This is the third part of last Friday’s post, Age Before Ages: D&D Ancient History.
Age of Mortals
The first mortal was created by accident when Piscaethces, a massive Far Realm creature perhaps related to the Sleeping Ones, brushed against the prime material plane, creating the first monsterous aquatic aboleth. As they have perfect genetic memory, all aboleths remember this event.
Over millions of years the aboleths came to dominate the material plane, learning the first magic and creating creatures - the oozes, at first, and later the first humanoids, who they created as slaves. Precisely who created what race is unclear, but the gods found that mortal faith increased their power. In exchange, they freed the humanoids from aboleth control.
The mortals were also valuable to the primordial creatures for their souls, which the baernaloths used to build into the evil yugoloths, and the obyriths to create the first demons, the tanar’ri. The first tanar’ri, Demogorgon, was forged from the primal fears of the first mortal souls. The tanar’ri became numerous, and overthrew most of the obyriths before turning against Asmodeus’ devils, whose numbers included deities’ servants turned traitor for the promise of power.
The Age before Ages concluded at the Battle of Pesh, a colossal battle between law and chaos. On the side of Law were the Wind Dukes of Aaqa, an air elemental race whose empire spanned many worlds, while Chaos included demons and evil elder elementals led by an obyrith called the Queen of Chaos. The result was a stalemate: the Wind Dukes destroyed or banished the most powerful demons, but lost too many of their number to continue the battle of law against chaos.
Age of Men
With the primordials weakened and the gods reinforced by exponentially increasing numbers of mortal worshippers, the era of humanoids and their chosen deities began.
In the millennia after the Battle of Pesh, humans and the other races created civilization and have learned the use of magic. The demons and devils continue to fight each other in what has become termed the Blood War, although few are ancient enough to remember why it started.
The Wind Dukes never recovered their losses.
Age of Worms
Doomsayers speak of the end times, an era of destruction known as the Age of Worms. Servants of mad cults work to hurry this along. Neither the deities nor the remaining primordial evils want this to happen any time soon, since both benefit from the continuing growth of the human race.