History of the Sildanyar, People of the Veil
Origins of the People of the Veil
As their sages tell it, the sildanyari were once called the People of the Veil. They emerged from their fae realms into the mortal realm for reasons unknown and hotly debated, but what happened next is their greatest tragedy. As the sildanyari saw their power and lifespans begin to wane, they fell to politicking among themselves instead of joining together. Though no blood was shed, the war was cold and long.
For a time, the sildanyari found unity in war. They raised their longblades in honor of the gods of Light and according to some, began to turn the tide as protectors of sacred spaces. They would guard the hidden reaches and forests, and assist servitors of the God of Mana, that such a source flowed freely and cleanly unto the world. And for a time, they and the other forces were successful.
The Attack Upon the World Tree
However, during their long vigil, Gunahkar the Destroyer and the patron of the Daemons of the Void sought to undermine the power of Light's armies. Targeting the sildanyari, He flew into the Feywild, and would wound the World Tree with poison and unholy weapons. Though the elves arrayed their great magic against the God of Darkness, it was only through the combined might of the Gods of the Light and their allies that they were able to survive and drive off the nihilistic deity.
However, the courts would seek an answer as to how he had gained access in the first place. Whispers erupted, and sildanyari eyed one another speculatively, even as the World Tree bled.
Soon, those whispers became war.
The Division of the Clans
Perhaps Gunahkar did not act alone, or perhaps Taara's greed has always been great, casting these stones eons ago in an attempt to gain control of mana's flow. Regardless of the reason or source, or why or how--a sildanyari of the royal line made a pact with the goddess of Avarice and when this was uncovered, the sildanyari split in two. The followers of this noble claimed that the gods of Light had abandoned them in letting the World Tree come under attack. The blame they argued, lay not on the sildanyari, its protectors--but among the weakling, unworthy gods themselves. They would point then to Taara's investment in their race--and no other--as a sign of Her promise to them. Others would join ranks, not believing the so-obviously fictive tale their cousins wove, but harkening to the promise of power and acquisition.
In the end, the sildanyari drove off what would become the mul'niessa, and the mul'niessa retreated to the ends of the earth. The remaining sildanyari themselves would divide into two races--to counteract their own race's own failures, the sylvanori would seek the guidance of Gilead and Dana, and swear themselves to guard the wild places. The llyranesi would choose to honor Eluna, and set themselves forward as guardians over the ancient leylines and the flow of mana against Shadow's growth.
The llyranesi court today is founded by one lone and surviving heir of Myn'Sandriel. She led those who would come with her to what is today known as Llyranost. Here, somehow retaining a measure of the ancient and vaunted immortality of the old world, she reigns to this day. Known by many names, Cherylindrea surveys a dwindling race from the depths of a forest realm.
Today, Llyranost has grown in size over the centuries as more sildanyari from various parts of the world continue to migrate to it on great pilgrimages. Its growth occurred despite the sildanyari's naturally low birth rate; many traveled to the great forest and though many passed by, many others would remain. In time, the pilgrimages to Llyranost came to be known as the Gathering. The Gathering also became a way for the llyranesi and sylvanori to reaffirm their connection to the fey world that their ancestors had left and were barred from returning to. The mul'niessa turn to other sources, and do not practice this tradition.
Races of the Sildanyar
For years content within their isolation, the ascension of the dark goddess has alarmed the llyranesi and sylvanori greatly and placed them on the offensive for the first time in generations of the histories of men. Of late the llyranesi have moved forward into the world again, seeking ties and contacts with the world around them. The mul'niessa in Charn have taken the coming of the shadow goddess as a sign of divine proise, and have broken off to form their own nation.
The rest of the world waits to see what the sildanyari may do.