Precious Resources Discovered
The quiet status of Kalamanda drastically changed when it found itself the leading lady on the world stage. The Kalamanda's mayor, Anson Ridley, and a local survey team had uncovered a massive deposit of gold and precious gems within the village's sphere of influence. Furthermore, two nexuses of considerable magic potency had been discovered alongside the resource deposits. When news of this spread, adventurers and prospectors from across the continent flocked to the village, seeking fame and riches beyond their wildest dreams. The town council had to set up a temporary camp located near the foothills that lead to Mogron Pass and the Great Barrier in anticipation of the great influx of individuals hoping to trade a hard day's work for handsome rewards.
Mayor Ridley acknowledged that Kalamanda itself was not properly equipped to extract and process the raw riches that lay under the village and its environment, and sought to partner with external mining companies or even one of the great city-states. With the discovery of two massive nexuses in close proximity to the valuable resources, the League had also taken an interest in Kalamanda's recent good fortune.
City-State Tensions Flare
As reports of more mineral strikes in the resource-laden region lure prospective hopefuls to Kalamanda, Valoran's city-states had added to the growing population with additional personnel. Demacia and Noxus, by far, had invested the most effort; their growing presence also brought with them a rivalry that raised tensions within the village to dangerous levels. Kalamanda's citizens were worried that their good fortunes may turn for the worse if Demacia and Noxus came to blows over the future of their village.
This tension manifested itself when Demacian and Noxus guards drank at the Hasty Hammer Tavern got into a drunken brawl – a brawl that witnesses claimed was "bordering on a riot". At least six guards were seriously injured when an argument between the rival guards erupted into violence. It took what appeared to be the entire Kalamanda constabulary, several local patrons of the tavern, and two League champions to break up the fight. The next day the Kalamanda Village Council voted in favor of pushing for an exclusive mining agreement with one of the city-states, as opposed to allowing multiple contracts. They reasoned that they did not wish to see hatred between powerful nations rekindled because of Kalamanda’s mineral bounty. The presence of just a single city-state would be in everyone’s best interest.
Following the village council ruling, both Demacia and Noxus increased their presence within Kalamanda, as both city-states have emerged as the leaders in securing exclusive mining contracts with the village. Both delegations had already escalated their presence in Kalamanda by appointing League champions as the leaders of their respective missions. The Demacian delegation was led by Garen, the Might of Demacia, while the Noxus delegation was directed by Katarina, the Sinister Blade – the eldest daughter of one of Noxus' top generals attached to the Noxian High Command. The presence of the champions in the village gave a clear indication that both Demacia and Noxus were committed to success in Kalamanda.
The Mine Collapse
An earthquake rocked the village of Kalamanda causing the collapse of a mithril mine and trapping twelve Demacian miners underground. Rescue efforts began shortly after the mine caved in. The League offered its assistance to Demacia in its rescue efforts, as had the small contingencies of Piltover and Ionia. Help was also offered by the Noxian delegation in Kalamanda – a surprising move considering the animosity between Demacia and Noxus in recent years.
After nearly a month of excavation the twelve Demacian miners trapped underground had finally been rescued. Though weakened after being buried underground, all twelve miners emerged in high spirits. However, the temporary joy and peace resulting from the rescue was shattered when a troubling piece of evidence was discovered, suggesting that the cause of the mine collapse was man-made. The body of a Noxian soldier was recovered underground approximately one kilometer east of the trapped miners, where geologists had estimated the initial fault point of the collapse. The soldier was surrounded by various Noxian arcano-seismic charges, and he appeared to have been caught unexpectedly by the cave-in after the charges were detonated.
An official investigation was immediately launched, with Kalamanda and League officials working in conjunction to scrutinize this potentially cataclysmic breach in the League code. Tensions at the rescue site nearly caused a fight to break out, but the Noxian rescuers lending aid withdrew swiftly in order to avoid conflict.
Demacia Awarded Exclusive Contract
Although the investigation for the mining collapse were yet to reach an official conclusion, the Kalamanda Village Council made an immediate ruling to grant Demacia the highly coveted exclusive mining contract. This established a permanent partnership between Kalamanda and Demacia, bestowing the city-state with exclusive extraction rights of all minerals within Kalamanda’s lands. In return, Demacia would commit mining resources and open a direct trade route to Kalamanda, effectively making Kalamanda one of its incontiguous provinces. All independent and city-state affiliated mining parties were required to cease activity and withdraw all mining operations from the village’s boundaries. A formal ceremony was made in the courtyard of Kalamanda’s Seat of the Elders, with Mayor Anson Ridley having prepared the formal documentation for his village's partnership with Demacia.
War in Kalamanda
The collective fears of Valoran were realized in Kalamanda as the standoff between Noxus and Demacia escalated to all-out war. Initial estimates placed casualties in the hundreds. It appeared that Prince Jarvan IV of Demacia struck the first blow against General Swain of Noxus. According to eyewitnesses, Swain was making his usual rounds of the Noxian camp when he was ambushed by Jarvan. The two became locked in combat, and soldiers from both camps immediately engaged each other in efforts to come to their aid.
Though battle between these embittered rivals has been heated, ambassadors from both sides pledged that their forces would refrain from the use of unsanctioned magic. Chancellor Malek Hawkmoon, spokesman for Noxus, called it a “steel and slugs” engagement, a Noxian military term for a physical-only wartime operation. Neither army gained a significant advantage over the other. The bulk of the fighting took place on the fields just outside the village’s primary dig site, though the contested area gradually expanded. Prince Jarvan was not seen on the battlefield since his initial clash with Swain, though Noxus’ Master Tactician was seen in the front lines, issuing commands and urging his troops onward.
Jarvan’s absence caused a great degree of speculation that the Prince may have been killed or captured, but the Demacian forces did not falter. Their morale was bolstered by Garen and the Dauntless Vanguard, whose efforts stymied the Noxian offensive at nearly every turn. King Jarvan III reportedly donned his own royal armor, although his exact position remained a mystery. It was likely that Xin Zhao, the Seneschal of Demacia, was with him.
In an unprecedented show of force, the League of Legends conjured a temporal stasis bubble over the entirety of Kalamanda, trapping the warring forces of Noxus and Demacia in a mid-battle state of suspension. The soldiers inside were to be extracted and returned to their homes, but the League pronounced the village and its immediate surroundings uninhabitable.
The League had sent four hundred summoners to the far edges of the Kalamanda conflict, transporting with them a small nexus that was, according to scholars of the Arcanum Majoris, a centerpiece of the Arcanum Vault. Utilizing ancient Urtistani techniques refined by League champion Zilean, the Chronokeeper, these summoners undertook an enchantment the magnitude of which hadn't been seen in Valoran since the Rune Wars. A great deal of care was devoted to ensuring that Runeterra sustained the least possible destruction as a result of the spell.
Though experts believed the damage to Runeterra is minimal, they have determined that the area occupied by the bubble will be magically unstable for decades. Soldier extraction had begun, and would continue for several weeks. It was a slow and intensive process, as Zilean believed improper extraction may lead to chrono-displasia, a disease he himself endured. League surveyors were dispatched to the village to assess the true extent of the damage, as well as to determine if there would be any way to speed its restoration. The League made arrangements for the families of Kalamanda residents, accepting responsibility for restricting them from their own homes.
Ambassadors from Noxus and Demacia took residence in the Institute of War and negotiated the safe return of their soldiers, as well as terms for a peaceful resolution to the conflict.
The Crystal Scar
Days after the League’s unprecedented intervention against Noxus and Demacia’s war, a portion of the magically contaminated region had been found to be salvageable and will be re-purposed into an official Field of Justice, the Crystal Scar. High Councilor Heywan Relivash gave the announcement to a gathered group of summoners, refugees, and city-state representatives. Those gathered for the announcement responded in great favor to the initiative.
As League surveyors, masons, and artificers began construction in Kalamanda, Noxian and Demacian ambassadors continued holding negotiations at the Institute of War. King Jarvan III arrived to represent Demacia and, as no Grand General had been determined at the time, Jericho Swain represented Noxus. League Champion Kayle, the Judicator, presided over negotiations alongside the High Councilors
The Brackern Awakens
After centuries of hibernation, the mining operations and violent escalation in Kalamanda were enough to awaken the first of the ancient brakerns. When Skarner, the Crystal Vanguard, burst to the surface, he lashed out in anger and confusion. Reason eventually won out over his anger when he realized that the agents of the League who found him were simply functionaries. Skarner was invited to the Institute of War to share the brackern's story. In return, the summoners told him about the history that his kind had slept through. Much had been done to curb the unchecked use of magic since the Rune Wars, but it was obvious that the world was not yet safe for his kind to reawaken. Skarner now worked to use his power to change the world into one in which his kind could eventually return.
Intruder in Kalamanda's Prison
An anonymous tip led the remaining Demacian guards in Kalamanda to the remnants of the local prison, resulting in a scuffle with an unidentified intruder. The suspect was caught searching the same ward in which the Demacian prisoner was assassinated. After a violent confrontation with Garen, the Might of Demacia, and a host of guards, the intruder escaped into the night.
Investigators searched the area and discovered that the intruder had left behind several daggers and a torn note. The contents of the note had yet to be deciphered.