|Period||1546 - 1554|
Bathor has been reduced to a fortification, gone its enterprise and halfling laughter. The Black Tide has keeps in Cormindar and a ring of them around the descent into Moregar. The area around the Fodder Mine is thick with undead, yet of poor security. Their supply line continues north into Sorrow Pass, the valley that none can secure. Black Forge and Galstyxe make sure of that.
- Sgt Ralucin, of the Wardens of Aspungad, War Chronicler - "Weak Points"
It was a long route to protect through lands overall hostile to the Black Tide and their undead legions. Long a crux in waging war across this area is Sorrow Pass. Flanked by the haunted fortresses of Black Forge and Galstyxe, great terrain for the defense and hiding, its hills honeycombed with ancient tunnels, like many that came before, the Black Tide failed to secure this area. Sorrow Pass is an their artery, passing supplies, communication, and reinforcements for operations spanning the Lands of Purity and Hells Womb.
Severing the Artery
On 6 Saunas 1546, the fiery legions of Surticon attacked Black Tide forts and strong points along the Sorrow Pass. One group attacked from the valleys and passes of Trudnar, the other came up through the forgotten tunnels of Strumpktar attacking northward. The Artery War had started. In all, Surticon put 20,000 troops in the field.
The Black Tide mobilized their forces from their garrison at Ebonstar and the scattered forts and outposts near Sorrow Pass. This northern army was to be the anvil, with the stronger southern army being the hammer. This second army, based out of the the Black Tide capital of Ugidreth, planned to destroy or drive Surticon back to their wasteland homes. The undead hordes and mercenary forces of the "Hammer" were led by Dax Jagg, a renown field general and Dead Councilor. After passing into Moregar, the army was struck in the rear by a large force from the fey woods of Gwaeldior. It would later be learned that the Celebriän Republic, for once trusting their neighbor, granted the Council of Bile a route into their forest, launching a surprise cavalry attack against Dax's army.
The Artery War started seven years into the Athenian Crusade (1539 - 1551). With soldiers needed for the bigger threat, where undead were put to the flame after every battle, little could be done to reinforce Hells Womb and its war.
Moving the bulk of his army into Moregar, Dax kept a heavy rear-guard. His army was safe in passages and fortifications that he had designed while lording over the Black Tide's claims in Hells Womb.
Siege of Ugidreth
In 1552, far south, along the coasts of the Sea of Mourning, the greatest city of the realm was stirring with activity. Paradomea girded for war. The Council of Nine, leaders of the Paradomea Syndicate ordered the attack on the tail of the Black Tide of Thasmudyan, the eastern capital of Ugidreth. The siege lasted months, with
Using a priestly spell, Dax returned to join in the defense of the birthplace of the Black Tide of Thasmudyan. Dax took control of the energies of the Pyramid of Merioss, raining fire and lightning on the besiegers. The full might of the Council of Nine was required to put an end to Dax and his minions holed up in this ancient Lith-Crillion pyramid.
The lich lords of Paradomea destroyed all in their path, raining every spell imaginable on the defenders. Such was the power of the attacks that it led to a cascade deadening effect. It was not without great cost. At the heart of Ugidreth, the dreaded wardens of the Web of Magic, emerged to destroy those damaging their domain. A weave spider snatched Kloidan, a Syndic of the Council of Nine, pulling him into the Web where he was lost. Dax and his Knuckle-Bone Slingers retreated to the tunnels, south to the ships of his old friend Jariall, himself an undead king.
Fall of the Black Capital
Paradomea's forces took control of the Pyramid and turned its might on the defenders of Ugidreth. With a dead-magic zone covering part of Ugidreth, the place succumbed by force and overwhelming numbers. The Githlarâk, blasting their way into the citadel with Gith Lances, had the most undead kills. Nothing survived the battle lust of the attackers; everything that moved was put to the sword and flame.
The Artery War ended the Black Tide's presence in Hells Womb, and on the Brucrumus continent. Remnants of the defeated regrouped on Necrocrypt, licking their wounds, and beginning the rebuild of their shattered undead legions.
Sailing away from Brucrumus, it is said that the Black Tide general Dax commented to a Tragaran pirate who asked what they would do now after the defeat:
Defeated you say, we are just getting started, your mortal life can only conceive short-range objectives, but when we get back to Gathrot I will enlighten you on Thasmudyan's Dark Gift, and then you will see that we have eternity to bring this world under the heel of the Black Tide.
- Dax, "Soon to be Living Dead Sailor"
- Battle of the Pyramid
- Siege of Ugidreth