The Long Famine
The Long Famine was a worldwide phenomenon between YE 782 and the mid-820s YE where millions of people were subject to starvation as a result of The Change after the Second Hycath War.
After the Second Hycath War ended, the damages to the lands by war and magic were enormous. The human population grew fearful of the Hycathae once again and turned against them. Many Hycathae fled to the Promised Land (Al-Murooj) to lead peaceful lives in a fully Hycath-led community. Several years later, a drastic increase in temperature came over the world. The ice caps began to melt and sea levels began to rise, causing significant parts of the continents to end up underwater. On the remaining land, flooding and extreme weather conditions became a daily phenomenon, damaging livelihoods, agriculture and wildlife.
The year 782 marked the beginning of the worldwide Long Famine, which lasted for around forty-five years. The temperature change and the floods of the Great Torrent had quickly made everyday life nearly impossible for those who had survived up to this point. Some of the remaining lands became infertile, unable to provide any kind of resources. The extreme weather conditions and frequent storms that arose after the increase in temperature made it hard to cultivate crops, even on land that remained fertile. Many countries began reporting food shortages, but none managed to develop a solution. The situation quickly turned dire.
Millions of people died of starvation, which drastically reduced the world’s population. The only place that remained untouched by this crisis was the Promised Land, where the Hycathae were able to develop a new type of seed that could grow in any sand under any climate, living on seawater. The Hycathae refused to share their invention with the rest of the world.
Although the famine officially ended in the mid-820s YE, the world never fully recovered from the consequences of Long Famine and The Great Torrent. Any solutions that leaders managed to develop were mainly short-term and these never succeeded in solving the core problem.
Food resources became a motive for countries to go to war, and on a larger scale, those conflicts only made the situation worse. Starvation never entirely disappeared from life, and it became the main reason for King Richard IV of East Mercia to attack the Promised Land in YE 876. He had hoped to confiscate the seeds but had unfortunately underestimated his opponent. When Richard and his general Robyn Loxley hadn’t returned home for a few years after the attack, they were officially declared dead.