Ivid may have won a kingdom, but he paid a high price. The South and North Provinces, and Medegia, became in effect semi-autonomous provinces of the Great Kingdom. Ivid had to accept this as part of the bargain for accepting his ascension to the throne. While North Province was ruled by the House of Naelax, Medegia in particular became increasingly independent and often failed to support the more aggressive schemes of later overkings. But the independence of these sub-states could only delay the final fate of the Aerdi.
The House of Naelax changed Aerdy forever. The five overkings it produced, and most of its noblemen and women, were dangerously insane and “fiend-seeing.” Dangerously insane because the typically paranoid form their madness took did not take any toll of their intellect; they were usually smart, piercingly observant, especially with fiendish aid, and utterly ruthless.
The title “fiend-seeing” ascribed so often to them is, nowadays, not such an unusual aspect of Aerdi. Many rulers traffic with fiends, have fiends in their armies, or are themselves undead. However, at the time, the House of Naelax assumed dominance by being very unusual and pre-eminent in such fell dealings, and it gave them a decisive edge.
Ivid V ascended to the Malachite Throne in Rauxes in CY 556 by the traditional manner of murdering his father and others who got in his way. This was accepted practice in many royal houses in Aerdi. The moral degeneracy which the House of Naelax actively encouraged had taken a firm rooting in Aerdi aristocracy.
Ivid was no military genius, but he was a brilliant intriguer and politician, and he knew how to stage a good public execution or, still better, utilize torture to encourage any possible rivals to re-think their plans to oust him. The Screaming Column in Rauxes is one of the most colorful testimonies to Ivid V’s innovation in the realm of cowing opposition by fear.
Had he remained content with such masterful acts within his own lands—for Ivid successfully ensured that his kingdom remained intact despite bids for secession by certain provinces – he might have been a highly effective ruler. As it happened, his megalomania got the better of him.
Carl Sargent. Greyhawk Adventures, Ivid the Undying, 1995