In the beginning, there was the One. The One created the world and created Smote and Siva to be the caretakers of the world. Smote ordered and maintained the world, while Siva struggled to renew it through change. Thus did the world exist for aeons.
After centuries of relative peace, a wicked mortal warlord arose and started a mad rampage of carnage and death. Many years of terror and pain later, most of the known world lay conquered. Unfortunately for the warlord these conquests took a lifetime, and at the height of his rule he was ill and on his deathbed, with all his sons dead on the battlefield.
With no heirs to carry on his legacy, the warlord decided to try another tactic. He summoned the empire's greatest shamans and alchemists to try and restore his youth, but all their attempts were to no avail. Resigned to the fact that no one in his empire could cure him, the warlord had scouts and spies sent throughout the rest of the world to find someone who can help him. The man they found was the archwizard Rimbol of Scarab - leader of a large Order of mages, holy men, and scholars. The warlord lured Rimbol to his court with the offer of vast magical resources in return for trying to find a cure. Rimbol's lust for knowledge overpowered his reason, and he agreed to make the attempt.
After delving for months into increasingly arcane volumes of magical incantations, rituals, and theories, Rimbol found one that seemed promising. Unfortunately, the spell required an artifact of immense power which had been lost for many years. Deciding he needed help, Rimbol procured the services of the infamous master assassin and thief, Calistarius. Promised mounds of treasure, and thrilled at the idea of the hunt, Calistarius set out at once. Taxing his skills to the limit for nearly a full month, a battered Calistarius triumphantly returned bearing the artifact. After collecting his fee, Calistarius left to continue his dastardly profession.
Glad to be rid of the distasteful fellow, Rimbol gathered his spell components and prepared for the ritual. The spell proceeded flawlessly, however when the time came to invoke the power of the artifact, something went wrong. The arcane energy was released incorrectly, sending an incandescent surge of violent magical energy across the land. All reality was warped. Siva himself, watching nearby out of curiosity, was inadvertently torn asunder by the blast. Such was the power contained in the artifact.
Watching from afar and escaping relatively unharmed, Smote assessed the damage. He realized that with the demise of Siva, whose essence was chaos, death itself had disappeared from the land. Concerned, Smote began seeking out the fragments of Siva's immortal soul, that he might be re-made. Few of these fragments remained however, and the new Siva was massively diminished in power, as much of a twisted wreck as this new version of reality.
During his search, Smote came to realize that certain other individuals who had survived the shattering had been infused with either some of the artifact's power, or a fragment Siva's being. He found Rimbol, the strongest of these new immortals, weeping in the ashes of the warlord's castle. Rimbol realized what he had done, and that the curse of immortality was to be his payment. Not far away, Smote found Calistarius' unconscious body. When he awoke, he began gibbering madly. For some odd reason, he refused to recognize his name and insisted on being called Mephiston. Many others were rounded up by Smote and set as keepers of this new world, but theirs is a story for another day.
The warlord himself was nowhere to be seen. It is said that just as the spell went awry, the warlord was breathing his last breath. An instant before death took him, he was swept away in the vortex, and was taken to a plane of existence between this one and the next.