The growing power of Ghidovia was subverted by the lifestyle of its aristocrats. More disciplined servants exploited this weakness to overthrow the Rafil dynasty and create the world's first human-ruled Zarodom.


Humans living in Ghidovia were often mistreated by their Arcva rulers, who saw them as little more than animals. Zarodess Lephisash IV turned Old Ghidovia City into a luxurious haven in the first years after her coronation in the year 909. She had the miners of Kryus Peak move underground so as not to pollute the sight of the mountain. From her subjects in the Donaughen Forest and the Retu Hills, she exacted outrageous tributes to feed the entertainment and gluttony in Ghidovia City.

She brought sculptors from Saeva to create massive statues that stood 20 metres tall, dwarfing the buildings of the city. When the city grew too large, she expelled many humans living there to raze their homes in favour of larger courts for Arcva. Money was taken from those who remained, and judges who accepted bribes paid portions to the Zarodess. Numbering nearly 5000 people, Ghidovia City was the largest city of its time, and the largest city of Arcva ever.

Lephisash IV was the worst of a succession of vain, oppressive, and selfish Zarodesses. She waged wars against the tribes in Vasta who appeared to slight her. When subjects disappointed her, Lephisash would throw them into the frozen waters of the Sun Sea. Her laws became harsh, and any violation could result in horrible mutilation or death.

Ghidovian Revolt

A young priestess of Zarodossa named Sophia Norsom from a temple in the town near Firesky Lake objected to her Zarodess' treatment of her people. She appealed to the teachings of Zarodossa, and in 934 called Lephisash a false ruler who did not deserve her crown. Others agreed, and soon Lephisash faced an uprising encompassing the entirety of Donaughen.

20 000 soldiers, women and men alike, united during Feyuken of 935. Following the priestess Sophia who encouraged them with zealous calls for justice, they demanded Lephisash IV resign in favour of another member of the Rafil family. Lephisash refused, and rallied her wizards to protect Ghidovia City. They arrested all remaining humans within Ghidovia City, and threatened their executions if Sophia did not turn herself over.

When the revolt did not end, the prisoners were collected. Each was tied to a post and burned alive. Hundreds were killed within the week. In retaliation, local Arcva overseers were lynched in Donaughen. The wizards loyal to Lephisash were ordered to intervene. The Arcva wizards burned a rebel village around the lake now known as Firesky. Lephisash's army was only 3000 strong, and Sophia intended to end the war in a single battle.

The two armies met west of Ghidovia City, setting up in long lines over a fallow field against the Donoughen River. Lephisash' army positioned itself against the river on top of a hill so that they could prevent encirclement. Heedless to the tactical advantage, Sophia advanced just after dawn. The superior numbers were useless against the wizards, and accounts suggest half of her force was lost in the engagement. Sophia and the survivors fled up the Wheat Tribute to regroup.

Eternal Winter

Though accounts are unclear, it is agreed that the wizards returned to Ghidovia City from battle in Darken of 936. The Rebel army was regrouping to march on Ghidovia City once more, and Sophia declared that she would destroy the Arcva once and for all. Meanwhile, warriors from Arcellus landed in Pizors  – claiming that they were sent by the Zarod Muat I.

Some Ghidovians believe that these Cellians brought Venificors with them, who then set about their work of casting a spell of eternal winter. The common tale among bards and storytellers is that Lephisash's own wizards succumbed to guilt and overthrew the Zarodess by freezing her capital so that her dynasty would never rule Ghidovia again. Sophia crowned herself Zarodess of Ghidovia, claiming that it was Zarodossa herself who descended and took vengeance against an unfaithful Lephisash.

Ghidovia was free from Lephisash, but the mysterious demise of her most powerful city, as well as the incineration of many villages left them weakened. Arcellus seized the mouth of the Ghidovian River and sank all Ghidovian boats along it. Further infighting resulted when Ashanzu raiders swept over the Retu Hills, and Zarodess Sophia was unable to stop them. Tribes east of Ghidovia sought new protection from local warlords. Tribes abandoned their villages and fled when danger appeared. In the span of only a few years, Ghidovia had vanished beneath the dark pines of Donaughen - save for one small stone fortress raised by human masons expelled from Ghidovia City. Ruled by Zarodess Sophia, it became known as Kryus Keep