The Death Day Massacre. by Susan Van Camp
The Deathday Rituals
Deathday is actually a week long celebration culminating in the Deathday Ritual. During this ritual the adult dragons of a Clan would commune with the spirits of past generations of dragons.
During these celebrations the clan would make their major decisions for the upcoming year with both dead ancestors and living dragons participating, thus guaranteeing that clan traditions were honored.
On the last day of the ritual all adult dragons would undergo a transformation, leaving their bodies and traveling the spirit plane for 24 hours. During this time living dragons have great difficulty returning to their living bodies. This is also the time when ancient knowledge was passed from the dead to the living.
The Deathday Massacre
Two hundred Years ago a great conspiracy was hatched to destroy draconic culture during the deathday ritual. The attacks were orchestrated by the mysterious Pylos Lords. The necromancers collected extensive information on the draconic clans. They used this knowledge to acquire allies among the mortal races, especially the dwarves.
During the final day of the Deathday Rituals dwarves, elves, humans, vorns and warpspawn were used to overwhelm the few orc and non-dragon shape shifters who defended the clanholds. Once inside the necromancers drained the defenseless dragons. These drainings created huge quantities of warp, changing the weather and geography of Grandilar virtually overnight. Warp Storms suddenly went from occasional to commonplace. Unsuspecting mortal kingdoms were caught by the changes and torn apart.
Necromancers had recruited mortal armies for the invasion they were cut down by zealous defenders, killed by the od magics of the clanholds and finally subjected to the damage of warp from the drainings. Few, if any, of the necromancers' mortal allies survived. The necromancers did not care about these loses. Hundreds of necromancers gained the power they had dreamed of.
Soon after the deed was done most of the Pylos Lords withdrew from Grandilar, with no explanation. This left the new power hungry necromancers to sort out the disaster they had created. With no armies and no coherent leadership the necromancers established petty kingdoms which fought the remaining mortal kingdoms, and each other, for power.
Thus the new world was born of the destruction of the old.
Before the massacre, the Valarian movement had been trying to warn the dragons of their vulnerabilities, but the warnings were mostly ignored. It is believed that the few ancient dragons who survived the deathday massacre did so because Valarians came to their aid. Look for more information on this in the Valarian Champion Book.