Telara's Timeline and History

How I got exact dates: Let's start by saying that math is not my strong point in any way! And the timeline of Rift seriously gives me a huge headache. It's so hard for me to put it into numbers. I consider the beginning of the world as "Year 0". The Age of Legends probably comprises of several centuries of unchartered history. It's been stated quite a lot in game by NPC's that most of the history and knowledge from the Age of Legends was lost when the Blood Storm came, so who knows how long it lasted, what all happened, or who all did what. I can only speculate that this was a peaceful, bountiful time. It's also been stated in the game that during this time, the planes intersected quite often with Telara, to no ill effects, and indeed it seemed that Telarans were walking between the planes frequently, using special gateways. The Porticum is one such gateway, and one of the last remaining that is safe to still use, although nowadays the Porticums seem to only take you to places within Telara. Also, like seriously, half of this stuff I'm guessing at. I've no idea if it's actual canon Telaran fact! There is some evidence to support it, which is why it's written, but it's actually very hard to pin down exact information about Rift's timeline. Which is really frustrating! So if anyone has any different information, or sees something that isn't right, please let me know-with proof-so that I can change it!! I am striving for accuracy.
PS: Most of these dates and info were found on the Rift forums, although it can be validated by in game data! But it is NOT my work by a long stretch of the imagination! I just expanded on what was given and guessed at a few of the more obscure dates! :)

Age of Legends: Unknown date.
     The gods built the world out of sourcestone at the nexus of the planes, creating a haven for their creations. Tavril created the Elves to be guardians of the world. They swore a Covenant with her that in exchange for being the protectors of Telara they would gain long life spans (300 years), beauty beyond compare, and special abilities that would aid them in their task. They roamed the world's wild places, back when the Forest of Tavra covered most of Telara. Bahralt created the Dwarves as crafters and laborers to help shape Telara. As a reward for their hard labor and assistance, he granted them the gift of life as sentient mortal beings with the desire for crafting, trading, and forging. Some time after that, humans appeared in the forest of Tavra, savage and primitive. The Elves took it upon themselves to educate, train, and watch over the new race of short lived beings, kind of like a maternal guardian. Near the end of this age, several different tribes of humans split off from the main group. Many went up north, seeking wisdom and knowledge in the gods and calling themselves Mathosians. They revered all that the Elves had taught them and dedicated their lives to serving justice and honor. Other tribes of humans ventured south, into the desert areas, where they eked out a living in the rough, dry climate, eventually adapting. They also began experimenting with what was a forbidden art at the time: Technomancy, or the combining of Sourcestone and magic. At this time, Sourcestone was not to be meddled with or used in any way, as decreed by the Gods.

The Age of Dragons: 1500 years before present day.
     The Blood Storm invades. Crucia personally attacks the High Elves, destroying their main gathering place, called Heart Grove, as well as a large portion of the population. All seems lost. It's not clear for how long the dragons ruled over Telara with terror and wanton destruction, but it was for many years, at least. Being scattered and divided, the Telarans were easy pickings. Eventually, the dragons turned on their strongest fellow, Regulos from the Plane of Death, attacking him in their frenzy to claim the world as their own. While the dragons fought amongst themselves, the Telarans saw the hope of finally being free and attacked the vulnerable Blood Storm while it was distracted. The dragons were not prepared for such weak creatures to retaliate and were eventually all defeated, since none trusted the other enough to defend them. The magitech devices that the Ethian tribes from the south experimented with were instrumental in the Blood Storm's downfall, yet they were still shunned for using forbidden arts.
     All but Regulos are imprisoned on Telara. Regulos's body is destroyed, and his spirit banished beyond a Ward erected by the Vigil to keep Telara safe from planar invasion. After the Ward was erected, several peoples and beings that had crossed over from the planes into Telara were trapped on Telara with no way to go home. The Ward prevented any and all access to the other planes. One such planar peoples that became stranded were the Shalastiri, a strange, but sentient and honorable people led by their beloved Prince Bahmi. Prince Bahmi had led his people against the oppressive dragon overlord that he'd been enslaved by in the Plane of Air, Crucia, and as a reward, was welcomed as an ally by the Ethian people. They were shunned and called abominations by the Mathosians and Elves. After intermingling with the Ethians in the south, eventually breeding changed the Shalastiri until they adapted to their new environment, and began calling themselves the Bahmi instead, in honor of their Prince. They took up homes in the arid desert climates, many of them settling in Rhaza'da Canyons.
     The First Schism happens, dividing the High Elves as many of them turn from Tavril, no doubt as result of being personally attacked and decimated by Crucia, the dragon of Air. These Elves turned to elemental spirits and natural elements of Telara for different ways of protecting themselves. After the Blood Storm was imprisoned, this came to a head and the Elves were almost consumed by a bloody civil war. Eventually, Priestess Isidora led the oath breakers away from Tavril and the other High Elves, making a long exodus across the world to eventually settle onto the Kelari Isles (later renamed the Ember Isles after the results of the upheaval caused by the Shade War). There, they found ancient and powerful Spirits who remembered the secrets of creation and were willing to share with these newfound allies. Creating pacts with the friendly spirits warped these Elves and eventually they changed, culturely and as a race. They gained darker skin, darker eyes, an affinity for magic. They gained a regal attitude and considered themselves above the struggles of the rest of the world, instead dedicating themselves to improving their own society.

The Eth Empire: Approx. between 700 and 900 years before present day.
     The Eth created many beautiful and fantastical cities to the south, powering their machines and technology with vast quantities of sourcestone mined from the rich sourcestone found in Stonefield and Droughtlands. They were at the height of power and ingenuity, and were ruled by the Sorcerer Kings, who each held sway in the Ethian city-states, Eboni, Fortune's Shore, Redoubt and Khaliti. It was also during this time period that experimentation with dimensional travel led to the Ethians exploring ways to enter the Planes. They succeeded in creating a way of traveling to the Plane of Water, but ended up trapped there, where they lived and adapted and became known as the Ghar.

 500 years before present day:

     The Eth Empire, which rose in the wake of the Blood Storm Wars, falls suddenly and mysteriously. The Sorcerer Kings of the Eth disappeared, and the great "Convocation" nearly decimated all the powerful and ancient Ethian tribes. All knowledge of magitech, technomancy, and the ability to use planar magic was lost along with them and the Ethians were reduced to homeless nomads, roaming the southern lands, keeping to themselves and remembering the horrors of that day that brought about their downfall. 

     In the wake of the fall of the Eth Empire, the Mathosian Empire rose to power, ushering in a new age for the people of Telara. The Mathosians became just as prominent and powerful as the Ethians, but in different ways. They followed different laws and different creeds, and their reach extended far beyond just the north, even venturing down into the southern lands where the Eth held sway. There existed an uneasy truce between those who followed the ways of the gods and those who adhered to the idea of personal ambition and growth and technology. The gods became ever distant, locked behind their Ward, but the Mathosians, the Dwarves, and the Elves never wavered in their devotion. Port Scion was built as a waypoint between the divided peoples, and Zareph Mathos, who was clever with diplomacy, was appointed its leader to mediate peace and trade between the northern and southern peoples. Prosperity reigned in Telara.

25 years before present day: Year of the Tyrant

     King Jostir died mysteriously, and his two sons, Aedraxis and Zareph, become tangled up in a Civil War after Aedraxis was crowned king and used his new status for brutality, cruelty, and abuse of power. He welcomed individuals who had ties with the Endless Court, and it soon became known that he secretly was a member of the cult himself, working alongside Alsbeth to bring back his dark master Regulos.

20 years before present day: Year of the Shade

      Aedraxis uses the machines built for him by Orphiel Farwind to crack the Ward, unleashing the power of Regulos onto Telara in an event that would become known as the Shade. This triggers the beginning of the rifts. The heroes of the Guardians are returned for the first time to stop Aedraxis from completely handing Telara to Regulos. Many are taken up from Telara at that time to be presented with a vision from the Vigil. However, others, such as Cyril and Shyla, remain on Telara to defend it from the rifts.
      At this time, Zareph and company go to Port Scion to be shielded within a great sourcestone barrier defending it against the planes. From there, they waged a long and bitter war against the rifts.

Also at this time, the Kelari fled their isles, the Ember Isles, due to Maelforge corrupting the Spirits they formed pacts with and causing Kelari to become corrupted Pyrkari, as well as being assaulted by tsunamis and tidal waves from Akylios thrashing in his prison.
     This is also the time that the Guardians became an official faction.
     Lord's Hall, one of the powerful Dwarven Delves and where the current king of the dwarves was from, was hit hard by the Shade and nearly destroyed from within. The remaining dwarves shut and spell locked the gates, allowing none to enter and none to leave and have not been seen or heard from since.

1 year before present day:

     An ancient Eth life factory is uncovered in Freemarch. Orphiel is able to get its Resurrection Forges functioning and returns Asha Catari from death. Unfortunately, hers would be the only soul returned with any sort of special powers, and hers were the product of a confrontation with Regulos and not true Ascension.

      Shortly after that, Alsbeth betrays the people of Port Scion. She manipulates them into sending their forces out of the city, and then corrupts the city's magical defenses, allowing a massive death invasion in. The city falls and Zareph is lost, sacrificing himself to seal the evil inside.

      Without Zareph to mediate, Orphiel and Cyril go their separate ways and take their followers with them. Thus you have the official division of the people of Telara into the Guardians and the Defiants.

This is also the time that the Defiants became an official faction.

 Present Day -Year of the Ascended

      New ranks of Ascended Guardians return with a vision of Telara's destruction from the Vigil to guide their new crusade. All but simultaneously, Orphiel erects a Failsafe device, a temporal anchor by which Defiants might return if need be. As it is initiated, Ascended Defiants spill through from the future to tell of the world's forthcoming doom. The Ascended work closely with their respective factions to repel the sudden uprising of powerful dark forces, slaying the cultists where they can and sealing rifts in the fabric of Telara that allowed planar monsters to destroy all that they could find. The planar rifts are everywhere, the world is once again thrown into chaos, and rumors of the Blood Storm awakening are becoming more than just rumors. Deep in their prisons, the dragons are again stirring, and its up to the powerful, god-like Ascended to put an end to them once and for all. As if that wasn't worrying enough, there is news from the Icewatch that Crucia is planning something big, and it involves the other Planes. It seems that travel between Telara and the planes is not as impossible as we've been led to believe, and nightmares are hinting at sinister tidings in the Plane of Water. 

    For every expansion, add one year to the Year of the Ascended. So in Starfall Prophecy for example, it has now been six years since the Year of the Ascended on Telara. The Ascended have been at work saving Telara for 6 years since they have arrived in the present time and have vanquished all the dragon threats, and yet they keep discovering more and more troubling foes and unearthed civilizations in their quest to keep Telara safe. They have even ventured into the other Planes in their pursuit of the enemy.

 Defiant Alternate Future:

8 years after present day:

     Meridian is sacked by the Guardians. The surviving Defiants hole up within well fortified life factories to continue trying to solve the trouble of Ascension with machines.

14 years after present day:

     Orphiel disappears without a trace. Where did he go? No one seems to know...

20 years after present day:

     Sylver Valis discovers the means to creating Ascended with machines. These new Defiants are sent back to try to avert the disaster they witness as they escape through the Failsafe to the past seconds before this future timeline is gobbled up by Regulos. By going back in time to avert these events, the Defiant Ascended just end up in a different timeline, where this future never happened. However, in the original timeline, the world was indeed swallowed by Regulos and destroyed.

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