Look ye upon the remnants of our glory. Before the descent of the hordes the mighty Karaadian Empire spanned the known world, from the eastern plains and the red hills, all the way to the Northern frontier. We brought learning, and roads, security and peace to every people we touched. The sciences of alchemy, engineering, and arcanology were advanced beyond the dreams of our rude ancestors. A golden age of man undreamed of was in our grasp, and then the hordes came. Orcs and goblins, and things unspeakable came howling out of the hills, and the legions were called to meet them.
For 300 years the legions fought, unshakeable in their duty. In the tens of thousands they bled and died so that our territories would never know the tread of an enemy boot. For 300 years the Empire was true to its duty, and our valor was repaid with treason. Without the presence of the legions, one by one the territories barbarian leaders, fueled by shortsighted ambition, rebelled. The Empire was unable to turn from our fight in the east to chastise them properly, and so others were encouraged and year-by-year the empire was diminished.
So here we stand today, and know that we all stand diminished, where once humanity was a united force to tremble the world, today we stand divided and warring with ourselves. Our learning has been lost. Our highways are crumbling. Our legions have first been pushed from the eastern plains, and then across the river Hythallon. And you faithless barbarians rejoice, and cry that we are defeated, your independence assured.
Where will your vaunted independence be when the inhuman hordes swallow us all? Every year their raids grow stronger, their magecraft more complex, and all that stands between them and you has been the Empires sense of duty, for even in rebellion we have defended you.
So pray now barbarians, pray to your crude gods and to the imperial triumvirate, which we brought you. Pray that the empire triumphs and returns to chastise your betrayal. Pray that the blood we will shed retaking your lands for the glory of the empire can serve as atonement for your betrayal. For the decline of the empire is not merely the decline of a nation, but the decline of humankind, and if the empire should ultimately fail, so too shall humanity. The fall of the Karaadian empire will usher in an era of darkness from which I fear humanity shall never emerge.
-Kenhai Althen, Imperial historian