King Valden Durethë
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(b:1131/3, d: 33/4) Valden Durethë was a great Thannish warrior who spent nearly thirty years fighting a series of wars against his fellow Thanns to unite the the entire Thannish race under a single banner for the first time in Corwyn's history.

EARLY YEARS


Valden grew up in the city of Tekrit, a cosmopolitan seaport on the coast of the Sea of Ralas and the capital of the small Thannish Barony of Dureth. As the son of a minor noble, Valden received formal schooling and weapons-training. He soon gained a reputation as both a skilled diplomat and cunning warrior. In his childhood studies, He learned much of other cultures and became quite worldly. He would later use this knowledge to gain alliance and influences while he took control of more and more of the Thannish people.

THE TEN CAMPAIGNS


At the young age of seventeen, Valden's father died and he officially became the Baron of Dureth, and Lord of Tekrit. Ruling the small city did not fit well with Valden's great ambitions, and he soon began to expand his power.

Sages tell of ten great campaigns Valden undertook to unify and control the Thannish peoples. The Barony of Dureth was a great power in the region, but there were many other Thannish political enclaves Valden had to face on his quest for unification. First, he faced the Iron Duke of the Rin Falar Freehold in three bloody military campaigns, before defeating the Duke's army, slaying him in battle, and capturing the city of Rin Falar.

Second he took on the Sokoro Union and captured the city of Varistan after a long siege. He did not execute the Prince of Sokoro, but instead made him an ally and a general. The two foes became good friends and allies in the upcoming fights.

Third, he took on the Principality of Azimar, a powerful realm. After two long campaigns, they surrendered and Valden spared them, and made the city of Azimar (later Eldarand) a regional capital, and finally Valden took on the Oramar Confederacy, a loose alliance of five city-states along the coast of the Gulf of Alesard.

VALDOR ESTABLISHED


Valden named his new kingdom Valdor, and what a kingdom it was. Valdor stretched from the Redpeaks in the south to the Salakrün Mountains in the east. Valden at first chose his home city Kingsport as his capital city. After defeating his enemies and being crowned, King Valden married Queen Anavel and had one son Eldan. A few years later he became involved with a noblewoman named Naomi Mallistäer of Ashara, who became his mistress and bore him a second son named Rhodan. Despite the scandal, the King loved both his sons and raised his younger bastard son to equal status of prince and made him his second heir. Unfortunately sibling rivalry and jealousy between his two sons grew as the years went by. By the time Eldan and Rhodan grew into adulthood, they truly hated each other. The future of the Thannish Kingdom was in grave doubt.
Years later, the threat of Alokkair was growing in the east and all the peoples of the West were preparing for war. An ailing King Valden was visited by the Council of Sorcerë, who wanted to present the King with a gift of a Melanthir sword. Valden knew that if he gave the sword to one his two sons as a royal birthright, surely a civil war would result and tear the country apart.

LEGACY


In a compromise to save the western alliance; the Council of Sorcerë chose to grant two Melanthir swords to the Thannish race. The Vaas people, who had rejected the Saar's counsel, were thus excluded. Both of Valden's sons were given a sword, and both Eldan and Rhodan promised their dying father to put aside their differences and both went off to war against Alokkair in the War of the Melanthir. King Valden died shortly after Alokkair's defeat in the year 33/4. Upon his death, the hatred of the two brothers renewed again with increased bitterness, and soon open fighting broke out, called the Twilight War; which lasted from 33-38/4. After five years of bloody civil war between the Thannish factions, Rhodan was defeated and an agreement was brokered, although strongly in Eldan's favor. This resulted in two separate kingdoms being formed in the year 38 of the Fourth Age. The wealthier western two-thirds of Valdor became Eldara under King Eldan; the poorer eastern third of Valdor became Rhodara, under King Rhodan.