The Desert Monarchs
Myths and Legends
Across the sand dunes and savannahs are dotted the necropolis city-states of the undead kings. Each one a kingdom unto itself, and each jealously guarded by its own deathrattle legion. During the Age of Myths legend says that the living and the dead coexisted in a form of symbiosis amongst the kingdoms. The living venerated the kings and supplied tribute to their mortuary cult, and in return the dead provided them protection and refuge from the dangers of Shyish. By the time of Archaon’s invasion however, the necropolis cities were silent tombs, home only to the dead. Whether the living abandoned their liege lords or were added to the ranks of the legions is yet another mystery.
Some point to several temple murals that appear to depict a large robed figure sweeping across the land, leaving only the dead in its wake. Speculation is that this depicts none other than the master of Shyish, Nagash. The kings stay silent on the matter, although the fact that they harbor a grudge against the great necromancer is no secret. They serve his will like all others within the realm, and march to war at his beck and call, but are no friends of his, bestowing upon him the title of Usurper.
An Age of War
Despite this, news still reached the monarchs of the shifting tides of war and many of them set their legions in motion. Gates flung wide and row after row of skeletal warriors marched forth, colossal stone constructs and gilded chariots accompanying them. The kings themselves led their armies, surrounded by their royal courts of princes, priests, necrotects, and heralds. The Age of Chaos had come to an end and they intended to finally reclaim all of their lands from the tainted tribes that still held sway in the wilds. Some even set their ambitions higher, wanting to take the fight to the forces of Chaos, wherever they may be, and reclaim all of Shyish from the dark god’s grasp. Regardless of their intentions, all felt the pull of the one they resented more then any other. Nagash had awoken, and the kings knew that when he called they would have no choice but to answer.
The kings were not the only ones to sense the winds of fate changing. The champions of the dark gods knew that now, more than ever, they had to push their advantage. Feral war bands of Bloodbound and pestilent war hosts of Rotbringers gathered their might and prepared to fight for their gods, calling upon dark favors and demonic allies.