Hey you keep forgetting MY work. I HAVE NAILED DOWN EXACTLY WHAT HAPPENED
Vaults of Pandius wrote:
Dwarves of the Second Age
At the time of the Rain of Fire, all dwarven colonies near Blackmoor were immediately destroyed.(1) According to the few remained chronicles, for years the dust clouds that were raised shaded the sun and made the temperature drop. The dust brought skin-affecting diseases and cancer, that fell upon the Dwarves and their neighbours. In order to flee from sure death, Dwarves begun to build homes underground, and thus developed their first skills in mining and underground engineering too.
In those years, Rockhome's climate was beginning to change toward ice-age: the mountains were always covered with ice and the dwarven agricultural skills were failing. Dwarves lost gradually contact with their neighbours, human and humanoid races became extinct, disappeared or fled from the Known World. Little use to the Dwarves were the friendship they matured with another race, the Gnomes, around 2900 BC. Gnomes are believed to be related to Dwarves, and moreover both races revered the Immortals Kagyar (whom the Gnomes also call Karl) and Garalin (whom Gnomes call Garl or Garal).
In the end, after wars for survival had wiped out all the last traces of culture, only Dwarves remained, in the regions near Rockhome, apart from the Gnomes, who were settled in the area now known as Northern Reaches.
The diseases continued to harass the dwarven race: even if the climate, around 2500 BC, had slowly begun to revert to normal, most children were stillborn, or bore deformities, and many Dwarves were born sterile. Around 2000 BC, only some ten-thousand Dwarves were present, and the race was facing the risk of total annihilation, of extinction. Most knowledge of their past had disappeared with their past greatness; in a desperate move to avoid ultimate oblivion, clinching to their art and their existence as the testimony of a race condemned to death, the Dwarves begun to compile extremely precise and definite genealogies of their families and clans, descriptions of their activities and history, while living their desperate lives. However, one of the six surviving Dwarven Clans, the Hrukats, got in touch with the Dark Elves.
The Dark Elves had been enemies of the Dwarves in the past. They were servitors of the Father of Demons, and lived north of Rockhome. The Hrukats Clan was in charge of the fortresses in the north that had been built to repel the Dark Elves in the past. The Hrukats were proud and noble, and had always defeated the enemies of the dwarven race, defending the other Clans from the threats in the north. After the defeat of the Dark Elves, the Hrukats had remained to guard the passes of the north, waiting for an enemy that for a long time didn't show again.
Four centuries after the last battle, the Dark Elves returned. After long years of decadence and desolation, the Hrukats had mostly forgotten about them and their adoration of the Father of Demons. So the Dark Elves pretended to offer a truce and an aid to the Hrukats. Although the Hrukats King expelled the Dark Elves, he secretly arranged to have some meetings to discuss the matter.
The Father of Demons was an obscure divinity. According to the ancient dwarven mythology, he had fathered some of the most foul of creatures: Garm, the Devourer of the Sun; the Midgardwurm, a monstrous demonic snake; and Fenris the Wolf. Later on, the Vikings would identify the Father of Demons with Loki, although currently the dwarven clerics suggest that the Father of Demons was none other than Orcus.
The Dark Elves told their necromantic arts to the Hrukats, promising the King that these arts would slow and prevent the decline of his people. The King and his counsellors and closer relatives became thus, secretly, powerful necromancers. In the beginning, they used their spells to halt and then erase the diseases from the population: but Evil always corrupts who uses its powers, and in the end the Hrukats leaders became tainted by Evil, isolating the Clan from their brethren in the south.
The dark arts tainted the heart and should of the dwarven necromancers, madness spread and the cult of the Father of Demons spread too, openly. Most of the population, having been denied any contact with the other Dwarves, forced to live always in the depths of the earth, ruled by necromancers, became apathetic and indifferent, while instigators at the service of the Dark Elves spoke against Kagyar and Garalin, and told the Dwarves that their patrons were to be blamed for their condition, as they had forgotten their race and left them to suffer in the claws of Evil. Around 1900 BC, the southern Dwarves begun to see clearly what was happening, and started to plan a way to expel all Hrukats from Rockhome (2). However, given the necromantic arts of their rulers, that had halted diseases and sterility, the Hrukats counted the same number as all the other clans together.(3) Called Morkwarf ("dark dwarves") by their own brethren, the most impious among the Hrukats rulers planned an attack against their own race, allied with the Dark Elves, with whom they forged five cursed weapons, each built appositely to be used against each remaining dwarven Clan.
A group of dissident Hrukats were able to discover the plot and managed to convince the other Dwarves that something dangerous was happening and that they had to move before the Morkwarf did. The Dwarves held a Council (1812 BC). Here they decided to attack immediately, before the Hrukats were ready, hoping in a spontaneous revolt among the Hrukats population. However, the intransigent nature of the dwarven race, and the malice spread by the followers of the Dark Elves (whose purpose was to destroy the whole dwarven race, like the Father of Demons wanted), had caused most of the population to actually hate and despise their southern cousins because they believed that they had been indifferent to their fate before, and now only desired to conquer and destroy them, blaming the whole Hrukats Clan for what was just the responsibility of their rulers (and of their gods, moreover).
The dwarven attack was extremely hard. The five Clans strangled the Hrukats in a long siege, that went on for six years. The Hrukats were suddenly abandoned by their allies, the Dark Elves, and the Morkwarf had to crush internal revolts in blood-bathes. In the end, the Dark Elves had nearly obtained their goal, as the dwarven population had nearly halved itself with the long and bloody, cruel, war, and the race was near extinction. Desperate, the Necromancer-King of the Hrukats surrendered (1806 BC). (4)
Hate between the two dwarven factions was at its peak. Both had suffered terrible hardships; the life of Dwarves in the last thousand years had just been suffering and desperation. Almost bursting in tears, the Morkwarf-King of the Hrukats, the son of the Dwarf who had allied himself with the Dark Elves, shouted his wrath against the southern Dwarves, that he considered simply put jealous of the achievements of his necromantic comrades: they had relieved the Hrukats from the curse and disease of Blackmoor, from sterility, and to do so they hadn't hesitated to use any means. Crippled, suffering and debilitated because of the dwarven race disease, the general of the dwarven army, Commander Tor, showed his plagues and his sore body to the bounded Morkwarf and proclaimed: "In no way shall the Dwarven race be consumed and tormented by the Disease of the Soul, even when this shall mean be consumed and tormented by the Disease of the Body! So, all Dwarves who stipulated the insane alliance with the Forces of Evil and the Dark Elves and the Father of Demons will not be Dwarves anymore! And their name will be removed from the Clans Chronicles. The Hrukats Clan is dead, it doesn't exist anymore. But you surrendered, so we will leave your people to leave our land. However, you and your batmen are sentenced to death, in the name of Kagyar and Garalin."
So the survivors of the Hrukats Clan left Rockhome and moved, in shame, east to the mountains at the border between Rockhome and the lands of the Gnomes.
The pride of the Dwarves of the five Clans moved the heart of Kagyar the Artisan, the Immortal who had always loved the Dwarves. Kagyar has never wanted to interfere with the lives of mortals: he is a respectful divinity, who wants to leave mortals free to choose and live their lives, according to their laws, and not as pawns of the Immortals. But in that time, the only time in the history of Mystara, Kagyar stepped in and acted, saving the Dwarves. In 1800 BC he sent them Denwarf, a Dwarf with great powers, that would guide them and save them from death. Denwarf was the First Cleric of the Dwarves. (5) He cured the Dwarves of their diseases and brought to them the secrets of the earth and fire that Kagyar and Garalin themselves had taught him. (6)
(1) At this time there were approximately 2 millions of Dwarves.
(2) This is, again, a false memory provided by Kagyar. The ancestral lands of the Dwarves were the Northern Reaches, and most Dwarves lived on the eastern side of the Rockhome/Vestland border mountains.
(3) At this time, there were about 30'000 Dwarves, 13'000 of which belonged to the Hrukats Clan.
(4) At this time, there were about 8'000 Dwarves, 3'000 of which belonged to the Hrukats Clan. In fact, not all Dwarves that "disappeared" had died in the war; a group of 4'000 southern Dwarves had been preserved in stasis by Kagyar and Garalin and put to sleep in the caves of Rockhome, while the two Immortals were discussing with Ka and the Hollow World Council how to move them to the Hollow World to become the Kogolor Dwarves.
(5) This could be a "false memory" of the Dwarves. Anyway, being Kagyar and Garalin so aloof and silent for so many years before, this could be a possibility to explain it. Kagyar was so "non-interfering" (à la Benekander) that he didn't even provide spells to his worshippers!
(6) At this point, there should be about 5'000 Dwarves. According to GAZ6, the original Dwarves were 500, but they are way too few, in my opinion, to rise in 400 years to the meteoritic number of 125'000 Dwarves...