A calm peace had settled over the kingdoms of Arlora and Torse since several months during the Regalia-Qadir war. The fortifications on both sides of the front lines had been reinforced and much of the battlements repaired, but the troops were still on high alert. Such truces between the two states were not uncommon, and they ended as quickly as they had usually settled in over very small reasons. The day was a chilly august 5th morn, cold winds from Ellador had carried and most of the soldiers were still practically freezing, huddled around small fires. The sky was filled with an eery blue glow from the North, as if a grim prediction of what was to come. Recently the two kingdoms had contracted various mage circles across the North which were not cracked down upon by Regalia to fill up their ranks. Since months, the largest concentration of magic users was present in the Arizon Brag, the largest Torse fortifications near the Arlora frontier. A thick fog approached from the north with a thunderstorm almost in tow, or inside the fog as it seemed. The soldiers paid little heed to it, as violent weather was a frequent in these waters. The warm water flowing from Farahdeen touching the cold air from Ellador caused the area to be frequented by rain and thunder storms. Though some mages became unsettled. The fog moved much faster than it normally should, at an unnatural pace even. Some wind mages tried to funnel the wind to stop the fog from approaching the land so as to keep the battlements clear in case of an Arloran attack. The attempts had no effects however, the fog in fact sped up and small lights appeared dancing around the fog. When it reached up the coastlines and cliffs, it suddenly stopped and rising from it came that same gaunt and ghastly female looking creature that the fisherman had seen before in Ellador. Some of those near the battlements where she appeared got a good look at her. She was definitely a female shape, though her body was almost made out of a light gray marble with small light emanating cracks and unreadable runes written over various body parts. She looked damaged though, some fingers were missing, some stone that used to form the eye was gone and her nose was chipped. Her head was adorned by a large crown that appeared like a mixture between a stag's horns and twisted vines coiling around themselves. Her eyes were solid light blue like the morning sky, and she appeared to simply hover, looking at those present. A turmoil came to be, the Humans were unsure of what was happening and some of the commanders even rolled forward the cannons and put the soldiers in high preparedness. Some of the Elven mages which had come from Ellador and Ithania with the circles approached and instantly recognized what they believed to be Estel, promptly dropping to their knees as closely to her as they could. They were the first to die, but arguably the ones spared what was to come next. The creature lifted an arm and then quickly slashed it down, the gesture as it went seemingly causing a barely visible shockwave to dash forward, hitting the kneeling Elves in succession. As the shockwave hit them, their bodies disintegrated into light blue luminescent dust, slowly floating in the air though with a ghastly chilling last scream. The Human commanders responded in horror and opened fire with their cannons, recently purchased from Regalia. The creature raised another arm, an invisible barrier stopped the cannonballs as they simply seemed to hit nothing and fell down like pebbles. As this started, along the whole cliff side never seen before creatures climbed up. slender looking humanoids with four arms, an elongated snout, antlers and various light trinkets wrapped around their limbs and horns. With great agility they assailed the walls. Some of the soldiers did not even have enough time to pull out their swords before they were pierced with the spears of the strange creatures. The female which was presumed to be Estel slowly floated forward, waving her hands around, disintegrating people left and right as she went. Meanwhile on the other side of the front line, the Arlorans saw light flashes and heard screams from the Torse side. The commander of the Arloran garrison decided to take no chances and defend against a pre-preemptive attack. They rolled their cannons forward and archers lined the fortifications. On his command, they opened fire. This only caused to increase confusion and the horror on the Torse side. Those who tried to retreat from the massacre were blasted apart by cannon fire and arrows, the whole front line now engaging in full out war while the fog creatures were slowly killing the entire Torse right line. The fighting lasted for about fifteen minutes until the Arlorans had ran out of their first ammo salvage. They silenced the cannons and waited for the thick gunpowder fog to dissipate. There was viritually nothing left of the Torse fortifications, nor of its defenders. In its stead, stood the fog creatures and the floating female figure looking at the Arloran side. The Arloran commanders were utterly confused, but assumed the Torse Kingdom had hired mercenaries of some land far away. The fact that their leader was floating obviously indicated a magical explanation. They took no chances, and made a decision that would probably serve to save them, even if they did not know it truly until it was over. The cannoneers loaded their cannons with the newly developed Lapis barrel shot, expensive but effective at neutralizing mages across a large area. The fog creatures took a sprint towards the Arloran fortifications, hounding almost until the cannons opened fire. The barrels flew trough the air, and when they reached the second stone line, exploded causing a large cloud of fine lapis dust to saturate the area. Those of the fog creatures caught in the blast suddenly stopped in their tracks and fell over forward, seemingly dead as all the lights they had in their eyes and on them went dark. Wave after wave of the fog creature bodies piled up over each other until even the female was hit by some and fell to the ground. She screamed some horrendous loud noise that could be heard from miles away, before disappearing, taking the rest of the still living fog creatures with her beyond the Torse front line. They disappeared into the fog while the Arlorans reloaded their cannons, still shaking in their boots over what they had just witnessed. News of the event quickly spread across the known continents, mostly towards Regalia and Daenshore. In Regalia, state of emergency was announced as a seemingly unknown threat had arisen from an unknown source. The army was being re-drafted and the State Council was given further executive control over future battle plans, as the Emperor had announced by letter to the Privy that he had received King Corentin who had fled Skiant, the capital of Torse. Apparently the fog creatures had now moved inland, crushed the various garrisons of Torse and laid waste to their capital. The Kingdom had effectively thrown itself at Regalia in hopes of avoiding utter destruction. Arlora meanwhile was in panic, knowing full well their military could not beat up against that and had sold large promises to the Regalian Empire for ever increasing shipments of Lapis dusts from Etosil. In Daendroc, the news that Estel may have re-appeared reinvigorated the crushed and otherwise hopeless morale of the various Elven groups. The Lothar were mostly disturbed however at the news of the Elves being the first to be killed. They reasoned that Estel has not yet forgiven the Elves for their failure to her service, and that even stricter Lothar ideals should be followed. The Unquäle meanwhile reasoned the Elves had died because they served the Humans. Various Unquäle tribes commenced attacking Human outposts and industry in earnest, harming many forestry camps and even attacking various cities in Daendroc. The Emperor of Regalia had meanwhile cancelled his vacation on the Ithanian coastline and started a campaign trough the rich city states down the coastline to gather funds to re-establish the Regalian army and jump start the reconstruction of the first fleet which had largely been ignored since the Qadir war due to lack of funds. On the Hadravian front meanwhile, the various states agreed to an uneasy truce. They signed the sun concord, believing that the fog that dragged along these creatures was the most heretical thing to the sun in centuries, given that the fog could completely block out the sun's witness. Some Qadir fleets sailed north to Ellador and beyond the Frozen Wastes where they ran into whatever came behind the fogs. Large flotilla's of floating ice chunks with dozens of those creatures on them would engage the Qadir fleets in combat between Ellador and the Frozen Expanse. In Ellador meanwhile, news had started spreading among Dwarven travelers and hunters that they had witnessed Dragons flying above in the skies. No reputable sources had been confirmed, though they spoke tales of white Elves riding pure white Dragons, elegantly gliding trough the skies and flying north, followed by the horns of the Winter Winds which were so frequently heard in the frozen tundras when the Isldar would approach. The known world settled into an uneasy calm before the storm as various countries and peoples were trying to make sense of what had occurred in Torse. The Ch'ien-ji scholars of Regalia were the first to come with a theory. They had divined that the Veil to the Void was wide open, a concept that to the Ch'ien-ji is like the sky falling down. Given that the attack took place in Torse, came from the North and was focused on a large concentration of mages, made them theorize that this was a Void Invasion taking place. What they could not come with an explanation for however, was that it was seemingly Estel at the head of this Invasion, and not Behesael or the Dark Banshee. The theological debate sparked some Elven riots in Regalia, as large groups of them believed their messiah had arisen to cast aside the Humans and restore the Elven Empire of old. Many of them were disillusioned poor Elves who had fallen on hard times, but they presented a viable threat due to looting and arson either way. And yet while the world was moving along and indeed accelerating above ground, things had started moving below ground as well. One stone here, another stone there. Then the wall collapsed. A single man, a single smirk, and a very large Seraph Conduit deep, very deep under the Regalian Sewers. He found it. This wasn't all over just yet.