Way of the Wicked
The humans of Talingarde have lived and ruled the island for centuries, certainly longer than living human memory. Humanity first arrived from the mainland and settled the southern reaches of the island, driving away or slaying the local goblinoid population. The first humans, a shamanistic culture who utilised bronze weaponry, were the ancestors of the modern Iraen people. The settled the more fertile southern lands, erected wooden forts to defend their holdings.
Their efforts against the goblinoids brought them into contact with the dwarven kingdoms in the mountain reaches, who were split as to whether the newcomers were friends or invaders. As humanity expanded, the dwarves became more fractured, leading to internal strife and eventually the collapse of the strongholds. Most dwarves accepted the newcomers, and were welcomed by humanity for their courage and skills. This was all always the case, however. Following a short but brutal civil war, several clans were driven from their strongholds and plotted in the underground territories. These dwarves united under the dark god Droskar, becoming the Duergar, swearing vengeance on dwarf and human alike.
A final wave of immigrants arrived less than two centuries later, but these were more united and possessed weapons of iron and steel. Over time, the new human colonists established the kingdom of Talingarde and a noble house founded the monarchy, House Barca. Although the family were scions of Asmodeus, they supported a pantheon of other gods (most of whom are no longer worshiped today) including Mitra. The dwarves, their culture now shattered, were impressed by these newcomers, many choosing to integrate into human society entirely.
Militarily, the kingdom did quite well, driving their goblinoid foes to the far north and pacifying some of the native human population of the Iraen. These tribesfolk mostly retreated into the Caer Bryr where they have survived to this day, though now with a deep grudge against the Talireans. King Accarius IV of House Barca began construction of the Watch Wall after several failed incursions into the Savage North which has been modified and strengthened since that time. House Barca imposed a policy of isolationism from the mainland, which restricted trade and hindered growth.
A century ago, House Darius began to rise to prominence. It held some claim to the throne and had gained considerable support from lesser houses who were impressed by their dedication to Law and Good. They were staunch supporters of Mitra and refused to acknowledge the pantheon, in particular Asmodeus. This culminated in a war of succession.