The land of Karugonia is an old one, its soil rich with the stories of those who worked it. In the days of old, the Kingdom of Karugonia stood a gilded testament to the ability of its people. Sturdy stone towers manned by expert marksmen kept Karugonians safe from sporadic raiders and marauders beyond the walls, for in the time before Sekiryu, the biggest worries of Karugonians were far less sinister.
Within the great walls of the Kingdom of Karugonia, its citizens prospered and made merry with little worry beyond the average toils of city life. In the interest of efficiency, society formed echelons in accordance with profession. The Kingdom itself was divided into districts in this manner, with the agricultural districts being the largest and closest to the great walls. The artisan district was further in, with Karugonians peddling their wares in the name of making a living. Being a prosperous nation, the Karugonians had plenty of time to perfect craftsmanship – a task they took great pride in, for Karugonian craftsmen were known throughout the greater lands. The governance district was the smallest and most central district in the old Kingdom of Karugonia, at the heart of which lay the Palace. With medical and public services scattered in encampments though out districts, the Kingdom better resembled a well-functioning organism than a city.
The Karugonians themselves were a people grateful to the bountiful lands, with a rich culture celebrating harvests and life itself. Karugonian artisans took part in creating large effigies of iron and Karugon rock to commemorate the role of nature in their prosperity. An annual event, the best effigies were placed in the lands beyond the Kingdom walls in hope these protectors scare off goblins and other nefarious creatures beyond the walls. A tradition spanning countless years, the lands beyond the Kingdom of Karugonia were scattered with such guardians, often an assuring sign to nearby travellers as they approach the Kingdom.
With Sekiryu’s fateful arrival, the golden halls of Karugonia were reduced to smouldering ash upon the Red Dragon’s visit. While the proud halls of the Kingdom were no match for the Dragon’s assault, the land of Karugonia itself seemed to fight back. Perhaps it was the vile touch of the Red Dragon’s flames, or it might have been the blood-curdling screams of the Karugonians as countless fell to the talons of the scaly predator, but nature sided with the residents of the once proud Kingdom of Karugonia. Plants grew sturdier, most flora grew fire resistant, almost as if the lands remember the burn of the Cursed One’s flames. What was left of the Karugonians used such bark to insulate their armour and homes, lending some resilience to the small camps scattered amongst the mountains.
Most notable was the effect Sekiryu’s flames had on Karugon rock –smooth, black stone veined with dormant arcane ore. Enchanting to look at, the rock quick became the favourite of artisans to work with, often valued over diamonds and other precious stones. Karugon rock adorned the effigies scattered across the lands, and with the arrival of Sekiryu, these once dormant stones sang to life. Upon waking, the Karugon rock imbued the myriad of effigies with arcane energies, bringing the majestic effigies to life. These magical creatures were the land of Karugonia’s answer to the wrath of the Dragon, and the beasts retreated to their preferred habitats, often friendly to encampments of Karugonian survivors.
The presence of these beasts were largely inconsequential to the survivors, that is, until the first new Karugonian children were born. Faster, stronger and smarter, these children were invigorated by the lands, equipped with the makings of warriors. Upon the arrival of the warrior children, the beasts of Karugonia converged around encampments, drawn to the warrior spirits residing within the new babes. By the time the warrior children were six years of age, they were chosen by a beast, bonded to each other by the tether of the Karugonian spirit empowering them. With the bondings, child and beast became Warrior and Mount.
Closest to the ruins of Karugonia, the War Rams grazed in the Stellar Mountains. The strange arcane energies bringing the beasts to life also gifted them the ability to propagate life, and the mecha-beasts now roamed the mountains in herds. Agile and study, War Rams were the preferred mounts of Scout Warriors, enabling seamless traversing of the hilly lands. The Mountains were also home to another favourite mount of Scouts, the Pegasi. Gorgeous, winged horses made their roosts at the very tops of the Stellar Mountains, flying down to grassier lands amongst the War Rams to graze as needed.
A little beyond the mountains in the West Windfall Plains, War Horses and Triceratops made their natural homes. Tenacious beasts of labour, these Mounts were ridden at the Vanguard, as well as in the daily lives of the Agricultural District. While the Pandas of Merlin Point and the gentle beasts of the grasslands roamed Karugonia in abundance, arcane energies also brought life to more predatory effigies, works of the more imaginative artisans.
The arcane beasts roamed far and wide, beyond the Rocky Mountains and the Grasslands, past Karugonian borders and into that of friendly Kingdoms. The colossal mammoths were among such beasts, who chose to make their home in the Duxa Empire, across the great Karugonian river. Where these behemoth mounts ambled along oblivious to the little creatures scurrying at their feet, the Mammoths when trained were the fiercest vanguard Mounts, shattering the ranks of opposing forces in magnificent displays of brute force.
While Kingdom Falls was breath-taking to behold, the term also applied to the mighty predators of the falls, Lions and winged Griffons. Razor sharp claws, teeth and beaks made these Mounts perfect for offensive-line warriors, and it was no surprise that warriors in training often hoped against hope to be chosen by the majestic beasts. Unbonded, these beasts were best steered clear of at risk of a nasty gash. Whispers around campfires speak of other beasts brought to life by the arcane energies; effigies unsightly enough to discomfort audiences, sent away to stand watch of the Shadow Valley. Here these beasts are said to remain, claiming dominion over lands no Karugonian in their right mind seeks to enter.
Thus was Karugonia’s response to the threat of the Dragon, forging symbiotic relationships amongst its inhabitants in resistance to its Cursed oppressor. The Mounts awaken now, looking to bond with their chosen Warriors. While the Kingdom of Karugonia has fallen, the Return of Karugonia is just beginning.