Apr 18, 2013

Parn Tandalorn - The Great Archive

Near the headwaters of the Tandalorn River there is a strange and magical community, high in the mountains, that is dedicated to the pursuit of knowledge.  This is the site of the fantastic Great Library of Parn Tandalorn.  It was settled by a group of monks and priests from the Olmart Empire that accompanied the first settlers to come into the Valley, south of the great river.  They brought with them soldiers, as well as their own families, seeking to establish a new community, in the strange and dangerous land of the Valley.

Parn Tandalorn

It was here, with the various artifacts and ruined sites of the Old Ones, that the Archivists thought they could study and make sense of what the world was like before the advent of Man.  To understand what the Archivists (the original settlers of the Great Library and the community there) understood about man, it is important to understand how they viewed Man's place in the world.  This was, of course, very different than the understanding that the inhabitants, with their knowledge of the three goddesses, and some of the subjected peoples of the old empire - such as the Lass Indol and their goddesses of the Seasons.  The old orders of the Olmart empire see the coming of man as some fulfillment of the element of magic.  The old races were not enough - the Elves themselves are magic, the Dwarves capture magic, the Saurials sing of magic, but only Man can create magic.  Hence, the element itself was responsible for bringing man into the world.  So, they came to study the Old Ones and find out what they could about them, and see whey there were passed over by Magic and why Man was chosen/birthed instead.

In coming into contact with the artifacts, and surviving learning, of the Old Ones, the Archivists learned something very, very different.  The Old Ones were enthralled, and worshipped (largely out of fear) their own elemental god.  There were immensely powerful beings, from another dimension, that were bent on the destruction of reality.  The Old Ones believed that by supplication and appeasement, they could keep them (the elemental gods) pacified until their knowledge of magic advanced to such a point that they could imprison them.  This they did, but at a cost.  Great structures were build by Ba'a Zarn the builder, in order to serve as the locks on the dimensional prisons that the elemental gods are imprisoned in.  These structures are part of the world, in the Valley, and the Archivists are beginning to learn the secrets of the Great River, the King's Highway, Fire Mountain, and the Tears of Heaven.  But not all the secrets, not yet.

The Archivists do know that after the elemental gods were imprisoned, that the young gods and goddesses of the world began to awaken - with the help of The Krunge, and Mika, and Earnissa.  Bronc and Photoss escaped, and became the two Warrior gods known as the Storm King and the Sun King, and their people (the Storm King barbarians in the north, and the Sun King barbarians in the south) have flourished, albeit the tainting of the Sun King by his diabolical mistress has led to a certain strain of chaos and evil that has suffused the culture of the Sun King barbarians.  The three goddesses have awoken, and even the forces of the seasons that the Lass Indol venerated have become goddesses.

Something else that the Archivists realize, that much of the remainder of the Valley (the Westroners, the Northerners, the Southerners and many of the non-humans) is that there is still a taint of power from the elemental gods loose in the world.  There are, in secret, and in shadow, pocket of worshipers who feel as if they can gain power, by serving the four sleeping horrors.  Some, the mad and those deranged by evil, see the bringing about the destruction of the world through the doings of elemental god magic, as a desirable goal.  These are the evil forces that the Archivists are arranged against.

Alas, however, the Archivists, in their quest for magic and knowledge, and their desire to exist as a separate community, has led them into a secluded and isolationist state.  They live, alone in their community of towers, schools, halls of study, and dens of magic, without any real thought to intervention in the outside world.  Let the petty barons fight over lands and holdings.  Let the Elves bicker over the boundaries between Faery and the world.  Let the Dwarves hollow out all the mountains, and make war against the orcs and goblins they find there.  The Archivists have much more important things to do - at Parn Tandalorn.


  1. Love the picture! New follower here. I'm stopping by from the "A to Z" challenge and I look forward to visiting again.


    1. Thanks, Sylvia! I look forward to checking out Writing in Wonderland as well!

  2. I always love the images on your blog as well. It's always guaranteed to be a fun read too. :)

    #atozchallenge, Kristen's blog: kristenhead.blogspot.com