Fifth Astral Era

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In the wake of the Fifth Umbral Calamity, the people of Eorzea turned once again to The Twelve for succor. A massive, beautiful cathedral was erected at the edge of the Black Shroud, and was used to offer prayer to the gods, harnessing the power of prayer through the use of magic. Rituals to worship the gods became commonplace, and magic once again was used across the realm as a method of coping with the bitter cold and the unlikely survival of its people.

Eventually, as with every Calamity in the past, the storms and bitter cold subsided, and the people set out once again across the land, scouring for resources and beginning small communities where they could find some. Over the centuries, these small settlements began to grow larger and larger, until large cities eventually began cropping up all across the realm, each with a diverse culture. Through this cultural evolution, the universal worship of The Twelvechanged, with each city identifying with the values of a particular patron deity. With the growth of cultural, spiritual and now arcane divides, contests of superiority slowly began to become the norm.

Over the course of five hundred years, dozens of cities would spring up and disappear. Eventually, there would be twelve different city-states, each worshiping a different god of the Eorzean Pantheon. Because of this, and because of their fledgling status, each city lacked the stability enjoyed in modern day civilization. War and strife constantly caused territorial lines to be drawn and redrawn time and again. After another five hundred years, the city-states were reduced to a mere six, with the most prominent being Mhach, Amdapor, Yafaem and Nym. The other cities changed shape and size, joining and separating repeatedly over time.

Each city, like with their diverse cultures, also practiced varied schools of magic. The people of Mhach, for instance, were master practitioners of Black Magic, first discovered and mastered by Shatotto, This form of destructive magic draws upon the ambient Aether in the environment surrounding the caster to bolster its effects. The Mhachi also mastered a rather esoteric arcane craft known as Void Magic, allowing them to open portals to the Void and summon Voidsent, whom they are then able to enter into a covenant with, but are able to add extra magical protections in the form of the Nullstone to keep themselves entirely safe so as to avoid being possessed or overwhelmed by the Voidsent, thereby bringing them entirely under the mage's control. The Mhachi were able to use these two schools of magic together in order to garner more power over many of the other city-states and become a dominant force in governing Eorzea.

The people of Amdapor on the other hand mastered the art of White Magic, using their craft to imbue life into the stone sentinels around the city. They learned to use this craft to counter the spells of the Mhachi, channeling aetherto heal and ward instead of destroy. With the mastery of White Magic, the Amdaporians were able to halt the Mhachi, who had taken to crushing the other nations that stood before them.

The other nations, seeing the power the Mhachi and Amdaporians wielded, drew inspiration and increased their study of the arcane. Like the Allagan Empire before them, the people used magic to vastly increase their quality of life through the development of weapons, medical and societal advancements. The Fifth Astral Era was considered as a time of wonder.

With this wonder came a period of peace and prosperity. However, the nations soon grew drunk with the seemingly unlimited power, and tensions slowly began to rise. While each city maintained the facade of peace, within each city's walls, security measures grew more and more stringent. And while the actual catalyst to war was lost to history, political and militant posturing grew rapidly, until all-out war broke out. this signaled the beginning of the War of the Magi.

The War of the Magi raged for over three hundred years, with the city of Nym being stricken with a mysterious and extremely viral plague, which came to be known as the Green Death. The virus almost wiped the Nymian people out entirely, to the point where those infected had to be sealed away in the Wanderer's Palace to save the remaining few from its grasp. As it turned out, the Mhachi voidmages had called upon Bitoso, a Voidsent who had been the root of the disease and had cloaked itself and hidden in the city.

The Mhachi mages had rampaged across Eorzea, conquering nation after nation, until they reached Amdapor. At the climax of the war, the Battle of Amdapor took place, where the Amdapori White Mages stopped the destructive march of the Mhachi at their city. This failed campaign was not the sole cause of the end of the war, however. After over three hundred years of magic-based warfare, the lands aether had become dangerously drained, and its elemental balance was thrown off, heavily favoring water. The land had become decayed and twisted, and spells had lost the strength they once had. Unbeknownst to the people of Eorzea at the time, they had just entered into the Sixth Umbral Era, and the Sixth Umbral Calamity was upon them.