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Qualinesti

Article written by Aslan Uth Tallshire


After more than half a century of fighting, the Kinslayer War had finally come to an end. With the war ending in somewhat of a stalemate, both the Empire of Ergoth and the nation of Silvanesti turned inward to lick their wounds.

Map of Qualinesti and the surrounding area as of 550 PC.
EnlargeMap of Qualinesti and the surrounding area as of 550 PC.
For the elves, it became apparent that life would never quite be the same for them. Those elves that had fought on the western frontier of Silvanesti felt different as though they had become detached from the eastern part of their nation. Over the last half century, families all over the western frontier had become married and interbred with their Ergothian neighbors; a fact that seemed to disgust their eastern countrymen. By the time war broke out, many families were not sure which side to fight on. This also led to some resentment on the part of the western elves since they had no choice but to fight for their home nation, the same nation that now seemed to turn their back on them following the war.

In time, the western elves sued for change. Prince Kith-Kanan, who had led the western elves throughout the Kinslayer War, appealed to his brother King Sithas for western soverignty. Agreeing with his brother that change was needed, King Sithas granted the western elves independence from the nation of Silvanesti. Kith-Kanan, now the new king of the western elves, bid his brother farewell and with his followers left in peace.

For 67 years, the western elves lived on the plains and tried to rebuild their war-torn lands. Life was difficult for many, especially for those that had lived in the great forests of Silvanesti and were used to the opulence of their former nation.

Once again, war broke out further to the west. This time however, it did not involve the elves. The Empire of Ergoth and the dwarven nation of Thorbardin became engaged in a major land and mining dispute known as the War of the Mountain. Knowing of his great diplomacy skills, the emperor of Ergoth summoned Kith-Kanan to his imperial court in Daltigoth. There in the capital city, Kith-Kanan was able to help the Emperor negotiate a peace treaty with the dwarves. Known as the Swordsheath Scroll, this treaty would create a new nation for the western elves while at the same time creating a buffer between the Empire of Ergoth and the nation of Thorbardin. With all parties satisfied Kith-Kanan returned to his people.

Over the next few decades there was a mass migration as Kith-Kanan led his followers off the plains and into the forests. There he founded the new capital of Qualinost and the surrounding nation of Qualinesti. Immediately upon establishing the capital, Kith-Kanan charted for trading posts to be set up all along the nation's borders. In time, the new nation of Qualinesti was able to join in a trading triangle between itself, Ergoth and Thorbardin. Continuing his efforts to unify the surrounding nations, Kith-Kanan appeals to men, dwarves and elves to raise the massive fortress of Pax Tharkas as a monument of peace. Upon its completion, the fortress becomes a major trading post garrisoned by both elves and dwarves, and serves as a constant reminder of the nations' friendship and trust in one another.

Age of Might

Throughout the rest of the Age of Dreams and the Age of Might, Qualinesti was able to prosper. The nation grew strong and was recognized as one of the leading nations on Ansalon. Wars would come and go drawing the nation into the conflicts however they generally did not affect the elves within their homeland. The Third Dragon War brought conflict to Qualinesti's very gates however the nation was able to hold out throughout the course of the war with most of the fighting being centered at Pax Tharkas in the south. Within a few years after the war, Qualinesti was able to once again able to reestablish trade and flourish.

Age of Despair

Although Qualinesti fared better than most nations during the cataclysm, it too shared the destruction and after effects of the disaster. Most of Qualinesti's northern forests and towns disappeared instantly as tidal waves swept them away into the New Sea. Disease and famine soon swept through land taking its toll on the population. As lawlessness erupted across the lands, raids became frequent. Large bands of starving humans invaded Qualinesti, pillaging and looting anything they could. With most of the outlying communities being destroyed, the Speaker of the Sun (King) Solostaran ordered the border nations sealed. All humans were expelled from the land and the elves set up a defensive perimeter to their lands. Any non-elves entering the land were killed on site. With this act, Qualinesti turned away from the world.

As the War of the Lance erupted across the continent, Qualinesti once again faced a great threat. Due to their isolationist attitude, the Qualinesti nation was unprepared for the war that approached their lands. With the reappearance of dragons and the massive armies forming on their borders, the elves knew they would not survive the coming invasion. Weighing their limited options, King Solostaran ordered the complete evacuation of Qualinesti. The population fled westward across the Straits of Algoni while the elven rear guard protected their retreat and cut the last few remaining bridges into Qualinost. Those that remained were never seen alive again; however it was said that as the dragonarmies invaded, the last of the elven guard made them pay for every step taken into their lands. Leaving from Porliost, the final refugees witnessed the horror as great dragons swept over the land burning the towns and massive tracts of forest. The elves that had inhabited this land for thousands of years were now exiles.

Arriving on Southern Ergoth, the population of Qualinesti joined their eastern Silvanesti cousins who were also forced to evacuate their homeland. Here the populations of both former nations tried to survive. Prior to the evacuation, King Solostaran had ordered for the construction of refugee city. Living in their new home of Qualimori, the elves eked out a humble existence.

Even after the war had ended, it would be ten long years before the Qualinesti would attempt to return to their former homeland. Upon arriving, the first scouts were horrified at what they found. Great regions of the forest were devastated. Even using woodshaping magic, it would take decades to restore the woodlands to their natural state. Upon arriving in Qualinost, their hearts sunk upon seeing the city. A good portion of the city was in a state of ruin. With the bridges cut, the invading army was not able to make it across the ravines; however the dragons wreaked havoc upon the ancient city. Two of the great arched bridges that spanned alongside the city had collapsed. Fragments of rose quartz which once formed some of the taller buildings lay scattered about. Portions of the streets were gouged up and the trees were burned. Reporting back to the Speaker, the elves knew it would be a long time before Qualinesti was ever restored.

Over time the elves returned and they rebuilt their war-torn lands. The capital was restored to its former glory and the forest began its healing process. Throughout the land rejuvenation came about. The Qualinesti nation reestablished ties with their dwarven neighbors to the south. Trade that has not been seen since before the cataclysm emerged between the nations of the region. As the decades passed, the elves were once again able to prosper.

Age of Mortals

During the Chaos War, Qualinesti once again fell under attack. Rushing into the nation like a storm, the Dark Knights conquered the nation before the elves even had time to react. Not long after the great Dragon Overlord Beryllinthranox arrived and took control of the entire region. Using the Dark Knights, the dragon was able to control the nation and the surrounding land through marshal law. Those who did not yield were destroyed. Using the elven nation as a base, the dragon overlord searched through the southern forests for the legendary Towers of High Sorcery. Many elves were pressed into her service to help in this endeavor. Suffering under this oppressive regime, many elves conspired to somehow bring about their liberation.

As the War of Souls set upon the continent, it suddenly became apparent to the elves that the dragon overlord no longer had any use for them. Unable to find the Towers of High Sorcery and tired of the elves, the dragon's patience had finally worn out. The elves knew their destruction was imminent. Working alongside their dwarven neighbors, and with Dark Knights who no longer felt allegiance to the dragon, a good portion of Qualinesti's population was smuggled out of the city through underground tunnels that had been built specifically for this type of evacuation. Those that remained in the city prepared themselves for Beryllinthranox's attack. The battle that followed would change the elves of Qualinesti for all time. During the horrific battle, Beryllinthranox was finally slain as she flew above the city. Falling from the sky, the massive dragon overlord plunged into the city. From the force of her weight, the tunnels and substructure beneath the city collapsed into a depression destroying Qualinost. The waters of the White-Rage River quickly rushed in and covered the city creating a new lake.

In the present day, the remaining elves have been forced from their homeland. Disorganized and without their capital, the rest of the elven settlements were overrun by human raiders and goblins. The survivors of Qualinesti are scattered. Those that have regrouped have migrated onto the Plains of Dust. Led by Speaker of the Sun Gilthas, the last of the Qualinesti race remain in exile and without direction.

Cities

Qualinost - Capital
Acris
Ahlanost
Bianost
Dark Raven - Pre-Cataclysm
Dark Tower
Flowing River - Pre-Cataclysm
Frenost
Gilthanost
Havlinost
Javinost
Kishpa's Tower
Lauranost
Mereklar - Pre-Cataclysm
Porlinost
Shrivost
Swift Runner - Pre-Cataclysm
Tower of High Sorcery at Wayreth

Ruins

Almurk
Blood Fortress
Castle uth Liam - Pre-Cataclysm
Dom-Shu Village - Pre-Cataclysm
Karad-Shu Village - Pre-Cataclysm
Mann
Nalune
Sanguine Manor
Therigal

Mystical and Holy Sites

Anaya's Tree
Wilder Green

Geography

Ahlanlas River
Elfstream
Kagonesti Woods
Mithranhana Forest (Qualinesti Forest)
Mount Thelalan
Wayreth Forest
Windsrun River
Zivilyn's Carpet

References

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This article has been viewed 14,104 times. It was added on July 4, 2005, and was last modified on January 1, 2010.

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