Age of ManCenturies ago, elves retreated to their forests. The giants and dragons went to sleep. Then the orcs and goblins slunk off into the wilderness. The dwarves sealed the doors to their mountain halls. The dead no longer walked. The halflings and gnomes simply vanished.
The humans thought they had inherited the world! They let their castles, monuments of a so-called dark age, crumble. Drunk with faith or reason, humans burned or buried spell books. The greatest minds published treatises about man and God and law. Monarchs declared themselves divine and built opulent palaces at the expense of their subjects. Cities became huge and squalid as farmers flowed in, abandoning their land in hope of steady wages in a factory.
But as the countryside empties, it grows stranger. Those who linger find themselves contending with things that are not supposed to be. Giants hurl boulders from hilltops. Corpses shamble through forests. Yellow-eyed things snatch children at sunset. Shepherds keep one eye on their flocks and one eye watching for dragons. On certain nights, chanting and unearthly lights fill the castle ruins. Tentacled beasts drag fishing boats beneath the waves. Men become wolves, slaughter their kin, then become men again.
The monarchs, newspapers and academies deny it, but the old ways are back.
Aaand my eyes hurt. Will post the work-in-progress classes tomorrow!