It is strange times we live in now. Four years ago, if you tried to tell someone that vampires, wizards, and fairies existed, at best you would have been laughed at as crazy, and at worst would have been locked up and in need of psychiatric help. Oh sure, urban legends would abound about a creature stalking the shadows, taking people the world at forgotten anyway, and making them disappear. Or perhaps your great grandmother would tell stories of dancing with fairy princesses in moonlit glades in the dead of night. Or your little brother insisted your childhood home was haunted, and that the ghost of a little boy would wake him in the night to play trains. But rational thought would wash away the tales of the supernatural. It wasn’t a creature stalking homeless, but a large rabid dog. No way had your great grandmother danced with fairies, she clearly has dementia. And your brother was always eating too many sweets late at night. No matter what happened, the mundane world always tried to ignore, cover up, or forget the supernatural. That is until October 30th, 2008, and what is being called the Night of Illumination. That was the night that Pittsburgh ceased to be, and with it, the world’s blissful ignorance.
October 30th, 2008 began like just about any other day. Halloween preparations were underway around the nation, and in cities around the world. But more sinister preparations were also underway. For centuries, the supernatural world had lain in a state of near cold war. All factions had universally agreed that knowledge of the supernatural in the greater world would have a disastrous result on everyone, so they had long agreed to keep their business out of mortal eyes, an agreement enforced by the Convocation of Belarius, named for the wizard who had succeeded in bringing all disparate sides into an accord of some sorts. This accord lasted for more than 300 years. But in that time, tensions grew frayed, and disagreements on all sides began to bubble over.
A plot was born, by a cabal of powerful necromancers. These necromancers were given the power to enact rituals to open doorways directly to the Withering, and to call forth the legions of foul beings contained within, to rain havoc upon the mortal world. And the first step was to open the gate, in the city of Pittsburgh. Pittsburgh sits atop a confluence of energies, much as do most major cities of the world. Only Pittsburgh’s confluence was tinged particularly dark. It was magic ripe for exploitation by the necromancers, who used it to open the way to the Withering. But what they did not realize was that the way would not be under their control, nor would the powerful creatures that walked out upon our world.
The creatures began with the necromancers who had summoned them, then moved on to the rest of the city, wiping out all who came into their path. Agents of the Council converged upon Pittsburgh, but there was naught they could do but help some survivors who crawled from the wreckage of Pittsburgh, and help contain the catastrophe. Worse still, Pittsburgh was only the starting point, as cells of necromancers around the world opened similar gates. In the nights following, Liverpool, Frankfort, Valencia, Omsk, and countless other cities all fell in the coming days.
After a week of brutality, the gates to the Withering within Pittsburgh and around the world began to fail. Agents of the Council had banded together to contain the disaster. But the world had seen. And this time, they would not forget. The governments were demanding answers. And for the first time in more than 300 years, the mortal world was given those answers. In a now historic interview, the leader of the council, bearing the honorific name of Belarius, explained in gory detail exactly what had befallen Pittsburgh and the surrounding area. He laid out the basics of the supernatural world, and that the attack had been carried out by “necromantic terrorists”.
He hoped that by telling the world what had happened, he might avoid some of the bloodshed between the mortal world and the supernatural. And for the most part, he was right. But the governments of the world were quick to act, bringing into being laws they hoped could curb the supernatural, somewhat. Police forces quickly began to employ individuals “in the know”. Often times, there were already one or two people on each force who were already clued in, had been dealing with the supernatural for some time, and were somewhat relieved that the hidden world really did exist, and that they were not crazy.
Four years later, and things are much different. The supernatural and the mundane have begun to mix. People are scared of what is in the shadows, but it is because they now KNOW that the creature lurking there really does want to devour him. But the wounds of the Night of Illumination have not healed. People are not content to be preyed upon. Fear and paranoia are at an all time high, as people see ghosts and ghouls in every shadow. Even though the supernatural world is known, the magical beings there still mostly hide, as the anger over the death of so many is still raw for the world. It is a frightening world we live in, but it is one we enter with our eyes wide open. For the veil has been ripped away, and what has been hidden for so long is now plain to see.
After that, take a look at your wiki. There is some more helpful info there.