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Gary Dallison
Great Reader

United Kingdom
4427 Posts

Posted - 22 Jan 2015 :  09:39:39  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Anyone have any ideas for good organisations in the Moonshaes.

I've got the Harpers (although they only have token presence usually to make contact with their friends on a regular basis), i've got the family of Song Dragons, i've got Greystone Trading (a weredog pack), and i've got the Druids of Moonshae (which includes the Church of Chauntea inside it).

The problem is that list is quite small when compared to the list of evil organisations - The Darkmoon, The Sons of Alaron, the Risen Cult of Bane, Cult of the Ravager (Bhaal), Cult of the Grimmulf (Malar), Cult of the Storm Maiden (Umberlee), The Broken Ring, Cult of the Dragon, Cult of the Dracolich (Talos), i'm also thinking of including cults for Loviatar and Talona and Auril.

Thats quite a sizable list of baddies. Its easier to think up bad guy organisations (they are much more interesting).


I need good guys, but they can't be religious (since the Ffolk largely ignore other religions - except for the church of chauntea in Callidyrr and Snowdown). They should also probably be primarily human organisations since the elves and dwarves have largely retreated into the background.

Anyone have any suggestions?

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Barastir
Master of Realmslore

Brazil
1510 Posts

Posted - 22 Jan 2015 :  10:31:58  Show Profile  Click to see Barastir's MSN Messenger address Send Barastir a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Maybe a knightly organization? I remember cavaliers as some of the coolest characters in one of the trilogies. I've also liked the northmen a lot... And in Alaron, the Gnarhelm kingdom has lots of mounted northmen, which remind me of Tolkien's Rohirrim.

EDIT: typo

"Goodness is not a natural state, but must be
fought for to be attained and maintained.
Lead by example.
Let your deeds speak your intentions.
Goodness radiated from the heart."

The Paladin's Virtues, excerpt from the "Quentin's Monograph"
(by Ed Greenwood)

Edited by - Barastir on 22 Jan 2015 10:32:46
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Gary Dallison
Great Reader

United Kingdom
4427 Posts

Posted - 22 Jan 2015 :  10:53:46  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I was going to say i hated the idea of mounted northmen from the Moonshae books, but you mentioned Gnarhelm and from what i can gather that realm was founded by a fleet from Stornanter (Luskan) and it is part of Alaron so is entirely likely to have horses.

Hadnt thought about that before but horses will definitely be a unique feature of Gnarhelm (as far as Northmen kingdoms go).



Unfortunately i'm drawing a blank on a knightly organisation short of the sisters of Synnoria (which is a bit cheesy for me but i will include it and make them follow the bearer of the sword of Cymrych Hugh.

Knightly organisations are usually founded to follow a feudal lord or a religion. The religion aspect wont work in the Moonshaes which means only the former is left. The Moonshaes are split into separate islands that long ago ceded from the High King's authority (i havent followed the novel or canon history from 1338 DR so it hasnt been refounded yet) and so each kingdom would have to have their own knightly order, but given the rural nature of the islands the lack of horses (highland ponies are more usual) and the lack of advanced arms and armour (they are more spears, axes, and leather kind of people than full plate and shield).



How about, Heralds of the High King. An order of "knights" dedicated to preserving and restoring the office of High King (not recognising its current holder Reginald Carrathal) and the Kingdom of Moonshaes. They are not really knights in the armoured cavalier sense of the word (although some of its younger and more brash members try to do so), instead they are like the Knights of the Shield (although not evil), a hereditary order of nobles and former nobles that once served the High King and would seek to do so again.

They could have been the former bodyguard and ambassadors of the High King and so the leader of Greystone Trading will be a member of this organisation as well.

For the most part they are dedicated to finding worthy candidates for the office of High King among the kings and lords of the Ffolk. When they find one they all rally around the candidate and try to help him reforge the Moonshaes.

I think i might make them the ones that hold the key to Caer Allisynn (using her Ring that she gave to Cymrych Hugh as noted in the GHoTR sidebar). When the last High King died, the Heralds of the High King searched high and low for the ring (it washed up on the shore of Callidyrr) and since that time have operated out of their base at Caer Allisynn while visiting the courts of all Ffolk kingdoms where they maintain a front of keeping track of heraldry and lineages (communicating with the Heralds on the mainland).

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Gary Dallison
Great Reader

United Kingdom
4427 Posts

Posted - 22 Jan 2015 :  10:54:34  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Cheers Barastir, that got my creative juices flowing again. Thankyou

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Gary Dallison
Great Reader

United Kingdom
4427 Posts

Posted - 22 Jan 2015 :  12:36:12  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
And heres a brief writeup. I'll be doing a full article for them though i think, plenty of potentil for a secretive order of knights that mix the harpers and heralds in their original roles.


Heralds of the High King: This secretive and hereditary order of knights is a seemingly minor order dedicated to the preservation of the various lineages of the kings of the Ffolk (all of which are related to the Cymrych dynasty). In reality the knighthood is devoted to restoration of the now long gone Kingdom of the Moonshaes and the office of the High King.
Originally the Heralds of the High King were the noble sons of various Lairds and vassal kings of the Kingdom of the Moonshaes, they formed an elite bodyguard for the king that protected him in battle. They were first formed from those who fought with Cymrych Hugh in the final battle against Kazgoroth (many of whom died during or soon after of wounds inflicted during the battle) and the tradition persisted where at least one son of the most prestigious noble households would be sent to train in the court of the High King.
The Heralds of the High King saw much action in the long wars against the Northmen and gained a fearsome reputation as unyielding in battle no matter the odds. After the Tethyrian immigration the call for the Heralds diminished as the Ffolk kingdoms built new defences against the Northmen incursions. The role of Heralds of the High King changed to a symbolic and ambassadorial role except during times of war.
With the death of High King Tanner, many of the Heralds felt the current holder of the office of High King to be inadequate, in fact the Carrathal lineage is thought by many Heralds even today to contain none worthy to be called High King. The Heralds pledged to restore the Kingdom of the Moonshaes to its former glory and place a worthy incumbent on the throne of High King, and many gave up their nobility in order to devote them solely to this goal.
They devoted all their resources, bankrupting many of the former noble scions, to finding the treasures of the High King; the Sword of Cymrych Hugh and the Crown of the Moonshaes are still lost, but they did recover the Ring of Alison from a trader and former caravan owner in Cantrev Callidyrr in the year 1023 DR (it was sold to the trader by Toluth Silverhelm whose father had been given it by his lover from Nindrol, before that it was lost in 420 DR when High King Lann drowned after his ship sank off the coast of Snowdown).
Using the ring the Heralds of the High King called Caer Allisynn back to the surface and entered its pristine hallways. Inside they discovered vast treasures; including the remains of the Selantime Harp that Queen Allisynn once played during the final confrontation with Kazgoroth. Queen Allisynn also inhabits the castle as a ghostly apparition that is bound to the Selantime Harp by some fell taint of Kazgoroth, she is unable to rest while Kazgoroth survives and spends her time providing sagely advice to the Heralds of the High King.
The Heralds use their expertise as heralds to cover their activities, they are ever watchful for suitable candidates among the nobles and kings of the Ffolk, when such a worthy individual is found they rally around him and provide whatever aid they can in order that he succeeds in uniting the other islands behind his banner; although maintaining their guise as simple heralds the entire time. Current worthy individuals include Prince Tristan of Corwell.

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Gary Dallison
Great Reader

United Kingdom
4427 Posts

Posted - 23 Jan 2015 :  09:37:33  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Nearing the end of detailing all locations on Callidyrr on the maps (4e and any others i could find).

The details for Callidyrr have been mostly human details since the elves are gone from there, the dwarves retreated into the background ages ago, the druids are almost non existant on that island and the humans and church of chauntea cover almost the entire kingdom.

The few mythic mentions are the werewolves of Torriage Wood, the Swan Maidens of Swanmay River, the goblins of Dernall Forest, the orcs, trolls, goblins (and dwarves) of the Fairheight Mountains, and thats about it. Callidyrr and Snowdown are more like mainland Faerun than the rest of the Moonshaes (because of their climate and terrain and proximity)

Corwell is going to have much more mythic detail and monsters and wierd creatures than Callidyrr (as thats where the fey seem most concentrated).

Moray can be a point of struggle between the Northmen and Ffolk.

The Northmen islands will be filled with Northmen politics and struggles with giants and dragons (which are more suited to Northmen mythology) with the occasional exiled fey thrown in.

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Gary Dallison
Great Reader

United Kingdom
4427 Posts

Posted - 23 Jan 2015 :  10:35:43  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Nuts, both Alaric's are before the arrival of the Ffolk (-90 DR to -6 DR.

And the Corsair Prince supposedly revived the Nelanther Pirates in 1227 DR

quote:
After five years rebuilding the long-gone Nelanther pirates, the Corsair Prince led a flotilla against Zazesspur


So i've got plenty of small pirate activities to use but no famous names or large fleets at my disposal. However Nelanther pirates kidnapping Bridgit and Scothgar seems like a good fit (after a tip off from the Sons of Alaron, who maybe later move to Snowdown and can explain the links of that island to the Nelanther Pirates)

Also a treasure horde of Black Alaric hidden between -90 DR and -6 DR 9 (from one or both Alaric's) might be exciting to be hidden in the Moonshae Isles. I'll have to see if there are any suitably named places.

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Barastir
Master of Realmslore

Brazil
1510 Posts

Posted - 23 Jan 2015 :  11:39:51  Show Profile  Click to see Barastir's MSN Messenger address Send Barastir a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by dazzlerdal

Cheers Barastir, that got my creative juices flowing again. Thankyou

Good, glad I could help, even if only with a humble hint of an idea!

"Goodness is not a natural state, but must be
fought for to be attained and maintained.
Lead by example.
Let your deeds speak your intentions.
Goodness radiated from the heart."

The Paladin's Virtues, excerpt from the "Quentin's Monograph"
(by Ed Greenwood)
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Gary Dallison
Great Reader

United Kingdom
4427 Posts

Posted - 23 Jan 2015 :  11:48:54  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Barastir

quote:
Originally posted by dazzlerdal

Cheers Barastir, that got my creative juices flowing again. Thankyou

Good, glad I could help, even if only with a humble hint of an idea!



It was far more than just a hint. It was a great big neon sign to a whole new avenue of intrigue. I now have a credible use for Caer Allisynn (in place of "the goddess made it appear out of the water"), i have a unifying network of good agents in the courts of every Ffolk kingdom in the Moonshaes, i have a reason why the ancient magic items keep reappearing (the Heralds of the High King keep finding them and placing them in the paths of the worthy), and as you pointed out the chivalric organisations are often the most fun so i can have a military arm that acts just in that fashion (although they will be wearing chainmail and wielding a sword and shield and using boats rather than wearing full plate and riding horses - Moonshaes are lower tech after all, or at least they should have been they have neither the resources nor the money for things like full platemail and have been isolated from mainland faerun until 1300 DR).


Any other ideas you care to offer would be most appreciated.

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Gary Dallison
Great Reader

United Kingdom
4427 Posts

Posted - 23 Jan 2015 :  12:03:50  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Thanks to an idea from George Krashos i have hidden the hoard of Black Alaric in the Moonshae Isles for the finding if anyone can decode my rather pathetic riddle (you will need a map of the Moonshae Isles to find it though).


The Hoard of Black Alaric: In ages past the flag of Black Alaric was to be seen flying atop the mast of every ship in the Nelanther Isles. Two separate pirates took up the mantle of Black Alaric to fight against the king of Tethyr and between them they plundered hoards of riches enough for a king’s ransom.
None know what happened to this treasure for it was never found, and there have been pirates living in the Nelanther Isles for over 1,000 years searching for it.
Only a single riddle was left to detail the path to Alaric’s treasure. “In the mouth of the last of the three dragon heads from the Land under Moon lies my treasure.”
Many scholars are certain the dragon heads refers to a location on the Dragons Neck Peninsula, others believe the Land under Moon refers to the Moonshae Isles in reference to it once being ruled by Lady Ordalf Moonshael of the nation of Sarifal, but what the three dragon heads and where the last one may be remains a mystery.

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Gary Dallison
Great Reader

United Kingdom
4427 Posts

Posted - 23 Jan 2015 :  14:45:08  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
And a small idea for what Alaric's treasure hoard might contain.


. . . . . an isolated cliff point that looks over a small bay. Hidden by a large boulder is a small cave mouth in the base of the cliff that holds a single human skeleton now rotted away almost to dust after over 1000 years of decay.
Howling winds whistle through the gaps in the boulder leading many to believe the bay is haunted.
Those that enter the cave end up duelling with the skeleton. If the intruder survives then the sabre of Black Alaric is his until his death (whereupon it returns to this cave for the next worthy finder). The sabre grants the wielder powers of command over the wind and the waves as well as people. It also allows the wielder to breathe underwater at will. Finally the sword can disguise the wearer to look like the original Black Alaric upon command.
This is the only treasure found in the cave. Black Alaric’s trusted lieutenants entombed the pirate in the cave and stole the treasure he had intended to store therein, they then fought amongst each other for their prize and the ship ran aground on rocks off the mainland of Faerûn.

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Gary Dallison
Great Reader

United Kingdom
4427 Posts

Posted - 23 Jan 2015 :  15:06:54  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Of course the skeleton has to be that of the first Black Alaric (the second having perished in a sabre duel with king Nishal.

I stuck to Steven Schend's rule and the first Black Alaric was believed killed in the big fleet battle, but no body no death.

So he tries to hide away his hoard while he goes incognito for a while. His pirate friends betray him because they are scum and seal him in the cave then they do a runner with his hoard and end up fighting among themselves as the ship wrecks off the coast of the Western Heartlands (which i think is where a cave was put in the 1st baldur's gate game).

I will of course have to think up a curse for the sabre since the first (and second) Black Alaric's were not nice people, and it will probably involve being possessed by Alaric's spirit, thus gradually changing them into an evil blood thirsty pirate.

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Gary Dallison
Great Reader

United Kingdom
4427 Posts

Posted - 27 Jan 2015 :  11:17:58  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Okay i'm trying to figure out a few details of the Northmen that arrive in the Moonshaes in 852 DR (and for me they take Gnarhelm from Callidyrr).

Now i think they are from Stornanter given its collapse a decade earlier and it being one of the few realms of of significance around at that time.

So i'm trying to work out the history of Stornanter/Illusk/Luskan in order to find uniqueness for the Northmen of Gnarhelm.

I've got that it was originally a Northmen settlement (the Northmen displacing the Ice Hunters further north). It was destroyed and around -400 DR it was resettled by Netherese.

The Northmen that had it were quite good at Rune Magic or so it appears and the Netherese refugees refined that Rune Magic. So i'm thinking that the early Northmen were in service to giants (probably from Tuern/Ruathym) and the Rune Magic crept into their society over time. But once they freed themselves from giant rule they had a backlash against the rune magic of their former masters (and all magic in general).

Now the Netherese Illusk appears to die around 95 DR when Uthgar appears and kills loads of wizards, then in 96 DRStefan Blackspear (sounds Northman ish) exiles the rest of the wizards (doesnt sound like a Netherese attitude) from the city and proclaims himself Highlord.

So i think following 100 DR the Netherese portion of Illusk starts to decline and Northmen are in the ascendence once again.

152 DR Illusk is captured by orcs and it is recolonised in 205 DR by immigrants from Uthtower, Yarlith and the Mlembryn lands. I think these more southerly people are from the Western Heartlands stock which is a mix of Tethyr/Calishite, Northmen, Netherese, and the ancient humans. They seem to expand across the north for a bit as their power is in ascendance.

These people are gradually pushed further and further back by orc hordes and Illusk and much of the north is once again ruined around 600 DR.

Then in 800 DR Laeral creates Stornanter. Now the Illuskans are the most prevalent race in the north now and i figure it was similarly true back then. I'm pretty sure that following the eruption of Ascalhorn it is the Illuskan Northmen and the Uthgardt barbarians (a mix of Northmen and Netherese) that save the north from being completely overrun, which makes sense for a bunch of savage warlike humans being able to wear down hordes of orcs and demons that expended a lot of strength annihilating the dwarven and elven empires.

So i'm thinking Stornanter was predominantly peopled by Northmen/Illuskan.

It also looks like they did not have the dislike of magic that most Northmen have now because Laeral was their queen (a spell hurler of the highest order) and one of her courtiers was a magic user who helped her build that throne.

Now i'm thinking these Northmen are a little more civilised than the islanders so they can farm, build stone buildings, even have horses. I might have some rudimentary rune magic from their ancient Illuskan heritage (i'm presuming Laeral helped revive it while she was ruler).


Anyone have any other ideas? Anyone know if i am even vaguely correct on the Stornanter/Northmen assumption (Eric/George)?

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Gary Dallison
Great Reader

United Kingdom
4427 Posts

Posted - 30 Jan 2015 :  12:32:23  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Moving onto Corwell now.

An attempt at the Kendrick Dynasty of Corwell from its beginnings following the death of Cymrych Hugh.

I figured that since Christopher and Cedric Koart/Riker were named Regent of Corwell (or at least the lands that would be called Corwell) then there cant have been a king. Furthermore you dont just get a king, events have to lead up to an appointment. So Callidyrr Hugh is ruler of Corwell and Callidyrr (although the term king was probably not used then).

Cyrmyrch Hugh was probably the first "King" of both having been appointed High King by the tribal council of both lands.
Cymrych Hugh appointed a regent to govern the lands that would become Corwell on his behalf while he lived in Callidyrr, and Cyrmych Hugh's son continued the practice. Both Cyrmych Hugh and his son held the title "King of Corwell - or whatever the nation was called then.

Then we get to High King Carrig I's reign. Now he died fighting Northmen and i have made it so that a significant portion of Norland was conquered during his reign, he also fought the Northmen that landed on Norheim as well (where he died). So all that warfare is going to require money and men. Tribal communities tend not to be very forthcoming with men and money unless they do it as a personal favour.

So i figure High King Carrig negotiated with the tribal council of Corwell and in return for lots of men and money, he gave them the power to appoint their own King who would then swear fealty/be a vassal of the High King.

Thus we have the first King of Corwell (and i came up with a reason for its name).

High King Gwylloch removes that power of appointment. Gorham restores it and finally High King Cameron makes the title King of Callidyrr hereditary, and Corwell likely follows suit. Now the tribes do not have the power of appointment unless there is a dynastic dispute.


Not sure that i will detail all the kings, but i just wanted to establish the formation of the dynasty. i'll probably only do the important ones from now on.




Kendrick Dynasty of Corwell
Kendrick Hugh was the first son of Callidyrr Hugh’s second son. Callidyrr’s second son became Laird of Caervu when Callidyrr became King of Corwell and Callidyrr. His son was then voted to become King of Corwell when the tribal council of Corwell was given the power of appointment by High King Carrig I in his negotiations with the tribal council to gather support for his expeditions against the Northmen that had just seized a large portion of Westarlun (Norland) from the High King. King Kendrick Hugh is considered the founder of the Kendrick Dynasty and House Kendrick of Corwell.
King Kendrick Hugh: Born 224, Reigned 275/289. First son of the second son of Callidyrr Hugh. Crowned king by the tribal council of Corwell after High King Carrig I negotiated with the council of Corwell for more money and men to fight Northmen invaders. Kendrick’s death sees High King Gwylloch appoint himself King of Corwell, despite the objections of the Council of Corwell who crown King Durnhal Kendrick of Corwell in 293 DR in defiance of High King Gwylloch.
King Kendrick Hugh ordered the construction of Caer Corwell above the small settlement of Corr’s Well, and names Cantrev Corwell the capital of the kingdom of Corwell (until that time Corwell had never been a kingdom in a real sense and was only a collection of tribal lands know as the Shyffolk lands – history has been retrospectively altered for reasons of clarity to easily identify Corwell and its beginnings).
King Durnhal Kendrick: Born 259 DR, Reigned 293/295. First son of King Kendrick Hugh, he ruled briefly from Cantrev Corwell before fleeing into hiding when it was clear that High King Gwylloch wanted Durnhal dead. King Durnhal and Queen Morgan were betrayed by Laird Brynn of Cantrev Bryndal (now known as Cantrev Kingsbay) and captured by Prince Ketheryll who slew them in bloody combat
King Dhryden Kendrick: Born 279 DR, Reigned 299/302. Appointed by agreement of High King Gorham and the tribal council of Corwell after the tumultuous reign of the mad High King Gwylloch. Died of food poisoning, although not believed to be deliberate.
King Rhydian Kendrick: Born 281 DR, Reigned 303/335. Second son of King Durnhal Kendrick. Swore a blood oath to serve High King Markus as soon as he was crowned High King, fearing quite rightly that the son would follow the father. Thankfully High King Markus was slain in a drunken brawl before his madness became too pronounced, King Rhydian survived a few years after to enjoy the benevolent reign of High King Cameron “the Wise”

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Gary Dallison
Great Reader

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Posted - 30 Jan 2015 :  13:57:09  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Reimagining some of the locations on Gwynneth and writing in a bit more story to the area.

I'm gradually working up to detailing the Myrloch Vale. I'm thinking of making the Glade of the Cat Lord a Moonwell with a feline/fey guardian.

I've also noticed a few discrepancies surrounding the Fens of the Fallon. It looks like Kazgoroth had his minions despoil the Moonwell there with dead bodies for some reason which implies that it was not always fetid and evil. However the Banshee Rider was created by an elf warrior that ventured into the Fens of the Fallon which seems to have twisted her into an undead (albeit one that still retains a semblance of good), which suggests that it has been twisted and evil for quite some time.

Also the 4e writeups for the Moonshaes mention Banshrae Warriors but with no indication as to what they are (or maybe it did and i missed them).

I'm thinking of making the Fens of the Fallon the place where Kazgoroth was killed by Cymrych Hugh and his death polluted the Moonwell there. Then perhaps those foolish enough to venture into the fens become Banshrae Warriors (some kind of elvish Curst type undead), the Banshee Rider being the first.




Corwell: Corwell exists as a kingdom of men trapped between primeval forces on the most mythic of all the Moonshae Islands. To the north lies Winterglen and the Myrloch Vale, lands full of fey creatures that do not react well to human intrusions. To the south is the dangerous Llyrath forest filled with bloodthirsty wildlife and vegetation.
Unlike the kingdom of Callidyrr, Corwell exists in much the same manner as it has since its settlement in 140 DR. The people live mostly in small wooden huts (except for the occasional rich merchant family in Cantrev Corwell) that aggregate into small Cantrevs along the cleared stretch of land north of Llyrath Forest.
Each Cantrev is ruled by a clan, most of whom still own the same Cantrev created by their ancestors over a millennia ago. These clans form the tribal council of Corwell that “serves” the king, but in reality spend most of their time looking out only for themselves and attending council when it suits them, usually to approve a new king that favours them.
The clans war little amongst themselves for there is much in and around Corwell that is happy to kill and eat unwary humans fighting each other.
The lands of Corwell are still wild and untamed, beast roam the rocky land that defines Corwell. The single road running from Cantrev Pontswain to Cantrev Kingsbay was once a white stone paved road that has dwindled over the centuries to a broken track through lack of maintenance, and it is only mildly safer than the wilderness.
People move little between the cantrevs unless they absolutely have to. Most of the traffic comes from the small family run caravans that travel between settlements trading goods and services.
The average commoner of Corwell spends his life tending to a small growing patch out the back of his shack, and looking after his flock of sheep that graze the rocky hills (most shepherds group their sheep together with neighbours for safety), those lucky enough to live on the coast also spend their time fishing. There are few to no shops in Corwell, except in Cantrev Corwell itself, most trading is paid for with bartering furs and food.
Each Cantrev has a single stone Gorwyr that is usually the house of the local Laird, when attacked by wandering animals, raiding Northmen, or mythic beasts, the Ffolk run to the Gorwyr and barricade themselves in until the threat has passed by.
Corwell is a picture of ancient Faerûn lost in the mists of time, life is a daily struggle for its inhabitants, and yet the people are happy with their lot and some of the friendliest (once you get to know them), and most generous people in all the realms.
Cantrev Caervu: One of the crown lands of House Kendrick of the kingdom of Corwell, ruled by one of the sons of the king. It has long been something of a secure paradise among the lands of Corwell, living in the shadow of the Llewyrr elves of Winterglen.
The elves kept the wild animals under watch and helped the people of Caervu to live among nature in peace and quiet. Often the elves could be found visiting their friends among the Ffolk of Caervu, and occasionally entire groups of them would turn up for dinner.
The people of Caervu lived from the forest, harvesting nature’s bounty from the sick and the dying, and the vegetation that was spare; as instructed by the elves. When the Corwell Cabal arrived in 1109 DR the elves that survived fled to Caervu and then to Synnoria (although more than a few stayed, giving Caervu more than a few half elves).
The people of Caervu heeded the warnings and prepared for the war that would come by arming themselves with spears and bows. War never came and within a few years the people of Caervu were venturing beneath the boughs of Winterglen once more to take what they needed.
Then the disappearances began and people began to avoid the forest. Now the people of Caervu live as shepherds like the rest of the Ffolk, and try their best to keep their herds and themselves alive despite the increasing attacks from shadowy demons and icy impish fairies that venture down from the forest every few months.
The attacks have gradually increased with frequency and are now so bad that Caervu is fast becoming a ghost town. The only small mercy they have is that the Northmen never raid Cantrev Caervu, they are far too wary of shadow demons and ice covered fairies to raid this most northern of Ffolk settlements on Corwell.
Cantrev Kingsbay: Originally known as Cantrev Bryndal after the Clan Brynn that founded it. Early in the history of Corwell, Laird Brynn of Cantrev Bryndal betrayed the King of Corwell to Prince Ketheryll; son of the mad High King Gwylloch. This betrayal earned him the enmity of the other Lairds and in 310 DR, Clan Brynn was stripped of its tribal status and all its holdings and titles by King Rhydian with full support of the tribal council.
Since that day Cantrev Kingsbay has been part of the royal lands; along with Cantrev Corwell and Cantrev Caervu, and is governed by a Scantraga appointed by the king (usually one of his other sons).
In 1123 DR the entire 12 berth docks were purchased from the crown by the head of the powerful Silverhelm Trading Company for a princely sum. The Moonshae Trade Wars saw those docks burned to their very foundations in the year 1139 DR by a surprise and uncharacteristic attack in winter by Nelanther Reavers, most believed it was the Two Silvers Traders that hired the reavers.
The docks were never rebuilt (the crown having squandered the money) and Cantrev Kingsbay has faded from the primary port of Corwell to a small fishing cantrev with a single berth dock for small vessels.
Llyrath Forest: This ancient forest is the remains of a single forest that covered the southern and eastern parts of Gwynneth Island, stretching its present day borders all the way north to Winterglen.
In a time before humans, before the first coming of Kazgoroth, Llyrath Forest was known as Quieryn and was a dangerous place even then, filled with magic infused animals and their fey wardens.
The LeShay and then the elves tended to the creatures and the trees, all of which were full of life and vibrant power. Then came Kazgoroth the Beast, the despoiler, with a single touch he corrupted those he encountered, turning their power into rage and turning them against the wardens and even themselves.
The very trees uprooted themselves (to their later destruction) and walked with the animals and fey of the forest behind Kazgoroth’s banner as he marched on Myrloch Vale.
With Kazgoroth’s defeat the beasts under his sway quickly withered away to nothing as the rigours of infinite rage took their toll. What was left of Quieryn were the southern boughs of Llyrath Forest and the northern reaches of Winterglen, the land between was barren and windswept.
In time the forests began to recover, but the humans arrived and cut back the forests even more to build their homes, and then Kazgoroth returned.
This time he brought with him the taint of undeath, a taint that soaked into the soil and ensured the forest would never again reclaim the land of Corwell, worse still the blood of the dead was fed upon by the animals and the trees and it has driven them mad and angry.
None venture into Llyrath Forest that do not fear for their life, because to do so puts one in great and immediate danger. Bears, boars, wolves, even foxes have been known to attack travellers venturing into the forest (and they occasionally venture onto the roads and cantrevs north of the forest), the larger herbivores are just as ornery as the carnivores and have bludgeoned many a traveller to death, even the vegetation is said to attack the unwary with blood soaked branches found among the trees.
Winterglen: This forest was at one time part of the many Llewyrr lands of the Moonshae Isles. It was the elves of Winterglen that engaged in hostilities with the Shyffolk of Gwynneth after a logging dispute with Melvair Darkhorn. The elves emerged relatively unscathed from the conflict with the primitive humans, but gradually their numbers dwindled as they retreated more and more to Synnoria.
Still, Winterglen remained a pleasant and picturesque forest under the care of the small groups of elves that remained beneath its boughs. The forest was constantly blasted by freezing winds funnelled through the Strait of Oman which capped the trees in an icy frost and caused the formation of beautiful icicles that dangle from the branches sometimes as far down as the forest floor. Even in summer the temperature here is rarely above freezing.
Following 1109 DR the elves of Winterglen suddenly disappeared and the forest turned dark and fey. Whereas before a friend of the elves could wander unmolested under its boughs (providing the Llewyrr were watching them) now an intruder is likely to be set upon every mile by all kinds of fey creatures.
The forest is seething with dark and malicious fey that hate humans. This of course is only in response to the evils visited upon them by a group of wizards known as the Corwell Cabal that fled here in 1109 after attempting to eliminate the witches Cymbre and Amye. The Corwell Cabal summoned hordes of monsters from the Outer Planes and even the Planes of Faerie and Shadow, their monsters slew the elves and drove them from the forest, then the mages turned their minions to creating a large fortress for them in the centre of the forest from otherworldly materials.
The monsters they turned loose included more than a few fey that became tainted by the evils the mages unleashed. These dark fey then “infected” the other fey living in the forest with their twisted ideals.
Today a battle rages between the fey and the forces of the Corwell Cabal. Occasionally it spills out into the lands around Cantrev Caervu and beyond, but mostly they remain inside the forest torturing and maiming each other to their wicked little hearts’ desire.
Citadel Umbra: This black rock castle is the home of the Corwell Cabal. It is fashioned out of shadowstuff on the outside and is filled with creatures from the planes that do the bidding of this ancient and now quite powerful group of mages.
At the centre of the citadel is a huge and bloated ray (as the fish) like creature that pumps out shadow material that is fashioned into spell components or other items for the Corwell Cabal to work upon.
This monstrosity was brought here by the Corwell Cabal and bound to a chamber in the depths of Citadel Umbra. Its presence has gradually turned the Corwell Cabal into Shadows (although they retain their memories and magic using abilities) which has enabled them to survive several centuries. It acts as a planar rift that has caused much of the forest in a 13 mile wide arc to become infused with shadowstuff.
It is this taint that tainted the minds of the fey and drove them mad.
Aurilandur’s Icy Copse: The fairy ice maiden Aurilandur was one of a number of powerful fey that inhabited the boughs of Winterglen. Through the ages she kept Winterglen forest in the grip of winter and used her powers to create beautiful ice portraits from the living forest around it.
With the coming of the Corwell Cabal, this powerful fey being has slowly been twisted by the taint of shadow and driven mad. She now delights in slowly torturing any non fey by allowing the icy touch of winter to creep through their forms freezing them solid into agony wracked statues. She is the ruler defacto ruler of the fey of Winterglen because she is the most powerful and forthright of her kin, none disobey the Ice Queen, and few of them would want to anymore as they are just as twisted as her.
Aurilandur hurls her icy minions at the walls of Citadel Umbra, and occasionally sends them out to gather living beings so that she can transform them into icy statues to live in her home; Aurilandur’s Icy Copse, which is like a menagerie of ice statues of random creatures frozen into poses of pain and agony and hung amid the branches of the trees.

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BenN
Senior Scribe

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Posted - 30 Jan 2015 :  15:29:31  Show Profile Send BenN a Private Message  Reply with Quote
This is fantastic stuff!
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Gary Dallison
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Posted - 30 Jan 2015 :  15:32:52  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Glad you like it. Could always do with some more ideas if you have any suggestions.

I'm working on Corwell at the moment before i move onto Moray, which i will be making a more warlike island of the Ffolk (and contain a sizable portion of Northmen blood as well).

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Gary Dallison
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Posted - 30 Jan 2015 :  16:21:42  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
An idea to develop the history of the Fens and the Banshrae. The Banshrae can be another good organisation of the Moonshaes, but one that is cursed and will probably turn evil in the end, through no fault of their own.




Fens of the Fallon: When Kazgoroth escaped from Nomans Isle and rampaged across the Moonshae Isles, he ultimately ended up in the Myrloch Vale at the head of an army of drathak warriors intent upon destroying Synnoria and the Greater Moonwell known as the Sacred Grove of the Earthmother.
He was ultimately beaten back by the elves of Synnoria, the dwarves of Highhome and Highrock, and the humans of Callidyrr and Corwell. The allied forces destroyed Kazgoroth’s drathak hordes and pushed him back into the area known today as the Fens of the Fallon.
There the two surviving bards kept Kazgoroth at bay as Cymrych Hugh closed in for the kill with his flaming sword. As Kazgoroth attempted to retreat into the Moonwell, his horn was severed from his head and his body turned to ash. From that moment on the Moonwell here was polluted beyond restoration and the area surrounding it became the fetid and inhospitable swamp land known as the Fens of the Fallon.
In 562 DR the Sisters of Synnoria mounted an expedition into the Fens of the Fallon to clear out an infestation of monstrous creatures that were attacking Synnoria and its people. The Sisters were ambushed by Firbolg giants and a number of them perished, including the captain; Anhaern Rhyllgallohyr.
The Firbolg dumped the bodies of their victims into the Moonwell to further desecrate it and fled back to their home in the mountains around the Myrloch Vale.
Unfortunately for Anhaern Rhyllgallohyr she was animated by the evil taint of the Moonwell in the Fens of the Fallon and returned as a Curst like undead being with a keening howl that quickly became known as the Banshee Rider. The Firbolg around the Myrloch Vale now delight in throwing the bodies of victims into the Moonwell in the Fens of the Fallon to see who will return as hideous and cursed undead.


The Banshrae: The unfortunate members of this organisation are the formerly living victims of Firbolgs (that weren’t thrown into the cooking pot), that the giants saw fit to dispose of in Moonwell at the centre of the fetid swampland known as the Fens of the Fallon.
Animated into undeath by the cursed magic of the Moonwell, these beings resemble the Curst that plague areas surrounding Waterdeep. They retain the memories and abilities that they had in life but are utterly indestructible.
The Banshrae are named after a corruption of the name given to the first of their number; Anhaern Rhyllgallohyr the Banshee Rider. These formerly living have been cast out of their former lives and have been forced to band together for companionship and protection (although they cannot die they can still feel pain).
The roam the Highlands and Shrouded Lands west of the Myrloch Vale, living in the inhospitable places that nobody else would want, from there they spend their time attempting to keep the Fens of the Fallon out of Firbolg hands to prevent anyone else suffering the same fate as them.
The Banshrae are led still by its eldest member Anhaern Rhyllgallohyr. The first and most powerful of her kind, she possesses a paralysing shriek and the ability to phase partially into the Plane of Faerie making her incorporeal when she desires.
Anhaern roams the length and breadth of the Moonshae Isles seeking to do good and looking for signs that Kazgoroth might return, for she alone knows the secret of the Banshrae and that they were animated by whatever evil magic Kazgoroth possessed, therefore should he return he will undoubtedly be able to control any Banshrae he comes into contact with.
A manifestation of Kazgoroth’s influence in the Banshrae is the small chance that any Banshrae engaged in combat will suffer a form of madness and attack anything in sight until all beings nearby are dead, or she is rendered unconscious.
The Banshrae are made up of a variety of people, former humans that live in the settlement of Fenton, diving for pearls in the sea and trading with members of Greystone Trading when they pass by. Former elves live in the settlement of Elyssyrr and ponder on the nature of their existence through meditation and sword practice. There are 11 elves, all former Sisters of Synnoria, and 35 humans; there is even an unlucky dwarf from Highhome that roams the southern mountains of Myrloch Vale.
At any one time up to half their number are travelling the Moonshae Isles on Anhaern’s orders; most are in Gwynneth though, looking for strange events and trying to help the people of the Moonshaes (be they Ffolk, Northmen, elf, or dwarf) in any way they can. Most try and disguise themselves in heavy furs and hope that the pale pallor of their skin is just taken as a lack of sunshine (with varying degrees of success) as they try to blend into the settlements as they pass through.
It seems that Anhaern is able to use the Moonwells to travel and communicate between islands (although she seldom does so in case her taint pollutes the waters) and uses this knowledge to keep in contact with other Banshrae.

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crazedventurers
Master of Realmslore

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Posted - 30 Jan 2015 :  22:03:56  Show Profile  Visit crazedventurers's Homepage Send crazedventurers a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Flamsterd by Ed:

http://oracle.wizards.com/scripts/wa.exe?A2=ind0309C&L=REALMS-L&D=0&I=3&P=7208

grab it quick before the Realms-L disappears forever. It starts about half way down a very long post by Ed

Cheers

Damian

So saith Ed. I've never said he was sane, have I?
Gods, all this writing and he's running a constant fantasy version of Coronation Street in his head, too. .
shudder,
love to all,
THO
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Gary Dallison
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Posted - 31 Jan 2015 :  08:50:18  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Good call on the Flamsterd thing. Thankfully my version of FLamsterd matches Ed's as a guy who is interested in the intricacies of magic, powerful individuals, nature and the cycle of magic, etc.


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Gary Dallison
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Posted - 31 Jan 2015 :  08:54:46  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Just been searching the archives before their demise (I hope someone manages to store all the entries.

And I came across this.

quote:
From George Krashos and Eric Boyd (via the magic of the List archives);

======================================
Bard colleges all slid into decline less than 300 years ago, perhaps circa
the time of the Harpstar Wars (1182 - 1222 DR), when a senior half-elven
Harper like Iriador Wintermist (Garnet) would have been distracted serving
politicians like Khelben. Note that Iriador was a contempory of Finder
Wyvernspur, and traveled with him as a Harper (i.e. sometime after 1022 DR)
ere his exile a few years after 1058 DR.
- Elfsong, p. 154, 231, 254
- Code of the Harpers, pp. 24, 27

Fochlucan (Silverymoon, now the site of Utrumm's Music Conservatory)
- Elfsong, pp. 10, 111, 171

MacFuirmidh (Moonshaes, outside of Caer Callidyrr, surrounding wineries
survive)
- Elfsong, pp. 15, 111, 170
I've decided it fell in the Year of Falling Menhirs (1137 DR).

Doss (in Berdusk)
- Elfsong, p. 175

Canaith (in Tethyr, near Zazzesspur)
- Elfsong, p. 175
- Lands of Intrigue (unpublished, found in original draft)
<<< The long-fallen ruins of the bards' college of Canaith
lie strewn along the northern stretch of the Hillstrail about 70 miles south
of Zazesspur. Its three buildings were abandoned ages ago, but their remains
were further destroyed by fire during the Black Days, as its remains were
used as hiding places for the Black Tyrant Count Romar Miklaas and his
family
and the local halflings used fire to drive them out. >>>

Cli (???)
As far as I know, we currently have no idea where this college was
located. I would propose that it was located in Neverwinter, specifically
the
site that is now the House of Knowledge, a temple of Oghma. However, it may
well be that Elfsong implicitly locates the last college by dint of
discussing where problems erupt thanks to Garnet's machinations.
Volo's Guide to the North, pp. 133-134.

Anstruth (in Sundabar, only one building remains and now serves as a
warehouse for musical instruments)
- Elfsong, pp. 154, 176

Ollamn (in Waterdeep, now the site of the House of Song, although many
believe it to have been located at the site of Halambar's Lute Shop)
- Elfsong, p. 206, 215
I've decided it fell in the Year of the Scourge (1150 DR), during a
time of plague in Waterdeep and the Sword Coast.
Note that if Ollamn was located on the site of the House of Song
(T19), that means that the site was not enclosed within the city's walls
until 1064 DR. It also means that as of 1035 DR, there were not sufficient
people out that far north to extend the wall even that far. (See City of
Splendors: Campaign Guide, p. 30.) I'm guessing that the college grew up
outside of Waterdeep amidst the farmland of the plateau and then was later
incorporated into the city.
Also the spelling seems to vary quite a bit, from "Olamn" (City of
Splendors) to "Ollamn" (Elfsong) to "Olamh" (AD&D1 Player's Handbook).





George, how could you not point out your previous work on these bardic colleges (especially the date of the demise of Macfuirmidh). Now I have to rework my dates

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George Krashos
Master of Realmslore

Australia
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Posted - 31 Jan 2015 :  11:03:23  Show Profile Send George Krashos a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Lol. You're so prolific I can't keep up! That bardic college lore has been around for a long, long time and well disseminated.

-- George Krashos

"Because only we, contrary to the barbarians, never count the enemy in battle." -- Aeschylus
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Gary Dallison
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United Kingdom
4427 Posts

Posted - 31 Jan 2015 :  13:32:53  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Well being prolific is no indication of quality but I will assume that was a compliment in which case all is forgiven. At least I was in the right historical era for the colleges. I can easily rework the decline of macfuirmidhs college.

Found quite a few gems on the realms l archive today (never used it before) I really really hope it gets saved somehow, i'd hate to lose a resource just as I started using it.

Some good stuff about ffolk and northmen heraldry that I can use

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Gary Dallison
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4427 Posts

Posted - 02 Feb 2015 :  14:24:08  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Adding some more detail to southern Gwynneth. I'm going to use the Cat Lord as the basis for one of Bhaal's children in the Cult of the Ravager.


Caer Cymrych: This ancient castle is now known as the Castle of Skulls because of its history and its macabre decorations (the gatehouse is fashioned to look like a skull, and stone skulls top each of the crenulations), as well as the rumours of skulls forming its foundation and filling its interior.
This place of evil was fashioned sometime beginning in 288 DR during the reign of High King Gwylloch after one of his many forays against the Northmen.
The ambitious and power hungry king suddenly and inexplicably moved his capital from Caer Callidyrr into the depths of Llyrath Forest; some whispered to hide his acts of madness and depravity from the rest of the Ffolk. When he did emerge from the castle it was usually at the head of a 50 strong unit of armoured bodyguards that scoured the lands of Corwell for traitors and agents of the Northmen.
During the reign of High King Gwylloch the people of Corwell trembled in fear as his Skullguard (the name given to his bodyguard that used the skulls of Northmen as visors for their helmets) and Prince Ketheryll carried off hundreds of Ffolk, including King Durnhal of Corwell, for various imagined crimes. The victims were never heard of again.
The Castle of Skulls was forgotten after the death of High King Gwylloch and lay abandoned for many years in the depths of Llyrath Forest, until the witches of Kimball Moor (although that was not their name at the time) found its location and discovered the Cauldron of Dhuum inside.
Together they used the cauldron to animate an army of undead drathak to plague the land of Corwell once more, they were undone by the magic of the cauldron itself and the Druids of Moonshae that called the forest itself to rise up and destroy the drathak horde.
Today the Castle of Skulls lies lost and largely forgotten (only vague rumours of its existence as a place of great evil circulate among the Ffolk of Corwell) in Llyrath Forest. Its lonely corridors are full of insane traps ordered by the mad High King Gwylloch (and left untouched by Cymbre and Amye). In the throne room lies the Cauldron of Dhuum, with the soul of its last victim swirling about it (Cymbre’s body was destroyed by the cauldron and her soul is bound to the artefact, although she can escape to wander the halls of the castle for a time). Finally in the catacombs where the prisons and torture chambers are, there exists an ancient arena, whose walls and floor are cached in dried blood, in the centre of the arena is the spectral form of Prince Ketheryll, the final victor of the orgy of slaughter in 299 DR where his father and Skullguard slew each other in a final moment of madness. Only Prince Ketheryll survived (and then only for a few minutes until his wounds caught up with him) and he persists in this arena waiting for another to challenge and defeat him.
One of the reasons why the Castle of Skulls has remained secret for so long is that the evil and horror of this place has linked it to the Demiplane of Dread. On the Summer and Winter Solstices, the Spring and Autumn Equinoxes and during a full moon, the castle and everyone inside is transported to the Demiplane of Dread where Prince Ketheryll’s undead body stalks the halls of the castle, and is made invincible by the evil of Ravenloft.
Goewin Wood: This southern arm of Llyrath Forest was named for Laird Goewin Wyngate who planted the first trees of this wood that later expanded to become part of Llyrath Forest. It is home to a number of Displacer Beasts that are unusually docile and have even been known to let humans walk by them while they feed.
Glade of the Cat Lord: This Lesser Moonwell is one of the 20 created by the Ring of Gwynneth over the course of a millennia. This particular Moonwell is noted for its unusually large Displacer Beast guardian. This guardian is on friendly terms with the Druids of Moonshae and taking their advice has instructed its pack members to ignore the humans wherever possible.
Manann’s Scar: Following the end of the Witch Winters in 1116 DR, Laird Dyllerv Llimbael of Cantrev Pontswain emerged mostly unscathed from the plagues of undead that afflicted Corwell, and many believed he had some part in the events. No sooner had the undead hordes disappeared, then Laird Llimbael sent his eldest son Manann Llimbael to find Caer Cymrych and bring him the riches that were no doubt inside.
Manann and his 100 strong entourage hacked their way through the forest and found the castle. On the morn of 20th Nightal (Winter Solstice) they entered the castle and looted its treasure chambers, only to be attacked by an unknown assailant that could not be killed and somehow prevented their escape. Early on the rainy day of 21st of Nightal, Manann and 14 of his men managed to escape the castle and fled through Llyrath Forest (which had already begun to regrow). As they reached the light the group and the 8 treasure chests they were carrying were sucked down into the thick red mud that still fills Manann’s Scar today.
Few come here now seeking Manann’s treasure, for the mud is said to possess a fell intelligence that attempts to slay any that come here; many whisper the intelligence is Manann himself who was to greedy to drop a treasure chest and escape the mud and so drowned here with the rest of his men, even in death he is unwilling to leave his hard won riches.

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Gary Dallison
Great Reader

United Kingdom
4427 Posts

Posted - 03 Feb 2015 :  11:02:29  Show Profile Send Gary Dallison a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I'm getting onto Norland now and i'm beginning to think more and more that they really were fire giants prior to arriving on Norland and then became Frost Giants later.

So

quote:
-256 DR Year of the Thousand Snows: Illuskan sailors from the island nations of Tuern and Gundarlun make landfall on the Moonshae Islands, finding a collection of squabbling kingdoms. Over the next couple of centuries, Ffolk settlements throughout the Moonshaes suffer seasonal attacks from the barbaric Northmen. The Ffolk of the Moonshaes concede the northern isles to Illuskan invaders from the island nations of Tuern and Gundarlun.


quote:
745 DR Year of the Proud Menhir: Fire Giants sailing from Tuern on gargantuan longships sack the coastal town of Gundbarg. This is the first of many giant raids against Gundarlun that continue to the present day.



Then from a bit about Norland
quote:
The glaciers and surrounding highlands are home to numerous frost giants. These fearsome humanoids resemble the Northmen more closely than they do the other giant race of the isles, the firbolgs. The frost giants rarely emerge from their mountain fastnesses.
On their rare forays, however, the giants are treated with respect by the Northmen, who often leave offerings of food and drink in caches where the frost giants have been known to pass.




So i'm thinking that the Northmen of Tuern were actually in service to the firegiants, and when the Northmen arrive on Dragonships in Norland they are accompanied by a number of fire giants.

Now for whatever reason the two groups split up but retain their cultural ties so that the Northmen still respect the giants (even though they are no longer fire giants but that shouldnt matter to a human).

It would seem that in times past the fire giants of Tuern went raiding with the Northmen in gigantic barges, but more recently the humans live apart from the giants and govern themselves. I wonder if the departure of giants from Tuern began a destabilising effect on the status quo (less giants means more power to the humans) and ultimately led the humans to overthrow their giant masters.

Not that it matters for Norland, its just a thought about wider events.

One thing that puzzles me though is how would a giant species be affected by the birth of new giants being of a different type. So you have fire giants that presumably venerate their patron Surtr. However all their children are born frost giants because they live in glacial surroundings. Would those children immediately adopt Thrym, would it be a gradual thing as the next rune shaman is a frost giant and discovers he cannot gain any power from Surtr (who doesnt like frost giants) and so he turns to Thrym and in turn preaches to other giants about Thrym which gradually converts the others.


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