The Demon Empire
Excerpt from the World of the Wilderlands
The ancient heartland of demon-kind, here it was that the first demon kingdoms arose after the retreat of the Markabs, for here the demons and demonbrood survived, on the fringe of the Markab heartland where now stands the Chaotic Horned Empire. Extirpating all life in their realm with terrible energies after their retreat, the Markabs never bothered to hunt down every last living being on the fringe, it being considered an uneconomical use of their powers. So the demons and demonbrood built their own societies, and then their own kingdoms, until finally they built their own empire… which, having expanded west and north, promptly split into the Demon Empire and the Horned Empire. With the internecine warfare between the two, the northern sections of the empire in Ghinor fell to rebel humans. While eventually the two empires attained a truce, the empire has never again regained its might (though the Horned Empire expanded further west and north again, and then, too, split in rebellious divisions). There has been little more than raids and minor battles with the Horned Empire since, as at the end of the Great War Lucifer created the Great Abyss, and in response the Demon Gods created the Behemoth Peaks between the Abyss and the Wurm Gap. Even demons fear the flames of the Great Abyss, while only the mightiest can challenge the terrible beasts of the Behemoth Peaks.
Today the Demon Empire is deep in a millennia-long age of decadence, each of the demonic city states seeking dominion over the other, but incapable of any real efforts toward such due to the debauched and dissipated nature of its peoples. The demons even give their Demon Gods mere lip service, as with their incredible wealth and power that yet remains they have want of little from the gods. Millions of humans, demihumans, and humanoids live and die in slavery, their greatest wish merely being that their demonic lords do not suck their souls out at the last glimmer of life to fuel their infernal devices. The names of the great cities of the Demon Empire are legendary in the north: Ploorumbashti the City of Lead, Aargantiush the City of Silver, Aurughlimha the City of Gold, Arkhaanos the City of Magicum, Feranghlias the City of Iron… the list goes on and on. Not one, however, is the demonic capital, for the emperor (currently Svarozicar XXXII, “The Glutton”) has always held court at one of the cities of his princes, the better to keep an eye on his enemies and empty their treasury, for demons take well to heart the ancient saying, “Keep your friends close, but your enemies closer… preferably in your gullet!”