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Shortly after the Fall of the Dragon Riders, Lady Marelda decided to secede from the Broddring Empire. Under her command, the Surdan army defeated the Imperial Army at Cithrí, resulting in the creation of Surda, an independent nation. King Galbatorix was occupied elsewhere and hence took no part in the battle. It is stated that if Galbatorix and Shruikan had joined the Imperial forces, Marelda would have lost and the Varden may never have been formed.