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 Greyhawk Info (for Saltmarsh)

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JulianAmici
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PostSubject: Greyhawk Info (for Saltmarsh)   Thu Sep 23, 2010 2:38 am

Races:

Humans
Six major races of humanity share the vast Flanaess with numerous nonhumans. Unmixed human races exist in several enclaves, but for the most part the Suel, Flan, Oeridians, and Baklunish have mixed to form a variety of blended types.
Race is given little importance by intelligent folk, particularly in the central lands, though some royal courts promote particular racial types. Each race appears to have developed ages ago in isolation from all others, with its own pantheon of deities, language, and culture. In practical matters of exploration, trade, adventure, and war, color and race have little meaning.

Baklunish
The Baklunish have skin of golden tones, and straight, fine-textured hair that is universally dark, ranging from dusky brown to bluish black. Their eyes are usually green or gray-green; hazel and gray eyes are rare. They tend to be long of limb and facial feature, with high cheekbones.
The Baklunish once held a great empire on the western side of the Crystalmists and Barrier Peaks. The Invoked Devastation ruined their empire, for which the Baklunish retaliated with the Rain of Colorless Fire, burning the Suel Imperium to ash. Most surviving Baklunish moved north or west, to the borders of the old empire and beyond. The inhabitants of Ekbir, Zeif, Ull, and the Tiger Nomads typify the straight Baklunish strain, while the Tusmites and the Paynims show mixed ancestry. The Wolf Nomads are often darker from intermarriage with the Rovers of the Barrens. The Ketites are the least typical Baklunish, having pale yellow, golden-brown, or tan complexions as a result of Suloise and Oeridian ancestry.
The Baklunish, unlike the Suloise, retained much of their culture after the fall of their empire. Honor, family, generosity, and piety are fundamental virtues. Use of their classical language, Ancient Baklunish, in religious observances, higher learning, and the fine arts has preserved their ancestral traditions. The Baklunish have many customs and taboos derived from their great knowledge of astrology, and their dependence on horses adds many beliefs and traditions regarding their honored steeds, particularly among the nomads. Singing and dancing arewidespread in their culture, and trade and exploration are major pursuits.
Settled Baklunish favor bright patterns and gaudy colors in clothes, typically with gowns and robes or else long coats with short breeches. Lower classes use the same colors with a long one-piece garment supplemented with other garb. Nomadic Baklunish prefer clothes with several pastel colors, enjoying fancy garments enhanced with puffs, slashes on sleeves to show contrasting colors underneath, and superfluous trim. When traveling or making war, the nomads instead wear rough items of leather, hide, or cloth, bearing shields or banners indicating clan allegiance. Many skilled wizards are Baklunish, including experts in elemental magic, divination, and summoning and binding spells (used on extraplanar beings). Cooperative spellcasting is practiced by many of the clergy, particularly among the desert mystics.

Flan
Pure Flan have bronze skin, varying from a light copper hue to a dark, deep brown. Flan eyes are usually dark brown, black, brown, or amber. Hair is wavy or curly and typically black or brown (or any shade between). The Flan have broad, strong faces and sturdy builds.
The Flan were the first known humans to live in eastern Oerik, and it is from them that the Flanaess gets its name. Although evidence exists that they once had settled nations, those vanished long ago. The Flan had been a nomadic people for many centuries when they were displaced by Suloise and Oeridian invaders. Large pockets of Flan live in what are now Geoff, Tenh, and the Barrens. The Tenha are pure Flan, and the coppery Rovers of the Barrens nearly so. The people of Geoff and Sterich also show strong Flan heritage, as do the Stoneholders, Palish, and certain Perrender clans.
The Flan have always been strongly tied to the natural world, as they were nomadic hunter-gatherers for so long. They see nature as an entity to be respected but not controlled, and this is reflected in their myths, legends, and culture. Many Flan believe the season of a child's birth affects later life, and certain customs and taboos must be observed annually.
Modern Flan still have a preference for the outdoors, and those who live in cities usually raise gardens and flower beds. A tree is planted at the door of a Flan home, and the health of that tree is believed related to the welfare of the family. Storytelling is a favorite pastime, and most families have ancient oral folklore and legends to pass on.
The ancient, nomadic Flan wore simple clothing of animal skins: belts, breechcloths, capes, robes, and footwear (boots and hard-soled slippers). Body painting and tattoos were common methods of personal decoration, and these traditions are still practiced by the Rovers of the Barrens (who prefer yellows and reds). Modern Flan tend to dress in what is currently fashionable, but they favor bright primary colors in solid arrangements.
Flan wizards normally work in harmony with nature, avoiding destructive magic. A few delve into the necromantic arts of the ancient Ur-Flan, but such practices are shunned by respectable folk. Many prefer protective and divinatory spells, a practice that stems from their traditional roles of guarding nomadic tribes and helping them survive. Flan clerics are often druids, who are more accepting of agriculture than they once were. Like the sun god, Pelor, many Flan deities have strong "natural" aspects.

Oeridians
Oeridian skin tones range from tan to olive; brown and auburn hair are common, though some individuals have hair as light as honey or as dark as coal. Likewise, eye coloration is highly variable; brown and gray are seen most often. Oeridians tend to have square or oval faces and strong jaw lines.
After inhabiting what is now Ull for generations, barbaric Oeridians were driven east by orcs and goblins employed as mercenaries by the Baklunish and Suel. The migrating Oeridians were able fighters and battled their way across the Flanaess, driving the Suel before them and allying with the Flan, elves, dwarves, and other peoples. Nearly pure Oeridians are seen in Perrenland, Furyondy, North Kingdom, Sunndi, and Onnwal.
The most powerful empire in the modern Flanaess was created by a conquering tribe of Oeridians, the Aerdi, who subjugated and assimilated all who opposed them. Ancient Oeridians were fierce warriors, yet they also were self-sacrificing and loyal. These traits are not as evident today, bur many Oeridians do remain temperamental and prone to violence. They have a preference for strict social order, usually fitting themselves at the top, and their military traditions are strong. Aggression is often channeled into political conflict and subterfuge. The Oeridian skill at warfare is unsurpassed, and many folk have a hard-learned respect for it. In peacetime, they are practical, hard working, and not inclined to intellectual pursuits.
Oeridian dress normally consists of a short tunic and close-fitting trousers with a cape or cloak, tailored for ease of movement. Aerdi and Nyrondal Oeridians favor plaids and checks, with ovals or diamonds in the south and west Colors and patterns once showed clan allegiance, but this practice is fading in favor of personal color preference.
Following their warlike tendencies, magic-using Oeridians focus on battle-oriented spells, as well as the enchantment of magic items useful in combat. Spellcasters have a hard-nosed, practical attitude, and they are generally hawkish and outgoing. Many strive to be leaders or masters. Magic is often used for pragmatic purposes, too, such as construction, irrigation, and iron-forging.

Olman
The Olman have skin of a rich red-brown or dark brown color. Their hair is always straight and black, and their eyes are dark, from medium brown to nearly black. Olman have high cheekbones and high-bridged noses, a trait less strong in those of common birth. Some nobles still flatten the foreheads of their young, for a high, sloping shape is considered beautiful.
The Olman originated on Hepmonaland, raising a number of city-states from the jungles of that land. Through centuries of warfare, they built an empire that spanned northern Hepmonaland and reached across the Densac Gulf to include the Amedio Jungle.
Internal strife and wars with another human race, the dark Touv, caused them to abandon their old cities. Many Olman migrated to the Amedio, where they maintained their civilization for several more centuries. Ultimately, these cities also fell to the curses of civil war and supernatural upheaval, until most Olman reverted to barbarism.
The Olman are now concentrated in the jungles of Hepmonaland, the Amedio, and their namesake Olman Isles. Many are enslaved in lands held by the Scarlet Brotherhood. Others have escaped to otherwise uncontrolled regions such as the western end of the Sea Princes' lands, which they now control and defend. What sort of culture the Olman originally had is obscured by their early adoption of the ways of alien gods. These beings made the primitive Olman their followers, encouraging them on the bloody path of ritual warfare and human sacrifice. The Olman Empire was a hybrid of monarchy and theocracy, with hereditary emperors and warlords ruling alongside clerics and astrologers. Modern Olman have a tribal culture, with a cleric or hereditary chief leading each tribe. Many still practice annual human sacrifice to the dimly remembered Sky Gods, while lesser ceremonies require simple bloodletting and the offering of animals and plants. Their warlike nature is persistent but unrefined, colored by their harsh jungle environment. They still practice ritualized warfare, often collecting heads or animating corpses, but they prefer to use stealthy raids and ambushes against their enemies.
While Olman clothing tends to be simple and monocolor, such as a split skirt, loincloth, or shawllike upper garment, they have fantastic methods of decoration, using beads, stones, feathers, bones, metal, and wood. These items decorate their clothes, weapons, and especially ceremonial items such as elaborate headdresses.
The Olman favor magic that damages many opponents in visibly graphic ways. They also choose divination spells that allow them to understand the world around them and perhaps comprehend the omens of their distant gods. Magic that protects or heals others is very rare.
4E Note: Olman prefer the primal power source, and the divine power source.

Rhennee
The complexion of Rhenn-folk ranges from olive to tan; their hair is usually curly and tends to be black or dark brown. Most have eyes of gray, blue, or hazel, but green is known in some families. The Rhennee are generally short but strong and wiry, with men averaging 5 ft. 6 in. and women less.
The Rhennee are not native to Oerth; rather, they are accidental travelers from another plane or world, citizens of a lost homeland they call Rhop. Their legends say that they appeared first in the Great Kingdom, in or near the Adri Forest. Pursued by monsters and hostile Aerdi, they fled west to the shores of the Lake of Unknown Depths, where they took to life on the water. They now expertly ply the great rivers that cross the Flanaess and migrate between the three great lakes (though Whyestil Lake is lately unsafe for travel). Rhennee are fairly common on the waterways of the central Flanaess and near inland shores and banks. A few secret, inland encampments are said to exist, and here may also be encountered their rare, land-dwelling cousins, whom they derogacively refer to as the Attloi. The mutual distrust and antagonism between the Rhenn-folk and other peoples of the Flanaess have kept the Rhennee relatively unmixed with other races, though the Rhennee do bring children of other human races into their families.
Little is known of the original culture of the Rhennee, as they were absent from the Flanaess before 450 years ago and entered their current lifestyle to escape persecution. The Rhenn-folk are masters of inland sailing and navigation, and they love their nomadic and adventurous life. Music and gambling are beloved amusements. Certain Rhennee say they are nobles and have great authority among their kind.
Men nearly always become warriors; some women become sorcerers, "wise women" whose skills and knowledge make them the subtle masters of Rhennee society. Rhennee men can be quite chauvinistic, and their women manipulative.
Rhennee have a wide reputation as thieves, and most do learn roguish skills as children, practicing them primarily upon outsiders. Their secrecy and bad reputation cause most people to dislike the Rhennee, and the feeling is mutual. They survive by ferrying goods and passengers, fishing, hunting, selling their crafts, and illegal means (theft and smuggling), although they put forth the least amount of work needed to accomplish their goals. They follow a code of conduct that has different restrictions for dealing with others of their kind versus non-Rhennee outsiders, who may be lied to and cheated. These people dress in muted colors, and each adult male has a set of homemade leather armor of good quality. The cut and style of their clothing is simple and functional, eschewing the fashion-minded concerns of other races. Their leatherwork is exceptional.
Of the Rhennee, only the female students of "wise women" become spellcasters. (Clerics are unknown among them.) Wise women prefer charms and illusions, practicing divination as well. They like spells that deceive or confuse people, especially enchantments like love potions or (very) minor protective
charms that can be sold to the foolish, unwary, or greedy.
4E Note: The Rhennee love the use of the arcane and psionic power sources, as well as good old fashioned martial trickery.

Suloise
The Suel have the lightest coloration of any known human race of the Flanaess. Their skin is fair, with an atypical proportion of albinos. Eye color is pale blue or violet, sometimes deep blue or gray. Suel hair is wiry, often curly or kinky, with fair colors such as yellow, light red, blond, and platinum blond. The Suel tend to be lean, with narrow facial features. The Suel Imperium was located in what is now the Sea of Dust. Wicked and decadent, this empire was destroyed during a war with the Baklunish when the latter brought down the Rain of Colorless Fire, Suloise survivors fled in all directions, many crossing the Hellfurnaces into the Flanaess, where they met other Suel who had fled the long war much earlier. Some evil Suel were forced into the extreme corners of the Flanaess by invading Oeridians. The barbarians of the Thillonrian peninsula are pure Suel, as are the elite of the Scarlet Brotherhood. The people of the Duchy of Urnst and places in the Lordship of the Isles are nearly so.
The Suel Imperium was governed by contesting noble houses, and the fleeing bands that entered the Flanaess were often led by nobles with their families and many retainers. The modern Suel retain this affinity for family, although they often use a very narrow definition of the word to include only siblings, parents, and children. A few Suel can trace their lineage all the way back to the days of their empire.
The ancient Suel Imperium was exceedingly cruel, This trait surfaces in the modern day, for more than one Suel organization openly plots against other people of the Flanaess. Fortunately, most Suel have avoided this dark legacy, having inherited the relatively minor flaws of being opinionated, selfish, and blunt. Many also tend to be prideful and unwilling to admit flaws or personal hardships. They have a passion for study, especially in regard to magic, and many Suel wizards become incredibly powerful. Traditional Suel dress includes wide-legged pantaloons and loose blouses (vests in the south), both in solid colors. Most individuals use one color only, with nobles using two or more as appropriate to their House. The style of clothing is adapted to the climate; Suel in the far north wear furs or thick wool, with capes, mittens, and furred boots. The Suel like large pins, brooches, emblems, and other adornments, a few of which are ancient heirlooms.
Heirs of a highly magical society, the Suel still have an aptitude for most types of spellcasting. Suel wizards often become masters of spells that involve transmutation. They also perfected a number of binding spells and created many items used for controlling and dominating other beings. For instance, it is thought that a long-dead Suel emperor made the ancient and terrible orbs of dragonkind.

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Elves
The elves (olve in Flan) are slight of stature (averaging 5 feet) and fair of complexion. Hair and eye coloration vary by kindred. High elves are usually darkhaired and green-eyed. The noble gray elves (eladrin) have either silvery hair and amber eyes, or pale golden hair and violet eyes (the second type commonly called faerie or fey elves), The hair color of wood elves ranges from yellow to coppery red, and eye color is a shade of hazel or green. Wild elves are the smallest of the elven folk, but otherwise resemble the wood elves. Finally, the valley elves appear to be taller versions (of nearly human height) of the gray elves.
Elves were present in the lands east of the Crystalmist Mountains for uncounted centuries prior to the rise of the first human kingdoms there. Slowly driven from open country to more secluded and better defended strongholds by the growing strength of both human and nonhuman folk, elves still held a number of forest and upland realms at the time of the Twin Cataclysms. The invading humans, orcs, and others pressed them further, until some prominent elven realms made military and political alliances with dwarves, gnomes, and halflings, and even with certain major human tribes (usually Oeridian). Today, elves are dominant in Celene, Sunndi, Highfolk, the Vesve Forest, and the Lendore Isles.
Elves are concerned with life itself and spend long periods contemplating natural beauty. Long-lived and curious, they enjoy exploration and remember much. Their frolics are usually joyous events, though some gatherings have a melancholy tone. The fine arts are much appreciated. Elves measure kinship in terms of broad, ethnic divisions, though family bloodlines, particularly among the nobles, often cross these ethnic boundaries. Valley elves are unique in that they have no social relationship with other elves in the Flanaess, being hated by them for unknown reasons.
Elves normally attire themselves in pale forest hues, though they favor more intense colors in urban settings. Generally, males wear a blouselike shirt over close-fitting hose and soft boots or shoes, while females favor a frock with sash, or a blouse with an anklelength skirt. Hunting garments are typically in neutral colors like shades of brown, tailored for silent and easy movement. Gray elves wear complex gowns and flowing robes of pure white, sun yellow, and silver and gold set off by polished leather of contrasting colors, accented by jewels. Wild elves usually wear kilts, boots, and rough shirts. All elves favor cloaks, especially when traveling, typically gray or gray-green.
Elves are fascinated by all types of magic, especially illusions and charms. They also produce superior and elegant magic garments, weapons, and armor. Half-elves are the offspring of humans and elves. They are highly versatile but not always welcome in elven or human society. They are disproportionately represented among adventurers as a result.

Dwarves
The dwarves, called the dwur by the Flan, have two main subdivisions. The more common hill dwarves have complexions of deep tan to light brown, with hair of brown, black or gray. Eyes are of any color save blue. They are solidly built, though seldom exceed 4 feet in height. Mountain dwarves are somewhat taller, with lighter coloration. All dwarves are bearded. The dwarves do not speak of their origins to outsiders, so little of their ancient history is known.
However, it is understood that they once had great underground halls in the northern Crystalmists that were destroyed by the Invoked Devastation. Their last High King perished in the aftermath, and the clans have ever since been sundered. Led by lords and princes of differing noble houses, the dwarf clans allied with elves and gnomes during the Suel and Oeridian migrations, and even joined humans of reliable disposition to defend their territories. In the present day, dwarves are found in rugged mountains and hills, particularly in the Lortmils, Glorioles, Crystalmists, Iron Hills, Principality of Ulek, and Ratik.
The dwur are perceived as materialistic, hard working, and humorless. They tend to be dour and taciturn, keeping themselves separate from other folk, but they are also strong and brave. In wartime they are united and willing to see victory at any cost, but prone to avenge old slights and reject mercy. They jealously defend the honor of their clans and families, and greatly revere their ancestors, building elaborate monuments to them. Yet, their chief love is precious metal, particularly gold, which they work with great mastery. Some dwarves suffer from an affliction called gold-fever, when their desire for the substance becomes so overwhelming that it consumes their souls. The tradition of dwarven honor demands that leaders dispense treasure to their loyal followers, and the inability to do this is a sure sign of gold-fever. Dwarves also place great value on their long beards, often braiding them and twining them with jewels and gold wire. It is a terrible dishonor to be shorn.
The traditional garb of dwarves is woolen trousers and a belted linen tunic, with a hooded cloak or cape worn over all. Their boots are of heavy leather, with or without buckles. Colors are a mixture of earth tones and loud, check-patterned hues. They also favor leather accoutrements, fitted with as many jewels and precious metals as they can hold. Females and males usually dress identically, except on certain ceremonial occasions when females wear a tabardlike overgarment, while males don their best embroidered work aprons.
Dwarven elders hold the secrets of their race's magic, best exemplified by their magnificent armor, weapons and tools. They also oversee the construction of monuments and tombs, many of which have magical traps and curses of great cunning.

Gnomes
Gnomes (noniz in Flan) are solidly built and muscular despite their height. (Most gnomes stand just over 3 feet tall.) Two major groups of them exist: rock gnomes (the most commonly seen) and deep gnomes (who live far underground). Rock gnomes are brownskinned and blue-eyed, and almost all adults have light hair with a tendency toward male baldness.
Males are most often bearded, though not so much as their dwarven cousins. Their facial features are a bit exaggerated compared to human norms, with prominent noses and eyebrows and leathery skin. Deep gnomes are hairless and wiry in physique, with gray or gray-brown skin.
Rock gnomes of the Flanaess have their origins as trappers and herders in the remote wooded highlands of the north. Their southward expansion began only a few centuries before the Invoked Devastation, bringing them into lands populated by other races. Their lairds and chieftains recognized the authority of elven or dwarven sovereigns, but discouraged any mingling of peoples until the Suel and Oeridian migrations encouraged cooperation between races. Most gnomes inhabit great burrow communities in the Lortmils and Kron Hills, and east in the Flinty Hills.
The history of the deep gnomes is unknown to others, as they are so isolated and little seen. Their homeland is said to be a vast kingdom within a milesdeep cavern, where they are ruled by a wise and brooding monarch.
Gnomes are possessed of sly humor and earthy wisdom. Measuring the practical value of things as seen by the gnomes against the pretensions of other cultures, their wit is often revealed in inventive and embarrassing ways. Their creativity is not limited to practical jokes. They are fine craftsmen who appreciate precious stones and make beautiful jewelry, along with woodwork, stonework, and leatherwork of excellent quality; they invent and experiment often. Seldom avaricious, gnomes take equal pleasure in music and story, food and drink, nature and handmade things. Most gnomes are not prone to cruelty, though their lively jokes may sometimes make things appear otherwise.
Rock gnomes in the Flanaess tend to dress in dark colors, favoring earth tones but enjoying stripes and brightly dyed hats, belts, and boots. Males usually wear high-collared shirts or blouses with trousers and boots, and a double-breasted coat worn over all. Females wear high-necked blouses with aprons or ruffled skirts, often with a matching jacket. Their hunting garments are colored with mottled greens and browns intermixed. Deep gnomes are almost never seen unarmored, but are known to wear simple, dark tunics and aprons in their dwellings.
Famed primarily for their use of illusions, some gnome magicians are also master toymakers and artificers. Others are superb weavers, dyers, or tailors, who can create clothing that will improve the appearance of the wearer or even alter it completely.

Goliaths
Goliaths (Goluz in Flan) are massive creatures unafraid of throwing their weight around in a fight. Highly competitive, these strong nomads can prove to be powerful allies and welcome additions to any adventuring party.
Goliaths are known for their almost foolhardy daring. In their mountain homes, they leap from precipice to precipice, heedless of the fatal consequences of a misstep. They place great stock in clan and family; life in the mountains teaches even the youngest goliath to rely completely on his fellows for a hand across a crevasse. Because most goliaths are hunter-gatherers, they tend to be inquisitive, always curious about whether better hunting lies over the next ridge or a good water source can be found in the next canyon.
Goliaths are completely unsympathetic toward tribe members who can’t contribute to the well-being of the tribe anymore—an attitude reinforced by social structures. Old, sick, and otherwise infirm goliaths are exiled from their clans, never to return.
A typical goliath is larger than the largest half-orc. Most stand between 7 and 8 feet tall and weigh between 280 and 340 pounds. Unlike with most other races, there is no appreciable difference in height or weight between male and female goliaths. Goliaths have gray skin, mottled with dark and light patches that goliath shamans say hint at a particular goliath’s fate. Lithoderms—coin-sized bone-and-skin growths as hard as pebbles—speckle their arms, shoulders, and torso. Their skulls have a jutting eyebrow ridge, wide jaw, and occasional lithoderms as well. Female goliaths have dark hair on their heads, grown to great length and always kept braided. Male goliaths generally have hair only on their limbs. Goliaths’ eyes are a brilliant blue or green, and they often seem to glow a little from underneath their furrowed brows.
Because their skin mottling has cultural significance, goliaths generally dress as lightly as possible, displaying their skin patterns for all to see. For the same reason, few goliaths would willingly get a tattoo—to draw on one’s skin is tantamount to trying to rewrite one’s fate. Goliaths instead decorate themselves with jewelry, often sporting ear, nose, or brow rings. A goliath’s lithoderms are also common places to embed a gem or two, since they have few nerve endings and stand out on the goliath’s body already.
When encountered in the mountains, goliaths are outwardly friendly to anyone who doesn’t threaten the tribe and can keep up with them as they climb from peak to peak. Humans who brave the mountains—rangers and druids, most often—can often earn a tasty meal by helping a team of goliath hunters. The Flan were once considered friends, but the predations of the Ur-Flan dashed all hopes of blanket acceptance. Still, if they learn to respect anyone, it is usually Flan tribes and rough and tumble wilderness types. Goliaths hold dwarves in particularly high regard, wishing their tribes had the dwarven aptitude for weapon crafting. Some of the bravest goliaths climb down into the tunnels and natural caverns under a mountain, seeking a dwarf community to trade with.
The smaller-than-human races are regarded as curiosities, but many a nimble-climbing gnome or halfling has earned respect by beating a goliath in a race up a cliff. Goliaths view the extended life span of an elf as vaguely frightening, finding it hard to imagine a person who could have known one’s
great-great grandfather. A goliath tribe’s attitude toward any nearby giants varies widely. Some tribes eagerly trade with giants; the giants’ weapons aren’t up to dwarven standards, but they are made in larger sizes (which goliaths greatly prefer). However, giants have a bad habit of trying to turn goliaths into their slaves, using them for menial tasks they’re too big or too lazy to do themselves. Conflict inevitably ensues, and soon either the giants are dead, the goliaths have fled, or the goliaths are chained up as slaves to a giant-lord.
Goliaths tend to hold goblinoids and orcs (including halforcs) at arm’s length, noting that the “downlanders” they trade with regard such races as troublemakers. But because goblinoids rarely stray into the high mountains, they are usually someone else’s trouble, so goliaths don’t bear them any actual malice.
Goliaths are common in the extreme highlands of the Crystalmyst mountains, as well as isolated communities in the Lortmils and other mountain ranges across the Flanaess. Because they don’t support large-scale agriculture or extensive settlements, the mountain ranges where goliaths live are home to few other intelligent races. Most tribes of goliaths wander from peak to peak, tending their goat flocks and foraging for alpine roots and tubers.
Typically, a tribe sets up a temporary village in an alpine meadow and remains there for a month or two, then moves on when the season changes or better hunting can be found elsewhere. Larger tribes tend to follow a similar trail from year to year, retreating to lower elevations in midwinter and when they need to trade, then ascending to the highest peaks once the snow melts.
Some goliaths live at lower altitudes among humans or other races, most often because their tribe exiled them after a crime, dispute, or injury. Many a folk tale features a forlorn goliath working as a farmhand after a failed courtship in the mountains.

Halflings
Halflings, called hobniz by the Flan, have three distinct types. The primary group is the lightfoot, the typical halfling found in the Flanaess. Lightfoots average just over 3 feet tall and are ruddy faced, with hair and eyes in various shades of brown. The next most common sort are the stouts, somewhat shorter than lightfoots and having broad features and coarse hair. Last are the tallfellows, who are taller, slimmer, and have fairer complexions than lightfoots. Most halflings have wavy or curly hair. Some, particularly stouts, also grow hair on their cheeks.
Halflings originally occupied small settlements in the river valleys of the west-central Flanaess. They spread slowly into other territories, so that by the time of the Suel and Oeridian migrations, few were north of the Gamboge Forest or east of the Harp River. They are common in much of the Sheldomar Valley, interacting freely with humans, dwarves, elves and gnomes. Historically, they prefer to dwell in stable nations ruled by stronger folk. Today, halflings are found in much of the Flanaess, but they still favor the central and western regions from the Urnst states to the three Uleks.
Halflings are clever and capable, whether they are hard-working farmers or tricky rogues. Most halflings are curious and daring, getting themselves into trouble as often as they get themselves out of it. They have great appetites for food, drink, and collecting things. They love fun, get along well with almost anyone who will at least tolerate them, and enjoy travel and opportunities for excitement.
Halflings prefer to wear knee-britches and tunics or shirts, often with vests. Males wear coats and high collared shirts on formal occasions, while females dress in a bodice-covered shift and long skirts. Shirts and britches are often striped in alternating bright and dark colors. They dress themselves in gnome style when hunting or at war, wearing clothing of mottled greens and browns.
The best-known halfling magic is culinary. Many halfling foods are made to retain their freshness for lengthy periods, and they use herbs with healing and other medicinal properties. However, most halfling spells are defensive and protective in nature.

Gnolls
Gnolls, which the Flan call kell, are big, nocturnal, hyena-headed scavengers who band together very loosely. Their packs are riddled with infighting and treachery. Filthy and vile, gnolls are also strong and roam widely through every clime, threatening outlying areas. They take slaves but always look for more, as gnolls tend to eat them. Some of their largest and most feared warbands include the Scarsavage, Gashclaw, Lowgorge, Foulpelt, Retchtongue, and Battlehowl. Many gnolls dwell in the Pomarj and in Bone March.

Hobgoblins
Hobgoblins, also called hoch jebline ("high goblins"), are larger and more disciplined than orcs. Their tribes always fight to determine dominance, but once this order has been established the tribes frequently work together. Some of the most successful tribes are the Rippers, the Leg Breakers, the Skull Smashers, the Flesh Renders, the Marrow Suckers, the Flayers, and the Slow Killers. A great many hobgoblins live in the western part of the Empire of Iuz, and some in Bone March.

Orcs
Evil orcs, or euroz, are all too common across the Flanaess. Undisciplined, bestial, and savage, orcs have severe tribal rivalries and do not cooperate unless controlled by a very strong leader. Major tribes include the Vile Rune, the Bloody Head, the Death Moon, the Broken Bone, the Evil Eye, the Leprous Hand, the Rotting Eye, and the Dripping Blade.
Orcs are frequently encountered as mercenaries in the Empire of Iuz, Pomarj, Bone March, and across North Kingdom. Orc-ogre crossbreeds are particularly dangerous and are known in several areas. Half-orcs (the children of orcs and humans) are usually born under unhappy circumstances in border areas between orc and human cultures. Dark of mood and nature, many half-orcs achieve renown despite their rejection by their parents' folk and many others. In this regard, they are similar to the much rarer half-ogres.

Goblins
Goblins, or jebli, are insidious nighttime raiders averaging 4 feet in height. More powerful creatures usually dominate them, though all goblins swear fealty to the name of the local goblin king. The names of their best-known tribes include Night Terror, Death Feast, Black Agony, Poison Wound, Bitter Ruin, and Dire Oath. Goblins are scattered across the Flanaess in hundreds of places.

Kobolds
The kobolds, also named celbit, are small, vicious, reptilian scavengers, picked on by every larger race. Their most numerous tribes include the Torturers, the Impalers, the Gougers, the Cripplers, and the Mutilators. Like goblins, they are found in many places.

Other Folk
Certain huge, wicked races gather only in loose bands that are highly unstable, though often large in size. Members of these races are strong and fierce, and some prefer to ally with or dominate other wicked folk rather than associate with their own savage kindred.
The most vicious of these beings are the trolls, called truknt. Trolls are without fear and often band together with the eiger, as ogres are known; trolls can also be found as guardians in gnoll dens. Stupid, huge, murderous ogres readily join orcs or gnolls to raid and plunder. Buchveer, the hairy goblinoid bugbears, assume mastery of smaller goblin communities whenever it suits them.
Beyond these groups are centaurs, sprites, giants, dragons, lizardfolk, bullywugs, and uncounted other nonhumans on the fringes of civilization. Most do humanity no good, though some ignore the civilized world in the main and a few, such as centaurs, are sometimes allies.

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Languages
Five primary languages are spoken across the Flanaess, with Common the most prevalent. Most folk are multilingual, though barbarians and the uneducated often speak but one tongue. Adventurers always know Common and learn additional languages in the usual manner.
Baklunish, Ancient: An ancestor of Common, Baklunish bears its offspring little resemblance. Many colloquial Baklunish dialects (some used by the Paynims) are based upon the classical language and collectively called Low Baklunish. Ancient Baklunish, however, is the standard literary form of the language and is used in religion, mythology, and poetry. It is also the language of all official documents and courtly proceedings west of the Yatils. Despite this, Common is widely known and used in the west, especially by traders and the educated.
Common: A combination of Ancient Baklunish and the dialect of Old Oeridian spoken in the Great Kingdom was the basis of this traders' tongue. Beginning centuries ago as Middle-Common, the language contained many obviously Oeridian elements, and the contributions of Baklunish grammatical structure and vocabulary are clearly identifiable. Regional variations were also pronounced, but all these elements became blended and standardized during the years of Aerdi dominance, resulting in the birth of the Overking's Common Tongue, later simply called Common. Any traveler must learn Common or be greatly handicapped. Very often, a language must be translated into Common before it can be translated into another language.
Flan: Doubtless the oldest language still spoken to any considerable extent, Flan is used by the Tenha in a corrupt form, and Rovers of the Barrens have a strange version of it. A stagnant language, it is hard to translate modern concepts (such as magic terms) into Flan.
Oeridian, Old: A young language, Oeridian took in few outside influences until a few centuries ago. As a result, translation into any language except Common is difficult at best. Many books and documents of the Great Kingdom were written in Old Oeridian, and in the far east the language is still widely known and used in speech and writing.
Suloise, Ancient: This ancient and widespread language became all but extinct after the Rain of Colorless Fire destroyed the Suel Imperium. Today it is rarely spoken, even by the few scholars who know the tongue. The infamous Scarlet Brotherhood are one of few that continue its use. It exists in its written state for those who would delve into the surviving arcane tomes of the Suel people. Transliteration into modern tongues or alphabets is difficult, and dangerous when used in spellcasting, for the significance of certain inflections has been lost over the centuries. Dialects and sublanguages worthy of note follow. Those who speak related languages have some chance to understand dialects, but little chance to comprehend distorted, mixed tongues.
Amedi: Only Suel natives of the Amedio Jungle speak this corrupt form of Ancient Suloise. Its few written symbols are Suloise alphabet characters.
Cold Tongue: This dialect, also known as Fruz, is Ancient Suloise with Flan admixture, spoken by Ice, Snow and Frost Barbarians. It has no relation to Common, and even speakers of Suloise find it difficult to understand.
Druidic: The druids' tongue of the Flanaess shares roots with Flan, but it is specialized and static, focusing only on the natural world and agriculture.
Ferral: Ferral is an old Oeridian tribal language spoken only by officials of the Iron League. Ferral is used for military command and identification purposes and is not a living language. Many fear that infiltration by agents of the Scarlet Brotherhood has compromised this code-tongue, but a magic-laced version is being developed in Irongate.
Keolandish: This widespread dialect of Old High Oeridian has local admixtures. It is spoken in and around Keoland.
Lendorian: This obscure dialect of Suloise (influenced by Common and full of nautical terms) was spoken in the Lendore Isles by humans before they were deported by elves in 583 CY. Only human refugees know it now. It has no relation to the Cold Tongue and is not written.
Lendorian Elven: A peculiar new tongue that only high and aquatic elves of the Lendore Isles know, this might be a divinely inspired language. It is thick with religious and philosophical terms, and it cannot be learned in the normal manner. It seems to appear in the minds of elves who go to the Lendore Isles.
Nyrondese: This High Oeridian dialect of Common is spoken in rural areas of Nyrond. It is the primary language of peasants, shopkeepers, and other common folk who distrust outsiders. Learned folk speak Common as well.
Olman: Olman slaves taken by the Sea Princes or Scarlet Brotherhood speak this strange tongue, as their masters hated it. Its huge, complex "alphabet" is really a vast set of pictographs. It is heard most often in the western Sea Princes' lands and in the Amedio Jungle.
Ordai: This dialect shared by the Wolf and Tiger Nomads bears some resemblance to Ancient Baklunish, but it is most similar to dialects spoken among the distant Paynims. Its written form is based on Baklunish script.
Rhopan: The language of the Rhennee, Rhopan is also called "Rhennee cant" because it borrows many terms from other languages, including the argot of several thieves' organizations. It is not related to any Oerthly tongue.
Ulagha: The language of the Uli is a debased form of colloquial Baklunish.
Velondi: This Old Oeridian tribal tongue is known to rural folk near the Furyondy-Veluna border. Those who speak only Common cannot understand it. It has no written form.

Other Languages of note:
Abyssal: Language of the Demons of the Abyss
Aquan: Elemental Language of Water
Auran: Elemental Language of Air
Celestial: Language of the Good outsiders
Draconic: Language of the dragons and the reptilian races
Dwarven: Language of the Dwarves
Elven: Common Language of all of the Elves
Giant: Language of Giants, orcs, and ogres, among others
Gnome: the gnomish language
Goblin: The common language of all goblinoids
Gnoll: The language of the hyenna like gnolls.
Ignan: Elemental Language of Fire
Infernal: Language of the Devils of the nine hells
Sylvan: The ancient elven tounge adopted by all creatures of the fey early on.
Terran: Elemental Language of Earth
Undercommon: The trade language of the Drow and Dwarves.

_________________
"Be strong and do as you will. The swords of others will set you your limits." (Marauders of Gor, p.10)

After the lights go out on you/After your worthless life is through/I will remember how you scream
I can't afford to care/I can't afford to care ("Lights Out" Breaking Benjamin)
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PostSubject: History Lesson   Thu Sep 23, 2010 2:50 am

History of Greyhawk

Disaster and Migration
The root cause of the animosity between the Suel Imperium and the Baklunish Empire is lost in time, but the end result of their final war haunts even the modern day. After decades of conflict, the Suloise Mages of Power called down the Invoked Devastation upon the Baklunish, resulting in an apocalypse so complete that its true form remains unknown. Entire cities and countless people were purged from Oerth, leaving few signs of the great civilization that thrived from the Sulhaut Mountains to the Dramidj Ocean. In retaliation, a cadre of Baklunish wizard-clerics, gathered in the great protective stone circles known as Tovag Baragu, brought the Rain of Colorless Fire upon their hated enemies. The skies above the Suel Imperium opened, and all beings and things beneath this shining rift in the heavens were burned into ash.
So terribly did these attacks plague the world that they have come to be called the Twin Cataclysms, a term understood by nearly every resident of the Flanaess. The Dry Steppes and Sea of Dust are geographical reminders of this unbridled magical power, now lost to all people—perhaps for the better. Thousands survived the early years of the Suel-Baklunish conflict by fleeing east over the Crystalmists.
The Oeridians, a confederation of barbaric tribes in close proximity to the warring empires, took the wars (and attendant raids from orc and goblin mercenaries in the employ of both sides) as a sign to migrate eastward in search of their ultimate destiny. They were the first large group to enter the lands of the Flan, which they termed the Flanaess. Suloise refugees soon followed, sometimes working with the Oeridians to pacify the land, but more often warring with them over which race would dominate it. For over two centuries, Suel and Oeridian fought for control of the region from the Crystalmists to the Solnor Coast. Many Suloise were debased and wicked, and they lost most of these battles and were pushed to the periphery of the Flanaess.
Though some Baklunish folk migrated eastward, many more fled north toward the Yatil Mountains, or to the shores of the Dramidj Ocean, where their ancient cultures flourish to this day. The very nonhuman mercenaries the Oeridians had sought to avoid found themselves swept up by these migrations. Many of the foul creatures that now plague the Flanaess arrived following the Oeridians and Suel. These renegade mercenaries trailed after human migrants in search of plunder, food, and slaves.

Keoland and Aerdy
The most successful union of Suel and Oeridian came in the Sheldomar Valley, where Keoland was founded eighty years after the Twin Cataclysms. The Suel Houses of Rhola and Neheli joined with Oeridian tribes on the banks of the Sheldomar and pledged themselves to mutual protection and dominion of the western Flanaess, an agreement that set the course of history for the region for the next nine centuries. Of all the new realms formed during those tumultuous days, only Keoland remains.
Farther east, the most powerful of all Oeridian tribes, the Aerdi, reached the Flanmi River. From there they spread outward again, conquering indigenous peoples and fellow migrants alike. In time, the kingdom of Aerdy ruled the whole of the eastern Flanaess and moved its borders westward. One hundred and ten years after the defeat of the last meaningful threat to Aerdi sovereignty, at the Battle of a Fortnight's Length, the leader of Aerdy was crowned as overking of the Great Kingdom. Overking Nasran also marked the birth of a new calendar, and with the Declaration of Universal Peace, the sun arose in the east on the first day of the first Common Year. The writ of imperial Aerdy eventually encompassed holdings as far west as the Yatils, controlling the southern Nyr Dyv with a small garrison at an insignificant trading post known as Greyhawk. From 213 CY on, the Aerdi overkings grew lax, caring more for local prestige and wealth than for the affairs of their vassals in distant lands. This period was called the Age of Great Sorrow. As each sovereign passed, he was replaced with a more dimwitted and less competent successor, until the outer dependencies of Aerdy declared their independence.
The viceroyalty of Ferrond led the way, becoming the kingdom of Furyondy. Other regions also broke away from the ineffectual government of the overking over time, creating their own governments after achieving success in their wars of rebellion.
By 356 CY, the ruling dynasty of Aerdy, the Celestial House of Rax, had grown especially decadent. In response, the western province of Nyrond declared itself free of the Great Kingdom and elected one of its nobles as king of an independent domain. Armies gathered from all loyal provinces of Aerdy to suppress this brazen act. At this time, however, barbarians from the Thillonrian Peninsula raided the Great Kingdom's North Province, forcing the overking to divert troops from the western front. Nyrond easily survived and thrived. The Kingdom of Keoland awoke from a long slumber in the third century, expanding to dominate its neighbors. This short-lived Keoish empire lasted almost two centuries before far-flung wars and internal strife laid it low. The outer dependencies declared their autonomy, and Keoland resumed its peaceful isolation.

The Ivids and Iuz
The darkest chapter in the history of Aerdy began in 437 CY. In this year, the upstart House Naelax murdered the Rax overking, inaugurating a series of gruesome civil wars called the Turmoil Between Crowns. Within a decade, Ivid I of Naelax was recognized as the undisputed overking of all Aerdy. As Ivid was rumored to be in league with powerful evil Outsiders, the Malachite Throne of the Great Kingdom became known as the Fiend-Seeing Throne, and the once mighty and upright empire became a bastion of evil and cruelty.
The lands of the Flanaess soon became acquainted with an altogether less subtle form of evil with the rise of Iuz, in the Northern Reaches loosely aligned with Furyondy. In 479 CY, a minor despot in the Howling Hills left his domain to his "son," a being known as Iuz. Within a handful of years, Iuz had conquered his neighbors, setting up a small realm for himself. Tales told by refugees entering Furyondy spoke of unmitigated evil: Iuz was building a road of human skulls from the Howling Hills to his capital, Dorakaa. Worse, divinations and rumors marked Iuz as the offspring of an unholy union between necromancer and demon; he was seen to be a half-fiend towering 7 feet in height, driven by a thirst for blood, destruction, and conquest. Political struggles within Furyondy prevented the king from acting decisively in this period, when the evil of Iuz might have been permanently checked. Instead, the cambion lord flourished until 505 CY, when he appeared to vanish from Oerth. In truth,
Iuz was imprisoned beneath Castle Greyhawk by the Mad Archmage Zagig Yragerne, former lord mayor of Greyhawk. In Iuz's absence, orc tribes and disloyal former subjects squabbled for control of his lands, allowing the forces of weal to rest for a time.
Three developments kept Furyondy and its allies from complacency. First, part of Iuz's leaderless realm soon broke away to be ruled by a nearly equal evil, the Horned Society. Second, the notorious Horde of Elemental Evil arose, a collection of cultists and villains headquartered at a temple south of the town of Verbobonc. The Horde was the puppet of Zuggtmoy, Iuz's abyssal consort, who instructed it in bizarre teachings at the behest of her absent lover. The Horde's banditry was finally vanquished in 569 CY at the Battle of Emridy Meadows, where Prince Thrommel of Furyondy led forces from Furyondy, Veluna, Verbobonc, and other realms in victory and the destruction of the temple.
Adventurers put down an attempted resurgence of the Temple of Elemental Evil in 579 CY.
Third, faithful orc and human servants of Iuz became zealots dedicated to their absent lord. In time, the leaders of these cults devoted to Iuz displayed magical power, igniting Furyondy's worst fears. In 570 CY, a meddlesome warrior-adventurer named Lord Robilar freed Iuz from his imprisonment. Iuz returned to his lands more powerful and wicked than ever before, with an unholy priesthood leading his forces in his unholy name.
The years from Iuz's return to the Greyhawk Wars (570-581) are often seen in retrospect to be the prelude to later conflict. Several destabilizing forces came into play, upsetting the old balance of power in the Flanaess. The most insidious of these powers was the Scarlet Brotherhood, a secretive monastic order first reported in 573 CY, the same year in which Prince Thrommel of Furyondy, hero of Emridy Meadows, vanished from the world. Semiregular skirmishes between Aerdy's South Province and Nyrond continually threaten to erupt into open hostilities.

The Current year is 576 CY.

_________________
"Be strong and do as you will. The swords of others will set you your limits." (Marauders of Gor, p.10)

After the lights go out on you/After your worthless life is through/I will remember how you scream
I can't afford to care/I can't afford to care ("Lights Out" Breaking Benjamin)


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PostSubject: Keoland and its History   Thu Sep 23, 2010 2:51 am

Keoland
Proper Name: Kingdom of Keoland
Ruler: His Peerless Majesty, the King of Keoland, Kimbertos Skotti (LG male human)
Government: Feudal monarchy with rulership that passes between two or more royal houses that are primarily descended from ancient Suel nobility with many Oeridians and some elves, gnomes, or halflings in Council
Capital: Niole Dra
Major Towns: Cryllor (pop. 8,400), Flen (pop.
11,900), Gradsul (pop. 49,400), Niole Dra (pop. 25,000)
Provinces: More than two dozen major and many minor duchies, counties, marches, territories, and baronies
Resources: Foodstuffs, cloth, gold, gems (III)
Coinage: [Keoland standard] griffon (pp), lion (gp), eagle (ep), hawk (sp), sparrow (cp)
Population: 1,800,000—Human 75% (SOf), Elf 8% (sylvan 60%, high 40%), Gnome 6%, Halfling 5% (lightfoot), Half-elf 2%, Dwarf 1%, Other 1%
Languages: Common, Keolandish, Elven, Gnome, Halfling
Alignments: LG, Good, UN
Religions: Heironeous, Phaulkon, St. Cuthbert, Fharlanghn, Ehlonna, Lydia, Osprem, Zilchus, Kord, Xerbo, Norebo, Olidammara, elf pantheon, Trithereon
Allies: Gran March, Sterich, the Ulek states, Geoff (exiles), Bissel
Enemies: Pomarj, Iuz, Scarlet Brotherhood, nonhumans and giants in Crystalmists and elsewhere, Sea Princes (all factions), Celene (greatly disliked), Valley of the Mage (distrusted)
Overview: Older even than Aerdy in the Flanaess is ancient Keoland, mainspring of the Sheldomar Valley. The foundation of Keoland, represented the birth of the first postmigration human kingdom in the Flanaess. For nearly a millennium, the Keoish heartlands have spanned the lands from Gradsul at the Azure Coast to the Rushmoors in the north, between the great Sheldomar and Javan rivers in the east and west. These lands are some of the most provincial and bucolic in the Flanaess, having been largely untouched by war and conflict for centuries.
The climate is customarily temperate year-round and the soils of the central valleys are rich, allowing the kingdom to grow wheat, rye, and other grains in great abundance. The country has never been rich in terms of mineral wealth, and perhaps for that reason it has always conducted a brisk trade with its neighbors, to whom it supplies staples such as foodstuffs in return for hard coin.
The folk of the land can be friendly and generous, but they are primarily noted for their superstitious natures, particularly their wariness of foreigners. The people are a mixture of Suel and Oeridian bloodlines, well blended for the most pan in the provinces of the nation, except in certain rarefied circles such as the nobility and other closed societies. Flan still exist in small pockets in the kingdom, no longer numerous in the heartlands and now driven to the peripheries of the valley. The common tongue is spoken here, but the primary dialect is called Keolandish. The speech of the common folk is highly recognizable for its accent.
For most of Keoland's history, the study of magic was banned to its citizenry, and its practice was restricted to secret societies and certain nobles. Little evidence is seen by the casual observer of powerful wizards' magic, as commoners fear those who practice spellcraft. Many priesthoods are present in the realm, though religion was never a dominant force in the kingdom, either.
Keoland is a true monarchy in that its kings rule for life and have great powers and authority at their disposal, but officially the government is a permanent regency. Ruled in the trust of the noble houses, the matter of succession has always resided in the Council of Niole Dra. This deliberative body, composed of the major nobility and heads of certain long established guilds and societies in the kingdom, has the responsibility to authorize succession and oversee matters dealing with the nation's founding charter. It is the founding charter, penned some nine centuries ago, that ascribes rights and obligations on the part of all the citizenry of the country, whether lowborn or high. The Throne of the Lion, as the office of the king is referred to in Keoland, is currently held by Kimbertos Skotti. The monarch is besieged by factions who constantly demand his attention, making changes or decisions often painfully slow in coming. Most of these petitioners are peers of the realm, who have varied and often conflicting self-interests.
Over two dozen political subdivisions exist in Keoland. The major provinces follow, with their capitals and rulers.

1. Niole Dra, Royal Capital and District of (Capital: Niole Dra)
Lord Mayor Pugnace Dillip (Un male human)
2. Dorlin, Duchy of (Capital: Dorglast Castle)
Duke Cedrian III of Neheli (CN male human)
3. Gradsul, Duchy of (Capital: Gradsul)
Duke Luschan VIII of Rhola (Un male human)
4. Gand, Earldom of (Capital: Endereisen)
5. Linth, Earldom of (Capital: Segor)
6. Nimlee, County of (Capital: Craufield)
Countess Lissen Rheyd (Good female human Clr of Lydia)
7. Marlbridge, County of (Capital: Marlbridge)
8. Flen, County of (Capital: Flen)
Countess Allita Elgarin (Un female human Clr of Xerbo)
9. Cryllor, County of (Capital: Cryllor)
Count Ignas Manz (Un male human)
10. Good Hills, Union of the (Capital: Black Top)
First Speaker Blaif Rinnar (Good male gnome)
11. Mandismore, March of (Capital: Ravonnar)
12. Mareman, March of (Capital: Regin)
13. Sedenna, March of (Capital: Plampton)
Margrave Erlich Derwent (Un male human)
14. Middlemead, March of (Capital: Middlebridge)
Margrave Kharn (Un male human)
15. Blerfield, March of (Capital: Granforth)
16. Sayre, Barony of (Capital: Woodsage)
17. Grayhill, Barony of (Capital: Dourstone)
Baron Markos Skotti (Good male human)
18. Westgate, Barony of (Capital: Millen)
19. Riverwatch, Barony of (Capital: Estgant)
20. Axewood, Barony of (Capital: Linnoden)
Baron Anladon of Neheli (LG male half-elf)
21. Mill Creek, Barony of (Capital:Black Pike)
22. Dilwych, Barony of (Capital: Dilwych)
23. Raya, Barony of (Capital: Daerwald)
24. Salinmoor, Viscounty of (Capital: Seaton)
Viscount Cronin Secunforth (Un male human)
25. Nume Eor, Viscounty of (Capital: Kimberton)
26. Dreadwood Preserve
27. Hool Marsh Protectorate

History: The Chronicle of Secret Times is a book banned by the Keoish crown, a strange set of affairs for a work that is said never to have existed. Nonetheless, numerous apocryphal copies are said to be in certain clandestine collections, including the Great Library of Greyhawk. The book's sometimes lyrical prose tells of the Suloise survivors of the Rain of Colorless Fire, beginning with how Slerotin, the Last Mage of Power, led twelve tribes out of ruin and into the valley of the Sheldomar. As the story continues, the Magus, nearly consumed and at death's door from his exertions, bids the most powerful noble houses to set aside their rivalries and unite to make a home in this valley and be at peace with its inhabitants. He prophesizes that they will one day combine with a noble people and together will lay the foundations of an exalted kingdom. Slerotin enjoins them to look for signs and portents, and to act upon them in the noblest tradition of their ancestors. The Last Mage of Power then quits the ken of mortals in a thunderclap that levels the surrounding trees and scatters them into the form of a glyph pointing toward the northeast, or so the tale goes.
History records that it was only a few years after their arrival in the Flanaess that the refugees fought each other and went their separate ways, disregarding the Last Mage's words. The powerful Zelrad family withdrew to the northeast, departing from the Sheldomar Valley entirely to settle in what became South Province of the Great Kingdom. The tales also recount how the vile House Malhel fled toward the Dreadwood and was consumed by its own evil after trying to summon up powers of the earth in a desire to resurrect the Suel Imperium. Similar groups suffered other malign fates, while others fled across the Azure Sea, never to return.
The remaining Suel Houses fought the local Flan and abundant nonhumans for control of the rest of the land, which was dominated by the near-mythical Empire of Vecna in the north. The nobles of House Rhola made for the Azure Coast, where in -368 CY they founded the city of Gradsul. While they began settling the southern coastal lands, the nobles of Neheli took their chances in the northern valleys, heeding the apparent words of the Last Mage and striking for the northeast. Their much feared Seers, who were among the few powerful apprentices of Slerotin to survive the cataclysm, closely advised the leaders of Neheli in all things.
Niole Dra was founded by them within ten years of Gradsul's creation. The next few seasons brought many changes to the land, as the Oeridian tribes entered the Sheldomar Valley from the north after a great upheaval appeared to bring down the Empire of Vecna from within. The Oeridians were the first people to encounter the Neheli, settling with the latter peacefully.
Keoland was officially founded in the year 303 OR (-342 CY), a union between the Neheli, Rhola, and minor Oeridian nobles who came to control large swaths of the central valleys between the holdings of the Suel. This series of disjointed states between the rivers Javan and Sheldomar became one nation after a series of brief struggles with the Flan. Niole Dra was taken as the capital and its first king, a nobleman of House Neheli, was chosen to rule by a consensus of the peers of the realm.
By-242 CY, Keoland had expanded beyond the Good Hills, allied with the inhabitants there, and entered a period of rapid expansion characterized largely by the peaceful annexation of new lands and territories. Sterich was soon founded in the west, followed in -161 CY by the Gran March, as the kingdom expanded the northern border beyond the city of Shiboleth to Hookhill. The Order of Knights of the Watch was awarded the fief to defend the northern borders by the duke of Dorlin. In -96 CY, the Yeomanry was brought within the kingdom, and its freeholders were given a voice in council in Niole Dra.
The expansion of Keoland came to a slow halt by the middle of the first century CY, after the death of King Malv III of the Rhola. In 49 CY, the throne reverted to House Neheli, where it remained for nearly two centuries. A long stagnant period in Keoish history ensued, during which the country remained a benevolent, if slumbering and introverted land.
Keoland awoke from its long slumber during what is generally regarded as its imperial phase, beginning in the late third century of the common era. When the last Neheli king died without issue in 286 CY, the summer conclave of the following year recognized the ascension of the first Rholan king in more than two centuries, King Tavish I. Tavish, the duke of Gradsul, was the scion of his house and its most formidable leader. He was determined to make the aspirations of Keoland rival that of the Aerdi and the nascent Furyondy, both of which already dominated the neighbors of Keoland and its rivals in the north and across the Azure Sea.
Tavish immediately brought a cosmopolitan air and youthful dynamism to sleepy Niole Dra when his court assembled the following year in the capital. He quickly reversed the course of the nation and raised armies in great numbers. He accelerated castle-building across the frontiers of the nation and abolished certain magical prohibitions that had stood for centuries amid the strong opposition of the anchorites of the Lonely Tower, the Silent Ones. Tavish's early maneuvers were subtle efforts to marshal the resources already at his fingertips by treaty. In 289 CY, Keoish forces verged on the Fals Gap, where the city of Thornward was founded by the Knights of the Watch as a northern outpost to ward and tax the trade roads between the Baklunish and Furyondy. While a brief skirmish was fought with the Baklunish of Ket, large-scale actions were as yet unknown. In 292 CY, Tavish negotiated a treaty to formalize the union of the Ulek states to Keoland, bringing them into closer cooperation with the Throne of the Lion. Keoish ambassadors were dispatched even to Enstad, and distant outposts were soon tolerated by Celene and its fey court. Tavish accomplished the near total confederation of the Sheldomar Valley, from the Crystalmists to the Azure.
Following the death of Tavish the Great in 346 CY, the throne was taken by his eldest son, Tavish II (called The Blackguard), a move that was grudgingly approved by the Council of Niole Dra. During the early summer of 348 CY, the new king made his so called "Wealsun Proclamation," over the objections of the members of the Council. In it, he asserted the manifest destiny of the Keoish to hegemony over the Sheldomar Valley and all its borders. Within a handful of years, Keoland had marched armies into western Veluna and annexed the Pomarj from the prince of Ulek.
Using the added support he gained from early victories in Veluna, Tavish II quickly drove the ill-prepared rulers of Ket to the Tusman Hills. In late 362 CY, he ordered the extension of a formal trade road from Thornward to Molvar and eventually to Lopolla. Earlier the previous year, the Yeomanry had closed its borders to the Keoish, withdrawing its forces in protest against the "wars of aggression," while Celene expelled royal garrisons from within its borders. The Ketite expedition began unraveling within a few years. The next three decades were rife with fits and starts that amounted to a slow retreat to Bissel.
By the year 400 CY, the forces of Keoland had completed their final withdrawal to Thornward, fortifying the Fals Gap and making Bissel the northern frontier of the kingdom. Keoland's aggressions took a lengthy hiatus under the rule of Duke Luschan, the new regent who had no stomach for war. In 414, the old regent became ill and died, and his young nephew assumed the title Tavish III. In 438, the Small (sometimes called the Short) War between Furyondy and Keoland ended Keoish influence in Veluna. Furyondians and their armies advanced on Thornward and south to nearly the city of Hookhill, as the Knights of the Hart captured Bissel before Tavish III reinforced the northern border in disgust. Keoland's influence north of the Gran March came to a complete end.
Troubles for the Throne of the Lion continued unabated in the south. In 433 CY, Tavish Ill's errant younger brother and the heir to the duchy of Gradsul disappeared, and reports placed the duke as lost in the Amedio, the victim of pirates or other foul play.
The old king attempted to salvage some dignity in a doomed expedition to reclaim the south, culminating in the Siege of Westkeep, 453 CY. In a prolonged battle against the insurgents, King Tavish III was himself slain.
The king's surviving son was crowned Tavish IV, assuming the throne immediately following the
death of his father on the battlefield. Recognizing the disastrous policy that had propelled the dependencies of the kingdom to fly apart and resulted in the death of his brothers and father, young Tavish IV reversed the course of the nation. He recalled and disbanded expeditionary forces from the frontiers, sending home men who had not worked their ancestral lands for their entire lives. In 460 CY, the Yeomanry League was formally recognized as an independent realm and relations were reestablished.
However, despite the best efforts of Tavish IV, many of these changes came too little and too late for others. In 461 CY, the realms of Ulek and Celene severed formal ties with Keoland, the former gaining complete autonomy. Two years later, seeing their opportunity, minor Suel nobles in the Pomarj forswore their fealty to the prince of Ulek and took Highport as their capital. This act went unchallenged in Niole Dra, which was tired of war.
In 488 CY, a prematurely aged Tavish IV died without issue, a lonely and broken monarch. The Throne of the Lion fell to an heir of the House Neheli the next year, who promptly turned a blind eye to foreign affairs. Keoland soon reverted to the more peaceful, even complacent state from which it had departed for nearly two centuries. This sudden introspection drifted into isolation a few years later when the Keoish monarch refused to engage in the Hateful Wars that raged between the Ulek States and the nonhumans of the Lortmils and Suss Forest. When the Suel barons of the Pomarj suffered a crushing invasion at the end of the conflict, their pleas for assistance fell upon a suddenly oblivious bureaucracy. Illness and misfortune befell the Neheli line over the next few decades to such disquieting proportions that, by the late 550s, it became doubtful it could put forward an heir to old King Trevlyan III when he suddenly passed away in 564 CY.
The Council of Niole Dra entered into prolonged debate the following winter and emerged with a surprising announcement. The new king was introduced as Baron Kimbertos Skotti of Grayhill, an obscure ranger lord from a small province near the Dreadwood with little-known blood ties to the throne. Lashton of Grayhill (LN male human Wiz19), an archmage of some notoriety and exceeding ambition, came to serve the new Royal Court as its magical councilor. He was seen by some as an extremely influential schemer.
Conflicts and Intrigues: Relations between Keoland and the Prince of Ulek are strained from the latter's economic alliance with the Lordship of the Isles, so support of the latter's Pomarj campaign remains tepid. Duke Luschan wants to build a dozen new frigates to contend with naval threats on the Azure Sea, and he courts an alliance with Irongate. Rumors come out of Dorlin about cases of madness in certain families of the Neheli. Monsters plague the southern frontier.

The Silent Ones
This ancient society is almost entirely closed to outsiders, but its mystique and influence extends throughout the valley of the Sheldomar. The Silent Ones are said to form the backbone of an eldritch order that seeks to protect the last vestiges of Ancient Suel magic that has remained in Suloise hands since the Rain of Colorless Fire. Whether the order is actually this old is uncertain, since they communicate little outside their own circles. What little is known of the Silent Ones comes from one of the few individuals who departed it alive. Uhas of Neheli chronicled some of their exploits in his apocryphal work, The Chronicle of Secret Times.
The group's name comes from an ancient Suel phrase literally translated as "those who must not speak." It is something of a misnomer as the silent Ones are by no means mute, but they are extremely outside the authority of the ruling Keoish king, according to the first lines of the founding charter of the nation, penned nearly one thousand years ago.
They do not form a magical guild in the traditional sense, as supplicants are not usually accepted to the order. Rather they are chosen during pilgrimages conducted by the Silent Ones annually during Needfest, when they scour the countryside for youths especially attuned to their ways. Those chosen are said to be gifted in some way, and most of them are of pure Suel bloodlines. Curiously, many of the chosen are also albinos and frequently are blind. Uhas of Neheli was both.
While the Silent Ones typically wear drab gray garb, they have no traditional dress nor any visible devices or emblems. The primary cloister of the order is an infamous spire known as the Tower of Silence, located less than a day's ride south from Niole Dra. It is an architectural wonder, erupting from the ground without support to rise many hundreds of feet and completely dominate the featureless plain that surrounds it. No mage who casts eyes upon it will deny that it would be nearly impossible to build today, since great sorcery was no doubt required for its construction. The bluish-gray stone that composes it has no counterpart for 1,000 miles.
The inhabitants of the Lonely Tower are headed by a single undisputed leader called the Wyrd. Currently, this magus is Mohrgyr the Old (Un male human Wizard), a former Nehelan nobleman believed to be over two hundred years old. The tower is staffed by a few dozen adherents, whose numbers are thought to shrink with every passing year. Their most powerful supporters in the kingdom are the nobles of House Neheli, and a plurality of their membership is from this ancient and decaying house. The Silent Ones have smaller enclaves in a handful of Keoish cities to which they frequently travel.
In centuries past, sorcery was in the hands of a small few in Keoland, and the Silent Ones monitored this tradition with dispassion. That is no longer their role, though they are still viewed with fear and superstition. Silent Ones seem to be drawn to ancient places and items of strong magical power and import. On rare occasions they openly contend with individuals, both good and evil, who seek magical power beyond the ken of mortals. Recently they have expressed disquiet over the rise of the Scarlet Brotherhood and the uncovering of Slerotin's Passage from the Yeomanry to the Sea of Dust.

_________________
"Be strong and do as you will. The swords of others will set you your limits." (Marauders of Gor, p.10)

After the lights go out on you/After your worthless life is through/I will remember how you scream
I can't afford to care/I can't afford to care ("Lights Out" Breaking Benjamin)


Last edited by JulianAmici on Thu Sep 23, 2010 3:32 am; edited 3 times in total
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PostSubject: Geography of Keoland   Thu Sep 23, 2010 2:57 am

Geography of Keoland
Sheldomar Valley ("Old Keoland")
The fertile Sheldomar Valley is almost completely enclosed by mountains until it reaches the Azure Sea. Two great rivers, the Sheldomar and the Javan, water these lands between the Crystalmists and the Lortmils. The climate here is warm and mild, and many elves, dwarves, gnomes, and halflings live in peace alongside Suel, Oeridian, and Flan farmers and lords.

Dreadwood: This large forest stretches across the southernmost provinces of Keoland, just north of the Hool Marshes. A royal writ grants control of most of the forest to the elves, who administer and protect it on behalf of the crown. Efforts are mounted to clear this forest of evil creatures, but these have failed time and again. Raiders from the Sea Princes and nonhumans from the Hool Marshes use the wood to attack southern Keoland. The elves and royal garrisons battle these invaders at great cost. The wood is also home to the Great Druidess of the Sheldonar Valley, Reynard Yargrove (Un female human), who is an ally to the cause of the elves.
Crystalmist Mountains: The highest peaks in the Flanaess are in the Crystalmists, the massive midsection of a range that divides the Flanaess from the rest of Oerik. Amid the summits and valleys of the Crystalmists dwell giants, ogres, orcs, goblins, and other monsters. Precious metals and gems are found here as well, dug out by armed mountain dwarves who trade with humans on either side of the range. Barbaric cavemen are scattered throughout. The Davish River's source is a weird, gargantuan glacier where the Jotens meet the Crystalmists.
Hellfurnaces: Unlike the Crystalmists to the immediate north, the Hellfurnaces feature many active volcanoes, allegedly ignited in the time of the Rain of Colorless Fire. These peaks are accurately described as a hive of evil, a treacherous landscape made worse by the presence of giants and fire-loving abominations. The steep walls of the Hellfurnaces are reliably reputed to hide many cavernous entrances to the Underdark. On the good side, the Hellfurnaces shield the Flanaess from the horrors of the Sea of Dust, beyond to the west. The legendary Passage of Slerotin, a straight tunnel from the Yeomanry to the ashen wasteland, was recently discovered here and is being (slowly) explored.
Jotens: The Jotens comprise the largest spur of the cyclopean Crystalmist chain. The name derives from an old word for "giants," as this is the home of many antagonistic tribes of ogres, hill giants, and larger kin. The southern slopes are well patrolled by long-ranging Yeomanry spearmen allied with dwarven units. Fighting between the forces of Sterich and evil giants continues in the north.
Lortmil Mountains: This low chain of mountains, fading into hills with age, is the homeland of many dwarves, gnomes, and venturesome halflings, as well as a few winged folk and scattered human enclaves. The good folk acted in concert almost a century ago to expel most of the nonhumans and vicious monsters from the Lortmils, and the small folk are common in the states that abut the range. The Lortmils contain some of the richest gem and precious metal deposits known. Dwarf clan leaders here are reputed to be as rich as princes, sought by emissaries from foreign nations for aid. Dwarves are notoriously immune to such overtures, except for the benefit of their kin in the Principality of Ulek.
Good Hills: This range of rolling highlands marks the eastern provinces of Keoland and channels the Javan River. The Good Hills are home to many gnomes and halflings, who produce prodigious amounts of wealth from mines located throughout the hills. Dwarves and humans from Stench fled here in 584 CY, but used the Good Hills and the town of Flen as a staging area for the counterattacks that freed their homeland in 588.
Little Hills: The towering Little Hills of the eastern Yeomanry are little only in comparison to the lofty Jotens that loom above them. The town of Longspear, located in the eastern foothills near the border with Keoland, is an active trading center. The hillmen and dwarves who populate the slopes of these hills are renowned for their ferocity in battle and were employed as mercenaries in Keoland for centuries. Many fought in Sterich, slaying scores of giants and uncounted nonhumans.
Azure Sea: Trading here is age-old, despite local pirates and sea monsters. The Scarlet Brotherhood greatly harmed trade here until last year, but the civil war in the Sea Princes' lands and the Flanaess's recovery from the Greyhawk Wars should allow trade to resurge. Major sponsors of piracy here are the Scarlet Brotherhood (operating from its many ports), Amedio Jungle savages (threatening ships near the Hook Peninsula with weather magic and poisoned arrows), and occasional human- or orc-crewed ships sailing from the Pomarj. The wizard Drawmij, one of the Circle of Eight and long thought to have a stronghold beneath the Azure Sea, is likely working against the Brotherhood and other enemies of the open seas.
Javan: This river is the longest on the continent, beginning high in the Barrier Peaks and coursing southward for hundreds of miles before emptying into the Azure Sea, It is navigable only to Cryllor, in the Good Hills of Keoland.
Sheldomar: While the Javan is perhaps the longest river in the Flanaess, the Sheldomar is the broadest and most majestic in the valley. It is over half a mile wide along half length and serves to separate Keoland from the Ulek states and Gran March. It is navigable to Niole Dra, with barge traffic from Shiboleth.
Hool Marshes: The Hool Marshes are infested with every natural danger, from animal predators to diseases, and is favored by monsters for its shelter. Only desperate people flee into the Hool, knowing the dangers posed by the native lizard folk, but with civil war in the Sea Princes' lands, many are desperate these days. Disturbing tales say that cults dedicated to demon princes such as Orcus and Dagon have developed here. Keoish scouts patrol the northern banks when possible.

_________________
"Be strong and do as you will. The swords of others will set you your limits." (Marauders of Gor, p.10)

After the lights go out on you/After your worthless life is through/I will remember how you scream
I can't afford to care/I can't afford to care ("Lights Out" Breaking Benjamin)
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PostSubject: Gods of Keoland and Beyond   Thu Sep 23, 2010 3:50 am

Beory
(Oerth Mother), N (NG) greater goddess of the Oerth, Nature and Rain
Beory (bay-OH-ree) is usually considered a manifestation of the will of Oerth itself. Little concerns her except the actual fate and prosperity of the entire world, and she is a very distant goddess, even from her clerics. Named by the Flan, Beory's name is known throughout the Flanaess. Beory has little time or interest for most other divine beings, even those of similar interests, for her connection to the Oerth consumes most of her attention. Her symbol is either a green disk marked with a circle or a rotund woman figurine.
The Oerth is the wellspnng of all life. Whether on the surface, below the waves, or underground, all life is part of the cycle of birth, life, and death, and part of Beory. She inspires every living thing to grow, nurtures them with blessed rain, and calls them to herself when it is time to die. Disasters that cause widespread destruction are agony to her. The actions of individuals are of no consequence unless they threaten the Oerth.
Clerics of Beory are contemplative and spend their time communing with nature. They often associate with druids. When they gather, they defer to the wisest and oldest. As they try to see the greater picture, they tend to be slow to act, but when they do act it is direct and focused on the solution. They wander to feel the different sensations of the Oerth, and use their power to relieve the Oerth's pains where it has been wounded.
Domains Earth, Life, Sea, Wilderness

Boccob
(The Uncaring, Lord of All Magic, Archmage of the Deities), N Greater God of Magic, Arcane Knowledge, Foresight, and Balance
Boccob (BOK-kob) is known throughout the Flanaess, oversees the maintenance of magic's existence on Oerth, and is interested in the creation of new magic items and spells (he is said to have a copy of every magic item made by mortals). He sees that Oerth's magic is declining and will eventually fade away; he combats this effect and suspects that Tharizdun is responsible. He is distant from all other gods save his servant Zagyg. Shown in purple robes with shimmering runes of gold, Boccob carries the first staff of the magi; an eye within a pentagram is his symbol.
Seek balance above good, evil, law, or chaos. Fight to push back the encroachment of good just as you would the oppression of evil. Magic is the most important thing on Oerth, and it must be preserved so that the balance can be preserved.
Churches are protected from outside interference, and those within devote most of their time to research, particularly prophecies, which they guard carefully lest they fall into the wrong hands. In lands where the forces of Law, Chaos, Good, or Evil grow too strong, churches of Boccob are built to balance those forces.
Clerics of Boccob create and study magic and divine the future. They leave their churches to root out rumors of lost magic items or spells, or to defend a magical place or item from destruction. Most clerics of Boccob are neutral, as extremism in ethos is frowned upon; they must maintain the balance between all alignments.
Domains Arcana, Fate, Knowledge, Trickery

Ehlonna
(of the Forests), NG intermediate goddess of Forests, Woodlands, Flora and Fauna, and Fertility
Ehlonna (eh-LOHN-nah) is a very old goddess. She combats those who would harm or despoil the forest of its resources and beauty. Shown as either a dark-haired human woman or a golden-haired elf maid (in which form she is known to many as Ehlenestra), she is served by Novelee, a planetar whose heart is so pure it makes unicorns weep. She has a hostile rivalry with Obad-Hai, but is friendly with the elven gods and most good-aligned deities. Her symbol is the unicorn.
The woodlands are a beautiful place full of life. The secrets of the forests should be learned and taught so that people can live in harmony with nature. Those who would harm or exploit the woodlands must be driven out or destroyed. The plants and animals of the forest are things that nature gives as gifts, not things to be stolen.
Most of Ehlonna's clergy are female, whether human, elven, or fey. They live in the forests, are friendly with rangers and druids, and watch for encroaching nonhumans, hunters, and loggers. They educate those who wish to live in harmony with the forest, just as the animals do. They are gentle in their first warning to those who would harm the forest and ruthless in stopping those who persist. They travel to spread their teachings or to protect a forest in danger.
Domains Sun, Protection, Wilderness

Fharlanghn
(The Dweller on the Horizon), N (NG) intermediate god of Horizons, Distance, Travel, and Roads
Fharlanghn (far-LAHNG-un) is shown as a seemingly old man with leathery, wrinkled skin and young-seeming bright green eyes. Brother of the Oeridian god Celestian, he is on amiable terms with nonevil earth gods and several nature gods, and is sometimes tied to Atroa. His symbol is a wooden disc carved with the curved line of the horizon, and he carries a magical version of this symbol called the Oerth Disc. He is the patron of those who walk or ride long distances (including travelers in tunnels, and as such is praised by those who must use mountain passes or travel the Underdark).
People need to move about and see new things. Be open to travel, as the world may change overnight and you may be in need of a new home or perspective. Look to the horizon for inspiration—the far end of the world has new peoples, new cultures, new magic, and new roads to walk.
The church is comprised of wandering clerics (who favor green and minister to those on the roads) and settled clerics (who favor brown and are usually older clerics whose wandering days are behind them).
Clerics of Fharlanghn are encouraged to travel the world and see new things. They bless caravans, explore exotic lands, scout for armies, and record lore on distant places and people. Because they learn many languages and cultures, they act as translators and diplomats. Many aid in constructing of roadways and bridges, and a pair of shoes made by one of his clerics is held to last longer than any other.
Domains Change, Luck, Protection, Skill

Heironeous
(The Invincible, the Valorous Knight, the Archpaladin), LG intermediate god of Chivalry, Justice, Honor, War, Daring, and Valor
Heironeous (hi-ROE-nee-us) is the Oeridian battlefield champion of all that is right and good. He wages war against evil of all sorts, especially his half-brother and nemesis, Hextor. He is tall, with coppery skin, auburn hair, and amber eyes, and wears fine chain. At his birth, Heironeous' skin was imbued with a secret solution called meersalm that protects him from all but the most powerful weapons. His symbol is a silver lightning bolt. His allies are other gods who fight evil, and his foes are those who encourage evil or suffering. Known for his great magic battleaxe, he recently has been promoting usage of the longsword in order to appeal to common soldiers as well as paladins and leaders.
The world is a dangerous place that poses a never-ending series of challenges to those who fight for justice and protection of the weak and innocent. One must act honorably at all times, and uphold the virtues of justice and chivalry in word and deed. Danger must be faced with certainty and calm, and glory is the reward for defeating evil, while virtue is the reward for upholding the tenets of Heironeous.
Heironeous' church is very militaristic, championing causes and crusading to eliminate evils. His clerics travel the world, fighting evil as dictated by their church commanders. Older clerics work as judges, strategists, and military instructors. Many of the most powerful clerics of Heironeous have themselves embalmed alive with meersalm to gain its protective benefits, although some have not survived the process.
Domains Justice, Protection, War;

Kord
(The Brawler), CG intermediate god of Athletics, Sport, Brawling, Strength, and Courage
Kord (KOHRD) is an incredibly powerful Suel god, second only to his grandfather, Lendor. Son of Phaulkon and Syrul, he is shown as a hugely muscular man with long red hair and beard, wearing dragonhide gauntlets (white), boots (blue), and fighting girdle (red); these items form his holy symbol, although a star composed of spears and maces is popular. He fights with his intelligent dragon-slaying
greatsword Kelmar, and when wounded he often enters a blood rage so intense only Lendor can control him when he succumbs; because of this, a cleric of Kord will always defer to a ranking cleric of Lendor.
He is reputed to have dallied with beautiful humans, elves, or even giants, and tales are told of the great heroes who are born of such liaisons.
The strong and fit should lead the weaker. Bravery is the greatest quality in any ruler. Scorn cowardice.
Kord loves physical challenges and contests, and it is this love that inspires many barbarian tribes to use nonlethal sports as a method for resolving disputes. Kord's clerics are expected to be leaders. They train people to become stronger, organize athletic tournaments, and participate in challenging physical activities. Doubting their fitness is a grave insult, and they go to great lengths to prove their physical abilities (although they realize the difference between difficult and suicidal challenges). Wearing of dragon-hide by a cleric is a blasphemy, unless the wearer is a descendant of Kord. Clerics believe magic should be used to enhance allies rather than strike directly at foes.
Domains Freedom, Luck, Skill, Strength, Trickery

Lydia
NG lesser goddess of Music, Knowledge, and Daylight
Lydia (LIH-dee-ah) is a wise Suel goddess, shown as a dynamic older woman with white hair and clear blue eyes. Her symbol is a spray of colors from an open hand. She interacts with many other gods, exchanging information and songs. In some ways she is the converse of Pholtus, pressing for individual liberty so that others may see the light of truth without being blinded by it; this pleases Trithereon, who also strives for the freedom of the individual.
People must gain knowledge to better themselves. Music is a key to learning, and the light of day lets one see their own ignorance.
Lydia's church has an open policy on all records, for the goddess hates secrets and those who would hoard information to the detriment of others. Her teachings are presented in song form so that they may be easily remembered, and her church often converts current and historical texts into ballads. Her church uses education to uplift women from lesser stations in life; this tends to make her unpopular with patriarchies.
Most of her clerics are women. They discover and spread information wherever they travel, and are often found in the company of clerics of Fharlanghn. They are required to help women in need of education, and they spend much of their time in villages teaching women and children how to read and acting as midwives. They travel to discover lost caches of information and song, preferring historical accounts of actual deeds rather than fictionalizations and hearsay tales.
Domains Freedom, Knowledge, Sun

Norebo
(God of Gambles), CN lesser god of Luck, Gambling, and Risks
Norebo (noh-REE-boh) is one of the more popular Suel gods, known for his willingness to make a bet on anything and his fondness for dice games; his symbol (a pair of eight sided dice) stems from this. He has been paired with most of the female members of his pantheon, but has been linked to Wee Jas for the past one thousand years despite their alignment differences. He particularly despises Ralishaz for giving gambling and risks a bad name. Norebo is shown as a man of average height, weight, and features, but can assume animal forms, especially when he wishes to be hidden.
Life is full of risks and gambling with fate is the only thing that makes life worth living. Owning property and life itself are fleeting things, and best be enjoyed while you have them.
His worship is popular in the barbarian lands and large cities, and donations to his temples (called Churches of the Big Gamble) are usually in the form of lost bets (as gambling operations are run on-site). Some patrons donate to his temple in the hopes of warding off thieves and assassins. Clerics of the Norebo are willing to make wagers on anything and are usually employed at least part of the time in a gambling house. Others wander the world to bring chance and elements of risk into people's lives; they especially love bothering clerics and followers of rigid gods such as Allitur, Pholtus, and St. Cuthbert.
Domains Fate, Trickery, Luck;

Osprem
LN lesser goddess of Sea Voyages, Ships, and Sailors
Osprem (AH-sprem) is a generally benign goddess, revered by the Suel people as the protector of those who travel on the water. She is more compassionate than her occasional companion Xerbo, yet she is not averse to punishing those who offend her or disobey her laws. She is shown as a beautiful gowned woman, a dolphin, a barracuda, or a sperm whale; the latter two are interchangeably used as her holy symbol. She wears no armor hut is protected by a ring carved from a whale's tooth, given to her by the grandfather of all whales.
The seas provide a bounty of food and a means of travel; protect the sea as you would your own home, or face Osprem's wrath. She protects those who sail and their vessels as long as they respect her and abide by her laws. She guides vessels through dangerous waters and is the patron goddess of naval explorers.
Those who defy her laws are punished by storms of ice, and it is said entire towns were wiped out because of serious transgressions against her. Her clerics are skilled navigators and often become the spiritual leaders of communities that rely on the sea for survival. Many gain political power for themselves based on the need for their abilities. Clerics not tied to one place might travel a great deal by ship; though they feel awkward away from the ocean, they are comfortable enough near lakes or rivers to venture inland.
Domains Justice, Protection, Sea

Olidammara
(The Laughing Rogue), CN intermediate god of Music, Revels, Wine, Rogues, Humor, and Tricks
Olidammara (oh-lih-dam-MAH-rah) loves upsetting those who are too attached to their boring and controlled worlds. He is shown as a brown-haired man of rakish appearance, olive skin, and merry eyes, although his magic laughing mask (and holy symbol) allows him to change his appearance. Zagyg once forced him into the shape of a small carapaced animal and imprisoned him; the Laughing Rogue still retains the ability to form a protective carapace, and he has used it to thwart many aggressors and pursuers. He is friendly enough with other gods, although the lawful ones resent his capriciousness and tricks.
Treat music as the art it is. Strive to be as skilled at it as your patron. Life is meant to be happy and entertaining, and the best jokes need a target to hang them on; when it is your turn, accept the laugh and appreciate the trick. Wine is one of the joys of life, and the only thing better than making wine is drinking it. Avoid misery, temperance, and solemnity, for they are the greatest poisons to the soul.
Olidammara has a faithful following but few easily found churches. Clerics of Olidammara study music, make wine, tell jokes, and occasionally perform acts of mayhem. Those who live in cities tend to work as entertainers or vintners, while those who prefer rural settings act are storytellers, messengers, and minstrels. Many of them live a life on the run from powerful people whom they greatly offended early in their careers. Others just enjoy traveling in search of new music, exotic wines, and celebrations.
Domains Freedom, Luck, Skill, Trickery

Phaulkon
CG lesser god of Air, Wind, Clouds, Birds, and Archery
Phaulkon (FAHL-kahn) is an active deity, promoting the cause of good and chasing down evil. He concerns himself with all things that happen under the open sky, and is a scholar of artifacts (and how to negate their powers). Father of Kord and second only to him in fighting ability, he is friendly with Aerdrie Faenya (the elven goddess of air and weather), Jascar, and the other gods with portfolios similar to his own. Depicted as a powerful, clean shaven, bare-chested wingless man, his holy symbol is a winged human silhouette.
Victory in battle depends upon archery. The sky is the dome over creation, and creatures of the sky are blessed for freeing themselves from the soil. Take the fight to the enemy; do not wait for the encroachment of evil. The ancient devices of war are best left alone, as their use involves great danger.
Phaulkon's clerics study the sky and clouds for portents, and work to protect the nesting places of flying animals. They teach archery and hunting to common people so they may feed and protect themselves, teach farmers the difference between birds that eat seeds and those that kill seed-eaters, and train soldiers in the more difficult aspects of ranged combat. When rumors of ancient evil magic surface, they seek out the source to make sure the item gets destroyed or at least stays buried. His clerics tend to be wanderers, enjoying living under the open sky and fighting evil where they discover it.
Domains Destruction, Skill, Storm, War

St. Cuthbert
(of the Cudgel), LN (LG) intermediate god of Common Sense, Wisdom, Zeal, Honesty, Truth, and Discipline
St. Cuthbert (CUTH-bert) may have once been a mortal man as his worshipers claim, but if so it was long ago and from an unknown people. His three prominent symbols are a starburst of rubies, a wooden billet, or a crumpled hat, and while he takes many forms (including that of a common yokel or white-haired mustached man in plate mail) he usually is shown with a bronzewood cudgel. He reacts favorably to other lawful nonevil deities, although he has a great rivalry with Pholtus.
The words of St. Cuthbert are wise, practical, and sensible. The word of the Cudgel is law, and the word must be spread so that all may benefit from his wisdom. Weakness in faith and acting against the Saints teachings are intolerable in believers. Unceasing effort should be made to bring unbelievers into the fold. Honesty, truthfulness, practicality, and reasonability are the highest virtues.
St. Cuthbert's clergy consists of three divisions that have different purposes: the Chapeaux, which seek to convert people to the faith, the Stars, which exist to retain doctrinal purity among the faith, and the Billets, which minister to and protect the faithful.
Clerics of the Cudgel are stern folk who speak their minds plainly. They do not suffer fools and discipline those who backslide in faith. They train in the arts of war and keep themselves physically fit. The Chapeaux wear Traditional crumpled hats, the Stars wear a starburst insignia of copper, gold, or platinum, and the Billets wear an oaken or bronzewood billet symbol.
Domains Destruction, Justice, Protection, Strength;

Trithereon
(The Summoner), CG intermediate god of Individuality, Liberty, Retribution, and Self-Defense
Trithereon (tri-THEH-ree-on) is shown as a tall well-built young man with red-gold hair, clad in a chainmail shirt and blue or violet clothes. His symbol is the rune of pursuit, representing his relentlessness in hunting down oppressors and tyrants. He is famous for his three great magic weapons (the shortspear Krelestro, the Harbinger of Doom; the sword Freedom's Tongue; and the scepter called the Baton of Retribution) and his three summoned animals (Nemoud the Hound, Harrus the Falcon, and Carolk the Sea Lizard). He fights evil and oppressive law, so he sometimes opposes other good-aligned deities such as Heironeous and Pholtus.
All deserve life and the ability to choose their own place in the world, and those who would place others in shackles or control them with oppressive laws must be toppled. Train the common folk to defend themselves and their property should another wish to take their freedoms, if you are wronged, you are right to exact vengeance yourself, especially if none will help you.
Because the faith praises individuality over standardized doctrine, each church has a different focus but is allied with all others.
Trithereon's clerics are rugged individualists, never afraid to question authority. Those in cities instruct commoners in self-defense and recruit like-minded rogues and rangers for the cause of individual liberty. Those in rural areas act as scouts or spies against despotic lords or murderous nonhumans. Both sorts keep close watch on Lawful religions lest they become too powerful. The Summoner's clerics travel far and wide in search of those in need of their help.
Domains Change, Freedom, Hope, Vengeance

Xerbo
(The Sea Dragon), N lesser god of the Sea, Sailing, Money, and Business
Xerbo (ZER-boh) is a stern and indifferent god. He is, shown as a large man with matted kelplike hair, wearing dragon turtle armor and shield. His trident, Murky Deep, enchants and grants him dominion over all ocean life and can enchant his opponents. Xerbo is also a mercantile god, where his stern demeanor represents the drive for a hard bargain. Most revere him as a merchant's god and placate him as a sea god. He avoids other gods except his estranged wife Osprem, battles Procan regularly, and sulks whenever Zilchus encroaches on his followers. His symbol is a dragon turtle.
The law of the sea states that no sea creature should be favored over another. Land creatures, including intelligent ones, have no place in the water; it is a place to be feared and respected, not exploited. Land creatures in danger on the sea deserve no help unless they act to protect sea creatures or the sea itself. Do not let one's emotions get in the way of making trade; no person should be favored over another.
This last thought makes him popular with smaller merchants and disliked by unions and
guilds. Xerbo's clerics are expected to protect the sea and sea life. They watch over merchant vessels on trade routes or facilitate business meetings in port cities. The god does not tolerate extended forays on land, especially for foolish pursuits such as exploring ruins and dungeons.
Domains Civilization, Destruction, Knowledge, Sea;

Zilchus
(The Great Guildmaster, the Money Counter),
LN intermediate god of Power, Prestige, Money, Business, and Influence
Zilchus (ZIL-chus) is a popular Oeridian god, depicted as a well-dressed Oeridian man of plain appearance but great wealth. Husband of Sotillion, brother of Kurell, ally of Rao, Zilchus has many contacts that reflect his ability to establish relationships that are vital to any businessman. A busy god, he has little time for frivolous pursuits, but is knowledgeable in such things because it allows him to influence others. He acts as a dealmaker between gods, finalizing agreements once Rao convinces warring panics to talk. His symbol is hands clutching a bag of gold.
In the world of men, the desire for money can be overwhelming. Control that desire in yourself and exploit it in others—that is the key to success and power. Anything done in the world can be done better for a profit, and those who recognize these opportunities are one step ahead of any competition. Politics and war are simply two other forms of trade, one using a currency of words and the other lives; the trick is to spend yours more efficiently than your opponent.
Zilchus' clerics are ruthless in business and often seen as emotionless. They are heavily involved in business and politics, and conduct deals above or below the table depending upon their disposition. They work for powerful merchants, trade and crafts guilds, politicians, or nations, making transactions and garnering prestige for themselves and their employers. Neophytes get less glorious jobs, such as managing caravans or remote businesses, but some are hired to participate in high-risk but potentially profitable enterprises such as smuggling contraband and adventuring.
Domains Civilization, Fate, Knowledge, Trickery

Elven Pantheon (The Seldarine)
Corellon Larethian
Corellon Larethian is the leader of the elven pantheon, and the god of Magic, Music, Arts, Crafts, Poetry, and Warfare. He is the creator and preserver of the elven race, and governs those things held in the highest esteem among elves. His symbol is a crescent moon. Corellon is considered to be foremost among the Seldarine. His consort is Sehanine Moonbow. Some myths claim that Corellon gave birth to the rest of his pantheon in his female aspect, while others claim that he fathered them on Sehanine Moonbow. He raised Ye'Cind to the status of demigod by infusing him with a spark of his own power.
Gruumsh One-Eye, god of the orcs, is one of Corellon's greatest enemies, because Corellon took his eye in an ancient battle. The entire orc pantheon hates Corellon intensely. He also opposes the deities of the goblinoids.
Corellon was also the one to banish the drow goddess Lolth to the Abyss. For this, he can count all evil drow gods as enemies. Because of his keen friendship with the Seelie Court, Corellon often finds himself at odds with the Queen of Air and Darkness. Corellon's truest friends are the rulers of the other demihuman pantheons: Moradin, Yondalla, and Garl Glittergold. Together, they work to ensure that the gods of the human and monstrous pantheons don't grow strong too quickly. Corellon is surprisingly humble, for a regent of his stature.
Corellon desires to protect and preserve the elven race, return to his people their lost artistic heritage, and to thwart the schemes of the drow and the orcs. This also means guarding against the corruption within that resulted in the creation of the drow. Corellon advises his faithful to guard against stagnation as well, continually seeking out new experiences. They seek to bring out beauty through art, craft, and magic.
Domains Arcane, Creation, Protection, War

Sehanine Moonbow
Sehanine Moonbow (SAY-ha-neen MOON-boe) is the elven goddess of the moons. She is one of the more powerful members of the Seldarine. The Lady of Dreams actively opposes the nefarious schemes of the Spider Queen and the other drow powers. She is often said to be the wife of Corellon Larethian. Her symbol is a full moon topped by a crescent-shaped haze.
Sehanine is sometimes said to be Corellon's consort. Sometimes she is the sister of Labelas Enoreth, god of time, and the daughter of Corellon instead. Sometimes she is even said to be the sister of Lolth, who can be seen as representing the darkness of the new moon as Sehanine represents the light of the full moon.
Sehanine is closely allied with all the Seldarine, particularly Corellon, Aerdrie Faenya, and Hanali Celanil, and gets along swimmingly with many other gods, including Baravar Cloakshadow, Cyrrollalee, Dumathoin, Oberon, Segojan Earthcaller, Titania, and Urogalan. Her foes include Gruumsh, the Queen of Air and Darkness, and the evil deities of the drow.
Sehanine's faithful view life as a series of mysteries veiled by Sehanine herself. The spirits of elves discover new mysteries once they transcend their mortal existences. Sehanine unveils the next step through dreams and visions revealed during the elven reverie. Worshippers of Sehanine revere the moons, feeling their pull in their souls like tides in the ocean.
Worshipers of Sehanine Moonbow seek out and destroy undead creatures, for Sehanine holds such creatures — with the notable exceptions of baelnorn and other good-aligned undead beings who voluntarily prolong their existence in order to serve their kin — to be blasphemous.
Domains Change, Destruction, Fate, Moon

Labelas Enoreth
Labelas Enoreth is an elven deity, the Lord of the Continuum who governs the orderly passage of time and guards against those who would alter the path of history. Together with Sehanine Moonbow, he oversees the long life span of the elves and their lives after they have left the mortal realms. His symbol is the setting sun.
Sometimes Labelas is said to be the brother of Sehanine Moonbow, and the child of Corellon Larethian. Labelas has good relations with the rest of the Seldarine, though he can get impatient with Erevan Ilesere’s tricks. Because it was Labelas who decreed that elven beauty would not be marred by the passing of time, he has good relations with Hanali Celanil. He is opposed to the gods of entropy and decay and Clangeddin Silverbeard the dwarven god of battle has a long-standing grudge against him.
Labelas is often praised but rarely invoked. Those who worship him are those with an interest in ideas and knowledge, and the changes wrought by the passage of time - sages, historians, philosophers, and librarians.
Labelas' priests are responsible for educating the young and promoting and acquiring knowledge. They are also record keepers and historians. They meet in groves at sunset to pray, meditate and mark the passing of another day by sharing prayers and knowledge. Clerics of Labelas Enoreth typically dress in light gray robes.
Domains Fate, Knowledge, Life, Sun

The Seldarine also include:
Aerdrie Faenya is the elven goddess of Air, Weather, Freedom, Impulse, Fertility, and Birds.
Alathrien Druanna
Araleth Letheranil
Deep Sashelas is the elven god of the Ocean, and the patron deity of aquatic elves. He is also a god of Creation, Knowledge, Beauty, and Magic.
Erevan Ilesere is the elven deity of Mischief, Change, and Rogues. Erevan is a fickle, utterly unpredictable god who can change his appearance at will.
Fenmarel Mestarine is the elven deity of Wild Elves (such as grugach), Outcasts, Scapegoats, and Solitude.
Gadhelyn the Archer (Gad-THEL-en) is the elven hero-god of Independence, Outlawry, Feasting, and Hunting.
Hanali Celanil is the elf deity of romantic love and beauty.
Kirith Sotheril
Naralis Analor
Rillifane Rallathil is the elven god of Nature, and the patron deity of wood elves. Shevarash
Solonor Thelandira is the elven god of Hunting, Archery, and Survival in Wild and Harsh Places.
Tarsellis Meunniduin
Tethrin Veraldé, god of Bladesingers.
Ye'Cind is the elven demigod of Music and Magical Songs.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Old Faith
Oerth's natural fertility has inspired the devotion of its people. The cult of the Oerth Mother (Beory) once dominated the entire Flanaess, and the traditions of her worship persist in many lands. The present hierarchy of the Old Faith is built upon the ancient religion of the druids, though deities in addition to Beory are worshiped. Of course, other "nature" religions exist outside the Old Faith, even different branches of the druidic heritage, but fewof these are in the Flanaess. The druids of the inner circles of the Old Faith gain far more prestige and respect than these other groups. Mistletoe, oak leaves, and holly leaves are their common emblems. Druids of the Old Faith are completely neutral in philosophy and personal alignment. They yield only to the world-spanning authority of the legendary Grand Druid.
The practices of the Old Faith are generally in accord with those of other nature priesthoods. The druids do not engage in the sacrifice of sentient creatures, yet there is a dark legacy within the Old Faith. The druids of antiquity allied themselves with the sorcerous Ur-Flan, who once held whole tribes in bondage to their evil. The unspeakable rituals performed by the Ur-Flan went unchallenged by the druidic hierarchy of that era, so long as the former were not so prevalent in any region as to threaten the balance of nature. Eventually, the Ur-Flan sorcerers waned in power and vanished. Some of their magical secrets are still preserved by the Old Faith.
The Old Faith is still widely practiced in the Flanaess, and not only in those regions dominated by descendants of the Flan peoples. The age-old sacred groves and monolithic circles of the Old Faith may include shrines dedicated to any nature deity the resident druids permit, but most often they are unadorned. While Beory the Oerth Mother is the best known deity associated with the Old Faith, any druid of purely neutral alignment may matriculate through the Nine Circles of Initiation, regardless of which nature god that druid venerates.
The most junior druids must first serve as Ovates, simple administrators and readers of auguries who govern only the aspirants who seek admission to the hierarchy. Above the Ovates and the Initiates are those who may claim the title of Druid. They, together with the three Archdruids and the Great Druid, provide tutelage to their underlings (there are nine Great Druids in the Flanaess, one representing each of the geographic divisions of the Flanaess). Legends also speak of a Grand Druid and a cabal of ascended mystics called the Hierophants, but complete knowledge of these masters is hidden from those outside the hierarchy.

Old Lore
The Colleges of the Old Lore are an order of bards appended to the druidic society of the Old Faith. Very few of these archetypal bards are left, as their traditions are primarily those of the ancient Flan. Bards of the Old Lore are distinguished from today's common bards and minstrels by their noble origins, their tradition of scholarship, and their use of druidic magic The prospective Old Lore bard must be of human descent and noble birth, although half-elves are permitted, as well. Tradition demands that each candidate have proven skill in warmaking and stealth, in addition to surpassing grace, in order to receive druidic training. The Old Lore legacy also includes a small number of magical, stringed instruments crafted specifically for each of the seven colleges of the Old Lore. Recovery of any such instrument is of prime concern to the remaining members of these colleges, and the true enchantments worked by the ancient craftsmen come alive only at the touch of a bard of the Old Lore.

_________________
"Be strong and do as you will. The swords of others will set you your limits." (Marauders of Gor, p.10)

After the lights go out on you/After your worthless life is through/I will remember how you scream
I can't afford to care/I can't afford to care ("Lights Out" Breaking Benjamin)
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PostSubject: Saltmarsh   Thu Sep 23, 2010 3:51 am



The state of affairs in the Viscounty of Salinmoor for the year 576:
• Viscount Hewell II has recently died of drowning in a flood. He was succeeded by Cronin III with his wife Serbeth as the Viscountess. King Kimbertos I rules Keoland.
• The tailor’s guild just lost their leader, Dricroft Cronan, because he was convicted of funding a smuggling operation, uncovered by a group of nobles and their adventuring colleagues.

Aeltyn Mansion (Area 55, P. 147)
Aerakin Mansion (Area 54, P. 147)
Ambermead House (Area 58, P. 148)
Andrigal Mansion (Area 60, P. 149)
The Anvil (Area 13, P. 128)
Baker’s Guildhall (Area 16, P. 129)
Barracks/Jail (Area 43, P. 140)
Black Market (Area 49, P. 145)
Blue Frog Brewery (Area 19, P. 130)
Major Bridges (Area 36, P. 137)
Minor Bridges (Area 37, P. 137)
Carpenter’s Guildhall (Area 11, P. 128)
Cathedral of Kord, (Area 7)
An 8-foot high stone wall surrounds this stone building. The roofs are tiled in blood red slate shingles, and the sides of the towering structure consist of massive pillars carved to resemble various styles of fighting men and women, each armed with a different weapon or performing a different feat of strength. As if these carvings weren’t enough to indicate the building’s purpose, a massive stone disc displaying the symbol of Kord is affixed over the twin oaken doors at the front of the cathedral. Although the citizens of Saltmarsh observe a number of religions, only a few have actual temples built within the city walls. The Cathedral of Kord is the second largest such temple, behind only the Cathedral of Pelor in size and popularity. Kord’s worshippers include fishers and laborers, as well as the majority of the town’s guards.
The Cathedral of Kord is open to the public, holding services once per day at sunset. These services are little more than glorified fighting matches between locals, but sometimes traveling combatants from other cities come to pit their skills against resident heroes. The temple bells ring only in times of danger; they double as a citywide alarm, and their distinctive, thunderous peal has been sounded only a few times in Saltmarsh’s history.
The cathedral of Kord is staffed 4 assistant priests, and high priest Nestor Purilltan. He has held the post only for a few short years, after the prior high priest was killed by an otyugh. The fighting sermons were Nestor’s idea, and they have been singularly responsible for the sudden upswing of Kord’s popularity in the town – the locals can’t seem to get enough of the fights.
In addition to the fights, Nestor also sponsors some orphans and gives them a place within the church. Although the children grow up in an arena fighting, they tend to turn out alright. While hardly competition for the orphanage in town, it has caused some friction between the two organizations.

Cathedral of Pelor (Area 8, P. 127)
City Gates (Area 3, P. 124)
City Walls (Area 1, P. 122)
Crazy Nettie’s Place (Area 50, P. 146)
The Curio Shop (Area 33, P. 136)
The Dancing Dryad (Area 47, P. 143)
The Drunken Urchin (Area 28, P. 134)
Dungsweeper’s Guildhall (Area 51, P. 146)
Fastralli Mansion (Area 53, P. 147)
Fishmonger’s Warehouses (Area 25, P. 133)
Frog Park (Area 21, P. 131)
Hoolwatch Tower (Area 4, P. 125)
Jewelers’ Guildhall (Area 14, P. 128)
Lassiter House (Area 57, P. 148)
Leatherworker’s Guildhall (Area 34, P. 136)
Lilybrook Orphanage (Area 46, P. 143)
Market (Area 31, P. 135)
Marshgate Bridge (Area 35, P. 136)
Merchant’s Guildhall (Area 17, P. 129)
Oak Island (Area 63, P. 152)
Oak Island Keep (Area 62, P. 152)
Radric’s General Store (Area 12, P. 128)
Rasivath Tower (Area 56, P. 148)
Saltmarsh Beacon (Area 65, P. 152)
Saltmarsh Cemetery (Area 10, P. 127)
Saltmarsh Museum (Area 38, P. 137)
Saltmarsh Playhouse (Area 24, P. 132)
Saltmarsh Point Forum (Area 61, P. 152)
The School of Blades (Area 41, P. 139)
Scrivener’s Guildhall (Area 15, P. 129)
Shipyard (Area 27, P. 133)
Shrine of Obad-Hai (Area 20, P. 130)
The Silver Raven (Area 42, P. 140)
The Slaughterhouse (Area 44, P. 142)
Standing Stones (Area 64, P. 152)
Stonemason’s Guildhall (Area 45, P. 143)
Tailor’s Guildhall (Area 23, P. 131)
Town Library (Area 39, P. 138)
Temple of Fharlanghn (Area 9, P. 127)
Timertikos House (Area 59, P. 149)
Town Hall (Area 40, P. 139)
Watchtowers (Area 2, P. 124)
Whitecap Shipping (Area 29, P. 134)
The Wicker Goat (Area 5, P. 125)

_________________
"Be strong and do as you will. The swords of others will set you your limits." (Marauders of Gor, p.10)

After the lights go out on you/After your worthless life is through/I will remember how you scream
I can't afford to care/I can't afford to care ("Lights Out" Breaking Benjamin)
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PostSubject: Re: Greyhawk Info (for Saltmarsh)   Thu Sep 23, 2010 3:58 am

Noble Families of Salinmoor

The Secunforths

The Secunforths, the ruling house of the Viscounty, have a long tradition of letting the local magnates rule their own affairs, and only interject when the good of the whole area is at stake. The Secunforths did not seek to become the Viscounts of Salinmoor. Their hereditary lands were far to the north. Neither did they welcome the promotion as they were quite prosperous as matters stood. They accepted elevation to the Viscounty because it was a vast increase in status and out of a sense of duty. Privately, they have regretted the decision ever sense.

While the Secunforths maintain the Viscounty, they maintain it at a very low ebb, drawing themselves up only when in the presence of their fellow nobles. The one bright spot of holding the Viscounty of Salinmoor is that they hold the title Viscount. As much as possible, the Secunforths absent themselves from Salinmoor to personally represent the Viscounty in the Court of the Land in Niole Dra. Unfortunately, they must eventually return for their fortunes are tied to the Viscounty and the king begins to look askance at too long a time spent away from their domain. In truth, the Secunforths are no longer wealthy enough to spend more than half the year in Niole Dra, if that. This is another cause for depression within the family.

The Lorchesters

The Lorchesters were the first Viscounts of Salinmoor, assuming the title when the Viscounty was founded. From their island home of Redshore they oversaw the initial growth and development of the Viscounty. For over 150 years, Salinmoor grew and grew prosperous under the able administration of the Lorchesters. Then matters began to unravel.

Today, the Lorchesters are still the most wealthy family within the Viscounty of Salinmoor, to the include the Secunforths. That wealth, however, is not comparable to the family’s past prosperity. Both the family fortunes and Redshore have sharply deteriorated. Still, within Salinmoor, the Lorchesters have the rare experience of real luxury and capital that might, if wisely reinvested within the Viscounty, help improve the overall situation there. This they absolutely refuse to do as they disdain the Secunforths and will not act to better their lot, even if it means not bettering their own. The Lorchesters are prisoners of their history, believing themselves wronged and pridefully refusing to accommodate, or even trying to fashion, a new reality.

The Andrigals

The Andrigals, Lord Barons of the West Riding, are the oldest of the noble families in the Viscounty of Salinmoor. They predate every other family, the Viscounty itself and even Keoland. They were among the first of the Suel to depart the Suloise Imperium, prior to the Rain of Colorless Fire, eventually settling in Salinmoor. Contemporaries of the Toli of the Hold of the Sea Princes, the Andrigals were altogether a lesser Suel house. As to their early disposition once they arrived in Salinmoor, none can say outside the family, because Salinmoor was then only thinly populated by the Flan. Subsequently, however, the family zealously converted to the worship of St. Cuthbert.

Notably, the Andrigal family never attempted to dominate the Viscounty of Salinmoor, being content to hold their lands in the west of the region abutting the Hool Marshes. Among the quietest of the noble families of Salinmoor, the Andrigals mind their own business for the most part. Perhaps, having lived in the area for so long, they have seen events ebb and flow to the point that little concerns them in the near term. They take the long view. Certainly, the family gets on well enough with the other noble families. While the Andrigals have no true allies, neither do they have any enemies.

The Rynnows

The Rynnows swore fealty to the Lorchesters as Viscounts and later swore fealty to the Secunforths as Viscounts. Lord Barons of Angleburg and Seaton Hall, they have no particular attachment to either family but are loyal to the Viscounty. Their domain includes Anglers Island and Seaton Hall. The later holding lays just outside of Seaton proper, which used to belong to the Rynnows as well, but which they willingly surrendered to the Stoutlys when that family was ennobled. Of all the nobles of Salinmoor, the Rynnows have the largest number of allies as well as the most enemies, although the later term is overly dramatic as those standing opposed to the Rynnows do so more out of jealousy than any personal animosity.

In more than a figurative sense, the Rynnows are Saltmash, being in all ways typical in their outlook. Along with the Stoutlys and the Andrigals, the Rynnows are the backbone of the Viscounty with no axe to grind and no interest in much beyond seeing to their estates. This lack of ambition is, however, a worse problem for the Viscounty than would be an overweening ambition. By their seeming contentment and willingness to let matters be, the Rynnows, as well as the Stoutlys and Andrigals, are consigning Salinmoor to stagnation. Of course, the Ryynows don’s see it that way at all. In their view, they are simply being practical and realistic.

The Stoutlys

The Stoutlys are the most recent addition to the Viscounty of Salinmoor’s nobility. Rising through the ranks in service of the Rynnows, the Stoutlys served in the Excise Service of Seaton before becoming prominent members of Seaton’s marine force. In the former capacity, the Stoutlys distinguished themselves as men and women of action, ready to risk themselves for the Viscounty, and the Rynnow Lord Barons of Seaton. In the later capacity, they similarly distinguished themselves not only to the Rynnows but to the Lords of Saltmarsh. In the process, the Stoutlys earned the trust and respect of both. It was then only a matter of time before they were ennobled. The Viscounty of Salinmoor has few enough bold and ready to take action on the Viscounty’s behalf.

Things changed when the Stoutlys became Lord Barons of Seaton, however. At first, new responsibilities were tackled enthusiastically and the Stoutlys moved aggressively to address Seaton’s long standing problems and difficulties. However, for every matter put to rest, another was uncovered or developed. At the same time, the Stoutlys found none who would match their drive, those who might being either otherwise occupied or simply lacking the energy. This included the Rynnows, who counseled caution and deliberation almost to the point of inaction. The Stoutlys were gradually, eventually worn down. While a fire still burns in the Stoutlys for action and betterment of their situation and that of the Viscounty, it is banked as they can find none willing to help.

Second only to the Rynnows, the Stoutlys are well connected within the Viscounty and they are the most well thought of. They have intermarried with the Rynnows with whom they are strongly allied. At the same time, they are on the best of terms with the Lords of Saltmarsh. The Makasters and the Nulbars, who are jealous and suspicious of the Rynnows, harbor no such ill feelings toward the Stoutlys, seeing them for the stalwarts they are in the Viscounty’s service. The Stoutlys are similarly well regarded by the Lorchesters and the Secunforths. For their part, the Stoutlys wisely trust neither the Makasters or Nulbars and are cautious when dealing with the present and former Viscounts. In this later respect, they look to the Rynnows and follow their lead, keeping mostly to their own affairs.

The Makasters

The Makaster family are the Lord Barons of Burle. They have served every Viscount from the inception of the Viscounty of Salinmoor. When the Secunforths became Viscounts, replacing the Lorchesters, the Makasters transferred their loyalties immediately and smoothly. The Makasters were able to do so easily and well because they have no true loyalty to any but their own family. They have been and are the power behind the throne. When the Viscount needs a dirty job done, the Makasters willingly undertake it and do not scruple to complete it successfully, one way or another. In this fashion, as loyal henchmen, they have made themselves invaluable to the Viscounts, who do not need to dirty their hands with unpleasant tasks.

While not proven, it is widely suspected that the Makasters have strong ties to the criminal elements in the Viscounty of Salinmoor. While they do not control them, it is believed the Makasters assist and profit from the thieves guilds in Seaton and Saltmarsh, as well as Burle. An even closer relationship is suspected between the Makasters and the smugglers and pirates who operate out of Salinmoor. In these relations, the Makasters have more to offer than their influence on the administration of the Viscounty. It is known that the Makasters, almost to a person, are wizards or at least schooled to some extent in the arcane arts. Like their general reputation, their involvement with magic is highly suspect. The tales told of their wizardly pursuits are uniformly dark.

The Nulbars

No family has risen higher or fallen father than the Nulbars. Once, the Nulbars were Dukes and Duchesses of Monmurg. When Keoland lost the lands of the Sea Hold to the Sea Princes, the Nulbars were dispossessed of their lands and their titles. As Dukes of Monmurg, they had committed the twin crimes of acting the part of equals of the Neheli Dukes of Dorlin and the Rhola Dukes of Gradsul, when their pedigree was as lofty as neither and where they owed their high estate entirely to both. Their pride preceded their fall, which was their final offense. They could not hold that which had been given over into their charge. Instead, they had to be repeatedly rescued from their own incompetence. When they fell, neither the Neheli nor the Rhola were inclined to succor the "Duke of Monmurg" in exile.

In general, the Nulbars are regarded as only slightly better than the Makasters. They are too obvious and obviously care about the Viscounty only to the extent that it can further their ambitions to regain Monmurg and their lost dukedom. The irony is that the Nulbars have lost almost all touch with political reality. Neither the Neheli nor the Rhola would willingly see the Nulbars returned to Monmurg should it ever be retaken. Worse for the Nulbars, they have been almost entirely forgotten by both royal houses. Their continuing existence was only brought to mind when, with Kimbertos I having retaken Westkeep, the Nulbars petitioned to be confirmed as Dukes of Monmurg and allowed to take possession of Westkeep. Their request was denied and they were reminded that they lost all claim to the ducal seat when they lost the dukedom, to say nothing of when they accepted a lord barony and swore fealty to the Viscount of Salinmoor. Almost the worst insult was that this message was delivered by one of the Brotherhood of Harbingers, and a junior one at that. The Nulbars were not even granted a personal audience with anyone in authority.

The Council of Saltmarsh

Egan Lassiter, Lord of Saltmarsh

Erolin Timertikos, Lord of Saltmarsh, Lord Mayor of Saltmarsh

Toren Aerakin, Lord of Saltmarsh

Lira Toliver, Keeper of the Beacon, Halfling

Lyra Ivessa, Priestess of Pelor. (This appointment is in direct conflict with the national directive that no religious official may hold an office, but her support was so overwhelming that the Council had little choice. Especially with arrest of Dricroft Cronan, the former holder of this position.)

Hosken Lashti, Halfling who owns the Silver Raven.

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The four founding families of Saltmarsh - the Lassiters, the Timertikos, the Aerakins, and the Rasivaths - have all been elevated to the nobility of the Viscounty of Salinmoor. As former adventurers, they were first knighted and subsequently elevated to lordships, being given charge of appropriate lands around the city.

Noble Houses of Saltmarsh
The Lassisters are the most immediately acquisitive of the four families that comprise the Lords of Saltmarsh. They are active within the Saltmarsh Merchants Guild through which they derive at least half of their considerable income. They are also active civically. Despite this, there is an undercurrent of suspicion surrounding the family. They have easily made as many enemies as friends in Saltmarsh. In a town as boisterous as Saltmarsh, this does not come as too much of a surprise. Neither would revelations that they had dealings with the pirates and smugglers who frequent the town. It is something more that seems to hang like a dark cloud over the family, some secret known only to them.
Egan Lassiter, Lord of Saltmarsh, Councilor of Saltmarsh

The Timertikos are accounted first among the Lords of Saltmarsh, long having held the position of Lord Mayor as a secondary title. That this has occasioned something of a rift with the Lassiters is obvious. For their part, the Timertikos attempt to downplay any rivalry but something in the manner of the Lassiters, despite an outward civility, keeps the Timertikos wary and on edge. Of all the Lords of Saltmarsh, the Timertikos derive their income in the most traditional manner - from their land holdings - and are accounted the wealthiest of the Lords. This and their able administration of a rough and tumble city has made them the leading candidates to eventually be elevated to Lord Barons.
Erolin Timertikos, Lord of Saltmarsh, Lord Mayor of Saltmarsh, Councilor of Saltmarsh

The Aerakins have suffered the recent deaths of their patriarch and his heir. The newest Lord of Saltmarsh has then been thrust into that position well before his time. Also being the youngest of the Lords of Saltmarsh, he has more than a slight credibility problem. Still, he is treated as befits one of his standing in the community. Of all the Lords of Saltmarsh, the Aerakins are the least well off. Neither their lands nor their business ventures have proven particularly profitable. This has left the Aerakins little choice but to pursue opportunities for adventure that hold out the prospect of a good financial return. In this, they alone of the four Lords of Saltmarsh continue the tradition of the founding Lords, who were fortune seekers and adventurous companions all when they first came to Saltmarsh.
Toren Aerakin, Lord of Saltmarsh, Councilor of Saltmarsh

The Rasivaths are the only demi-humans to be numbered among the Viscounty of Salinmoor's nobility, although there are rumors that the Andrigals have intermarried with elves. Halflings, the Rasivaths have intermarried with the Viscounty's native halfing population of hairfeet, stouts and shoal halflings. These connections have insured the family's prosperity. It has also occasioned the Rasivaths becoming the unofficial liaison between the Secunforths and the demi-humans among their subjects. The Rasivaths have willingly accepted this role and prospered the more for it. They often act as mediators, arbitrators and go-betweens for the other noble families. Extremely cautious, the Rasivaths support the Secunforths' benign neglect of the Viscounty. The demi-human population is not discomfited in the least that the human residents choose to allow Salinmoor to remain a backwater, and the Rasivaths see the advantage in it of being left to live their lives pretty much however they choose.
Sara Rasivath, Lady of Saltmarsh

City Watch and Militia
Geolin (Unaligned Male Dwarf fighter), Commander of he Hall Guards
Grust Redbeard (Unaligned Male half-Orc Ranger), Warden of the Saltmarsh Jail.
Iborian Kelstinar (LN Male Half-Elf Ranger), Commander of the Hoolwatch Tower (Personality: Aloof, competent, but full of himself. No one is as good at his job as him, and no one else could ever do the job, and he wouldn’t let them anyway. If these fools he had working for him were worth anything, he wouldn’t have to replace them so often.)
Lars Tannerson (LG Male Human), Commander of Eastgate
Vera Orrenti (LG Female Human), Commander of Westgate
Walthas Kang (LN Male Human), Commander of the City Watch

_________________
"Be strong and do as you will. The swords of others will set you your limits." (Marauders of Gor, p.10)

After the lights go out on you/After your worthless life is through/I will remember how you scream
I can't afford to care/I can't afford to care ("Lights Out" Breaking Benjamin)
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PostSubject: Salt Marsh 1st Adventure Recap   Thu Sep 23, 2010 4:09 am

The group heard all about the old haunted Makaster house and marched off to deal with it, with much fan fair from the local children. As they approached the house, they found it was in horrible shape, and looked spooky. Gathering their courage, they ventured forth. The group entered the house, and began a systematic sweep of the rooms, clearing one before moving on to the next. The two bedrooms on the right front of the house were cleared. Threan found a large amethyst in one of the fireplaces. After this, it was off to clear the left front rooms of the house. The library revealed a pile of moldy books, but three of them were in good condition, and drew the attention of the group. The Magical Properties of Gemstones, by Mage Tenser, The Magical Properties of Herbs and Flowers, by Mage Tenser, and The Metaphysics of Mathematics, by Mage Nystul were the titles. In the study, the group found a hidden compartment with a glass vial with 2 ounces of a watery rose coloured liquid. The master bedroom, as the group surmised the last room to be, held infinitely more curious things. A pile of refuse garnered Cathblaidd a golden earring that he figured is worth 20 gold. But it was Threan who had the biggest and ultimately most profitable discovery. When he went to investigate the trap door he had found, he set off a trap, an illusion of a horrid voice and its laughter. The sound of that laughter still haunts Brother Kordson. While he battled his own inner demons, the rest of the group pressed on to discover what was being hidden so well. Downstairs they discovered what had once been a cellar now turned into a secret base of operations for someone. Their leader turned out to be an illusionist of some skill, given the spell book the group found. Threan narrowly avoided a trap set by that same leader, a needle trap dipped in a blue dye that would discolour the skin.
A door marked “Danger” was left alone, though a through search of the room also discovered two secret doors. One, led to a wine cellar, where a corpse, none too fresh, was discovered. Though his weapon and shield showed signs of rust and disuse, his chainmail armour was pristine. When Cathblaidd went to recover it from the body, he was attacked by what Sir Ironblood identified as a rot grub. The beasts burrow into the skin and can kill in less than a minute. With precision and deftness normally attributed to chirurgeons, he excised the creature from his arm with his axe, without harming himself.
Once the corpse was put to fire, and the other seven beasts in the body were destroyed, the armour was recovered. Some of the bindings that hold it to the body must be replaced, but the chain was completely unharmed by the fire. At this point a discussion was had on whether to finish clearing out the upstairs or the
down. The group decided to clear out the lower sections first, likely to their great fortune. In exploring the natural caverns they found, they were accosted first by a patch of green slime in a cavern not well used (likely for that very reason), and then by a band of men they figured to be smugglers, whose hideout the group had found. It was here, flanked and outmanoeuvred that the valour of the company was tested and found sufficient. A timely spell by Brother Kordson grew the already hefty and powerful Sir Stonewall to massive proportions, out massing the size of an ogre or troll. But the power and strength of Sir Stonewall were paired with the speed and fury of Cathblaidd, whose furious bladework cut a swath through the front ranks of the attacking horde. The illusionist fell first, foolishly charging in. One lucky sot narrowly avoided death at the hands of Sir Stonewall, only to fall to the whirling blades of Cathblaidd, along with two of his companions. Sir Stonewall, not to be outdone, flattened a gnoll slave (quite literally), and smashed another in the face with his shield, nearly killing him. The creature died attacking Stonewall, but fell due the grievous injuries he had sustained. On the other flank, Sir Lorcan and Sir Ironblood both had bandits swarm up. Sir Lorcan nearly met his doom, but for the protection of his armour. He backed away and responded with raining stones down upon the attackers. Sir Ironblood, seeing danger close, put three of the four to sleep, and also backed away. Brother Kordson and Threan both leapt to the defense of their wizardly companions. Even as the front lines were thinning, the only standing bandit on the flank awakened his companions. While they did not get very far, he did manage to get them up so they could die on their feet. The group fell on their remaining enemies, and soon stood bloodied, but victorious.

First, as the group has a fairly well stocked and fairly comfortable larder and resting area, they decide to secure it and recover here. One full day is spent recovering spells, recording and gathering loot, locking up the trap and secret doors, and healing. No further exploration of the upstairs is done on this day of rest, namely because of the wounds the party is recovering from (no sense getting into trouble when you can’t fight it). Deciding that the danger you know is better than the danger you don’t, the group exited from the same door they entered in from. Harghen and Threan were the most adventurous, and entered into what they surmised to be a drawing room. There, as Threan searched, they were attacked by two spiders the size of Harghen’s hand. This was the first of the spiders that Harghen deftly slew.
Next the group set off to the kitchen. A quick search of the kitchen revealed a few key points of interest. One of these was the sink, the other was the door out of it into another room. Harghen set off to the door, while Cathblaidd and Sir Lorcan made searching the sink area their priority. What happened next is an example of simple things combining to make a confused and terrifying situation. At the same time that a few giant centipedes attacked Cathblaidd and Lorcan, Harghen set off into the next room, setting off the second of the howling traps. The echoing screams sounded like to several of the group as though the centipedes were screeching and warning them to get out now! While the group persevered and eventually got things straight, for a second it was pure chaos. Lorcan burnt out the nest, destroying all five of the large insects. After learning that the back stairs would not support them effectively the group set off for the front stairs. In the first bedroom on the right the group found two more spiders, and here Harghen Spider Slayer shared his limelight with Sir Stonewall. Each slew one of the spiders, Harghen deftly with his sword, and Sir Stonewall powerfully with his hammer. In the next room the collapsing floor drew off any serious investigation, though a cursory look did show there to be nothing of interest in the mostly bare room. The next room held the body of an adventurer, this one also full of rot grubs. Fire was quickly applied, and the monsters destroyed.
After jumping the weak floor near the stairs leading into the rest of upstairs, the group split up. Cathblaidd and Lorcan set forward into the left, accompanied by Threan, while Brother Jinn, Sir Stonewall, Sir Ironblood, and Harghen set off towards the back. The left group encountered a swarm of rats, while the back group encountered very little. As the rejoined, several of them made investigation of the attic. There after finding little but old clothes, they found a nest of stirges. Making a wise and quick decision, they retreated. As they did, they heard a sound up front. Throwing caution and stealth to the wind, Cathblaidd and Lorcan ran to the front of the house, just as a group of kobolds leading some goblins entered the house. A wild melee ensued, with spells and Cathblaidd flying into action. As Cathblaidd faced off with some goblins and a kobold monk, the winged and armoured warrior leading them flew up to engage Stonewall. As they had done below, Brother Jinn enlarged Sir Stonewall. Due to the already weakened state of the stairs, and the blood on the floor, the goliath slipped, falling into blackness. As things looked worse for the left flank, the right flank was doing well. The greenspawn sneak, obviously second in command in the group, called for a retreat from a costly situation. The winged warrior grudgingly acknowledged and was the last out of the house. Those facing Cathblaidd stood dead or dying, and the rest had retreated, but the cost was great.
Stonewall and Cathblaidd both were unconscious, most of the casters had few to no spells remaining, and all were exhausted. A quick barricade and retreat to rest gave the group time to recover. The next day after recovering a bit, the group managed to clear out the stirges, and explored the attic finding many items of little or no worth, but a few more documents about the ownership of the house, as well as an antique ring engraved with the holy symbol of Wee Jas and magical in nature.

The following are snippets of the talk between the Kobolds and Goblins.
Upon Attack:
Kobold Unholy Warrior in Draconic: “Attack Hand and Talon, bring the wrath of Tiamat to their throats! Their gear will add to the Loot of the Master of the Black Talon!”
Kobold Monk in Draconic: “Feel the fist of Tiamat and wither in despair unscaled fools!”
Kobold Cleric in Draconic: “May the breath of Falazure bring death to his enemies, and those of his faithful!”
Upon retreat:
Greenspawn in Draconic: “Let us leave this battle with what we have lost and no more. We must deliver our dread lady’s message to your people. The Red Hand and The Black Talon must join!”
Kobold Unholy Warrior in Draconic: “Fine, honoured scion of the Green, we will retreat; this was but an exploration anyway. Soon they will all feel our wrath!”

_________________
"Be strong and do as you will. The swords of others will set you your limits." (Marauders of Gor, p.10)

After the lights go out on you/After your worthless life is through/I will remember how you scream
I can't afford to care/I can't afford to care ("Lights Out" Breaking Benjamin)
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