HYRKANIA (Medium Kingdom) -- Savage horse tribes of the interior steppes, uncivilized in all by the arts of war at which they excel, the Hyrkanians move upon a shifting sea of unrest as turbulent as the fiery ponies upon which they ride. The Hyrkanian tribes war constantly amongst them- selves but when united under a great chief they destroy armies as swiftly as their horse-archers can race across the endless flatlands which encompass them. Trained from childhood in horse and bow, the Hyrkanian cavalry has been called with good reason the finest horse- archers in the world.


Know, my savage lord, of the ways and history of thy people. Thy people were born of ancient Lemuria, one of the mightiest empires among the ancients. Long ago, perhaps six thousand years, the civilization of Lemuria perished in the rage of the Great Cataclysm which shook the world, tore down great mountains, rose up the oceans to swallow whole continents, and forever changed the face of the earth. Lemuria, like Atlantis, was drowned in the ocean leaving only a few survivors remaining to sail to the mainland. In the mainland our Lemurian fathers were immediately enslaved by an evil and ancient culture whose children's children were to form the kingdo of Khitai.

For thousands of years we toiled in brutal servitude, becoming almost as the beasts of the earth in bondage to that hated race. But one day began a time of slaying, of longed-for revenge, of general uprising throughout the land until everywhere the masters fled into uncharted lands or died beneath our swords of vengeance. These refugees were later to form the kingdoms of Stygia and the since fallem empire of Acheron. Oure forefathers stood amidst the ruins of cities, of a civilization in which they had never been allowed to share, and were dumbfounded. Forsaking in disgust the empire they had laid to waste, your Hyrkanian fathers moved west to their present land and became gradually a new people, a people of horse and bow upon the vast steppes of the eastern continent.

Some traiterous few of our people remained behind to join with their former masters in rebuilding the empire of Khitai. Moving westward, we left them and our mongrel kin, the Wigur and the Kuigar, behind us. One of our Hyrkanian tribes pushed south around the Vilayet Sea and began what is now Turan. Turan is kin to us but of late they have grown arrogant, calling themselves foremost of Hyrkanian descent, as if they could command us. We will never be slaves again! Each year our people have continued to drift west. There, around the north of the Vilayet Sea, we are ever drawn to our future and our destiny. Heed well now my words, my Leige, as I report to thee of the length and breadth of thy land.

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