Maleri (Mal-er-eye) was once the homeland of the atia - powerful magic users who built a civilisation within the vast forests which envelop the land here.
Yet the atia were not content with the powers they had, and strived for more. In doing so, they inadvertently invoked the awesome power of mighty demons. This, in turn, led to the beginnings of the cataclysmic Great War.
It was during the Great War that the atian civilisation was destroyed beyond all repair. Their cities burned, their queen slain, and their government crushed, the atia scattered to the four winds, becoming wanderers.
Their homeland was never re-settled, and today the old atian ruins are the destinations for treasure hunters and adventure seekers alike. It is not a simple task to raid the old ruins, however, for dark things - remnants of the Great War - still lurk within them.
The surrounding forests, too, are far from safe. Nigh impassable due to the dense tree cover and foliage that fill them, the trees also home deadly creatures, from sinister giant spiders to massive ogres.
Collectively, Maleri comprises a large archipelago which extends southeast from Magador, as well as a large island several miles beyond that, and a large number of smaller islands around the coasts of both. At one time the entire area was a solid landmass. This was until the events of The Sundering, which tore apart the lands with massive earthquakes and tidal waves. Maleri was one of the worst affected places, as it is a low-lying area relatively close the the epicentre of that event. The changes the Sundering wrought left much of the shorelines as high, jagged cliffs, and the hinterlands scarred with deep valleys and harsh crevasses tearing into the landscape. Long ago, the land was ravaged with fire and left as a barren wilderness. But over the course of centuries, the land revitalised itself, and is now covered in a dense, lush forest that has grown unchecked to become the largest forested area upon Iiosia. The forest, named The Ashen Woods, is so-called for the colour of the bark of the giant trees that grow there. The woods are known for being dangerous and unnatural, and few venture there.
Maleri has no permanent in inhabitants which are not the beasts which dwell within the woods and ruins there. The last intelligent creatures who lived there were the atia, who built several large settlements along the coasts. Since their decline, however, no other civilization has come to settle there.
This is due largely due to the curse which is commonly thought to lay over the Ashen Woods, which has caused a great many fell beasts to make their home there. Among them exist hulking ogres, savage Night Hounds and terrifying Giant Spiders; as well as mysterious dryads and fea folk.
Worse than any of these, however, are the demons that have come to infest the area. Innumerable drath lurk within the woods, providing ample food for the warped creatures that already dwell there. Would-be adventurers claim that more powerful demons including reavers and mealkon dwell in the old ruins of the atian ruins.
Allyon (Al-ee-on) is the lost capital of the atia. Once famed to be the most beautiful city in the world, Allyon was a center of learning and magical study. Built deep within the forests, atop a rocky outcrop that overlooks a long, fertile valley, the city was the pinnacle of atian power. The city was built from the living wood of trees, said to be twisted and warped into buildings and walkways by magical energies, yet still remaining strong and vibrant and alive. The city was home to thousands of atia who utilised husks to perform menial tasks for them while they set their energies towards the study of music, magic, art and alchemy. Allyon was cast into ruin during the events of the The Great War, during which the atia fought bitterly to save their city from the oncoming tide of demons, but failed in doing so at a terrible cost. Since those events, centuries ago, Allyon has been lost to the world. There are records of several attempts to try to re-discover the city, generally led by ambitious atia attempting to do so either for their own glory or to reclaim the lost pride of their people. There are no records of anyone ever finding the city and returning back alive, however, and Allyon is fast becoming myth, with only a portion of even the atia now believing it still awaits to be discovered in the woods.
During the time of the atia, Kal-Alsha was a major center of maritime pursuits and cartography. Atian sailing vessels, manned by crews of husks and only having two or three atia aboard, would set sail from Kal-Alsha and explore the world. This was the staging ground that allowed the atia to map the world (before [[The Sundering]]) long before other races had even attempted to do so. In modern day Iiosia, the city lies largely underwater. Since it was built on the low-lying shoreline, it bore the brunt of several tsunamis that washed in from the Whitewater Sea. This has not stopped treasure hunters seeking riches among the ruins, though. Many fail, and often drown or fall prey to the things that lurk within the dangerous waters off the coast.
Kal-Releron was the atia's second city. It stood atop a cliff face and enabled the atia to gaze into the stars, naming the nearby planets and, thus, the gods of the atian pantheon. Because of this, Kal-Releron became a center of religious worship, with many temples and shrines within its borders. Because of this, it is one of the favoured destinations for treasure hunters seeking their fortune, as there were no doubt valuable offerings and adornments within such temples. However, the city still stands atop a vast and steep cliff, which is inaccessible from the southern shore for many directions. This means that those wishing to get to the site must travel many miles through the Ashen Woods, and thus brave the dangers therein to complete their journey. Few manage to do so.
Despite bring by far the most accessible of the lost atian strongholds, Kal-Archus (kal ark-us) still holds its secrets. Demons still continue to infest the ancient city despite several attempts by the atia themselves. Built just a hundred miles from the border with Magador, this is the favoured destination of those seeking treasures. It was here that artefacts such as the Fang of the Serpent, Spear of the Ancients and Stone of Seeking were recovered.
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