The Doors of Oerth
Many years ago, in a far away land, two men, a wizard and a priest, lost in a storm wandered into a town in between jobs. Having burned the last of their gold earned from escorting an overly eager mercenary band in inns and taverns, they were desperate for work, honest or otherwise. Seeing the warm glow of a tavern fireplace through the storm wracked night was a welcome sight. They weren’t expecting to find another tavern along the road for some time and did not recall passing it on their travel away from their home, a gleaming jewel of a city called Specularum. They were not, however, in the habit of questioning their good fortunes and hurried their pace towards the promised warmth of the roadside inns hearth. The events that followed are of little importance, suffice to say that the two men were directed to an enormous labyrinth a short ways outside of the town and told of fabulous treasures within, protected by unspeakable guardians.
The labyrinth turned out to be a small maze and the fabulous treasure turned out to be a large iron-shod chest and the unspeakable guardian was single mouldering zombie. The young wizard, recognised magic at work, understanding the walls of the maze to be the creation of a single conjuration used again and again to bring forth a simple stone wall. It was convenient at best he knew, in the back of his mind screamed a single voice of protest about the coming trap but his companion, sure in the omens of his dark god urged him forward.
The two confronted the guardian, brought the creature down with little difficulty and discovered the chest to be filled with coin, a large amount to be sure, more then two thousand in fact, but it was hardly vast hoard they were lead to believe. Still, it was more then an honest man, doing honest work would make in years. Again and again his companion spoke of providence swore that there was more then the coin. Finding the iron shod chest, and its contents to be far to heavy to move on their own, they emptied its contents into that haversacks and pouches, and left many of their belongings behind in order to carry their new found wealth. It was only after relieving the locker of its contents that they found an old map at the bottom and a page torn out of a captains log. Both men, having extensively sailed the southern seas before, immediately recognised that this map was likely not on any charts they had seen. This was what the clerics fel deity was urging him towards the priest claimed. It was something that this faded map would lead them too. The islands on the map were uncharted by any cartographer they were familiar with and the log it was bundled with described the island chain being beyond the point that sailors refused to sail being that it was beyond the point designated on the charts as being the home of dragons and sea serpents. The captains log also spoke of an enormous black peal the size of a mans head and whispered of a bloodthirsty cult of savages that worshipped it. Quickly gathering up the contents of the chest and rode as quickly as they could back to Specularm in order to charter a vessel, in their haste to leave the maze they failed to notice that the village and the tavern within it had vanished in the night.
What transpired after that night was never documented and only a very few number became aware of them, but the ramifications of their actions unlocked a chain of events that echoed across worlds. At the epicentre of it all lay an island, at the centre of the island lay a temple and within the temple sat a being that both existed for all time and never was. While the map that led the two wanderers to it was not a forgery, it was not entirely accurate either and even to this day, newcomers find their way to the islands dreaded shores.