Sanctum of the Serpent God
Of all the battles waged between the Azlanti and the serpentfolk—from the heights of Viperwall in ancient Thassilon to the depths of the Mwangi Expanse in Garund—none had a more profound impact on their genocidal war than the titanic struggle that took place in Ilmurea. There, the Azlanti heroine Savith beheaded the snake-god Ydersius, plunging the serpentfolk civilization into an abyss so dark and unyielding that they’ve struggled to recover ever since. Indeed, as a species, the serpentfolk lost much of their cultural identity after Ydersius’s demise, devolving into monstrous brutes challenged by near-constant infighting and forgetting much of their proud history.
But the natural order of evolution sometimes replaces the vagaries of fate with fortune. Even as Earthfall doomed the Azlanti empire, it shielded the remaining serpentfolk from annihilation, granting them one last chance at survival. With almost every generation thereafter, serpentfolk of greater intelligence and ambition emerged in each tribe. Assuming a mantle of leadership over their less-evolved brethren, they invariably aspired to return their species to glory—even as they challenged one another to be the first to do so. Most of these individuals took up magic, rediscovering the arcane lore practiced by their predecessors and using it to reclaim serpentfolk cities and goad their tribes into a frenzy of rage against any who would challenge their supremacy. Others, however, turned to faith, looking for more sibyllic answers in the will of Ydersius, filled with visions of their serpent-god still calling out to his children from the abyss of the Darklands.