The Empire of Gallidon was ruled by the Emperor Gallidon, thirteenth of his line, direct descendant of Na’naat. The Emperors Gallidon were not as other men. Each Emperor chose a consort from among the daughters of the seventeen Greater Noble Houses and each had a single son: The Childe of the Isle. No Emperor ever died of old age despite lifespans exceeding 450 years. Each of the previous twelve Emperors was either killed or chose to abdicate in favor of their son, and lay down their life a short time later. Upon ascending the throne, the Childe of the Isle became the Emperor Gallidon.
The Emperor ruled from the Imperial City, while Greater and Lower Noble families ruled in the cities, states and territories. Fealty was seldom enforced by threats of military action. Instead, the Emperor was credited with possessing both the ability and willingness to use powerful ritualistic magic (magic that, it was said, could wipe out crops, summon devastating natural phenomenon, or even visit entire populations with fatal illnesses). While the Emperor did not have a large military force, he did keep an Imperial presence of Administrators and elite Imperial Guardsmen in all regions. Authority over the Noble Houses was sufficient to ensure that they used their own military might to enforce the Emperor’s will.
Greater Houses were granted areas to rule over. They and their families were required to spend alternating periods each year at the Imperial City (usually with the head of the house coming to the city while their family stayed home, then reversing the arrangement). Greater and Lower Noble House succession follows a first-born precedent, regardless of gender. Most marriages among the Noble Houses are arranged.
After millennia of peaceful rule, the Emperors and many of the Noble Houses became complacent, retreating within the Imperial City and their individual capitals in an ever-increasing sphere of isolation. As the rulers of the Gallidon Empire turned inward and continued to ignore the Imperial territories, the knives of the Greater and Lower Noble Houses turned against each other. Jealousies, grudges, and past grievances surfaced. Rival houses tested each others’ weaknesses, and the former solidarity among the Gallidon Empire ruling class that allowed them to manage such a far-flung empire crumbled.
In the Year 5101 of the Age of Gallidon, the Destruction swept over the Imperial Isle. The Emperor has not been seen or heard of since. The fate of the Childe of the Isle, the Imperial Consort and the Imperial Court remains a mystery.