Unlocking the World
Long ago, when the World was young and weak, the Gods created giant structures to support the World and all of its creatures. These were carved of stone and magma and clouds and oak. Forged to be the strongest structures that anyone or anything had ever created, they were meant to stand for all eternity. Four of them stood at each end of the World, while the largest was placed right at the center. For hundreds upon thousands of years these structures, eventually named the Pillars by storytellers, held up the World and provided a safe place for the God’s creations to roam about. Though with the creation of mortals came the threat of destruction of their world bearing structures. Therefore, they came up with a plan on how to protect the World from harm.
The Gods held a contest between their more powerful and faithful warriors, giving each of them a chance to provide a protector to the Pillars. Boccob, Ehlonna, Gruumsh, Pholtus, Incabulos, Aerdrie Faenya, Berronar Truesilver, Istus, and Corellon all put forth their selected champions to vie for the chance to stand as a Defender. Eventually four warriors were chosen to be placed by the side of the Pillars: Corrin, the champion of Berronar Truesilver and Defender to the Northern Pillar, Lythia, the champion of Istus and Defender to the Southern Pillar, Tendren, the champion of Corellon and Defender to the Western Pillar, and Muura, the champion of Incabulos and Defender to the Eastern Pillar. As mediator to the four corners and Defender to the Key Pillar, Tharmin, the champion of Moradin was placed. Each champion was placed at their given structure to forever stand guard, a task which they each took with great pride. In exchange for their sacrifice each champion was given the tools they needed, which included eternal life and the weapons that would be used to strike down any attacks or trespassers to the Pillars.
Each Defender was also given a companion who would escort any trespasser, once slain, to Styx so that their spirit could not wander and spread the location of the Pillars. These companions would also wander the areas on the look out for any potential threats, then warning the Defenders when they approached. A lion was given to Corrin, an eagle to Lythia, a wolf to Tendren, a cheetah to Muura, and a bear to Tharmin.
Legend has created demigods out of the Defenders, and indeed they may just well be. The Hand of Truesilver watches diligently, morningstar in hand, with the sun gleaming off his plates. The Blood of Istus stands at the ready, dagger waving and her red robes flowing. The Grace of Corellon paces quietly in the shadow of the Pillar, quiver at the ready. The Talon of Incabulos waits at patiently, resting his eyes cloaked in his own wings. Lastly, the Son of Moradin stands patiently leaning on his hammer, his cold eyes peering through his helm. Centuries past have seen these Defenders without threat or trial, and their complacent lives have caused them to slowly fade into the World’s surroundings. Some, upon hearing of the vast powers bestowed upon these legends, have sought to strip them of their gifts. However, many generations have come and gone yet not a person has even set eyes on a Pillar or its sanctified Defender.