Greece (aka Hellas) has seen the worst of the 21st century’s turmoil. Around the time of the Awakening, the country found itself in debt, being the weakest link in the European Economic Community. Poverty, of course, never comes alone. In this case, it led to increasing support to the patriotic extreme-right wing, as a considerable part of the country was keen on blaming any kind of foreigner for their woes, and a sort of Reformist extreme-left wing, for those more inclined to blame the rich. With crime rates soaring and the stock market constantly discovering new depths to plunge to, social tension was at a fever pitch. The last thing anyone needed (or, indeed, expected) to happen, was babies being born as minotaurs, cyclopes, dryads, satyrs, and other beings solely encountered in antique myth.
The public found itself in the clutches of despair, awe, terror, disbelief and anger at the same time. For some time, nothing seemed to happen. And then, it all exploded.
It was hectic. Minor television personalities who until then pitched books on conspiracy theories and the superiority of hellenic DNA, were elevated to sages overnight, and consulted daily in panic-ridden news broadcasts. Cults worshipping the Olympian Pantheon came out of the closet and started recruiting new members among the dumbfounded populace. Meanwhile, the Orthodox church identified the threat and armed its own ranks with promises of fire and brimstone in the upcoming Time of Judgement, which was certainly close at hand, with Satan spawning his abominations upon the Earth and all that. And the few remaining rationalists, condemned the sheeple forming the general public for their eagerness to abandon reason in favour of any old religious rubbish.
Everybody knew, there was only one way to resolve this. The quintessentially greek custom of Protesting In A Central Avenue And Then Having A Street-Fight With Anyone Who Disagrees. So, every group got supplied with traditional greek protesting gear, A Small Flag With A Surprisingly Thick Flagpole That Can Be Used As A Club, and got underway. Greece plunged into chaos. Whole neighborhoods burned. Organized crime used the rioting as an excellent distraction, in order to loot and pillage without being noticed. The political situation became so unstable, that most politicians aspired to simply avoid attracting any sort of attention while they were “ruling” the country.
And, after fifteen years of unofficial civil war, southern European economies crashed. By then, the governement’s role had become so arbitrary, that few even noticed them fleeing to other countries (or “exiled”, as they insisted on calling the event). Upon spotting the power vacuum, upstanding citizens ensured support from the mafia, and rushed in to fill it. For some months, all one could see was declarations of independence and talk of patriotic messiahs bearing the gifts of freedom and integrity. Crowds cheered. They were hungry, and tired of rioting, and in urgent need of some stability.
And then, the Alliance of Allah called for a Jihad against the West. And the first piece of West they fell upon was, as expected, Greece. The Greeks had no army to speak of, and no more fight in them. Their new-fangled city-states surrendered one by one.
The occupation lasted two years, yet it managed to be remembered as an event more horrifying than fifteen years of in-fighting. There was curfew, and pogroms, people disappearing, and forced conversion, and turncoats selling out their own people in exchange for food and some peace.Cities were demolished “to set an example”, and no-one was safe. In the end, Mullah Sayid Jazrir was assassinated, and his retreating armies left harrowing scenes of untold destruction behind them.
Once the dust had settled, it was megacorps who came to the rescue. Negotiations with the virtually non-existent greek state were swift and effective, and they soon moved in and started building their outposts. The people welcomed them. They craved for jobs, peace and order, and they seemed to be able to provide a certain measure of them by advancing Greece’s economical significance within Europe. S-K was the first one to grab the opportunity, but Ares and some major Eurocorps soon followed.
In the shadows of giants, smaller ventures started emerging as well. In Delphi, an alliance of traditionalist mages founded Orakle, a brotherhood tapping the ancient site’s potential to offer divinations and business consultants’ services. They made quite a name for themselves, which led to a considerable surge of interest for the magical arts within the country. Politicians, now backed (or, as some would rather say, owned) by the corporations, initiated projects to create infrastructure and transports. Slowly but decisively, the hellenic monorail transport network came to existence.
And suddenly, as things were looking up, their view was obscured by the Comet. The Year of the Comet (2061) brought torrential rains, earthquakes and tidal waves of biblical proportions, and many nothern greek cities disappeared under the sea. Ancient monuments emerged, and immense mana-storms swept the country. Finding out that anything was left standing, was a surprise to all…
In the next decade, the rebuilding commenced. Corporations and state administration solidified their foothold in the region, and the populace, harrowed by disaster, patiently accepted the new status quo. Until the next one strikes, at least…