Rakia counts few followers from amongst the dwarves. Most members of this stout species spend little time on the surface let alone worship the Sun. But just north of the equator, near the Veil of Flames, the tallest mountain of The Great Divide rises up to meet the Sun, and upon it a small settlement of dwarves have flourished.
Though Rakia is the goddess of joy and love, most dwarves hardly need her influence to enjoy their lives. Even miles below the surface the dwarves still find contentment in a good drink and a good woman. No, here the dwarves seek something different. There are creatures of this world that hide within its shadows, and living within the Deep the dwarves wage an almost unending war against these abominations, fragments of a dead civilization. It is here, on this summit, that the greatest warriors in this conflict are trained to harness the power of the Sun, the force their enemy fears the most, and bring it to bear against them.
Vennerzad, born at high noon during the summer solstice, has always been a gifted invoker. Chosen by Rakia, he carries within him a portion of her power, and it one of the greatest weapons the dwarves may field against the fragments of the shadows. But the fragments know this, and during a solar eclipse they launched an attack upon the dwarven village upon the summit, intent on destroying it.
The suddenness and ferocity of the attack was unexpected. Though the dwarves knew they were vulnerable during an eclipse, it was no more so than true night. And with the window of opportunity so small they didn’t expect such an onslaught. The fragments of shadow entered the village as a wave of death and violence, slaughtering all that stood against them. Within moment the lone survivor was Vennerzad, his innate power protecting him. But the shadows were too powerful and he would not survive totality.
Even as the enemy surrounded him a voice came to Vennerzad, promising to unlock his potential if only he would consider an offer once his victory had been assured. With no alternatives, his goddess beyond his reach, Vennerzad accepted. Empowered by this new force he raged against the shadows, turning their attacks aside and tearing their bodies asunder as they struggled to take his life. And though Vennerzad could not defeat them all, that was not the goal. All he had to do was survive until Rakia could stretch out her fingers once again. And as the moon finally passed and the rays of light struck the world Vennerzad had survived; bloody and broken, but alive. Even as his enemy fled he fell to the ground unconscious.
Hours later he awoke, his body rejuvenated by the sun above. But though he had survived, no others had. He was alone, the last of his kind. It was then that the voice returned to him and spoke its offer. The world as they knew it was stagnant. The war against the shadows, and the suffering of his people, was doomed to continue into eternity. But there was one hope. The voice had a plan, a way to shake the foundation of the world. And once the accursed age of stone was brought to an end they could purge the earth of the shadow fragments that should not be.
Accepting his fate Vennerzad turned away from the village upon the summit, leaving the ruins to the snow and wind to reclaim. His destiny lead along another path.