In the First Age all the planes were one and were at peace but the lust for power of wizards destroyed this peace and the First Age came to a close with the ruinous Magewar. The Second Age was of one of war, with all arcana at war for ultimate dominance; the Second Age at last came to a close when a secret cabal of benevolent wizards sundered the world into countless planes separated by a magical void.
The Third Age is an age of exploration, the descendants of the wizards responsible for the separation of the Planes named their Plane Arcanus and devoted themselves to the study of magic and the creation of laws to keep wizardry from spawning another Magewar. Their organization came to be called the Novis Orbis Librarium, and in time, they discovered a complex enchantment to create a permanent link between two disparate Planes. Armed with this knowledge they set out to reconnect the Planes and spread their benevolent system of laws to all they found. There were few objections, most Planes they found had backslid into anarchy and barbarism, the few that had retained any civilization at all were glad enough to enter the NOL peacefully. Would that it could have continued like this, but all good things must come to an end.
In the year 1066 of the Third Age a Planar Link was brought into being on the frontier Plane of Treviso and from it poured the insectile hordes of the Shadowlord. It seemed the wizards of the NOL no longer held the monopoly on the Planar Link spell, much the misfortune of Treviso, and, in time, twelve other frontier Planes. The military forces of the frontier Planes mobilized but could not seem to halt the Shadowlord’s armies, and the NOL remained aloof. For in order to prevent another Magewar wizards of the NOL were forbidden to use war magics, or even to learn them. Alas, the Shadowlord was not so constrained.
All hope was not lost however, as fourteen master wizards repudiated the laws of the NOL and joined the cause to defeat the Shadowlord, and indeed, with their help, and the help of many lesser wizards who followed them, the armies of the frontier Planes were triumphant.
It is now the year 1069 of the Third Age, the Shadowlord has been defeated, his forces are in shambles. The cost was high however, thirteen Planes lie devastated, and more ominously, the prestige and control of the NOL has been weakened. Fourteen master wizards and scores of lesser have defied NOL law, and the armies that defeated the Shadowlord would be unlikely to see things the NOL way. A compromise was reached, in reward for their service, each master wizard was to be granted rule over one of the Planes devastated by the Shadowlord, in return the rebellious wizards would repledge themselves to the NOL laws and foment no further discord.
It was a shaky compromise, but it might have succeeded, if all parties involved had been honest…