The history that shaped the current age. . .
Many thousands of years ago, Meliora was much like it is now. The land was prosperous under the rule of a King and Queen that had a strong army that was rarely needed for anything but keeping the occasionally insubordinate citizen in line. The government had fine relations with the surrounding countries, and its people lived in relative comfort. The races, though not always mixed, generally had no quarrel with each other. It was a place of peace and strong community.
That is, until the Leviathon arrived. Its origin was unknown, but its influence was vast. It cast a shadow over the people of Meliora, blocking the sun from shining on most of the land and draining the liveliness of its people. As if taken by a spell, the citizens changed. Brother against brother, child against father, they fought. Nature withered and people went hungry. The allies of the Melioran people refused to help, fearing that the influence of the Leviathon would spread to their lands.
Where the hidden ruins now lie there was once a city. The Leviathon took it, and when the resistance finally arrived, there was a great battle that destroyed the entire city. The army of Meliora was not enough to take down the hellish creature. Instead, eight of the greatest mages came together to destroy it. Alone they didn't stand a chance, but with their powers bound together they were able to weaken the beast, and the royal army finished it off.
However, while one may achieve the desired end, it does not come without a price. By becoming one with each other and unleashing a greater power than their world had ever seen, the mages perished. Their mystical powers were lost, along with the powers of every other mage that was under the Leviathon's shadow.
It seemed that the divine spirits of nature had left the people of Meliora, but the land was eventually revived. Plants began to grow, the sun rose and fell every day for all to see, and the waves of the once stagnant sea crashed toward the shore again. The beauty of nature surrounded them, but they were no longer connected to it.
That is, until eight individuals from across Meliora began displaying power greater than the eight mages of the Leviathon battle. They had unbelievable power over the eight elements: Air, Earth, Fire, Water, Day, Night, Time and Fate. Cities were offered, temples were made, and people began to give their service to their new deities in exchange for protection. Under the guidance and watchful eyes of the eight, Meliora was fully restored.
Since then, some of the deities have come and gone. The spirits have chosen others to rise in their places, and they have served Meliora well. These people, though none of them are flawless, are the greatest strength Meliora has. They uphold the law and balance of their lands while maintaining their elements and guiding their people. However they choose to use their power, the responsibility is theirs. Choose your allegiance wisely, for if the desperate time comes when the citizens must call upon the deities for help, one must be protected by more than the imperial army.