|Existence, regardless of what world it is upon, is defined by opposites. Light is the reverse of dark. Order stands opposed to chaos. And in the old schools of magic, frost existed in contrast to flame. In light of this fact, it isn’t surprising that even the great races of Dereth would one day find their antithetical mates. Such was the case in the years following the devastation of the Fifth Sending, after the Hopeslayer’s return rent the world asunder, that we faced and were overcome by our opposite, the Nemesis races.|
The first of the Nemesis to appear were the Drudges. For years they had plagued the more civilized races, raiding supplies, stealing minor trinkets, and generally making a nuisance of themselves. However, it was in those times when they came under the influence of a more powerful, more intelligent force that the Drudges showed what they were truly capable of. On one cold, dark night, the city of Cragstone was once again made aware of this. Under the control of a new master, whom we later discovered were the Dericost, the Drudges attacked the town with a might and fury never before seen in their kind. Human, Lugian, and Tumerok alike fought with all their strength to defend the town, but it was in vain. In but a single night, the Drudges had overwhelmed one of the capital cities of Dereth, leaving little but blood and ash in their wake.
Next to strike were the Burun. Like the Drudges, the Burun had existed on Dereth long before the Fifth Sending, and in that time we became aware of their most singular talent: Corruption. Unlike most races, the Burun were not fond of making war openly, but of letting their magic, subtle and sinister as it was, creep through the land, transforming it into swamps like those in which the Burun once dwelled upon another world. It was in this way that they made war upon the Tumerok. They let their magic quietly seep into the lands of Omishan, the decay and corruption destroying the delicate balance that the Tumerok held so dear. In time their sacred lands lay defiled, the spirits of those buried within provoked and at unease, and soon the Burun had severed the Tumerok from the nature that sustained them altogether.
The last Nemesis to appear was the Gurog. The youngest of the races, they appeared after the Fifth Sending. They were a fearsome breed, their battles raging more fiercely within their own kind than without, but one day a powerful chieftain named Bloodhorn rose among their ranks, assumed control over all the Gurog tribes, and eventually established an alliance with the Lugians of Linvak Tukal. This alliance proved fragile, however, when the Firstborn of Dericost, Geraine, easily slew Bloodhorn and turned the Gurog against the city of Tukal. The Lugians fought bravely for five days to defend their greatest city, but empowered by their new masters, the Gurog were too much to overcome. Great Tukal had fallen, and the Nemesis’s victory over us was complete.
It has been several centuries since our defeat at the hands of the Nemesis races, but little has changed. Great numbers of the Nemesis still stalk the land, though the schism the Archons created within the ranks of Dericost mean they do so more independently. Some corruption by the Burun still endures in Omishan, and there are those that to this day fight to reclaim that sacred land. Only the Drudges have gone through any significant alteration, casting off the shackles of slavery, seemingly once and for all, and establishing a nation of their own. An old saying goes that you’ll often find a little bit of yourself in even your greatest rival. If such is the case with the Drudges, perhaps there is yet hope for the rest of the Nemesis races, if not all Derethians as a whole.