Historian’s Note: This document was discovered in a ruined fortress on planet #5t46543j.n.jgb. and it has been verified as being authentic and native.
Any historical document is not a record of the “truth”, but instead a highly subjective and fragmentary account. Nonetheless, the postscript (see end) does throw considerable doubt on the widely perceived veracity of the document.
- Processed by Ms C Jones, administration block, planetoid KS-159, 31st January 2606 CE.
The Old Time
Long ago, there were twin worlds of magic and science, worlds where many future battles would be fought as people and creatures struggled for mastery over the cosmos. These worlds were Eternia and Etheria!
The Elders of Eternia were a council of wise seers, mages, scientists, engineers and wizards. Their knowledge was legendary, and they foretold that a mystical asteroid – some said from the dawn of the universe – would fall to Eternia. Thus, it did, and the Elders set out from their Hall of Wisdom to retrieve it. The Elders foresaw many times when great evil would threaten the universe, and they decided to use the comet to forge weapons with which to fight against this evil – to be wielded by a series of mighty champions!
Thus, two swords were forged. The Sword of Power was a blade of strength and brute force, and would be used by more than one defender of Eternia. The Sword of Protection was a similar blade, but less powerful. Less was known of who would brandish this weapon.
Around half of the asteroid was left, and a corrupt Elder seized it for himself, forging a Sword of Evil from it! The other Elders confronted this corrupt member and banished him to another dimension. Using the Swords of Power and Protection, the Elders split the Sword of Evil in two.
The last fragment of asteroid was fashioned into a gemstone and placed in a Staff of Light. The Elders were aware that it would be needed soonest, and that the youngest of their number would have need of it in future.
In order to dissuade the curious from the Hall and its secrets, the Elders’ last major act was to transform the beautiful Hall of Wisdom itself into a fearsome fortress of mystery and power – the mighty Castle Grayskull!
The Rise of He-Ro
Centuries passed, and the world of Eternia moved on, its human and other tribes largely forgetting about the existence of the Elders as all but one died out. Then, the first of the long foreseen evils came.
King Hsss was the ruler of the Snake Empire, a considerable and planetary dictatorship reaching out from the planet Reptos. The Snakemen planned a conquest of Eternia, hollowing out a mountain fortress and encircling it with their living god, Serpos. King Hsss had links with another shadowy "god" figure, the mysterious Nameless One. It is possible that this may have been the banished Elder.
Eldor, the last of the Elders and holder of the mighty Book of Living Spells was by this time the last inhabitant of Castle Grayskull. He was aware of the threat the Snakemen posed, and contacted Sharella, warrior chieftess of the human Eternos tribe. He bade her send a young peasant farmer, Gray from the village to the Castle. There, Eldor revealed to Gray that within his heart he held powerful magic abilities, and Eldor gifted to him the Staff of Light – which contained the final piece of comet gemstone. Using the Staff of Light, Gray was able to transform himself into He-Ro, the most powerful wizard in the universe! He-Ro was gifted with the ability to transmutate anything natural such as trees, rocks or rivers to his will. Gradually, He-Ro set about building his own Council, to replace the forgotten Elders. These included Sharella, as well as the giant Tytus, Cosmic Enforcer Zodak and his brother. He-Ro and his Council rode out from Grayskull and from Eternos Village on bionically enhanced dinosaurs such as Bionatops, Turbodactly and Gigantisaur.
But the Snakemen were not easily defeated. King Hsss dominated much of the planet with an iron fist, ably assisted by lieutenants such as Tung Lashor, Squeeeze, Snakeface and the feared General Rattlor. The Snakemen also altered beasts to their control, and Hsss in particular favoured riding a mighty Tyrantisaurus Rex. The Snakemen progressed across the planet, building a massive Central Tower roughly equidistant between Snake Mountain and Castle Grayskull. A smaller Viper Tower next to it linked the Mountain and the Tower by monorail. King Hsss planned to rule from Central Tower, only he quickly lost control of it, as He-Ro and his followers attacked it. A third tower was built on the reverse side from Viper Tower – Grayskull Tower was constructed in the image of the famous Castle itself. Many battles raged within this one battleground. It was there that King Hsss consumed Zodak’s brother, sending the young Cosmic Enforcer into a fit of rage and vengeance.
He-Ro and his new Council fought long and hard, aware that many secrets lay within Grayskull, in addition to the two swords so desperately needed by future champions. Eventually, they managed to defeat the Snakemen, banishing them into another dimension and sealing the Towers Complex deep beneath the ground.
Some enemies of He-Ro escaped this, however. A few, scattered Snakemen avoided banishment, and would later evolve into the Reptons – a largely peaceful race with the noted exception of future super-criminal Kobra Khan. King Hsss’ chief sorceror also escaped judgment. Keldor. Keldor was not a Snakeman but a blue-skinned human from the future who spent a few years aiding Hsss and observing events as he built his powers around him. Keldor returned to the future when the Towers fell.
Legend of Etheria
A small group of He-Ro’s Council used Keldor’s dimensional technology to travel not in time, but space. They arrived on the beautiful but warlike planet Etheria. There, they realised just who the Elders’ second sword was intended for. This group met up with a similar alliance of magicians on Etheria, and together they forged a jewel. This jewel was sent back to Castle Grayskull on Eternia, where He-Ro added it to the Sword of Protection. This magic of two worlds meant this sword and its bearer would have many more powers than whoever wielded the Sword of Power.
This Eternian/Etherian group remained on Etheria and named themselves the First Ones. The First Ones knew they did not have the powers of the original Elders of Eternia, or even He-Ro’s full Council. But they knew that Etheria would face terrible danger in the future. They chose the highest peak on the planet, Mount Skydancer, and on it they constructed a beautiful citadel – more awe-inspiring than even Castle Grayskull. They named it the Crystal Castle. For millennia to come, the occasional lucky climber or sky traveller might see the Castle, and so its legend spread. But the First Ones knew that its true location must remain a secret, for in future it would be a powerful weapon in the wrong hands. The youngest of the First Ones, a young magician and healer, volunteered to transcend his physical form. He became Light Hope, a shimmering curtain of rainbow light, an oracle who would live in Crystal and guard its secrets. Although both swords of good remained on Eternia, Light Hope accepted one half of the Sword of Evil, to split its wicked power between two worlds, and locked it deep within the Crystal Castle.
A strong relationship could have been established between Grayskull and Crystal, but events would soon conspire to prove otherwise.
For generations more Eternia flourished. But the last of He-Ro’s Council had long died, and many secrets had vanished also, such as the location of Etheria. He-Ro’s descendant, King Grayskull, lived in the Castle with his wife, a powerful magic-user called Veena. Surrounding the Castle was a prosperous walled Grayskull Village. One night, King Grayskull was called by a mysterious voice to a locked vault. It opened to reveal to him the two swords forged by the Elders. King Grayskull realised that he would have to wield the Sword of Power in battle.
And so he did. An ambitious sorcerer/scientist known as Horde Prime had become aware of the powers held within the Castle, and brought an assault force to the planet Eternia, intending to seize it. Horde Prime’s origins are shrouded in mystery, but some have suggested that he is in fact the disgraced Elder who fashioned the Sword of Evil. Horde Prime soon came up against King Grayskull, who rode his mighty Battle Lion into combat, supported by Veena, and other warriors such as the Trollan known as the Oracle. Horde Prime and his evil Horde fought King Grayskull many times, and Horde Prime realised that he was never going to get access to the Castle. So Horde Prime and his sorcerers planned to perform the Spell of Separation, which would rip Eternia apart and open Grayskull with it. A climactic final battle was fought, and the King was able to turn Horde Prime’s massive spell upon himself. The heroes had won.
But the cost was high.
Horde Prime was, like the Snakemen, banished. But not to another dimension, he and his Horde found themselves trapped on the planet Despondos, which Horde Prime decided to rename Horde World, planning to built an empire of “easier” target planets before going after a world like Eternia again.
The Spell of Separation had begun to do its work. Eternia was now split into Light and Dark Hemispheres, with the Light Hemisphere – including Grayskull and Eternos Town – experiencing normal day and night. In the Dark Hemisphere it was always night, and evil bred.
King Grayskull’s defeat of Horde Prime had not been easy. In deflecting the Spell, the King’s sword was split cleanly in two – both halves lost. King Grayskull himself was mortally wounded, and he died in his beloved Veena’s arms. Veena carried his body back to his Castle, and laid it in a tomb deep in the vaults. King Grayskull’s warriors, with all their special powers, realised that they were the Last Council, following in the steps of the First Elders and He-Ro’s Council. Thus, like Light Hope, they converted themselves into energy beings and worked their way into the architecture of the Castle itself. Now it was near impervious, now it truly held the secrets of all the Ancients, even if the Sword of Power really was lost forever. Whoever controlled Castle Grayskull, would have the power to become Master of the Universe!
Only Veena remained, as waking guardian. The first Sorceress of Castle Grayskull.
The war with Horde Prime had taken its toll. Vast tracts of the planet lay in ruins, the hemispheres were forever magically separated. Much civilisation collapsed. The village around Grayskull crumbled to dust, and the Evergreen Forest grew up around the Castle.
The Castle always had its guardians, always keeping it hidden. Each guardian would wonder if a new king would ever arrive, if the two halves of the Power Sword could ever be re-united.
One such series of battles involved a mighty yet just Barbarian. This brown-haired warrior rode a lion, and discovered one half of the Power Sword. Unfortunately, the other half was held by Skeletor – the future form of Keldor who again tried to raid the past to gain Grayskull’s secrets and powers. The two fought many times, often inside Grayskull. However, with the help of the Castle’s current guardian – the green-skinned, snakeskin-clad Goddess – the Barbarian managed to unite King Grayskull’s long lost Sword of Power after all. The Barbarian and the Goddess banished Skeletor back to his own time.
Castle Grayskull stood alone and hidden again, its two swords hidden inside. Its darkest days, and greatest champions, yet to come.