The universe was born in the fires of the last. As the remnants of a dying world drifted through the astral plane, they were seized by beings of unknown origin, and shunted into an alternate plane of existence. Acting on some unknown caprice, these beings, known to scholars only as the Malthet, breathed life into the dead world and shaped the reborn planet according to their mysterious whims.
Soon, the primordial arcane energies expended by the Malthet took shapes of their own, and first life germinated on the new world. At first, the Malthet were content to simply observe these new beings; however, they soon grew bored with their creation and sought to destroy it.
It was called the Cataclysm, and it was terrible. Using arcane magics, the Malthet caused the very elements turned against the planet. Fire rained from the skies, noxious plague clouds roiled across the earth, and the seas rose up in maelstroms of destruction. Almost all life was wiped off the face of the planet, and the unlucky survivors lived in constant fear and agony. Faced with extinction, and with few options left to them, the last free creatures closed their eyes and prayed.
Some say it was this desperate plea that beckoned the Gods forth, others that the tragedies of the Cataclysm awakened their spirits. Whatever the cause, divine energy began to erupt from the planet, shielding the survivors and pushing back the Malthet. This energy took forms in the Gods, reborn remnants from the last world who were determined to protect what remained of their home. Divine war was brought to the already-stricken planet, as the Gods and Malthet fought for control. There were many great battles between the two powers, and several Gods were lost in the struggle, but in the end their power overwhelmed the Malthet’s, and the Gods sealed them away in the stars, scattered and broken.
Almost immediately after the Malthet were banished, the Gods fell into strife. While able to present a united front against the Malthet, the Gods could not stand together in the reconstruction of the world. And so, each God founded their separate domains in the Astral Sea, and each vowed not to directly intervene in the affairs of new world. To this day that covenant has remained unbroken-the Gods act through mortal agents, but not one has lain foot in this world.