Excerpts from "A study of poetry in the 43rd century post Cataclysm." By Sister Vana Islewight
The following poem is most interesting in that a version of it still exists today. What makes it especially noteworthy is that the original is almost certainly a call to arms against the Sisterhood of Ire's keep; the forth verse (completely missing from the modern variation) makes this abundantly clear. Other noteworthy changes are that, as we've seen in other poems of this era, the archaic word 'sun' is used instead of 'star' and the spelling of the red lamp Rathis, is still 'Rethis'. Here is the poem in full:
Ever gone is Fehires golden sunlight,
Ever missed are all things green that grew here,
Ever lost are all the lands around us,
Ever dim is all the world we live in.
Fehire fell and swindled us of sunlight,
Beios the blue is cold compensation,
Rethis only angers when she waxes,
Di on waning: hope to desperation.
Never days to bask in Fehire's sunlight,
Never nights to sleep in coal black comfort,
Never rosy dawn in which to delight,
Ever haunting twilight tries to take us.
Evergloom: three-pronged land on barren moon,
Rotting lands, and where Keep stands: rotten core.
The Fourteen Kingdoms pay the Sisters boon,
The cost? Their daughters to prop up Ire's rule.
Ever hope to reignite,
Ever sharp swords make light,
Ever long wives-tales hark,
Evergloom, but never dark.
As the forth verse is completely new to me, I shall start the breakdown there. 'Three-pronged land' almost certainly is a reference to the triangular shape of the inhabitable land between the three lamps (which we call Evergloom), and the 'barren moon' is certainly referring to the wasteland beyond.
Although the world's eco-system has stabalised now, the 43rd century post Cataclysm world was still undergoing great changes as the plant life was replaced with fungi. This I believe is what 'Rotting lands' is referencing. There was no way for those people to know it would work out fine in the end. Of course, the 'rotten core' is meant to be Ires' Keep, but I cannot fathom, even in those times, why anyone would blame us Sisters for the fall of Fehire...
Excerpts from "A Succinct History of Evergloom for the Uninitiated Novice upon joining the Faculty of Death" by Grace Silkweaver
Chapter 18 - The First Cataclysm.
Sixteen thousand years ago, the star, from which Ever gained all its light was failing. Growing, cooling, and threatening to engulf all of Ever. Earthquakes, storms, and strange illnesses were already causing vast damage and untold deaths.
The population is estimated to be around three billion at this time (a huge number compared to the two-hundred thousand that reside here now). Of course, more people alive meant more women with magical gifts and a much larger Sisterhood. While we don't know the exact numbers, we do know that Ire's Keep was just one of nearly three-hundred strongholds dedicated to the Sisterhood, and that more were under construction. Some scholars claim that there were more sisters alive then, than there are people alive on Ever today (although I should add this is merely speculation).
The power of the Sisterhood back then was unimaginably vast, and they came up with a solution. They would move the planet out into the darkness of space and away from the star. Now, I have heard it said amongst non-sisters that this is just a legend, yet it is not. There is overwhelming proof and evidence to support this theory (see appendix C).
To compensate for the effects of this movement, the Sisters created four magical lamps. These had a dual purpose of stabalising Ever during the planet's movement, and then lighting it in the darkness. One can only imagine the power involved in such an undertaking, but sufficed to say that the Sisterhood could not even hope to do a similar feat now. In truth, we cannot even gain entry into the three remaining lamps, and our most accomplished Sisters cannot propose a theory on how they were constructed.
Obviously, the move failed which led to the event known to most Sisters as 'The Cataclysm', yet those of us in the Faculty of Death know it as 'The First Cataclysm'.
The reason: Fehire the White Lamp, failed.
It was meant to be the brightest of the four, simulating the failing star's light, while the remaining three were meant to simulate that light reflected off three moons the planet was said to have had (see chapter 7). When the move began, Fehire's light died and it collapsed into ruin. Few accounts of the following ruination exist, but we know that billions died instantly as the planet shook and trembled. And that millions more died in the years after as crops failed in the darkness.
Ire's keep was the only stronghold of the Sisterhood that survived, and the few remaining Sisters found there way here. They came together in one great effort to move the remaining lamps, and change their cycle; creating a triangle of constant light and stability with Ire's Keep at its center. This is the land that we now refer to as Evergloom, and all outside it is a dead wasteland.
Those survivors who could be moved, were brought into Evergloom, yet nothing would be the same again. Trees and plants were replaced by fungus, and the great magics that existed waned with the passing of the years.
This is the history that all Sisters in Ire's Keep learn, and much is known of it in the Fourteen Kingdoms that make up this land. It is, as far as we know, the truth... yet it is not the whole truth. As one dedicated to the Faculty of Death, it is important that you know why this happened, and the events that occurred afterwards, events that we know as 'The Second Cataclysm'.
Chapter 19 - The Second Cataclysm.
Many of the Evergloom graphics have been created out-of-house, but this new interior collection we've been working on this week has been created by our team and we are really pleased with the results.
Books have a huge role in Evergloom, not just to expand on the vast lore, but also as a way to impart magical knowledge, and the Library at Ire's Keep (a vast and sprawling building filled with secret passageways and mysteries) really needed to reflect this.