The World of the Rasenna
Born amidst fire, war, and blood, our forefathers found us sanctuary both ripe and plentiful just across the sea in a land of rustic wilds and jagged mountains. The twins, Fassus and Cassus led our people to their promised land, away from the old land of their storied father Arnza and toward the land of the future. Across the land, the brothers settled with Fassus the elder venturing to the lush and ripe south while Cassus the younger took to the hilltops and settled his people there. In the blood of both would spring Lakics, "the people of the hills" and from Cassus would come our father eternal, Rascus.
Rascus was a rowdy youth and a force of chaos in his father's court. One day, Rascus was found to have had an affair with a married servant girl. When the husband of the girl objected to the advances made by Rascus, he and the husband fought and after a brief struggle, Rascus had incidentally murdered the husband. Forced into a difficult choice, Cassus was forced to try his son and before long sent him into exile for the offense. In his exile, Rascus and some of his companions who joined him trailed up the river called Sacris and were told by oracles that they would find the center of the world on the banks of a golden river. Upon coming to the bank of the Sacris, Rascus and his party were so desperate for a place to settle they dumped their gold jewelry and items into the river and claimed to have finally found the river they were promised. From here the settlement of Deumueum as it was then known, came to be a place for exiles, murderers, fugitives, slaves, widows, orphans, and thieves. Deumueum was a place where those who had nothing went to find solitude in the presence of those who shared their plight. Rascus was mockingly called the "king of the beggars".
In the heart of the exiled prince now king was ambition. Rascus laid the foundations for our people and was first among the old fathers in prestige. Rascus proved our first father and first conqueror as when the nearby Lakics of Findana rose to challenge Deumueum, Rascus raised the first legion and rode out to destroy them. Celebrating the first triumph, Rascus raised the newborn Findanan prince to the heavens and promised to raise the boy as his own. This boy, the adopted son of Rascus came to be known as Quirinus and would become the 2nd king of the city and rename it after his adopted father.
Rascus' end would come when the city was beset by invaders, vile men from the north who rampaged through the hobbles and shelters of the city for three days. These invaders were allowed entry to the city by a vile slave named Giora who they thanked by throwing her from a nearby cliffside. Rascus, at this time an old and broken man witnessing the destruction of his city, called on the gods to grant blessings on the ruined city and aid it in recovering. The old ruler then threw himself from the same cliff face after the northerners departed. Thus this cliff became known as the Giorian Rock and came to be the end of a number of traitors to the Republic.
Those in the sun must eventually cede it, the age of great heroes and great fables came to an end when our great father Rascus founded his hobble at the edge of the river Sacris. Did he ponder what his village would become? What worthy successors would spring from Rascus' loins and encase the world in greatness? Great Rascus gave us our city, our land, our people, but we gave ourselves our Res Publica.
We remember heroes of ages past who nurtured our public thing, heroes of indomitable strength such as Marcus Ferras Furius, our great victor at the Fritigern who placed the great eagle standard on the mounds of every great city in Lakia. We remember heroes like the father of the fatherland Corlio, who taught our people the letter of the law, laid down our deities and our customs, and transformed our hobble into a respectable land worthy of our great people. We remember our honorable father Atius Vosorianus Mus, faithful and just in all things and defender of the city. We remember those heroes of ages past like Black Lars and Triumphal Haccedus who dually brought the southern barbarians to their knees and brought the lush lands of the Hakkatens to the people of Rasca.
Through vice, we convinced ourselves our Republic would last till the final days, through envy we demanded the world be brought to heel before us. Vice, envy, deceit, corruption, and decadence slithered their way into the hearts of our Republic and soon the heroes of ages past were ash, and the vipers who took their place spat on their graves as they whipped the slave till they halved in two. Born in a world of slime and decay the last hero of the Republic came, master of war, orator to rival any, statesman and commander of men, from whose brow the grass crown never left, Lucius Decimus Kotta!
Hail Kotta! Hail Kotta, the man of steel, the man who plunged his hands into the filth, into the rot and decay of our once-great Republic, and returned with hands full of gold made to build an empire. Kotta was born with wants, in the slums of Rasca to a family of ill repute and a father whom the world trampled. Noble Kota's mother, noble Aulia was who raised our hero and who instilled in his head thoughts of unrivaled greatness. The first office a young Kotta was elected to was a member of the Pontum Colligae and he donned the hood of the gods and received their divine messages. His translations of the omens of the gods brought him great popularity, and the games of Kaisie and Amiel were told for generations after as the day Kotta became loved by the people.
Ambition grew and the deeds of Kotta were too few to satisfy him, he next spent his years drastically rising through the Honorable Offices before the fateful day he posted his name on the list of the running Suffetes. None had a better case as none roused the people in the ways wise Kotta could. None knew the hardships that now befell the great people of the great city more than fair Kotta. None knew of the slime and rot that now sat on the pews, benches, and in the courthouses, as intricately as he. Kotta won with triumph and in his first year, he remained a vigorous symbol of the rising voices of opposition to the corrupt and decadent Curia. After his term finished, Kotta was a star, he had enacted policies that benefitted the people and he had captured the hearts of his fellow countrymen with his stunning rhetoric of future victories against the enemies of the Republic. Posted in the north he commanded the respect of all soldiery and when the day came that the cries of the Areuls became too much to bear, he led his men into uncharted lands to free them from their oppressive state. His campaign against the tyrants of Areul gained him great glory and a heroic visage in the eyes of those of the fatherland, his deeds were told aloud in the streets, and for every tribe conquered 12 days of feasting were made and Kotta kept the people in their revelry as Areul was a land of 10,000 peoples.
But Kotta's triumphs raised the ire of the Curia, for their power was in a calm and docile people who grew to resemble less and less of the public outside as Kotta rallied them to action. One of their own, Rabirius came to oppose the great general, and soon lines and swords would be drawn in defense of that ill-conceived notion of the Republic. A war between brothers would be fought when Kotta returned from conquest and war leaving only one standing. After an arduous fight, Kotta ascended to the summit of power, and the grass crown was bestowed to him as the savior of the Republic, a glory which would never leave his brow. But Kotta was now a senior man, his glories had been achieved and no challenges were known to him now so he looked to the future and saw it in his nephew, Marius.
Marius and his uncle were alike in many ways, ambitious, decisive, and wise beyond their years. Marius had fought in the wars of his uncle and shown himself to be made of steel, in the manner of his great uncle. When the civil war was won, Marius looked every bit like a young Kotta and as such looked to take his place when the great conqueror passed from this earthly realm on a quiet day in the heat of summer. struggling to regain the power of his departed kinsman, Marius would secure more for himself and his progeny than Kotta secured for him. Marius' conquests were of the mind, of the state, and of society as he reordered the long laws of the Rasenna and forged a new state in the decrepit, decaying mass that was the Republic. Known as the Princeps, Marius came to forge that which we call the Empire, an empire that raced towards the setting sun and grab the solar crown for itself. Known to us in posterity as Marian, the Princeps was unmatched in his genius, in his statecraft and in his foundational ethics with which every one of his successors would model their reign on that of the 1st.
Marian had given the world a new state, the Empire was to be the forerunner of civilization in that archaic age and his successors would secure his legacy through sword, words, and destiny. Aelius and his bastard grandson Darius brought our empire to the far banks of the Rhor, to the scorching deserts of the eastern barbarians. Under the tutelage of Marian's kin, the Empire expanded and solidified into the state it would remain in for centuries. In the 3 years of war that followed Victor's death, Paterus would win the crown and his sons would hold it after him for less than a quarter of a century. By this time, the empire had relied mainly on its arms and as such, the strongest was only to rule.
Paterus' seizure of the crown would set the precedent that would spill so much Rasennan blood in the coming centuries. After his weak son, Opellian's demise brought the vile tyrant Caelius and the empire would know the 5 years of his reign as a time of chaos and terror. Caelius' neglect of the provinces led to the Great Revolt, Caius Macsen would have drained the blood from the empire if only it meant his people were free. At Vurbose and Pontelonga he proved it and also proved only a just emperor would put him down. Luckily two just emperors were nearby as the rebel received a righteous thrashing by Amellian and his son Dicorus, putting an end to the Revolt of Macsen.
Amellian had seized power from the tyrant Caelius and his spawn would rule the empire and the world for nearly the next century. From Amellian came Dicorus, Dicorus gave us Aurakios but before came the regents Tzimikus and Cyrelius. Aurakios gave us Adienus, Adienus gave us the good cripple Alexius and Alexius gave us the coward Arrius.
Arrius lost the east and got his just return by the blade of Pracclius, the domestic of those lands. Given the state of the east, Pracclius waged a war he could not win as proven by his capture and death at the hands of the eastern barbarians. With no emperor to claim rule, Great Rursus rose to the challenge, the commander of the Oltune legions, defender of the faithful, and vanquisher of all the enemies of the empire. None matched him in martial valor or skill and none he left in the field as all bowed under the halo of the eternal and unconquered sun. Rursus promised eternal victory and was marching to achieve it when the folly of man slew him before his divine promise manifested itself and worldly men took his place just as it had been in the times of Paterus.
When Appian rose to the imperial red, the empire was already staggering, disease had sapped the men of their strength and halted the flow of gold in the lands of the eagle. What the empire needed was a man of action, of vision, and an arbiter of the will of dearly departed Rursus, instead, our empire received Appian, a sight to make the gods snicker at as their great joke neared its punchline. Appian was thought weak and proved it as his ministers trampled him and his generals, captains, and domestics knew him as the fool he was. His progeny were weaker as his heir Bracchus was more of the same and our people suffered under his furrowed brow and dumbstruck face, the tyrant and the jester all in one. Only bold Macerian, thankfully half removed from the blood of Appian, would be able to stem the tide of the empire and for a time he returned it to the promise of Rursus, of an eternal empire wed tightly to victory and stoked to steel in brimstone fires.
From Emperor Macellus to Ranavus the empire suffered its first blows not followed with overwhelming force. The legions were robbed of noble men and replaced by cowards and traitors. From Roman the Bloody to Roman the Shackled, the empire regained its might but saw it once more slip to the abyss. By the last century of the empire, Nepotian claimed the imperial red and his rule would see the west fall to the barbarians across the Rhor. He proved no equal to the Conqueror of the World as Radimane won a glorious empire from the crumbling corpse of our own. Now the empire was setting and the rays of light were growing dimmer and dimmer. In a final brilliant flash of the empire's past, Mathias and his son Arno would win us one last glory, conquests done in the manner of the old, winning them a seat at the table of the old patriarchs of our storied past. With the last breath of Arno, dying at the blades of foul men touched by greed, envy, and vanity, the great empire breathed its final breath.
God judged us unworthy, he laid out our great suffering and entrusted it to the hand of the barbarians. Turvil, clad in black and with a crown resting on his head given to him to destroy and plunge the world in blood came. Riding fire-breathing horses, the marauders came and for all our strength, all our valor, all our might, the Great Heathen King was not humbled for he was the humbler. Everywhere the hooves of his steed drove, the world quaked and quivered and all the world's lands fell pray to him. With bow and animal, he covered our world in darkness. He set the village ablaze as if it were a campfire in the night, his armies drank the rivers dry and turned them red in blood poured from the unfortunates who fell before him.
Now came the time of the fallen walls, "Oes y Fwlturiaid", the Age of Vultures came to peck out the heart of the empire and leave it dead and rotten. When the barbarians came to the walls of Rasca, they found not the city of 1,000 dreams, the city of Rascus or Corlio or Kotta or Marian. They found Rasca the city of thieves, of children, and of tired women and they destroyed it. The loot of 1,000 years of our great state was taken back to the pits of their crazed huts and thrown to bogs and swamps never to be seen again. The loot of 1,000 years was melted down into coins that they bartered for cheap whores and cheaper drinks. With a final deathly fury, the ghosts of our great fathers cast their ire on the destroyers of their city, and in time, the world knew the final, vengeful cry of the empire as it shook and crumbled beneath a fire born of a 1,000-year history turned to dust by the vices of man. So came the Dykairos, the age of fire came and swept the world into the billowing smoke of the worldwide chaos that would be known for generations.