Translated in the dwarven tongue to mean “holy war,” the Kazun Dahl war was initiated by the dwarf nation of Torryghiem against the elves of Sylwood Forest for the ascension of three elf nobles to demigod status. Fought off and on over a period of of almost 30 years from 256 C.E. to 282 C.E. It led to the unification of the five holds of the Auro humans in the nation of Arulan to join in the war on the side of the dwarves. The conflict was officially concluded on the 1st day of the 13th month of the year 282 C.E. with the signing of the Cliffwatch Treaty, where the elves were forbidden from raising up more demigods in exchange for the right to their own religious practices.
The dwarves had long tolerated elven disdain for the Harkiron Gods, though it made for poor relations between the two races. When the three elf lords Elrovand, Siobhan, and Floki were raised by the magic of their people to deific power, their pious neighbors were outraged at the arrogance of the elves, and declared war.
The three newly made elven gods smote the first dwarven army to enter their forested realms, slaughtering every last invader with their might. At this moment, the Harkiron Gods intervened, banishing the elven gods from Ather for abusing their powers as deities, before returning themselves to the outer planes. Despite having suffered a crushing defeat, the dwarves took the intervention of the White God, their protector, as a sign that their campaign was just and that vengeance was the proper recourse. As they rebuilt their army, the elves, having suffered the loss of their most powerful leaders, steeled themselves for another invasion.
In the year 264 C.E. the dwarves launched their second invasion, this time with a new weapon: gargoyles. Forged from the souls of the dwarves slain to serve as defenders of their homeland, the flying beasts caught the elves off guard, and drove them back into their forest. Pressure from the aerial assault and the dwarven ground troops pushed the elves miles back across their frontier, but the lack of any cities or significant population centers left the dwarven army with no targets to attack. Any split in the dwarven forces resulted in troops being isolated and picked off by elven squadrons. Eventually, facing supply shortages, the dwarves retreated to their strongholds. The continued to launch occasional forays, but the war quickly stagnated.
In the year 276 C.E. the elves, tired of dwarven aggression along their frontier, gathered their forces and launched a full scale assault on the dwarven nation of Torryghiem. Caught off guard by elven aggression, the dwarves were pushed back to their capital city, and some of the bloodiest fighting of the war happened at the gates of Torryg Hall. Fearing destruction at the hands of the elves, Torryghiem sent ambassadors to the five Auro human lords to the east, promising rich rewards of iron and gold for their aid. Political maneuvering by the dwarven ambassador swayed the lords to join together in a confederation, later to become a monarchy, and the new nation of Arulan sent an army of humans to invade Sylwood Forest. The poorly armed and trained humans made little progress against the elven defenders, but their invasion necessitated the withdrawal of elven forces from Torryghiem to strengthen their forest defenses, as when the humans could not beat the elven warriors, they often resorted to simply burning the trees around them so that there was nothing left to defend. The elven return to a defensive war led to further stagnation, as neither side was able to gain the upper hand.
End of the War
In 282 C.E, talks of peace began between the involved parties. The dwarves wished to continue fighting, but the morale of their human allies was wearing thin, despite better weapons and training from their allies, and the dwarves wished to negotiate terms while they still had an advantage in numbers. Talks were held at the human fortress of Cliffwatch, and the Treaty of Cliffwatch was signed by all three parties on the 1st day of the 13th month of 282 C.E.
Torryghiem and the Sylwood elves both sustained major losses over the course of the fighting, and have since worked to rebuild. Relations are strained, but not hostile, as both stick to the terms of the agreement. In payment of their debt to Arulan, dwarven smiths and military advisors were assigned to each hold to provide instruction in weapon making as well as training in war. These attachés also serve as military officers, directing human forces in the defense of Arulan. A contingent of 200 dwarven warriors has been assigned to the human king at Cliffwatch to help him maintain order through the realm, and serve upon his command. These advisors and soldiers have a dual purpose in securing Arulan loyalty and preparing their allies should another war occur.