For other uses of 'Valdemar,' see the disambiguation page.
Kordas Valdemar was a Baron in the east, possibly in what is now the Eastern Empire, holding lands along that kingdom's western border. He did his best to protect his people from his tyrannical monarch, until it was no longer possible short of outright rebellion. At that point, he gathered up his family and all the people who wished to join him, along with their livestock and possessions, and journeyed as far into the western wilderness as they could go. When they found a promising spot far enough away, they settled, founding what is now the city of Haven. Eventually, the area was established as the kingdom of Valdemar (named for the Baron), and the Baron himself was acclaimed King.
Years passed, and through many hardships, Valdemar and his people built a thriving kingdom. In his old age Valdemar began to worry about what the future would bring. While he was certain his son would be a good ruler, there were no guarantees for what would come after.
The kingdom's histories teach that Valdemar went into the Sacred Grove at dawn on Midsummer's Day and prayed to every god he'd ever heard of for help. Given that he and his wife were both mages, he probably did some spellcasting as well. At sunset his answer arrived-- the first three Companions emerged from the Grove. One Chose Valdemar, one Chose his son and Heir, Prince Restil, and one Chose the king's herald, Beltran.
Valdemar then decreed that the Monarch and Heir must be Chosen. Those who were not were ineligible for the throne. Though the crown has generally passed through the same royal line like in other kingdoms, if the Monarch has no children who have been Chosen, the crown passes to a Herald in a cadet branch of the royal family.
By the time of King Valdemar's death there were 21 Heralds, including himself, the Heir, Prince Restil, and Restil's second son.
King Valdemar had the Mage-Gift. Any other Gifts he may have possessed are not enumerated.
In the series Edit
While Valdemar himself does not appear in the text, the story of the Founding is fully told in the first Herald's novel.