My mom dropped off some old papers the other day and I had the time to go through them today. Hidden amongst them is one of the very first written treatments of what would become the setting for War of the Ages—written sometime around 2001-2003.
I thought it might be interesting to share—for my own personal history record if nothing else—so I made some minor edits for readability, but otherwise kept my mistakes—such as however the hell I counted the number of millenniums of human civilization and thinking that dinosaurs died out in 65 million BC instead of 65.5 million BC (note: none of this is officially canon anymore, but well, most of it actually is pretty close to the true setting. Why change a good idea, right?). Here's a snapshot of a written out timeline outline that was included with the treatment:
Without further ado, here is the original setting to War of the Ages:
Dragon (working title), is yet another story that takes place on an earth far into the future.
There have been five ages of the world as the dragons see it. The first age was the age of dragons. In this time, dragons flourished, being the most powerful creatures in the world. This encompasses the beginning of life on earth—since, as everyone knows, dragons were the first creatures that populated the earth, arriving from out of the void and making the earth habitable for other living beings—until the end of the dinosaurs.
Beginning of life until 65 million BC.
During the second age came the arrival of the 'faery' people from the lands of Fae. Using their mystical powers, they created grand cities and beautiful landscapes. They became rivals to the dragons. The dragons, whose lives were far longer than the 'immortal' elves, chose to wait them out and descended into the bowels of the earth. Only occasionally rising to the surface to mate and view the toils and tribulations of the 'lesser' races. The third age lasted until the ice age.
65 million BC to 1.6 million BC.
In the third age, man—a result of the elves meddling with the natural creatures of the earth—came to power. Casting their former masters down, they banished them to the lands of the Fae using their own brand of magical power that drew on the powers of the Earth itself. The grand wizards of the humans created an impenetrable seal across the void that separated Fae and earth, sacrificing themselves in order to bring it into existence. The cosmic forces summoned by the magicians completely destroyed their grand city of Atlantis.
Left without their greatest minds and powerless to defend themselves against the natural forces of the world, man discovered technology and science, and thus the tool for their own destruction. In the beginning, when man was still relatively weak, the dragons often surfaced and tried to slow down the inevitable collapse of the human race; however, as the humans grew stronger and more intelligent, it became too dangerous for the dragons to interfere. Still, they persisted, determined that the humans would not destroy everything they had worked for. During this time, many dragons were killed trying to save the world. Finally, they gave up and reclined in the bowels of the earth, resigned to wait for the elves' creation to destroy everything so they may begin anew. This happened near the end of the ninth millennium of human civilization, or 5996 AD. Humans refer to the third age as the 'golden era,' a time when everything was good and they lived a life of ease.
1.6 million BC to 6000 AD.
During the fourth age, the mystical seal placed on the lands of Fae was weakened along with the earth after the cataclysmic sundering of the world. The creatures of Fae poured through the void into Earth, eager to reclaim a place for themselves after their one and a half million year exile. However, the humans' great civilization left behind a terrible legacy: the robots. Separately, the last remnants of the humans (whose magic was working again after the destruction of the seal of Fae), the elves, and the dragons fought against the robots at every opportunity. But it was not until they united that they finally destroyed the robots and completely wiped any and all traces of their existence off of the face of the earth. This happened in the year 9,999. With the new year, brought freedom from fear of the robots and the dawn of the fifth age.
The tenuous alliance between the races dissolved after the defeat of the robots. The 'barbaric' humans formed many isolated kingdoms all over the planet and their powerful magic kept the elves from enslaving them again, while the 'noble' elves created the beautiful city of Yesurian, and also had small communities around foci of the leylines of the earth. The dragons, refusing to be categorized as either 'barbaric' or 'noble' were simply themselves. Always having been solitary creatures, the dragons' grand kingdom, that had stood as a testament for good for literally billions of years dissolved around the same time as the collapse of the races' alliance. The dragons of the world scattered, never joining together again.
After many years and endless fighting, a king unites a tribe of humans with a village of elves. Thus begins a new alliance. The High King wins many battles and finally brings many lands under a tenuous peace. The dragons, all but vanished into obscurity are the powers behind the scenes.
However, the dragons, who were never social creatures, do not all agree. Some believe the lesser races should be wiped out. Some believe everyone should be equal. Some believe the lesser races should become slaves for the dragons. The ones in power believe in the Alliance, and that is why the High King is succeeding.
Always before in history, when there is a light, there is a shadow: the demons. Their goal is to begin a new age of darkness. Always they have been in the shadows, but now as they are in danger of being found out, they are taking chances. Never before has there been such a fine line between success and total failure.
There is a prophecy, billions of years old, that hints at the existence of the demons, and also hints at the existence of a hero to fight them. One who is both a dragon and not a dragon.
So there you have it. It might make sense to mention that originally the main character was going to be a dragon that was born while his mother was shapeshifted, promptly orphaned (because Conveniently an Orphan is one trope I find hard to leave behind even today), and forced into the wilds to grow up as a human that doesn't know his true heritage.
It was wayyyy too close to the Breath of Fire games for me to be comfortable with (in fact, since I was pretty into Japanese culture and was still pretty into the Meaningful Names trope, my main character was named Ryu even—Japanese for dragon—so yeahhhh), so I shifted focus to other characters and slightly backwards in time.
Ryu's father became one of the main characters of the new series starting with Throne of Ao and his current existence is up in the air as I don't know what will happen to his father in upcoming novels and stories.
Thanks for reading! What did you think? Feel free to ask questions about changes between this original treatment and the WotA of now or about the aborted book detailing Ryu's coming-of-age.
I hope to be putting out some new (canonical) content in the WotA-verse soon, but I'm releasing a math section first (hopefully by the end of the month). Apologies if I've sent you down the rabbit hole of TV Tropes.org with the above links, but it's one of my favorite websites and something I think it's good to be cognizant of different tropes as a writer.
Also, if you have any experience or thoughts on Patreon and what you like to see from authors and creators on there, please share it with me. I am considering this as a platform moving forward.