|Head of State||
Supreme Archdomina Makeda
Skorne Empire is an Empire in Eastern Immoren led by the tenacious Skorne. Recently, the skorne have begun to make war upon the peoples and nations of western Immoren, mainly Cygnar and the Protectorate.
The skorne are a house and caste-based people, with every person within society knowing their place in the scheme of things, although it is possible to transend one's caste by merit of being particularely skilled at what one does. They are also firm believers in the fact that "might makes right", with much of their society being ruled over by warlords with varying degrees of control over their peers.
The skorne, although traditionally fighting wars against each other as the various houses try to prove their superiority, were recently united by one of the most dangerous persons in recent history, the former king of Cygnar, Vinter Raelthorne IV, who has declared himself Supreme Archdominar of the entire Skorne Empire.
The skorne culture arose several hundred years ago in the eastern parts of Immoren. A barren land with few natural resources, the skorne were a savage hunter/gatherer society. Living a nomadic lifestyle, the skorne would contend with each other and the wild beasts of the plains for what little resources stood to find, as well as making occaisonal raids into the elven kingdom of Lyoss to the north. The elves of Lyoss called the skorne the "godless", a title the skorne relished, believeing that their own ancestors were greater than any gods of other races.
The skorne culture as it is today began to take form with the rise of Voskune. An ascetic and philosopher, Voskune dedicated his life to unraveling the mysteries of life and death. He fasted, mortified his own flesh and even plucked out one of his eyes to better understand its functions, replacing it with a polished stone which allowed him to perceive the spiritual as clearly as the physical..
Voskune, as with all skorne of his time, died, his spirit consumed by the Void. Several generations later, however, two students of Voskune's teachings succeeded where their predecesor had failed. Ishoul and Kaleed worked together to discover the mysteries of Exaltation. Ishoul discovered that certain stones, when cut and polished in a certain fashion, would absorb the soul of any skorne who died in the stones vicinity.
This discovery led to the creation of the first Exalted. The Tyrant of their house, Vuxoris, invented the code of battle known by the name of hoksune, which is known and practised by all skorne warriors even today. Fearing that his teachings would be lost with him, Vuxoris asked Ishoul to preserve his spirit so that his art would never be forgotten. Ishoul did as asked, and captured Vuxoris spirit within the first sacral stone, preserving his soul from the Void.
Ishoul and Kaleed also imitated Voskune in plucking out one of their eyes and replacing it with a stone to better percieve the spiritual, a practise which is mirrored to this day by all Extollers.
Twelve generations before the destruction of Lyoss, there was two more breakthroughs. Morkaash was a warrior-philosopher whom studied the anatomy of skorne, cyclopes and titans, as well as several other creatures of eastern Immoren, seeking to learn how the bodies of various creatures functioned. He succesfully captured and tamed several creatures, and today his teachings lives on in the practices of the paingivers and chirurgeons. During this period, the art of Mortitheurgy arose as well, allowing those skorne capable of mastering this difficult art to gain almost unprecedented control over the beasts under their command.
Then came the destruction of Lyoss. The skorne, being used to hardship, fought tooth and nail for survival as nature itself seemed to strive for the annihilation of their people. The violent storms, floods, and earthquakes of this era forced the skorne to abandon their nomadic lifestyle in favour of building large fortresses and castles capable of withstanding the fury of nature itself.
As the storms abated, the skorne eventually returned to their ways of war, the houses fighting violent battles between each other for what meager resources were to be found, continued in their practises of ancestral worship, and invented new weapons, such as blackpowder.
Nothing could have prepared the skorne for what was to come, though. From out of the west came one of the greatest warriors in the world. He was Vinter Raelthorne IV, the former king of Cygnar. How he had managed to successfully cross the abyss separating east from west is unknown, but when the skorne set upon him, they quickly realised their folly.
Vinter was a consumate warrior, slaying anyone who came against him, skorne or beast. Eventually, some of the skorne came to believe that Vinter was the reincarnation of one of their revered ancestors, and before long, the skorne began to follow him. As Vinter made his way into the Skorne Empire, conquering the houses and cities one by one, more and more skorne began to flock to him, until eventually the only skorne unwilling to bow to him where those of House Balaash.
The skorne of House Balaash were led by one of their greatest warriors; Makeda. After a longfought battle between Vinter's and Makeda's soldiers, the two warriors met. Trading blows which would have killed any lesser being, the two fought like demons. Makeda was shocked, for despite the injuries she had inflicted, Vinter refused to die, despite being unable to shunt damage to the warbeasts around him like Makeda could. Eventually, Vinter won out, but instead of killing Makeda, he told her to take up her swords and fight on in his name.
In 602 AR Vinter led an expedition into the west, were he laid siege to Corvis. In Vinter's absense, however, the Tyrants sought to return the Skorne Empire to the way it was before Vinter united them. Makeda was the only one those who sought to preserve the new ways, and was thus forced to return to her fortress where she would weather the attacks of the other Tyrants until Vinter's return.
When Vinter returned, he quickly subjugated the revolting skorne a second time, executing anyone who had sought to betray him during a one month long torture-session, carried out at the hands of Master Tormentor Morghoul. After restoring order, Vinter gave Makeda the duty of conquering the west while he remained in the empire to ensure that no further uprisings would occur. Makeda, now Archdomina of the Western Reaches, has made several attacks against Cygnar, the Protectorate of Menoth and the Trollbloods along the western borders of the Bloodstone Marches.
Most recently, the skorne have suffered a string of setbacks, largely due to recieving incomprehensible orders, unstable supplylines, and having been forced to fight off the Legion of Everblight, the Circle Orboros and the Trolls at the Castle of the Keys, where they suffered tremendous losses.
More alarmingly though, Master Tormentor Morghoul has, after torturing Magnus the Warlord, unearthed the truth about Vinter; he is not one of the Skorne's ancestors come back to lead them, but a power hungry human who is using them to achive his own ends. What Makeda intends to do with this information is unknown, however.