Three thousand years ago there were a dozen kingdoms in
Sarlona. Today there is only one: the empire of Riedra.
The change began some fifteen hundred years ago, when
the quori first came to Sarlona. Initially, the quori spirits
could not completely dominate their hosts. Instead, they
could only whisper into susceptible minds, fanning ambitions
and aggravating existing feuds. Within two centuries,
Sarlona had collapsed into chaos and war. By this point,
the quori had full control over a handful of hosts, enabling
them to produce the first of the Inspired. These psions
and psychic warriors stepped into the political void, using
their mental powers to systematically seize control from
the weakened warlords.
They proclaimed themselves to be souls inspired by divine forces, sent to guide Sarlona to a new age of prosperity and glory. All they required was absolute loyalty. It took another two centuries of mental manipulation, military conflict, and pure guile, but when the battles finally ended, the Inspired held sway over all of lowland Sarlona. They named this empire Riedra.
For the next thousand years, the Inspired consolidated their power, strengthening their hold on the people of Riedra. They purged the land of any traditions that could be a threat to their power—notably any form of magic, which could provide the people with a counter to the natural psionic powers of the Inspired—and hunting down the kalashtar, who had unwittingly shown the quori the path to Eberron. Some of their enemies took refuge in the mountains of Adar; others fled to Khorvaire, settling in the kingdoms of the Five Nations or establishing new colonies in the Shadow Marches or the Demon Wastes.
For the past thousand years, the borders of Riedra have been closed to foreigners. Even today, the Inspired have no interest in allowing the people of other nations to spoil their terrestrial paradise. But after centuries of scheming and planning, the Inspired are finally beginning to turn their attention to Khorvaire, and Riedran ambassadors can be found in courts across the continent.
The Inspired hide their secrets well. Those who have managed to breach the borders of Riedra speak of titanic monoliths that lie within. The sages of The Twelve believe that these monoliths enhance the psionic powers of the Inspired, drawing on the mental energy of the populace in order to supply their masters with vitality.
The Inspired have been studying ways to use Eberron dragonshards. No Eberron or Siberys dragonshards can be found in Sarlona, and what Khyber shards exist below the surface are hard to come by.
The people of Riedra believe that the Inspired are divine avatars, sent to guide and protect their nation. Most are willing to die for their Inspired lords. Most communities are agricultural villages, designed to be as self-sufficient as possible. Inspired overseers manage the work force. A vast fortress-metropolis at the center of each web of villages is home to the bulk of the armed forces of the region and the high-ranking Inspired nobles.
Riedra is a strictly feudal society. The humans serve the Inspired, who in turn protect and care for their loyal subjects (or so the theory goes). The Inspired, highly evolved humans with a touch of elf and fiendish blood, have been bred over the course of a thousand years to be perfect hosts for quori spirits.