A Timeline of the Gods’ War and Aftermath
The Gods’ War was a devastating event which took place some two thousand years prior to the start of The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms. The causes of the war are complex, but its outcome was the near-destruction of the mortal realm and the sundering of The Three. Its full repercussions are still developing.
A rough timeline:
- The Demon War: An unknown length of time before the war: The Three discover that demon blood is deadly to immortals. They hunt down and kill every demon they can find.
- T-minus 10 years before the war: Nahadoth and Enefa form a pairing, briefly rejecting Itempas. Itempas experiences his first moment of true solitude, his antithesis. He flees the Gods’ Realm, needing someone else to help him counter the pain and distress of abandonment. This person is Shahar Arameri, a high priestess of his own mortal religion. Itempas begins living with her, helping her raise Shinda Arameri?, their half-god, half-mortal child.
- The year of the war: Sieh helps persuade Itempas to return to the Gods’ Realm, where Nahadoth and Enefa apologize and attempt to negotiate a new relationship with him. Shahar Arameri, enraged by his abandonment of her, kills Shinda. Losing his child shatters Itempas’ still-fragile sanity. When Shahar offers him Shinda’s blood, he uses it to kill Enefa. He gives the last remnant of Enefa’s flesh, the Stone of Earth, to Shahar for safekeeping.
- The War: Nahadoth discovers Enefa’s body and goes mad with rage. He summons any of the godlings who will help him and attacks Itempas, trying to kill him. Other godlings, grieving or torn between their parents, attempt to calm him and call a truce, but all of Nahadoth’s forces are beyond reason; Nahadoth’s madness has infected them all. At the head of Nahadoth’s army are Sieh and the other godlings who later become the Enefadeh. Nahadoth gradually gains the upper hand against Itempas, but Shahar Arameri then uses the Stone of Earth to strike a blow at a decisive time. Itempas then flings Nahadoth to earth and forces him into mortal form. He sweeps through Nahadoth’s fighters, killing most of them and leaving only a handful of survivors: Sieh, Kurue, Zhakkarn, and an unknown fourth godling. The fourth godling refuses to accept enslavement; Itempas kills her too. He then incarnates the rest as mortals, then gives them and Nahadoth to Shahar Arameri’s son and daughter for safekeeping. He also gives them the Stone of Earth to wield on his behalf. The Gods’ War lasts three days in human time.
- Immediate Post-War: Due to Enefa’s death and the damage done by the godlings’ battles, the world is dying. Only a few thousand humans survive, and many species have been wiped out entirely. The Arameri have no choice but to use the magic of their captive gods to rebuild. They do this at first just to help mortals survive, but later, they offer their aid for a price: the nation which receives their help must agree to live by the commandments of the Order of Itempas and the Arameri. Eventually they send their captive gods to destroy any land which refuses this covenant.
- Also Post-War: Enefa’s soul lingers in the mortal realm, unable to pass on because of the remnant of her flesh that has been preserved by Itempas and given to the Arameri. Kahl, Enefa’s child by Sieh, is aware of her death, but he has been made to forget the circumstances of his birth; he remains in his hidden realm. The mortal realm, having lost 1/3 of its creative force, becomes a shadow of itself — less colorful, scents lose much of their power, all sensations are diminished. Gods and godlings become sterile.
- Two thousand years post-war, 20 years pre-trilogy: The Enefadeh finally find Enefa’s lost soul — but they realize it is badly damaged by its time unprotected in the mortal realm. They make a bargain with Kinneth Arameri, saving her husband and aiding her quest for vengeance in exchange for her allowing them to house Enefa’s soul in her unborn child. This child becomes Yeine Darr.
- The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms: Seeking a way to break the stalemate between himself and Nahadoth, Itempas makes a pact with Viraine Arameri and begins inhabiting his body in order to observe the Enefadeh. He convinces Kurue to betray them, which she does by murdering Kinneth Arameri. This, she believes correctly, will cause Dekarta Arameri to assume that Yeine has killed her own mother. Dekarta summons Yeine to Sky and forces her into the contest of heirs as the potential sacrifice. Though Dekarta later realizes Yeine did not kill Kinneth, by then it’s too late. Itempas kills Yeine, intending to destroy Enefa’s soul (thus destroying all life in the universe). Instead, Yeine’s soul devours Enefa’s, and through the power of the Stone of Earth she “reboots” as a new Enefa (with Yeine’s soul). She frees the Enefadeh, recreates Nahadoth’s Shadow/Hado/Ahad as a godling, and replenishes the universe’s full creative force. She and Nahadoth force Itempas into mortal form as a punishment. Meanwhile, Yeine’s rebirth as a new Enefa frees Kahl from his imprisonment, and restores the gods’ fertility.
- 100 years post-trilogy: The Kingdom of Gods. Bereft of the gods’ power, the Arameri finally fall from power. The Maelstrom becomes active again for the first time since Enefa’s birth; Sieh hears Its call when he forges a friendship with Shahar and Dekarta Arameri, and later Spider senses that Its attention is on Sieh. Dekarta and Sieh die in battle against Sieh’s son Kahl. When Shahar eventually dies, however, all three are reborn as a new Three, elsewhere in the cosmos.
Components of the Universe
- The Mortal Realm: Space, including the planet on which the Inheritance Trilogy takes place.
- The Gods’ Realm: Envelops and contains the Mortal Realm, though it has distinct regions of its own. A rarefied space in which gods may dwell safely in incorporeal form. Powerful demons can enter the Gods’ Realm briefly, if they are capable of shifting their form to suit the realm’s constantly-changing conditions.
- The Intentionality: A region just beyond the Gods’ Realm, where thoughts become reality. The gods use this as a playground/staging ground for experiments.
- The Thoughtwhale Sea: A failed universe which overlaps the Intentionality. The gods created it by accident and meant to get rid of it, but then thoughtwhales appeared in it, so Enefa claimed it as one of her realms. Thoughtwhales are the by-products of mortal sentience. Unlike gods, mortals cannot create new matter or worlds at will, but their creative force still has power. There are infinite thoughtwhales. Gods often go swimming with the creatures for fun.
- The Heavens and the Hells: Several thousand small universes built to house the souls of deceased mortals and gods. Each of the Three created some of them. As the term implies, some are pleasant and some are not. Souls are drawn to the heaven or hell that most closely resonates with their personality in life.