"A Brief History of Salvarian Monarchs
A History by Wilmor Harley
A Gift to His Majesty the King, Varis II
It is my hope that this history of your bloodline is of interest to His Majesty, and pleases you. Of course, our works of literature are possible through your continued patronage and grace bestowed upon us by the generous hand of your Father. It is our greatest hope that you would seek to continue his admiral practice.
With greatest regards,
Simon Beaufort, Master of the Writers Guild of Falador."
Salvar von Holzern-Grau was a warlord of the late-fourth and early-fifth age originating from the western marches of Misthalin. Although direct accounts are few, many legends tell of Salvar's conquest of the Burthorpian Valley in the name of King Raddallin during his unification of Asgarnia. Although he initially died without issue, he did leave behind a pregnant wife who gave birth to a single son. Today, many great royal dynasties share direct male-line descent from Salvar, for which he is known as the 'Ancestor of Kings'. Today we take a look at history through the lens of the Salvarian Monarchs, beginning with the first and most legendary of them all, King Varis the Great
King Varis 'The Great'
King of Asgarnia
King of Anglia
I dareso to name Varis 'the Great', not for any single achievement, but for irreplaceable role of laying the foundations for all those that would after. While Salvar gives his name to the umbrella of dynasties, to remove King Varis from history would so drastically alter the course of events across such a breath of time and space that one could not possibly imagine what the modern day would be like. He ruled over Asgarnia and parts of Misthalin in his youth, humbling even the great Worshippers of the Dragonkin until he was betrayed by his son and heir, and Asgarnia was lost to the family. He was later able to recover parts of Asgarnia, founding the Kingdom of Anglia from the remnants of Asgarnia's dissolution. More important than his reigns were his marriages, which produced eight children by three wives. Varis was known across the globe for his skills in diplomacy, but by far his master stroke would be the foundations he laid for his descendants. These unions and their issue would prove to be the beginning of a storied bloodline that continues to this day.
King Corvus 'The Greedy'
King of Anglia
Corvus was Varis' second eldest and most controversial son. Rumors were abound for much of his life that Corvus was secretly adopted and no trueborn son of Varis. Despite this, Corvus was a powerful legitimate member of the family through his control of the Kandar Banks. House Grey had begun to buy banks across Gielinor in these days, and this project had been lead primarily by Varis and Corvus. At the death of his father, Corvus was in full control of House Grey's banking division and thus it's main income. This left him with a powerful hand to uphold his claim and enough resources to silence any that spoke otherwise, if for a time. Eventually, Godric Grey wrest control of the family from Corvus and forced him to step down from the Throne due to his weak claim. Corvus accepted his political defeat and retired to a life of banking until his death.
King Edward 'The Good'
King of Anglia, Emperor of Argrevia
It is said Godric crowned Edward simply because 'He was good'. Although only a nephew of Varis, Edward was the product of one of Varis' marriage pacts, that of the Aren-Grey alliance, the result of his great friendship with Christopher Aren. Kandarin was weakening, with nearly of third of it's territory under Aren rule. Thus, crowning an Aren-Grey King ensured the Kingdom of Arenvale was able to declare its independence with the guarantee of an ally once it did. When the Kingdom of Camelot came into the hands of Edward's cousin, his fealty along with that of Arenvale gave way to the Empire of Argrevia. Edward ruled the empire well and justly, and is remembered fondly in nearly every account of him. His courage and piousness are legendary, as he lead the Great Crusade into morytania where he died as a martyr for the Saradominist faith. He was later canonized by the Church and is remembered best as Saint Edward the Vyrebane.
King Varian 'The Cunning'
King of Camelot
King of Anglia
King of Asgarnia
Varian Grey was the youngest son of Varis Grey, and the most ambitious. From a young age he strove to be like his father and carve his name into history. So he would, for better or for worse. Demonstrating all the political genius of his father, Varian seized the throne of Camelot for himself through his mother's claim on the Kingdom. He acted as one of the main architects of the Argrevian Empire, agreeing to swear fealty to his cousin King Edward. However, a temporarily successful coup by a Vekon Prince forever shook Varian, who became militant and erratic after the traumatic experience. He stepped down from Camelot in favor of his brother Reynard.
In his later years, he inherited Anglia following the death of Oskar Octavian. In the wake of Argrevia's collapse, the white knights were left in control of the remainder of Asgarnia and sought to find a proper claimant for the Asgarnian throne. With a direct blood claim to Raddallin through his father, and in control of the other half of Asgarnia through Anglia, Varian was the clear choice for the crown and successfully pressed the case for the bloodline's claim. With Asgarnia reunited under Varian and his wife Zara Le'Gaunt, the Aren-Grey alliance was replaced by the Le'gaunt-Grey, which led to the founding of the de Moselle Dynasty. He famously feuded with the Camelite Dynasty after the collaspe of the empire, and many feared a war between the rival branches. He was eventually killed by his own guards during a fit of maddness, and is often remembered in history for this event, which many claim saved Kandarin and Asgarnia from war.
King Reynard 'The Wise'
King of Camelot
Ruling his entire reign under the Argrevian Empire, King Reynard led a rather quiet and peaceful time. Reynard was said to be just, honorable, pious, and above all, wise. His court is accounted as the image of majesty and grace, where all leaned in silence to hear the word of the King of the Round Table. There is not a single unsavory account to attribute to his name, and the small people themselves renamed one of Camelot's great lakes in his honor. Reynard is often held up as one of the great models of Kingship for young lords to learn from.
King Godric 'The Thrice-Crowned'
King of Anglia, King of Asgarnia, High King of Kandarin, Emperor of Argrevia
Godric Grey came to the throne as the King of Anglia, and was unanimously elected Emperor of Argrevia after Edward's heroic yet tragic death. Hand-picked and educated by Varis Grey as one of his best students, Godric was born and bred for the role he would play throughout his life. It was he who largely took over the family after the death of Varis, and he was a major architect of the Empire a great deal before his crowning. It was Godric who crowned Edward after deposing Corvus. This assured the Arens of House Grey's support for the independence of Arenvale from Kandarin. Godric again who provided Varian with the Grey Knights whom helped him seize control of Camelot. After the formation of the Empire, some questioned if Godric even inspired Edward's suicidal crusade into the most dangerous region of Gielinor. Whatever role he played before the creation of the Empire, he was it's greatest beneficiary. Looking deeply into history, however, one can see these foundations were laid long before Godric, between Christorpher Aren and Varis Grey whom created these unions in the first place.
Under his reign, Ardougne and Piscatoris joined the empire, bringing it to five Kingdoms and making Godric the first High King of Kandarin since Oliver Cleeves. Godric married the Queen of the Faladian City-State to tie Asgarnia together through marriage, while is cousin Oskar married Queen Elrina of Misthalin to bring the Eastern Kingdom into orbit as well. At it's greatest height, the bloodline held hegemony over the Seven Kingdoms and Godric reigned as the most powerful man in the world, some would argue the most powerful in history. However a conspiracy between his proud cousin King Sennis of Camelot, and Ausar, the ambitious Archon of Ardougne, led to his downfall and later collapse of the Empire. Godric is remembered often as the 'Triple King Emperor', and is known to history as the most titled monarch to ever live. He is known as 'Lord Second', appointed heir to the family by Varis himself before his death.
King Sennis 'The Shy/The Dragon'
King of Camelot
King Sennis is incredibly interesting for the two phases of his reign, and is unique in being known for two very different personalities. Sennis inherited Camelot at a young age as the eldest son of Reynard the Wise. The nobility chaffed under the rule of a boy-king in these early years, and Sennis' shy and timid persona did little to remedy these first troubles. However, as the years went by, Sennis was presented with challenge after challenge to his rule, and in every single one he triumphed without fail. Growing into a man under the Argrevian Empire, Sennis grew strong, fierce, and above all, proud. He is credited as the greatest contributor to the downfall of Godric Grey amongst historians, as he provided the vast majority of Kandarin's rebel soldiers.
It is thought that as he grew in strength in pride, he found himself no longer content to be a vassal king under his cousin. Whatever his reasoning, break free from Argrevia he did, and Sennis continued his remarkable growth. Under his reign, Camelot grew to replace Anglia as the greatest political and military power in the world. He could often be found in full war-regalia and flanked by a cohort of elite soldiers. The rise of Varian Grey in Asgarnia would provide Sennis a rival, and a target of Camelot's growing militant power. Varian would die before this could come to ahead, and Camelot hardly broke stride on it's continued rise in power. Later in life he married Veronique de Lorraine, a popular and well respected Duchess. After a long and storied reign, Sennis disappeared during a hunting trip and was never heard from again. He a titled himself 'Lord First' of the 'Kandar Branch' of the family, but the separation of the branches was short lived and rejoined the main branch under the reign of his brother Ottican.
King Oskar 'The Peacemaker'
King of Anglia
Oskar Octavian, born Ormond Del'Vair, is an often over-looked monarch due to the short length of his reign. Lasting no more than a few months, Oskar none the less may be responsible for saving both the Asgarnian branch of the family from extinction, as well as Asgarnia itself from Kandar dominance. It was he who raised a host against the Kandar rebels and forced them into negotiations. It was he who pulled the favor of the White Knights and the Clergy to support the Grey claim to Asgarnia. If not for Oskar, the Kandars could very well have wiped out the Asgarnian branch and installed a puppet Kandar dynasty in Asgarnia. Before he could see his work through, he was assassinated by Zamorakian fanatics at the crossroads north of Falador. It is said Queen Elrina wept for the rest of her days at the loss of her husband.
King Varrick 'The Young'
King of Asgarnia
King Varrick came the throne of his father Varian in Asgarnia following his violent death. Having witnessed his father's death first hand, Varrick may have been traumatized by the event. Still in his minority, his mother, Queen Mother Zara Le'Gaunt, ruled Asgarnia as regent for his entire reign. Before his father's murder, Varrick had been well prepared for rule and many expected him to be a great King in his own right. However, despite this, watching his father's feuds and his violent end disillusioned Varrick from a life of power and politics. Before he reached his majority, he decided to abdicate his throne in favor of his brother Andreas. Varrick retired to a quiet life out of the public eye.
King Francois 'The Shrewd'
King of Ardougne
King Francois was born Elijah Le'Gaunt, the bastard first-born son of Varian Grey and Zara Le'Gaunt. Although the two intended to marry, Elijah was born just before the wedding, becoming a bastard by default. As he grew, he proved to be his fathers son in every way, just as cunning, just as ambitious, and in any other circumstance would have made the ideal heir to House Grey. However, a bastard he was, and le'gaunt was the name he was born with. Thus, feeling more akin to his Kandar family, he traveled to Kandarin once old enough and took up residence within the Duchy of Moselle. Through the surprise death of the previous Le'gaunt lord, Elijah became Duke of Moselle and attracted the attention of Queen Iliara, also a Le'gaunt on her mother's side. In a famous love triangle, Elijah stole Iliara's love away from King Sennis, to whom she had been promised. Illiara left Sennis at the altar and married Elijah instead, making him King jure Uxoris of Ardougne. He took the regnal name Francois, and the royal house adopted his name, Le'gaunt, during their rule. Francois and Illiara ruled wisely for many years together, and were known to be deeply in love. They would bear twins, Hedrak and Aoife, however, Illiara tragically died in childbirth, sending all Ardougne into a great mourning. King Francois ruled alone for several more years until the famous elven invasion deposed him and subjugated Ardougne for 16 long years. Francois fought tooth and nail against the elves for the entirety of that time, and after their final victory, his son Hedrak was crowned King Augustus. Elijah, now an old veteran, returned to his barony and lived out his days in peace.
King Andreas 'The Pious'
King of Asgarnia
Andreas, a second son, never expected to rule Asgarnia. Yet with his elder brother seeking out a quiet life of peace, rule he would. In his youth, Andreas had taken well upon religion, and many half-expected Andreas to take his vows as a priest as an adult. Perhaps he would have had Varrick never abdicated. Thus, when crowned, Andreas deferred on many great matters to scripture or the Church. He could often be found in prayer, and was known for his temperance and honor. Although a Just and well-intentioned King, Andreas took as little interest in rule as his brother. The power of the church grew immense in the vacuum, and the royal dynasty grew less concerned with Asgarnia itself. Andreas' younger siblings traveled abroad or were otherwise preoccupied elsewhere to care for their royal duties in Asgarnia. Finally, in an unexpected move, Andreas abdicated his throne in favor of the Church itself. Some suspected the clergy to be behind the deterioration of the royal family, but no matter the speculation, fall the de Moselle dynasty did. Asgarnia fractured into Principalities and Republics as various factions quarreled for the remnants of the Kingdom, which would remain divided until reunified by James Grey.
King Ottican 'The Lawgiver'
King of Camelot
The curious case of Ottican Grey is one of particular intrigue. Ottican was the second son of Raynard the Wise, and younger brother to Sennis. Where Sennis was shy and modest in his youth, Ottican was proud, gregarious, and fierce from the onset. Early in Sennis' reign, older ministers feared Ottican would be used by rival factions to launch a coup against Sennis. Ottican seemed much more Kingly than his elder brother, and many thought he might be more deserving of the Throne. In response, the elder ministers set Ottican off halfway around the world with a single division of Grey Knights. For the majority of his life, he was continually sent on distant 'black missions' for the Kingdom. Ottican became an excellent soldier and commander, but was never in Camelot for more than a few days time. Over the long years, Sennis became a much better King, and many forgot about Ottican. Thus, when Sennis vanished, it was with apprehension that Ottican was greeted back into Camelot as King. In fact, Ottican had to press his claim, as the round table had sought to place Veronique, Sennis' wife, on the throne in her own right. She carried Sennis' unborn child, but being unborn, Ottican was still by rights true heir to Camelot. To appease the restless nobility, Ottican had Veronique adopted into the family by Lord Fourth Jakob, and she was made his heir. In return, Ottican was able to push through vast reforms to Camelot's legal code, and issued the Kingdom's first Constitution, which still stands today. Ottican abdicated in favor of Veronique after pushing through his reforms, and returned to military service.
Queen Veronique 'The Mother'
Queen of Camelot
Queen Veronique came to the throne of Camelot after the reforms of Ottican. Beloved by the nobility and the people alike, she was often called "Mother" by those around her. She was said to inspire fierce loyalty and under her watch, Camelot prospered for 16 years. She ruled as wise and justly as any of the greatest kings in history, and many proclaimed the return of Raynard the Wise in her. She personally raised her only son, Aeron, whom she loved above all else. She died peacefully in her palace in the `16th year of her reign, surrounded by friends and family. She is held up as a model of compassion and public service, and it has become a compliment among young noble ladies to be "Veronique".
This First Edition of 'A Brief History of Salvarian Monarchs' details the reigns of past Kings and Queens with family relation to the Salvarian Dynasties, in order of their first coronation. Titles are listed laterally for consecutive reigns, and horizontally for simultaneous reigns. The First Edition ends with Veronique, as to continue would enter the Modern Day. More editions may be released as the march of time progresses.
There is no greater tale than the history that mankind has created for itself. All the fantasy in the world has taken inspiration from it. From history we learn the true tragedy and triumph of mankind, and it is from this great library of the past that the wise may glean knowledge of the future.