They came from the stars…
“From what I’ve heard, our world of Lirel is not unique. There are many worlds, much like ours out in the great vastness, though I have never been there myself. Before the starfolk arrived, there a great many different tribes that lived upon Lirel. We were spread out, some in cities upon great plains, some in caves underground, and some in houses atop the trees. In between the cities, towns, settlements, and castles, was the wilds. Untamed, filled with beasts and monsters of the most deadly kind. Brave and foolish men would venture into the wilds all the time, sometimes to seek wealth, other times to wage war. Some of them would live to return, some of them would perish, but always the wilds would remained as it were, dangerous and untamed.
And then one day, many years ago… the sky fell. Giant flying ships of steel left trails of fire and smoke across the sky, crashing into the ground with noises louder than thunder. And from these vessels, out came the starfolk. The ones called the Humans. They looked harmless, all soft and pale, with no claws or fangs or tough hides. How wrong my first impression was.
The Humans had weapons and magics beyond anything I had ever seen. Swords of light that cut through steel. Wands that shoot red lightning, faster and further than any arrows. And they weren’t the only ones. Soon we learned of numans, the brahmans, and the dwarves. They built cities out of their ships, strange, giant places of steel and smoke. And they did the unthinkable, the changed the wilds. They burned their way through the jungles, and built roads. They cut down forests and dug deep mines in the ground.
The tribes were amazed, frightened, or angered. We all responded differently. Some tribes, like the lizardfolk, coveted the starfolks power. They sought to steal their weapons and magic, and rule over them. Some, like the birdmen, ran away from the starfolk, wanting nothing to do with them. And some people realized that the starfolk are here to stay, and to learn from them is the best way to survive in this new, changed world. That is what our tribe did, we went to them and offered ourselves up as their servants.
We live in the shadow of their metal cities. We learn their language, perform menial tasks for them, and live by eating the scraps off their tables. And in this way, we are safe, secure.
The starfolk, I eventually learned, could no longer leave Lirel. They had come from far above the sky, fleeing a feared enemy. I do not know what enemy could be so horrible as to cause folk as fearsome as the starfolk to run, but if that enemy should ever come to Lirel as well… perhaps they would also be some helpful servants who don’t mind doing the dirty jobs."
- Musings from Snipps, Elder of the Ratkin