The story of Sylvanna is the story of two peoples: The Bats and the Avians. At its core is the tale of the planet’s creation, passed down over the centuries and held as truth by almost every being inhabiting the world.
The All-Maker, a nameless, formless deity worshipped by Bats and Avians alike as the creator of all things, bestowed upon the planet Sylvanna two custodians: Reeno, the Bat God and Cyngro, the Hawk God. Between each, the All-Maker split the power of a Star, the mightiest form of magic in all of creation. To possess even a fragment of such a rare gift is to embrace the very essences of creation and destruction, simultaneously.
The two fledgling deities used the power of their Half-Stars to create the world around them. Reeno fashioned forests, jungles and all manner of living beings to inhabit Sylvanna. Cyngro forged the terrain, mountains and oceans which gave Sylvanna its beautiful landscape. With the planet thriving, the All-Maker thought it a fitting reward to create sentient beings in the shape of his noble Gods. Thus, the Bats were made in the image of Reeno, and the Avians in the image of Cyngro.
The planet was peaceful for centuries, but by and by, Cyngro found himself craving more power than that which he already had. When the All-Maker wouldn’t give it to him, he took it from his compliment. Reeno was unable to defend himself as one fateful day, Cyngro reached deep within his greed-fueled heart to produce a power the world had never seen, and the Bat God was transformed from a living entity into a lifeless crystal shell.
Outraged, the Spirit Xixa, Keeper of Time, intervened and prevented Cyngro from culling Reeno’s Half-Star from his crystallized body. She then used her superior powers to trap Cyngro within the planet itself, so he could carry out his duties as a God, not as a physical being, but as a mere conduit of Sylvanna. Grief-stricken by her inability to transform Reeno to his previous state, Xixa shattered the crystallized God, and when his Half-Star formed from the rubble, it was in five separate pieces. These she sent to hide in five different parts of the world, so they too could continue to look after the planet in Reeno’s absence.
The Bat-Peoples of Sylvanna are free-spirited creatures with a deep appreciation of nature. Bats are generally much smaller than Avians and more prolific, with a population estimated to be four-times that of the Avian race.
They are spiritual and believe every creature is important and all life is precious, though they do hold a grudge against Avians due to Cyngro’s actions, many centuries ago. They are strict vegetarians and subsist on a diet of only sustainable plants: That means no meat, no milk, no cheese. They are not without technology, but the materials used in crafting their goods are unobtrusive to the environment and replenishable. Some Bats practice magic and the arcane, but most are untrusting of such things.
Bats prefer to build their homes in trees and thrive mostly on the Sky Continent level of the planet. The central homeland of the Bats is Shangri-La, where the ruling monarchy resides.
The industrious Avian race concerns itself primarily with the survival of the species and the quality of life inherent in its military-like society. Avians are larger than Bats but their numbers pale in comparison due to their high sense of duty when it comes to serving the collective as a whole, which often trumps such personal goals as raising a family.
Avians hold a deep resentment towards Bats for what Xixa did to their champion and beloved God, Cyngro, but they are otherwise not deeply concerned with spiritual matters. They eat a diet of both plants and meat, but draw the line at consuming Bats, which is taboo. Avians rely heavily on technology infused with arcane magic to help their society function.
Avians prefer to build their homes in isolated parts of the planet, as far away from Bats as they can manage it, and often this means utilizing the caverns of the Lower Continents. The central homeland of the Avians is The Maker’s Eye Citadel, an underground base of operations for the Avians’ largest clan.
The World-Keepers: The Spirits
Spirits are an immortal race of creatures that live outside the physical realm of Sylvanna. They are shape-shifters who often assume the appearance of one or both of the planet’s sentient races when in the presence of mortals.
In centuries past, Spirits dwelled on Sylvanna and mingled with the mortal races freely. Ever since Cyngro’s coup, however, they have had greater restrictions placed upon their interference with the beings that call Sylvanna their home. Thus, their interactions have been severely limited.
Spirits function as the All-Maker’s watchful eyes and each is in charge of a single otherworldly function. There are Spirits in charge of time, light and dark, and even life and death. Though each boasts spectacular power, the Spirits of Sylvanna have also been put on notice in recent years, that their full potential is not to be utilized while conducting business in the mortal realms.
The Broken Ones: Demons
Demons are mostly malevolent immortals who are forced to spend an eternity of subservience to the All-Maker and the Spirits, outside the physical realm. Demons take many forms. Some were once mortals, too corrupt to live in the afterlife in peace. Some were Spirits who disobeyed the All-Maker and were turned into shadows of their former selves as punishment. Some Demons are so old and so twisted, that it isn’t entirely clear what their original existence was like, and how they came to be.