Chaos wars, Chaos war or Commonground Discord was a serf uprising that turned into an armed conflict between many parties. It resulted in the downfall of the state of Toor, establishment of Commonground and the rule of the Five Kings.
Wealth inequality in Toor led to a serf uprising that unexpectedly destroyed Toor's key fortress Hohned. Toor sent an army to quell the uprising, while the rebels began assembling an army to defend themselves.
Toor's army was not able to immediately defeat the uprising and stationed in the area for the winter.
Wanting to speed the dissolution of the rebellion, Toor asked a loyal superhero warrior to destroy the rebel camp, but ended up angering him and he burned down the capital of Toor, killing most of the court. At about the same time a warlord by the name of Jolder invaded the area from the west and destroyed much of Toor's army. This ended Toor as a country.
Rebels began infighting and ended up defeating the army of the original uprising, while some united against Jolder. One of the rebels, a superhero warrior named Gened, was able to forge peace with Jolder by impressing him in battle. They then united against the Empire of Barud, which used the disarray in the north to prepare for a major campaign.
Five kings of the north - Jolder, Gened, Agzor, Noana Rolee and Svonōr Fogon - stood together against the army of Barud.
Course of the conflict
Toor became exceedingly wealthy due to its subjugation of the Laeooy Coast, which allowed it to take advantage of abundant metal deposits. The country quickly experienced a rise in wealth inequality, with the mines being served by families who were forced to sell themselves into serfdom to mineowners, in order to make a living.
A community leader by the name of Keetoh tried to ignite a freedom movement for several years, when one of his loyal followers, a miner named Gened, discovered that he can wield belequel as if it was a piece of cotton. Gened pledged to use his powers not to enrich himself and his family, but to free his people from Toor's yoke.
Toor had two major cities in the area: a military fortress called Hohned and the seat of Toor's royalty, Chusoh. Using his powers, Gened quickly freed many of the local miners, by using surprise attacks with belequel stones against mine guards. News of Gened and his powers allowed Keetoh to quickly assemble a sizeable army and being the uprising.
The army attacked Hohned, with Gened using belequel stones to destroy city gates and induce panic in Hohned's army, killing dozens upon dozens of soldiers by throwing belequel stones at them. Hohned was defeated, but the battle ended up lasting for several days, with heavy rebel losses. With most of the Hohned army still being intact and simply retreating to Chusoh, Gened believed that they must follow it and finish it off. Otherwise, he believed, Toor would regroup and return with a bigger force to quell the uprising. But Keetoh disagreed, citing heavy rebel losses and saying that they are not conquerors, but people defeating their land.
Gened continued to disagree, very vocally. Keetoh was afraid that Gened, whose standing in the community was that of a hero, would sway people's opinion on the matter, and had him imprisoned. He then proclaimed the sovereignty of the whole area and called it Commonground, describing it as a land of free people. His close aide, Gozodōroh, became the general of the Commonground and began recruiting and training the army.
Meanwhile, Gole Tōrmoh had indeed organized his forces to suppress the rebellion and sent a 40,000-strong army under the command of Uroh Oroat (Lord Oroat). Uroh Oroat decided to attack the miners from behind and maneuvered around the area to emerge from the Yassa-pao valley. He quickly reclaimed several territories, but got bogged down in guerilla warfare with the decentralized communities of miners, who knew the area better and were willing to retreat and then come back to their mines. Uroh Oroat then set up camp at one of the pro-Chusoh mines with the intention to resume his conquest in spring.
Wanting to speed up their victory, Tōrmoh's court managed to get the support of Agzor, a young superhero warrior who lived in the cold plains to the east of Quoon River. Agzor was tasked to use his powers to incinerate Keetoh's camp.
The simple "rebels against mineowners" narrative began to fall apart at around this point in the conflict.
First, some miners began local wars with each other, trying to use the situation to fight out old rivalries or simply gain more land. In some cases, mineowners would provide money and even troops to their former serfs in order to maintain some sort of ownership in the land. One of the most aggressive was Rolee, a mine which belonged to the wealthy courtier Noana Rolee. So by the time Gozodōroh was ready to march on Uroh Oroat, she had to first establish the dominance of her own forces against several of the other rebel armies. She was successful at first, but was eventually killed, with her army decisively defeated by the Rolee. Rolee then followed the retreating army to Koalderood, where in the final battle she defeated the resistance army, capturing and executing Toreetoh, Keetoh's sister who became the de-facto leader by that time.
Second, a small group of Gened's followers found out about his imprisonment and helped him escape. Gened then abandoned Keetoh, who would later perish when Rolee would overtake Koalderood, the mine where Keetoh's camp was based.
But while this could have been good news for Chusoh, by this time Chusoh did not exist: as Agzor approached Keetoh's camp, he found out that he was known among the populace as Tōrmoh's Pet Destroyer and that Gole Tōrmoh and his court used Agzor's loyalty to the Gole as a weapon against the miners for many years now. This angered Agzor, so instead of destroying Keetoh's camp, he turned around, came to Chusoh and set fire to the palace. As Chusoh was mostly built with wood, fire quickly expanded and destroyed the whole city, killing many people. This had effectively dissolved the state of Toor, as the set of unexpected events - the destruction of Hohned, the prolonged violence at Commonground, the destruction of Chusoh and with it the death of most of its court - had Deeras and Gaskal secede and stay away from the events at Commonground.
Meanwhile, an army from the west led by a superhero warrior Jolder attacked Floroh and then Jhet. Uroh Oroat confronted Jolder at Jhet, but lost. He managed to save part of his army and retreat to the east, bringing worrying news of this conqueror to the miners and uniting forces with some of them. This was happening as Gozodōroh's army was just defeated by Rolee. Uroh Oroat's insistence on uniting against Jolder convinced most of the Laeooy Coast to ignore the fate of the resistance army, which led to its decisive defeat at the hand of Rolee just a month later.
Gened also heard the news about Jolder, but decided to confront Jolder alone. He and several of his close supporters, including Forl, traveled northwest and encountered Jolder as he was just leaving Jhet. Seeing a small group in front of his army, Jolder used his ability and attacked them with a tsatskee, but Gened shot a belequel kippie between its eyes, killing it instantly. Jolder was impressed by Gened's ability and his bravery and offered him friendship.
Unaware that Chusoh was destroyed by Agzor and still believing that Uroh Oroat's army is the enemy, Gened suggested they continue moving east and finish off Chusoh's army.
However, as news of this mess had reached the Empire of Barud, it began preparing for a campaign to the north, hopeful that the north is an easy target for its expansion. This became known to Gened, Rolee and Svonōr Fogon, the Jeenor of the Laeooy Coast forces, and led to the decision to stand together against Barud, thus ending the conflict.
Gaskal and Deeras
Both countries stayed out of the conflict, albeit for different reasons. Gaskal was meaning to defend its territories along the Laeooy Coast from the rebels, but got mired in indecision and eventually decided to step back when Chusoh was burned. Gaskal then officially seceded from Toor, but would campaign for centuries against Commonground in attempts to reclaim Laeooy Coast.
Deeras did not have direct claims to any of the mines, but nor did it have a powerful conquering army. It was, however, well defended and geographically distant, and was content with preserving its neutrality. In the aftermath of the conflict it became part of Agzor's jurisdiction and enjoyed decades of uninterrupted peace.
Battle of Kustichoh
Main article: Battle of Kustichoh
One of the key consequences of the Chaos Wars was Barud's invasion. This was one of many unsuccessful attempts of Barudse to expand its influence through conquest.
At the time, Barud's army employed a powerful superhero warrior Aaroh, capable of causing confusion in enemies. This allowed Barudse to defend against a recent invasion from the State of Asdoh. This is why news of the impending march of the Empire's forces instilled fear into participants of the Chaos Wars and prompted them to unite.
Due to the geography of the approach, it became clear that the most likely entrance into Commonground would be the Yassa-pao valley, and everyone pulled their forces to the city of Kustichoh. The armies confronted each other on January 3rd, 74 SR. Aaroh's, acting in open space, had difficulties directing his aura of confusion in the direction of the enemy and ended up creating a vortex that began moving around uncontrollably, hitting both Commonground's and Barud's forces. This led to many hours of frenzied attacks of everyone against everyone, during which many have perished, including Aaroh himself. Aaroh's demise did not stop the vortex, however, and it kept bouncing around, slowly dissipating for many more hours.
Once the effect of the vortex began to diminish, the fighting subsided and Commonground forces realized that the army of Barud was no longer there: affected by the vortex, at some point it withdrew. The invasion was over. Barud forces returned to Barudse by mid January.
In spite of the fact that the armies barely attacked each other, losses were heavy on both sides due to the effects of Aaroh's vortex of confusion. Uroh Oroat, who fought beside Svonōr Fogon, perished in battle, and Noana Rolee lost most of her troops.
The rule of the Five Kings
Main article: Mōroh
By decimating Toor, Chaos Wars have created a decentralized region which could have gotten mired in power struggles, but having to unite against Barud, laid the groundwork for self-organization and peaceful co-existence that characterizes Commonground to this day.
After the battle of Kustichoh, fights for power began to slowly reignite, but Gened managed to put an end to it by reaching out to Jolder, Rolee and Fogon ( and Agzor was at the time traveling with Gened). Gened then suggested dividing the region amongst the five of them, with the mission of protecting peace and putting the people of Tarnaria on the right path.
The rule of what became known as the Five Kings of the north lasted until Gened's death in 93 SR, although the legacy of the Mōroh - the rule of five - became the foundation of a political and religious philosophy that was later picked up by Stogen and instituted on an unprecedented scale, turning Tarnaria into the land of nomadic kingdoms for half a millennium, until the rise of Mantar under Nilma Oordar.