The tales vary in the telling, but after the act of Creation, the gods walked the face of O’ous among the lesser races they fostered. There was no afterlife, as the deities preserved their favored followers and erased those that displeased them. All was fickle mutability, and the world was remade dozens of times over as each divinity changed the work of others to best suit its own image.
Over time the gods fell into conflict, their followers became thralls and pawns instead of children and worshipers. The advent of death as a grand scorekeeping and the rise of Hekhet to godhood in a deception culminating in the erasure of the first human pantheon all led to the Compact- the gods removed themselves from the world and established rules of how they could influence it. Atrian, the Arbiter, the Lawgiver, the Keeper of the Gates was formed from all the gods’ powers to stand sentinel over the division of O’ous from the realms of the deities.
Thus did the age of gods end, and that of mortals begin. The races each took their first steps away from the awful adoration of their living gods towards their own uncertain futures.
Some gods, however, did not abide such severance with their kind. Through history, fractures in the barriers between worlds have formed and those intrepid or foolish enough to seek them out are ever-present, and the gods and dreamers still work to change the way of things. Fogen, the Trickster, the Walker Between had left a way open to change the world again, locking most of his power and consciousness in an artifact that could bridge the worlds again. In the culmination of centuries of planning and intrigue the Drow and human mages of Nehesh gained control of the Gift and attempted to use its power to bring armies of outsiders into the world that they might conquer it, but were stopped in the midst of their rituals by a brave few and the sacrifice of many.
The gods had to respond to heal the breaks in reality, and once more brought their true power to the face of O’ous. The races had grown, though, and did not want a heavy hand so the gods’ power was used more deftly, and they wax and wane in power based on the strength of mortal faith.
Years have passed, and much is changed. Empires have risen and fallen in the 250 years since the Shattering; much has been lost, and more yet awaits discovery. Shumanpoor, long cut off from the world by elemental interdiction, now reaches out with the Great Ships, filled with colonists and trade goods to relieve the pressures of overpopulation and internal dissent. Ancient dragons send their minions and pawns out to subvert or conquer in the name of the Wyrmsee, and to play out their own will across the world. These new wanderers bear their own tales of lands further removed. Strange murmurings of old faiths and nameless cults boil up across all lands as forgotten entities insinuate themselves into the hearts of mortals, now that the barriers of the world are thinned.
There are many stories to tell, would you care to hear more?