Founded: ~800 years ago (Declared August 2005)
Capitol Hex: 7311
Deity: Cath, a great bear god
Around 800 years ago, the nomadic tribes of the north began to settle down, establishing small villages and towns near the Great Forest, as it was then called. The elves in the forest befriended the townsfolk and over the years a great bond of trust and friendship was made.
The two very different societies and cultures meshed peacefully, while both maintained individuality. A new city was built in the forest, Tyrcath, incorporating both the styles and architecture of men and elves. It was in the first summer of the city that the Library of Cath was constructed and recorded time began. Cath was the Great Bear God worshiped by the humans in his warrior aspect (as they were accustomed to fighting the orc hordes on the plains and mountains where most of them hailed from), and by the elves in his nature guardian form (as they took offenses against their forest home very seriously).
Many years of peace and prosperity passed and Tyrcath became a hub for knowledge and trade. But the Times of Tranquility were coming to an end, and the peaceful lifestyle of the Tyrcathians was soon to be lost in a tide of war.
In the year of 428, refugees from the north began to straggle in, all carrying horrific stories of a massive orc invasion that slaughtered, burned and utterly consumed everything in its path. An elf scouting party was dispatched to find truth in the terrifying rumors that had all of Tyrcath on the edge of panic. Several weeks later, the scouts returned, confirming everyone’s greatest fears. The orc force was so large, their campfires blackened out the sky, their marching shook the earth, and their war drums silenced all innocent screams. Thousands upon thousands, more than could be counted, marched endlessly towards Tyrcath. The good people stood no chance of surviving, but would not give up to the orcs what they had worked so hard for.
Preparation for war began immediately, as every forge hammered out spears and swords, every sorcerer, wizard and mage read up and studied new spells of destruction and death. Every man, woman, and child was armed and instructed in the ways of killing.
The peaceful city of Tyrcath dug itself in for hell, and hell is what she received. Nine long years. Nine years of killing and dying. Nine years of hatred and fear. Nine years of constant war. Many stories of horror came from those nine years. As well as many tales of heroes and brave warriors. One such tale comes from a tight knit band of fearless, brutal, and savage fighters that could always be found in the very heart of the bloodiest, grimmest, and most hopeless of battles. The MacCaths, sons of the Great Bear, suffered the greatest casualties, but always at the greatest price. An inspiring sight they were, charging full speed into the ranks of the biggest and meanest orcs, screaming and laughing the entire way, enjoying the killing and not fearing death at all.
When the war was finally over, the elders vowed to never allow another such war to break out. An alliance was made between the humans and elves of Tyrcath, and all surrounding settlements, cities, towns and villages. Even the wild elves from deep within the heart of the forest, joined the alliance. Thus the Northern Alliance was formed and for the last 200 years, has helped stamp out starvation and war in all nations that pledge support and warriors.
The orcs however, have been quiet for the last 2 centuries, luring some into a false sense of security, thinking the Times of Tranquility have returned. But we know they bide their time, waiting for us to be so helpless and unprepared as we were then, when they marched to the city walls without so much as a scrape. The MacCaths will be ready for them, and as our ancestors did, we will give them a fight they did not wager for. We are ready and filled with the fury of the ancient dead, and we will not live in fear.
Sovereign Isles of Light
•Government: Elected Triumvirate
•Capitol Province: City of Beinnrigh (Province #2351)
•Deity: There is no official state religion
The Isles are an alliance of nations guided by the stars and the light of civilization.
The Isles are diversely populated by Aasimar, Tieflings, humans, dwarves, elves, drow, werewolves, ratfolk, catfolk, and everything in between.
Isles culture centers around seafaring, commerce, learning and merry making. Isles exports Ralkean wine, fine garments and weapons. Houses of healing and magical studies are open to all, religious tolerance is widespread. Islanders labor hard and celebrate often.
In the year two thousand and seventeen, an island rose out of the sea. When the countries of the realm descended upon the island, they were overcome by the desire to conquer it, and they turned on each other with savagery and greed. The nation of Eileana’Reult and the Empire of Ralkea forged a wartime alliance. When the island sank back into the sea, the alliance endured.
They discerned in one another a shared spirit of courage, curiosity, and ingenuity; they learned each other’s thousand-year histories and stood alongside each other in times of trouble. They held each other in such high regard that they declared a festival of friendship, in which they honored one another with songs, finely crafted favors, theatrical displays, and the best yields of their harvests. All the realm envied the strength of their alliance.
However, extraordinary forces threatened to tear them apart. The spirit of possession had come over Sir Zoren (then High Consul of Eileana’Reult) and Sir Crow (General of Ralkea). Violence broke out, and the two countries descended into war. After a series of gruesome battles, Sir Crow took Sir Zoren and Sir Stephen hostage. He could not overcome the spirit of Tuath residing within Sir Zoren, but he afflicted both Sir Stephen and the Ralkean Lady Paya with the spirit of Tiamat.
The heroes of Eileana’Reult set out to rescue Stephen and Zoren, and the heroes of Ralkea turned on their own to weed out the affliction from within. By the guidance of Emperor Sark and Consul Silas, all but Sir Zoren were freed from possession.
A plague came over the land, prolonging the possession of Sir Zoren. When the time was right, Sir Crow brought forward an angel-blade and Sir Stephen retrieved the sword of Tuath. Eileanan and Ralkean heroes met in an unholy city to ritually banish the spirit of Tuath from the body of Sir Zoren, and the Ralkeans watched over Sir Zoren’s long rest. In this way Sir Zoren was freed from his possession, and the breach of trust between the two countries was mended.
There was a legend in old Ralkea, that the Empire always went where it would grow, and when it had reached its grandest in any realm, that it would be pulled into another realm. It was only a legend – until whole Ralkean villages began to vanish in the night. The heroes of Ralkea rejected the otherworldly pull of the Empire, and together with their Eileanan allies, devised a plan to anchor Ralkea in the realm of ORCS.
Eileanan settlers took temporary possession of Ralkean landmarks. The countries jointly land searched and established new settlements together. They harvested magical roots from the cursed tree of Tzeentch, and buried the roots deep within the Ralkean capital. The Ralkeans called upon a great iron golem to bear the Flame of Civilization to a safer resting place. At last, the two countries pledged themselves to one another and united under one flag, one government, and a new name: the Sovereign Isles of Light.
In spite of their best efforts, the land of Ralkea slipped away. The anchor points remained. The great landmarks of old Ralkea and the co-established settlements thrived, and it is whispered that hidden within the roots of the Tzeentch tree, a green thread of magic preserves a portal between the Sovereign Isles and the old Ralkean capital, to be called upon in a time of need.
And Sir Stephen encouraged all of the people, saying to them, “We are stronger together and stronger than ever. Do not let your hearts be troubled. For fallen Reultar, demons, dragons, death, royalty, and the universe itself tried to tear us asunder, but we were unyielding – we were resolved. And in the face of powers much greater than ourselves, we have chosen our way. We write our own destiny.”
Government: lead by a de facto leader, who is Westwater.
Capitol: City of Freeport (Hex 9556)
For the past 5-600 years the island was used as a penal colony for non-death sentence offenders and political exiles. As a way to reduce prison costs and in major cities and larger countries.
As population increased with no outside support. The inhabitants were forced to develop their own form of government. As well as produce their own food and textiles.
This was initially very difficult. Considering that the populace consisted of criminals and politicians. Though many were familiar with the inner workings of governments. Few were willing to take up the mantle of responsibility. Ultimately adopting a “It’s yours as long as you can handle it” policy of leadership.
The production of food and materials proved more difficult. Due to the fact that most had never worked an honest day in their lives. However, through trial and error, many obstacles were overcome and they eventually became self-sufficient.
After a time (about 200 years) outside countries realized that they could use criminals as a cheap labor force. Thus making it no longer cost effective to ship them off. So, ships stopped bringing in new prisoners.
Not long after (less than 50 years) privateers noticed the “ungoverned” island and realized it was a perfect location to hide and/or trade stolen merchandise. This became a mutually beneficial system for the locals as well. Giving them both trade and news from the outside world. And for a time, the island prospered this way.
One day ships began to appear on their shores loaded with people instead of goods. Apparently, the criminal labor force had become so popular that the demand had exceeded what most countries could supply alone. Sentient beings had now become the number one export. Given, that people were the one thing the island wasn’t in short supply on, trade became scarce. Still, many vessels used the port as a stop off point in their travels elsewhere.
The locals became incensed with the way the prisoners were held and treated.
One evening the dock workers along with a few small fishing vessels liberated the cargo holds of every slave ship docked there. The slaves were then granted asylum on the island.
Although upset by this unsanctioned act, the head of state at the time supported his citizens. And to show a united front decreed that the island would no longer harbor any ship carrying slaves. Moreover, any found in their waters would be taken and freed. Stating that this land is now and forever a “Free Port”
The pirates soon realized that losing the ability to dock there would seriously hinder the currently booming slave trade. So, in response, the pirates set their sights on an untapped resource. Freeport itself.
Due to the fact that Freeport had very little in the way of actual military. They were overtaken almost immediately with the pirate ships taking almost a third of the population away for trade.
After a heartfelt and rallying speech from the head of state. Every able bodied man, woman and child took up arms. Loading into every remaining vessel in port, they set off to rescue their comrades……
More lives were lost than saved that day. The country has still not fully recovered from this tragedy. The only survivor to return washed up on a cracked barrel lid almost a week later. He wore nothing but a loincloth and a set of broken manacles. Starving, dehydrated and delirious from exposure. He stood with his hands above his head shouting “We shall never be bound again!” Then promptly collapsing, dead.
This statement has become the motto of Freeport since that day.
After a time, slavery began to lose popularity and Freeport is slowly reclaiming what they lost.
Now, a man has come to them claiming to have once been a slave himself. He has offered to lead the city state into an era of prosperity.
The Kritarchy of Esotera
Capitol: City of Carcosa (Hex 6843)
Deity: None, The Law comes first
The history of Esotera takes place long before it became realized. The idea of Esotera was postulated by the Necromancer Goz and his friend, Sargon of the City Ur, during their shared time dwelling in the City of Kalamar. They were both idealists and discussed what it would take to design a culture where the study of magic could flourish and the people could prosper under a set of egalitarian laws.
The country would do its best to stamp out divine radicalism through rule by a Council of five Judges (with one judge henceforth called the Chief Justice) acting as the voice and leader of the military. This Chief Justice would share equal power in terms of deciding existing laws, disseminating said laws, and, with the rest of the Council, deciding on punishment for those who broke the law and rewards for those who followed it. The people could freely worship whomever they wanted and freely practice their faith, but the country could never be a theocracy. It was the experience of Goz and Sargon that Clerics and Cavaliers, while powerful magic users themselves, have a history of blindly hunting and hurting those their faiths deemed “dangerous and or heretical”; such classes could not be reasonably persuaded to do otherwise.
As such, to create a safe haven for the persecuted, citizenship in a hypothetical Esotera would solely be based on someone’s ability to use magic. If a citizen lacked the ability to cast, they could not receive citizenship. Such a country did not currently exist, and perhaps never would, for Sargon was recalled to his homeland and conversations between he and Goz dithered.
When the Warlocks started to rise out of the ground, Sargon’s first plan of action was to take back his station as ruler of Ur, but his enemy the Kaiju Mobia still had its claws sunk deep into its loyal followers. The ensuing fight between the Mobian loyalists and Sargon’s forces eventually tore the country apart and, to the dismay of the loyalists, the Kaiju Mobia disappeared.
With its disappearance, the Mobian loyalists left the area, not wanting to serve under the Ash Vampire Sargon in his new regime and culture: The Cult of the Sleeping Sands. Unfortunately, all the healers of the area left with the Mobian loyalists, leaving Sargon in a bind as his people and reclaimed land were decimated with an ensuing plague; the Kaiju’s last revenge.
Sargon and his people were forced to leave the plague-stricken land, instead traveling north to safer lands. In this time of wandering, Sargon met other Warlocks. He planned to join forces with them to work out a means of leading the people out of their dark times, but these new Warlocks soon faded into obscurity within their own borders or died. Sargon was again left alone with no likeminded individuals able to match him in charisma or genius. His people were dying and left to obscurity as the Realm forgot about them, embittering Sargon, but driving him to succeed.
It was here, in desperation, that he remembered the idea of Esotera. As if by a miracle, more Warlocks, stronger than the last in power and will, appeared as if from the aether. One by one, Sargon approached all of them, sharing his vision for Esotera, and gaining their agreement to see it realized. These Warlocks, like Sargon, suffered the prejudice of the Realm and persecution from the Ravenguard, but together they could withstand great tribulation. The ideals of Esotera could not solve the problem of disease, however. After all, what did a Warlock know about mystical means required to heal the infected?
Then it struck them: the dead were unaffected by the plague, the dead could till the soil, and the dead could harvest grain and hunt with direction. “But,” Sargon wondered, “How could they implement it?” It was later said that Sargon gazed upon his Phylactery and, after great thought, knew what to do. It would be a great deed, requiring the aid of his Patron Goz, the work of all the Warlocks, and the willing offering of the power of thousands of souls. Sargon’s sacrifice would be the greatest. To start the process, Goz required Sargon reverse his undeath and utilize that power as a catalyst. In exchange, Sargon’s people would no longer suffer. Sargon willingly agreed.
Over the course of twelve endless days, and ending on the twilight of the thirteenth night, the Warlocks crafted a Phylactery, in the shape of a burning star atop a crescent moon, for all who wished it: those who would rather live in un-life and without pain. Such a boon was not mandated, and any who declined the offer were free to offer and receive healing from the casters able to do so. The thousands of people who gave their life over to the Phylactery had a new life without plague and, in turn, a sense of nationalism and pride took its place. They tended the fields, they aided the sick, and the rate of infection dwindled to almost a halt.
Sargon was elected Chief Justice for his sacrifice and the rest of the Warlocks were elected as Justices. In the newly established capital of Carcosa, the first laws were written and Esotera was born.
I. Do not murder your fellow citizen, nor cause harm to one another in anger.
II. Do not covet what your fellow citizen has, and do not steal from them.
III. Always aid your fellow citizen in their time of need.
IV. The needs of all Esotera outweigh the needs of the few and the ends always justify the means for your fellow citizens.
V. Be wary of outsiders, but give safe harbor to all those who use magic and are governed by reason and not by faith.
VI. Never persecute someone because of who they worship, how they worship, or what they look like.
VII. Never stifle one’s speech, but encourage it. Challenge your leaders with wisdom, but never in anger.
VIII. Trust the Council of Judges in time of war. To disobey the Chief Justice during war is punishable by death.
IX. Wear your truth on your face, do not to lie to each other, and do justly by your fellow citizens.
X. Bring your woes in the form of civil disputes to the Council of Judges.
The Council will in turn write more laws, reward those who follow the law, and punish those that break the law.
Government: Representative Democracy
Capitol: Tyr Kase
Long ago, when the realm was young, Kase Lespri was a single large island contenant to the Northeast of the realm. This island quickly became the leading center of knowledge and innovation throughout the lands. Nobles and wealthy merchants would send their children to the isle to further their education. The art and architecture of the lands of Kase Lespri were the pride of all the lands this made it the intellectual and cultural hub. Due to these facts, the residents of the country became both rich and egotistical.
Over the years the "educated" began to believe there were no god like beings above the sentient races of the world. They began to revere themselves They started teaching classes that 'disproved' the existence of what we have come to know as deities. They began to revere the leaders and warriors of their lands as well as the art created over their previously established pantheon and began to create idols to these new ideals. A great tower was built in the center of the lands of Kas Lespri, its leaders and its countrymen pursued the creation of the tower as a quest of great indulgence and ego. The arrogance of the people of Kase Lespri grew as they filled this tower that reached into the heavens and atop the tower the placed a golden idol built in the image of their most revered animal.
The great beast of burden that helped them pave roads, build great architecture and construct the Lespri tower became the symbol of their hubris. A golden bull statue was mounted at the peak of the tower that reached above the clouds. This angered the gods. As punishment they struck down the great Tower of Lespri with lightning and thunder and sundered the land, splitting it into the tiny islands that exist today. A labyrinthine curse of unnatural fog rose from the ocean and covered the lands completely.In addition, the gods took all magic and technology, as well as the knowledge and intellect to produce such things, away from the people of Kase Lespri.
For more than a thousand years the people have been left to suffer living like tribal beasts on these broken archipelagos islands. Groups of barbarians began to convene as best they could within each islands and trade occurred though precariously due to the unsafe travels of the maze like curse and traveling between the islands. The mystical maze-like fog that had doomed Kase Lespri to not only be separated from the rest of civilized society, also limited contact with the other broken isles they were all once a part of.
Recently a few of the more benevolent gods, lead by newly born god Kaz, have begun to take pity on the descendants of these once proud people. The curse has partially been lifted, allowing inhabitants finally travel the lands again, the curse has left countrymen's efforts to rebuild slow. Given time and the grace of the gods they once shunned, one day these broken lands may be healed and united again.
Now joined with Ralkea to form the Sovereign Isles of Light
•Founded: 800 years ago (Declared: 9/13/2013)
•Government: Elected Consulate
•Capitol Province: City of Beinnrigh (Province #2351)
•Deity: There is no official state religion; Eileana’ Reult supports a variety of faiths practiced within her borders.
Long ago, the tribes of Eileana’Reult lived in abject isolation from each other, kept apart by fear of the uncharted wilds and that unknown which lies in them. The people were strong, clever, and capable, but solitude and simplicity were their weakness. A day came when a great storm circled the island, and it was like nothing seen before. But, carried on each of the four winds, was a shining celestial being—one for each splintered tribe. The celestials each nurtured the people, and helped them to become something greater. iption here.
The South Wind came to elven tribes, and Deas taught them to craft many fine tools and with them, the finest arts.
The West Wind came to humans, and Siar taught them to cultivate seed in the ground, and to irrigate. Soon their fields spanned miles.
The East wind came to dwarves, and Searach taught them to forge their mountain homes into monuments of civilization, to carve legacies in stone.
The North wind missed its mark and so Tuath came to where there was strife. The land was unforgiving there and several tribes fought each other endlessly for the means to survive. Tuath gave them magic, and with it they overcame their harsh homeland, and, as an unforeseen addition, each other. Tuath was not displeased, however, and so he took the strong survivors under his arm, and they prevailed.
The celestials, in their long-lived wisdom, told their respective peoples to go forth, and unite with the other tribes, so that all of their gifts could be shared for the betterment of all. And so it was. Elven crafts lent to dwarven architecture, and dwarven stone stood tall and strong across Eileana’Reult. Caravans soon rolled en masse across the land, carrying food from human fields, and gold back. Mages from the north lent their trade wherever it could be bought, and the wilds soon bent to the people as the unknown began to dwindle, little at a time.
•800 YEARS PAST- The celestials arrive on the four winds.
•~800-650 YEARS PAST- The tribes advance under the guidance of the celestials.
•650 YEARS PAST- The treaty of Trìcait (involving tribes of the south, east, and west domains) and the founding of Beinnrìgh, the first co-habited settlement.
•600 YEARS PAST- The city and outlying villages have prospered and Beinnrìgh is now a thriving center of trade. The Consulate of Beinnrìgh is formed as a governing body.
The celestials departed one by one, as they saw that the goodness of their influence was expended, and that the people would flourish most if left on their own. The Aasimar, mortal descendants of the celestial beings, formed the first noble houses and prepared to lead in their absence. But Tuath chose to remain, for he enjoyed his god-like status and believed that his continued influence would make his following stronger than all others. He continued to sire heirs, and his many princes and princesses sought to go forth conquer all that they could for themselves.
For decades, the eastern, western, and southern Aasimar and their people struggled to contain the spread of the north. Over time, Tuath became unrecognizable from the celestial that he once was, and his bloodline corrupted with him. War was unavoidable, and when it came, it ravaged.
•~500 YEARS PAST- Deas, Siar, and Searach depart, leaving their Aasimar children behind to tend the society they’ve nurtured. Tuath stays behind.
•400 YEARS PAST- Many of Tuath’s heirs seek their own wealth of power, and create strife with the rest of Eileana’Reult.
•390 YEARS PAST- The Consulate of Beinnrìgh issues formal demands that all cults of Tuath keep clear of territories in their constituency.
•380 YEARS PAST- The Consulates demands are repeatedly ignored but the Consulate does not react consistently. A new Consul, Eolan Laide, initiates a duel with a Tiefling princess, Deidre à Tuath, in a display of non-tolerance as her brigade skirts the borders of a protected settlement. The duel ends in the graphic death of Deidre, sparking retaliation from cults of Tuath.
•375 YEARS PAST- Violence has escalated and there is a widespread, open-armed inquisition against Teifling kind and other affiliates of Tuath.
It might have ravaged longer, if not for dissent amongst Tuath’s ranks, and his heirs. An attack on Beinnrìgh went awry when Eallair à Tuath, leading several of his kin and a horde of mages and warriors, orchestrated an uprising against his father. Tuath fell to his son’s sword and the Tiefling war effort quickly fragmented and dissipated.
Eallair and his following made short work of the remaining princes and princesses of Tuath, and in exchange, the Consulate of Beinnrìgh mandated that remaining Tieflings would not be persecuted on behalf of their origins. As a byproduct of negotiations, the Consuls no longer inherit power, but are elected, and not required to be Aasimar. The following years were a time of reconstruction, and Beinnrìgh emerged a stronghold. Once primarily a center of trade, it is now a convergence of culture and craft, nourished by the city’s expanding intellectual interests. Though the Tieflings are not persecuted outright, a strong prejudice persists for decades.
•352 YEARS PAST- the Tiefling resistance breaks down from within. A son of Tuath turncoats and betrays his father during the sacking of Beinnrìgh. Tuath falls.
•350 YEARS PAST- the Dearg Treaty is ratified by the Consulate of Beinnrìgh, declaring that citizens under the arm of the Consulate are equally bound to, and moreover, protected by its laws, with no regard to race or origin. The Dearg Treaty additionally reforms the Consulate as an elected body, rather than a legacy of Aasimar heirs to the celestial founders.
•~300 YEARS PAST- the reconstruction of Beinnrìgh is considered to be complete.
Even of the longer lived races, there are few remaining who fought in the Tuathan war, and it is largely considered to be a thing of the past, especially so when a Tiefling mage is eventually elected Consul. Aasimar and Tieflings alike are becoming rarer by the passing year, and it is not unheard of for either to be born to a common family that had no knowledge of their celestial ancestry. Eileana’Reult may favor the natural grace of her celestial children, but it does not hesitate to embrace the commoner who sets himself apart. The wilds are still uncharted and the unknown still lies within.
Now joined with Eileana' Reult to form the Sovereign Isles of Light
- The nation of Ralkea is called "The Guiding Light of Civilization" escription here.
-“May the light of civilization guide us all to a brighter future.”
- Their culture centers on commerce and the furtherance of magical studies.
-There are three great cities of Ralkea: Koroco, Lamerin, and one in the north that has been lost to the wilds.
The foundation of Ralkea was a result of the War of the West, where four great families fought on behalf of their city-states over control of the great lighthouse at Koroco. The victory was secured on behalf of the Tael family by Martial Tyron, a militiaman who was able to unite the merchants of Ralkea into an impenetrable defense surrounding Lamerin.
In Lamerin, the early guild of mages forged a magical artifact: a jewel crown called the Emperor's Crucible. Upon donning the crown it either judges an Emperor worthy, or destroys them. Martial declined to claim the crown, insisting that the Emperor must be a common person from Ralkea: one of the merchants of the realm. Many tried to don the crown and were found wanting, and the people began to think it was a trap by the mages intended to destroy merchant families, until Linus Tael succeeded and became the first Emperor of Ralkea. The crown continued to choose an emperor from one of the prominent merchant families for generations, resulting in them being dubbed the Noble Merchant Families.
The Ralkean empire flourished under the rule of each successive emperor and became a haven for merchants, craftsmen, and seekers of knowledge from all over the world. The country enjoyed an era of peace lasting for over 500 years.
However, upon the death of the last emperor, the crown did not declare any members of the merchant families worthy. This led to a splitting of the power as the noble merchants raised armies in attempt to declare themselves emperor.
The country had been weakened by many years of continued war, and just as it seemed one of the families was becoming victorious a scourge of orcs flooded in from the north and tore through the ranks of the Ralkean armies. The orcs were eventually defeated, but the crown was lost during the war, leaving the people without a clear emperor.
None of the noble merchant families were left to claim the empire; what people remained were mostly simple farmers and craftsman, as well as the fractured remnants of the college of magic. Representatives from some of the more influential families of Ralkea came together to form a new government, but many still continue to search for the lost crown in an attempt to assert themselves as the emperor.