Partial Timeline of the Empyraeum.
In the year 25 BE (before Empyraeum), Alexander the Great left Babylon after recovering from a major illness. It is claimed that an Indian holy man, who had joined his retinue after the pacification of said country brought Alexander back from the banks of the Styx.
By 21 BE, the army of Alexander had arrived at the base of a mountain known locally as Sagarmartha or Chomolungma, the Great Mother Mountain, in a high and frozen land far to the East. Sagarmatha is said by many to be the tallest mountain in the world. Alexander vanishes inside of this mountain for one hundred days and, when he emerges, he is not alone. First, come three-hundred giants clad in golden armour like to a dragon; their armour blazing golden in the sun, their heads enclosed by a snarling dragon’s maw. Following them, ten thousand great soldiers in black and silver plate which covers their entire body. They are half again as tall and broad as their compatriots. Alexander announces them as the Dracograth and the Kalshodar. Soldiers who arrived as normal men but are now changed by means unknown.
20 BE, Alexander and his new army; millions of 'regular irregulars', as they as jokingly called, following his new soldiers - Kalshodar and Dracograth - reach the Far Eastern Sea. They look upon Ippon in distance not knowing it is there.
By 15 BE they have reached the Pillars of Hercules; Iberia, Hellas; all nations of the Mediterranean saw their force coming and almost all surrendered without a fight. Many observers note that this is becoming an increasingly common sight in the wake of the army. There is rumour this is even Alexander's desire, for a "bloodless conquest".
12 BE, the army reaches Avalon, known to locally as Brytton, a long and brutal campaign of guerrilla warfare and war of attrition begins. It is noted that that the Bryttons are either the bravest soldiers Alexander has faced or simply the most stubborn or maybe even stupid. No-one can decide which. After two years of bloody struggle (most of the blood is not from the invader's side), Bryttan submits to The Empyraeum and declares Alexander honorary Chief Druid. Alexandria-Upon-Thames is built in his honour.
10 BE; the nearby island of Eire turns out to be as difficult to convince the benefits of membership of the Hegemony as Brytton was. A further year of what is described as "bloody annoying" fighting is required before the High Kings of each County meet and decide to offer the Hegèmon no more resistance.
The army travels back and mops up any remaining resistance along the way. As has been Alexander's practise to date, garrisons and token forces are left behind at strategic points. Small forces of Kalshodar are added to these garrisons for further reinforcement. Large numbers of younger tribespeople from both islands clamour to join the army, further swelling the returning force.
In the year which is later to become 1 EA (Empyraen Age), Alexander names Alexandria-the-First in Egypt as his capital and begins to consolidate the Empyraeum officially. The former army argot is formalised into Empyraen Standard Greek or Là Glostèan Empyraen (though Koinè Greek is still considered the educated language of the Empyraeum, it is soon rarely spoken outside of the Senate and courtly circles). The Empyraen Senate is elected and sits for the very first time. Work on the Pharos of Alexandria is begun. Of course some parts of the Eurasian continent were too vast and empty to visit on the famous Bloodless Conquest.
11 EA, the idea for the Flèva Dromos, a new kind of roadway to connect the new Empyraeum is floated in Senate, by one of the 3 Senators for Manchuria. The idea was to build upon his ambitious plan for a Silk Route. A plan Alexander’s predecessor had rejected as too expensive. The project is expected to cost two hundred-million talents but, Senator Ho Peng of Manchuria says, will bring in much more than that as trade becomes easier and safer.
13 EA, Alexander approves the Flèva Dromos project and releases enough money for Senator Ho Peng to train and recruit builders and well as prepare prospecting and mapping teams to travel the Empyraeum and prepare ahead.
37 EA, Afrika is brought into the Empyraen fold, treaties with all the major territories and tribal confederations are signed. Work on Alexandria-on-the-Congo begins.
38 EA, The East-West Flèva Dromos reaches the Pillars of Hercules.
45 EA, the vast Scythian wastes as pacified by a force of 200 Kalshodar, the united tribes swear allegiance to Alexander. Work on Alexandria-of-the-Caucasus begins
48 EA, The North-West Flèva Dromos reaches Alexandria-in-the-Caucasus
49 EA, A splinter force returning from Brytton encounters resistance in the lands of the Gothic tribes on Scandia. In parts the terrain suits the inferior tribal force but, after 18 months of minor bloodshed, the local chiefs bend the knee. Work on Alexandria-of-the-North begins.
51 EA, the North-South Flèva Dromos connects Alexandria-in-the-Caucasus to Alexandria-the-First. A system of fortified garrison-inns (shambal) begin to appear around major intersections of the Flèva Dromos. Known as the Peregrine Guild, they consisted of retired veterans of the Regular Irregulars and formed the basis for what would later be the Territorial Hoplite Regiments, local standing armies who would protect from banditry, assist in the event of disasters and form the backbone for the Empyraen Courier Service.
52 EA, work on the Great Library of Alexandria starts as literature, philosophers, and wise folk begin to pour in from all corners of the Empyraeum. The Pharos is completed and its torch lit for the first time.
71 EA, The North-South Flèva Dromos reaches Afrika and begins the monumental task of connecting newly rising cities and large settlements.
84 EA, the East-West Flèva Dromos reaches the furthest reach of the former Gaulish territories and the idea of building a bridge to Brytton is first floated, then rejected out of hand. Huge barges are built instead and the first footings for an ambitious series of ferry docks are planted at the end of the summer.
87 EA, Alexandria-upon-Tamesis is connected to the Flèva Dromos using a dedicated ferry system and the city grows with trade material flowing into the formally forgotten corner of the Empyraeum.
92 EA, The Empyraen University is built in Alexandria-upon-Tamesis. Within short years it attracts both the best teachers and students from all corners of the Empyraeum. So high is demand that additional facilities are built in the new cities of Ychrhyd and Pontycam. A curious rivalry, including in strange sporting events, soon crops up among these soon-to-be-considered independent kollegia.
104 EA, The Empyraen Society builds the first Museum of Hegemony in Alexandria-upon-Thames, commemorating the thousands of cultures who are part of the Empyraeum and collecting artistic and cultural artefacts of pre-Empyraen culture. Copies are made of the first Glòssia Empyrean, the documents which formalised ESG or Glòsta.
135 EA, Eusebias, the grand-son of Ptolemy retires to Alexandria-upon-Thames and, between giving speeches and lectures on the early conquests that led to the Empyraeum and Alexander’s early life, managed to meet Eudemus of Rhodes and began to pen the very first History of the Empyraeum. The Biblio Alitheia took seven years to write and is still held to be the definitive and official history of the early Empyraeum.
142 EA. Alexander travels to Alexandria-upon-Thames for an official inauguration of the many new cultural Empyraen monuments and institutions spreading across the Brytton capital. He gives a speech at the University, then both Kollegia. He reads on each occasion from the recently completed Biblio Alitheia and endorses the work as inspired. He praises the philosophers, scholars, and wise of Alexandria-upon-Thames as pure embodiments of what the Empyraeum stands for. He leaves with an honorary doctorate from each educational institution and beautifully bound copy of the Biblio Alitheia.
200 EA, Alexander and one hundred Dracograth begin a ceremonial circuit of the now completed Flèva Dromos. The journey between the ‘four cardinal Alexandrias’ takes five years. Along many of the more populated routes, a veritable carnivale springs up, with celebrations that last days, even weeks. Following the ‘official opening’ the Flèva Dromos is soon flooded with travellers and the Peregrine Guild grows to serve their need for food and beds, as well as protection.
263 EA, Alexander formally recognises the Peregrine Guild and announces his intent to form them into regional, local armies. The Territorial Hoplite Regiments are formed. The first garrison-inn, in Falco-Altai, is recognised as their official HQ and all existing veterans are given the choice of whether they would like to redeploy to train recruits across the Empyraeum or remain where they are. Soon, Peregrine shambal are springing up in every corner of the Empyraeum and number over 1,000. To this day, Empyraen Army Hoplites are often referred to as ‘The Falcons’, it was thought that this was due to how their half-helm’s noseguard made them appear somewhat birdlike but this is not true. The Saker Regiment from the Altai region are still considered the ‘special forces’ of the Empyraen Army.
311 EA, rumours of a major rebellion surface in the region locally known as Judea. Rebels appear to be gathering around a charismatic prophet who – it is said - claims to be the son of their One God and the man who will free them from subjugation. Alexander decides to take no risks and heads there personally with one hundred Kalshodar and ten Dracograth. When they arrive, they find the region curiously quiet. Alexander meets with the supposed rebel leader Jeshua ben Josef and determines him to be no rebel but a great holy man and philosopher. The two become friends.
315 EA, several Judamen, locals of the region of Judea, murder Jeshua ben Josef calling his friendship with Alexander a betrayal to his people. The men attempt to flee to the ocean, seeking refuge outside of the Empyraeum. They are very swiftly caught and returned to Alexandria for justice. All five are publically executed. When it found that the Judaman Temple and its ruling priests are behind the murder, Alexander orders his soldiers to leave no stone standing or person alive. The Temple burns for three days. Several followers of Jeshua ben Josef, coming to be known as Kristomen comment that Jeshua would not have wanted such vengeance. Alexander is contrite and returns to Alexandria. He goes into seclusion upon his return.
316 EA Alexander comes out of seclusion and resumes his normal duties.
330 EA, Alexander leaves unexpectedly and alone. He is gone for a whole year. When he returns, those closest to him suspect he visited The Mountain but cannot get him to speak of it. He becomes increasingly withdrawn for a time
335 EA, Neshaa and Kalliades take a ship to investigate rumours of a huge land beyond the Atlantic Ocean. They return with many beautiful examples of trade goods and fantastical stories worthy of Herodotus.
350 EA, with stability, prosperity, and learning spreading freely throughout its borders, the Empyraeum enters its First Golden Age.
447 EA, Alexander vanishes from his audience chamber in Alexandria within the presence of two very unimaginative Dracograth. Searches of the palace, the fortress, and the city find no trace of him. His closest friends and advisors decide to keep his absence quiet as they have no idea for how long he will be absent. They are certain he is not dead. No body or even blood was found. No ransom demands were made. They are sure he will be back any moment.
None suspect it will be over two thousand years until they see him again...