(for any purists, I know the lore is in complete disarray right now since Riot announced the League never existed. Since the majority of champions have no reason to exist now with no explanation forthcoming, I am ignoring the retcon and using the old lore)
Centuries ago, the continent of Runeterra suffered from perpetual war. As cities marched against each other, powerful mages on all sides supported their troops from the back lines. However, these were not just battle mages. These mages cast spells so powerful that the earth itself was torn apart, cities destroyed, rivers and lakes drained, and the fabric of reality itself shattered. These wars became known as the Rune Wars.
During a rare moment of silence, a shocking revelation was made: another Rune War would destroy Runeterra. The world simply could not bear the strain of the magic at work, and the very land the nations fought for would be destroyed. So, a council of nations was called and a radical solution was found. No longer would war rule the world. Instead, an international complex called the Institute of War would be built to house the greatest warriors and mages in the world. These fighters would carry out battles on Summoner’s Rift, a magical recreation of one of the many now destroyed battlefields. Aided by Summoners, who would guide the warriors in combat and cast spells to aid them, these champions would fight proxy wars so real nations would not go to war. The results of these fights would be binding and final. All the nation states, from the Freljord in the north to Shurima in the south, agreed this was necessary. It would be called the League of Legends.
“Why do I have to go to this stupid meeting? It’s just some piece of land that no one really cares about.” Lux finished fitting her ornamental armor over her tunic. She never really understood why she had to wear it to formal meetings instead of the more traditional robes most mages wore. Sure, she may be a battle mage, but it’s not like anyone was going to attack them here at the Institute.
“Sister, there is no such thing as inconsequential land. We are Demacians. The light of Demacia must shine throughout Runeterra.”
Lux sighed. She loved her brother, but he was also kind of a tool. “I know. But I don’t see why they need me. I may not be the most senior ambassador here, but I’m senior enough that minor disputes shouldn’t be my job. Just send Shyvanna. She would do anything to make Jarvan happy. And no one would dare make her angry.”
Garen smirked. A half dragon let loose in the chambers would indeed end any disputes quickly. But it could not be, and they both knew it. The orders came from High Command itself. Lux and Garen, the figureheads of Demacia here at the Institute, were to represent the Crown at the meeting, along with Crown Prince Jarvan.
“Institute of War” was a misnomer. Yes, the battles done here were a proxy for war, but it had grown to be much more than just war games. Because the greatest generals and mages in the known world were drawn to the prestige of being a champion and representing their countries, the Institute quickly became a central location for scholarship and research. The library on the grounds, guarded by the terrifying giant dog Nasus (believe in the pimp cane), was the greatest in Valoran. There was a robust market surrounding the central grounds, and the Institute felt more like a small city than just a battle ground.
The buildings themselves spared no expense in their architecture. Towers rose above the landscape in physically impossible formations. It was in one of these towers that disputes were formally brought before the council. This particular meeting was about a small island, barely larger than the Institute itself that was recently discovered to the West of Runeterra. Normally no one would care about this island at all, but the explorers who found it reported wisps of purple energy occasionally appeared. This was indicative of Void energy. But this energy was relatively common in much more accessible places, such as the desert of Shurima. But Zaun claimed it for research, which meant that of course Demacia had to get involved, which meant Lux and Garen had to go to this meeting.
The Yordle moderating this particular meeting had been droning on for some time, explaining every single detail of the case. Truth be known, Lux felt as if she would have a hard time staying awake. Finally, the yordle got to the least boring, but not particularly interesting part.
“In the matter of the…Isle of the Void,” (“Not too creative. Must have been Noxians,” Lux thought) “Zaun has claimed ownership on the grounds that it is in neutral waters and Zaun has the most advanced Void energy research facilities. The Institute has determined this is a legitimate claim. Are there competing claims?”
Oddly enough, the most high profile members of each faction were at this meeting. Lux couldn’t understand why; maybe there was something that High Command neglected to put in their letter. Swain stood, limping on his cane with that vile raven perched on his shoulder. “In this matter Noxus has guaranteed claim, as its explorers found the Isle of the Void,” (“Nailed it”) “However, we relinquish our claim. Zaun may have ownership.” That made sense, thought Lux. If there was a war, Noxus and Zaun would be on the same side anyway, and Noxian necromancers had little use for Void energy.
Caitlyn from Piltover stood, her top hat perched firmly on her head. The Yordle eyed her carefully. It was no secret that Caitlyn was not fond of the residents of Bandle City. After all, on the battlefield she often baited her traps with cupcakes specifically to catch Yordles. She spoke in her odd Piltover elite accent, “The people of Piltover mistrust Zaun, but have no claim over this island. We will not challenge it.” Odd. Piltover usually opposed whatever Zaun did out of principle. Maybe they just figured that they couldn’t use Void energy, and it’s not like Zaun didn’t have supplies from elsewhere in Runeterra. Why bother with this?
Azir, the Emporer of Shurima stood. Lux was fascinated by the Emporer. The Shuriman Empire had fallen and been buried under the sand centuries ago, but was recently reborn when Azir rose from the grave, accidently became an ascended being, and reclaimed his throne. The residents of Shurima had flocked to their Emperor and had gained recognition from the Institute as a sovereign nation. He seemed nice enough, but he would never shut up about Shurima. “The glory of Shurima will never fade again and shines even now.”
The Yordle looked annoyed. “So you don’t dispute it?”
“That’s not an answer.”
“Shurima does not dispute it.”
Jarvan stood up, standing much taller than any other person in the room, “Demacia disputes the claim. Demacia holds claim to the seas between Runeterra and the Shadow Isles. The island must be purged of the evil that lurks there.”
“The League acknowledges the claim as legitimate. Matches will be scheduled for Summoner’s Rift in a timely manner.”
“Why do they even bother with these meetings?” thought Lux. “Any claim is recognized as legitimate, no matter how ridiculous. Maybe some theatrics could happen, but they never do. Why can’t we just send in letters?” Of course, she never let her lack of enthusiasm for the meeting show. She was a Crownguard, a member of one of the most noble families in Demacia. She was a trained diplomat, spy, and fighter. She knew what was expected of her. At this point, that was silence and correct posture.
Karma stood. Lux had always liked her. While Lux’s assignments usually required her to act like an airheaded blonde, she had always wished she could conduct herself like Karma. Cool, collected, yet with an air of authority that reminded you she could tear you apart with a single spellword. “Ionia will not dispute the claim. We caution against trying to harvest Void energy, but we reside on the other side of the continent.”
Gangplank, the fearsome pirate who held an obsession with oranges, stood. He looked like he had been drinking the night before but then that was true most days. “Bilgewater cares not far ye islands in the far seas. There’s no profit in the matter for a respectable gentleman like myself.” Lux could see Miss Fortune, a bounty hunter who held a distinct dislike for pirates, roll her eyes next to Gangplank. They may fight for the same faction, but they certainly were not friends.
“We dispute the claim,” came a voice from the other side of the room. Lux looked over, but didn’t see anyone standing. She realized it must be Bandle City’s turn. Sure enough, Rumble was talking, “Bandle City’s science is more advanced than anyone’s. We need the Void energy to keep ahead. If Zaun can claim the island for research, so can we.”
“The League acknowledges the claim as legitimate. Matches will be scheduled for Summoner’s Rift in a timely manner.”
Two to go. Karthus floated up from his chair, “The undead have no use for Void energy. We will not dispute the claim.”
Finally Ashe stood, much to the consternation of Sejuani, who sat beside her, despite an ongoing civil war. Like Bilgewater, the Kingdom of the Freijlord was only united in name. “The Freiljord will not dispute the claim.” Again, not surprising. Because of the political situation back home, the Northern kingdom tended to stay out of matters that did not directly impact them.
“Very well,” the yordle monotoned, clearly just as bored as Lux, “The claimants to the island will do battle of Summoner’s Rift to decide the matter. If there are no other matters at hand, this meeting…”
Just as the yordle was to call the meeting to the close, the doors to the chamber burst open. A twisted man, floating on a cloud of purple mist entered the room. His hood obscured his face, and he was covered head-to-toe in a robe that matched the purple of the mist. This was clearly Void magic. “I am Malzahar, the prophet of the Void. I am the herald of the destruction that comes to Valoran and I speak for the Void. We claim the island as our own as a homeland in this pathetic world.”
On either side of Mazahar were two abominations Lux recognized as the creatures from the Void. One, much larger than any being in the room, had four enormous legs and…was wearing a top hat and monocle? Lux double-checked, but he certainly was wearing a top hat, and at the knee of each of his insect-like legs was another top hat. Lux knew this was Cho-Gath, she had seen him many times on Summoner’s Rift. She shuddered at the thought of being eaten alive by him, as she had many times when her magic wasn’t quite quick enough. Of course, the magic on the Rift made sure she was always resurrected, but Lux never wanted to meet him in real combat.
“The Void has no claim in this matter,” began Jarvan, “It is not a recognized city state and must first petition for membership before joining in any disputes.”
The hideous being known as Cho’Gath opened his mouth, “You sir, are a coward and a ruffian!” Lux wasn’t quite sure why Cho’Gath was suddenly putting on the airs of high society, but she found it somewhat amusing. The shock of the Void suddenly taking an interest in League affairs, however, was much less so.
“Ah, Jarvan, always a pleasure. I so enjoy sucking the very soul from your body in battle,” the Prophet began, “But per League bylaws, because we are claiming this island as our homeland, claiming this island is a de facto petition for League membership. I believe the exact wording is, “a claim of one’s homeland that is currently occupied by invading forces, or is being claimed by one or more members of the League, when the claimant is not currently a member of the League, will act as a petition to membership and is not subject to the normal procedure.’ Of course, this was designed to protect the Solari and other minor nations, but it’s hardly specific is it? Void energy is on the island. That gives us claim as our homeland.”
There was a long pause as the group came to realize that Malzahar was probably correct, or at least plausible enough that the League would probably allow it. A sense of dread filled the room; the Void terrified everyone, even the delegation from the Shadow Isles.
The yordle had clearly been jolted awake by unexpectedly having to interpret League rules and actually work at one of these meetings. After a moment’s consideration, he announced much more enthusiastically, ““The League acknowledges the claim as legitimate. Matches will be scheduled for Summoner’s Rift in a timely manner.” The Yordle glanced at Jarvan, knowing that Demacia would resist the Void’s acceptance most bitterly, “There can be no appeal except by combat.”
Assistant Mock Trial Coach, University of Nebraska at Omaha
Last edited by Incognito on Thu Jun 11, 2015 5:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.