History of Santuariel
From The Heretic Knowledge Vault
The half-elf refuge-city of Santuariel has not always been as it is now. Courtesy of the Chronicles of Heretic Knowledge (CHK) and a timeline graphic developed by Poe and Impy to show the Eras of Errant Story, we are beginning to get some understanding of the history of the place, although there are many blanks yet to be filled in. This article summarizes what we know (or think we know).
The earliest Santuariel, Santuariel I, dates to the year 208 TEW (i.e., year 208 of the Errant Wars Era, or 1917 years before Errant Story time, plus or minus a year or so). Quoting Poe and Impy, at the CHK:
The earliest Santuariel was formed in early years of the Errant Wars; the city was actually built by the Elves who were fighting on the side of the half elves. By that point, the half elves had been largely forced from most elven cities by the fighting, so Santuariel was constructed as a home for the many refugees and their families, while the sympathetic elves tried to calm the rest of the elven population and stop the race war that was brewing.
Santuariel I is the only Santuariel other than the current one that has actually been seen in Errant Story. Sarine and her first husband lived there at the very beginning of the Prologue. Based on a distant view as they are talking about the future their unborn daughter may face, it seems to have been a tidy little place, reasonably comfortable to live in. Alas, all good things must end ...
Destruction of Santuariel I
... And end it did. About 110 years after its founding, and coinciding with Sarine's pregnancy, the elven faction that favored the "kill 'em all" solution to the Errant problem mustered the strength to attack and destroy the sanctuary city. Sarine has described some of the details for Jon, but all we know, having come in on that conversation at its very end, is that shortly after Sarine miscarried, "the camp was over run and we had to escape." Her husband's death followed shortly afterward. It isn't clear from context whether "the camp" was Santuariel I itself, or one of the mobile refugee camps established once the city fell. In terms of outcome, it really doesn't matter.
This began a period of life on the run for the half elves, and possibly elves and humans, who had lived in Santuariel I. As yet, we know little or nothing of this time.
Santuariel II and III
Santuariel II and Santuariel III were more roving refugee camps than they were established geographic locations, so they don't have clear founding or ending dates to put on the timeline. Santuariel II was more or less disbanded towards the end of the Errant Wars, as people gradually left in search of better food and shelter. Santuariel III lasted much longer but suffered a variety of small disasters, culminating in a fire set by a self-hating half elf with the misguided notion of purging them all of the curse of their various birth defects. It kinda worked, in a manner of speaking.
And there, for the moment, the matter rests. Some time during the Santuariel III era, the elves gave up on fighting the Errant War and retreated resentfully to Praenubilus Astu, so attacks by the elves at least weren't one of the hardships Santuariel III had to face.
Santuariel IV, however, was a real city. Here's Poe:
The years turned into decades, and then to centuries and eventually, whether by chance or design; a couple of families of half elves came to be living near each other in an area of west Veracia. Several others heard of this and moved there as well. This migration continued until they found themselves forming an impromptu half elven settlement. The name Santuariel was soon chosen for the fledging village based on some old stories passed through the generations. And as the years passed the fourth Santuariel grew and even prospered to some degree and the half elf population felt safe and secured, the first time in their lives, for many of them.
This nominal "founding" of Santuariel IV happened in year 1480 of the Age of Man (AoM), 320 years before the time of Errant Story. For quite a long time things worked reasonably well, as by now the elves had retreated behind the Elven Barrier and weren't interested in venturing out to persecute half elves (or do much of anything else). Unfortunately (at least from the standpoint of Santuariel), Veracia dispatched Luminosita to knock on the elves' door, and with the barrier down, it didn't take long for the elves to send out rangers to check out the outside world -- and discover Santuariel. Another massacre followed, and the fourth version of Santuariel passed into history.
This time, there were some survivors of the elven attack. A faction of sympathetic rangers was able to get word to Santuarielites that an attack was coming, and survivors of the attack (which occurred in 1620 AoM) were able to flee to the Northern Confederacy. Eventually, by the year 1670 AoM, they were able to get back together and found Santuariel as it exists today. The current Santuariel can therefore be considered "Santuariel V." For more on the city as it now stands, check out the HKV Santuariel article.