Almost two millennia later – over six thousand years ago – strong, powerfully built sailors calling themselves the Charad arrived on the shores of Theridae north of Ptolus in huge vessels made of wood and, curiously, stone. The Charad looked much like muscular, regal humans, but on a grander scale: The shortest stood over eight feet tall, the largest at least twice that height. The Charad, called the Charad Titans by the Lunas elves they first encountered, wielded powerful magical might as well as physical puissance. Their vast lore far outstripped even that of the Elder Elves.

Theridae is the ancient name for the region now known as Palastan, so named and governed by the Elder Elves.

The Charad never told their new elvish allies exactly where they hailed from, although they clearly came from across the sea. Speculation at the time suggested that they originated in the north, in the area now known as the Endless Sea of Ice. In those days, the theories profess, the ice did not cover that entire land, and the Charad thrived in those cold climes. If this is true, their homeland was long ago swallowed by ice as the world grew colder and is now forever gone.

A few years after arriving and conducting the first trade and information exchanges with the elves, the titans built the fortress Ar-Nampur on an isolated cape north of present-day Ptolus, near the site of their landing. The huge structure’s existence remains unknown to most people in modern times. Most sailors simply call the area the Fogbottom, because it is perpetually shrouded in mist. Due to the rocky coastline, ships always avoid it.

Eventually, after spending more than thirteen hundred years in Ar-Nampur and interacting with the native elves, most of the Charad decided to return to the sea. Presumably they sailed for their homeland—a homeland, of course, they had never seen, for this was not the same generation of titans that had come to Theridae originally. Truth be told, the Charad sensed a slowly growing evil in the land and wished to leave its presence. A small number would remain, having grown accustomed to the area and developed an affection for it.

They never told their brethren, as they waved good-bye to the departing Charad fleet, but those who stayed were drawn to the Spire and the lands around it. They built large fortresses surrounding it, and from them delved deep below the surface. The titans had no idea at the time, but they were compelled by the Galchutt, drawn to their immense power like moths to a flame. Through eldritch processes, they tapped into the sleeping Galchutt’s power and siphoned it into themselves. But such potent energies come at a price. The Galchutt’s evil nature tainted the power the Charad took, corrupting them into aberrant mockeries of the noble beings they once were.

Today those few who even know of the existence of the so-called Elder Titans think of them only as terrors and evil beings that lived in the area around the Spire for a thousand years. But because this time was almost four thousand years in the past, their very existence is hardly ever mentioned in today’s history texts. The corrupted titans spent most of their time underground. For a time, a small number of them conquered and ruled over the dark elves. Another group lived among the zaug. Still others spent their lives hoarding chaositech. It is unknown whether any of them still survive today.

Of course, it is entirely possible that the Charad came from some other, still undiscovered land to the east or west, accessible only by sea. Elvish sailors, however, will tell you that no such land exists.

DM TIPS

Kadavalus, the Ageless Titan, dwells in Goth Gulgamel and guards the entrance to the Gates of Delirium and the Entropy Sphere (page 499). He allied himself with Ghul long ago and exists today in undead form. For details, see page 497.