Hall’vak Fjall the Harbringer was the first warlord to unify the many Bakki, tribes of northland warriors that ruled the North of Modir, the homeworld of the Vaklndr. At the time of his father’s death, the western world was ruled by an alliance of emperors known as the Imperja. Though there were nations that existed outside their influence, notably the Iskime that chose to live in the inhospitable poles in the North and South, there were few who did not pay one of the Imperja a tax or levy that had ever come into contact with them.
Hall’vak’s reign began at the age of 17. Fierce in battle and unusually gifted in military strategy, he quickly gained the allegiance of many of the neighboring Bakki. At the age of 23, he was named Jofurr of the many Bakki tribes. His ambition was not sated. He set sail for the coasts of Nova Sveit, a nation under the protection of the Imperja. Nova Sveit had not suffered war in many centuries and was caught completely unprepared. News of the overwhelming victory spread quickly. All in the Imperja nations came to know of the men of Hall’vak Fjall, calling them Hall’vaklndr. By the age of 28, through an endless campaign of war, he had accepted the surrender of each of the Imperja emperors. He took on the title of Kungungr, emperor of the world.
For centuries afterward, the name of Hall’vak Fjall was forgotten, but his people continued to thrive, calling themselves Vaklndr, a shortening of the name the foreigners had placed upon them. The Vaklndr continued to expand their empire, exploring the seas to the East, West and even North and South. Each nation they encountered they destroyed and pillaged, enslaving their men, women and children. During the reign of Leiknir Ulrik, the eighteenth Kungungr, they encountered the Iskime tribes trading in whale and seal oils. Centuries without tasting of significant defeat, the Vaklndr army fell to the Iskime on first landing. The Vaklndr were unaccustomed to fighting in the dark, and the dark in the lands of the Iskime was unending for months at a time. They would wake after each sleep and march to the battlefield only to find it empty. Unable to know whether it was day or night, or even that days had passed, sleep deprivation set in. The troops suffered delusions and disease brought on by exhaustion. By the time the Vaklndr army set sail for reinforcements, they were little more than a band of lunatics babbling ceaselessly about ghosts in the night.
Leiknir was furious at the retreat. Working with his priests and magicians, they devised a way to track the time through Aevi, stones that would burn most brightly at the crest of night, diminish to dull darkness during the peak of day, and then simmer again until the crest of night returned. He gathered nine generals, putting ten thousand men under each. He ordered hundres of ships built in the harbors, enough to carry 90,000 warriors. Once the armies and ships were ready, he set sail for the Northern pole. He ordered his camps arranged so that all men could open their tent door and see the burning stone high upon a post in the center of each camp. Rather than allowing men to sleep whenever exhausted, he ordered they sleep in shifts, measured by the Aevi stones, each taking a third of the army to sleep for one third the day. The Iskime were forced to fight skirmishes on the edge of camp, unable to devastate the large armies as they had before.
The Iskime ghosts, the assassins that painted their faces in the pattern of skulls to terrify the Vaklndr warriors, deadly as they were, fell quickly once forced to fight in the open against overwhelming numbers. After several weeks of unsuccessful raids on the Vaklndr camps, the Iskime retreated to their capital protected only by makeshift walls. Within days the city surrendered, and Leiknir Ulrik claimed the Iskime tribes, making them the last major nation to fall to the Vaklndr before the time of woes.
The Vaklndr know only of Ymil and his offspring. Their world, Modir (meaning mother in their native tongue), was his domain and his alone. Though they have encountered many gods of Ymil’s lineage, their history of how each came to be is more myth than fact. As with all myth, some truth remains.