[Written] Silverthorne - Duchy of Vaunephasuak

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[Written] Silverthorne - Duchy of Vaunephasuak

Post  Jared T on Fri Jul 22, 2011 3:40 pm

Vaunephasuak
Found in the Old Lore Books on the Final Haven website.

Duchy of Enlightenment

From A Biography of Silverthorne by Sathin Maevers, 1000 P.E.W.

Population: c. 42,000
Exports: Books, Fine Armor, Vegetables
Baronies: Ish'ania, Mill'Ania, Tak'Amoria, Hessinon

Overview

The dutchy is founded on the precepts of order and organization. Much of this duchy is a good deal older than the Kingdom of Silverthorne. Some of it several thousand years older. The entirety of the architecture within this duchy seems to be laid out in an elaborate grid pattern. Though extremely organized, the bland nature of the architecture in the capital city takes some getting used to. Many of the surrounding baronial seats are a good deal more beautiful, set up with breathtaking stonework and elaborate walls, gates, and waterways to please the eye. If the city of Silverthorne is the crown jewel of the nation, then the baronies of Vaunephasauk could well be the crown setting.

The duchy is ruled by a high council of the duke Fraiser Ehromis III and duchess, along with their ten advisors. Each member of this group of twelve is knowledgable in the paths of lore, and has been schooled for years in the great library of Vaunephasauk before taking a position on the ruling council. The seats that Toevass, DeVris, and Jacorik, and Mandolar hold only are represented as well, but DeVris stays out of this Duchy for the most part, saying that it is already orderly and does not require their services.

In addition, it is known that the nobility of Vaunephasauk makes a procession every twenty years, moving from one city to another. Barons become thanes, thanes become barons, a new duke assumes the seat of leadership and a new family comes into power, as one leaves. Why this is so, is known only to the nobility, but all of the people of vaunephasauk and all of her peasantry turn out every year to watch the grand procession. It is supposed that this procession is the reason why Vaunephasauk has not expanded in many centuries. They have a set number of ruling members, which never changes.

Vaunephasuak is the seat of the mages guild, who pass out information to the other mages guilds from their headquarters in the duke’s city. They maintain extensive files on all the guild members. They also perform research and keep track of any information pertaining to magic.

The great library of Vohnephasuak is one of the most extensive around and costs a mere pemb a day for citizens to visit. Books must remain in the library, unless one is a member of the mages guild or house toevass in which case they may be given a short lending. Penalties for lost books are severe. All patrons of the library are required to inform the librarians of any magic they posses and submit to binding for the duration of their stay. Endangering the archives in any way is penalized by death.

Vaunephasauk also contains an elaborate stable and proving ground which raises strange birdlike beasts known as Griffons which are used by Raifisto’s Royal guard in the service of King Silverthorne. The beasts are watched closely to prevent them from endangering the populace and their training lasts for several years before they are ready to join that elite force which defends the kingdom from the sky.

Members of the mages guild, and others with special permission study in a building known only as the Vault. It is said to have exhisted before the magriocracies, according to the tales of local bards.

Known dangers include the dreaded pattern distortion storms. These storms are created by the bleeded-off chaos created by the remaining rifts in the Great Barrier range. They settle down out of the Chaos Mountains and generate random fluctuations in weather, terrain, and animal life. On rare occasions whole armies of vile distorted creatures have wandered out of a rift. It is the goal of Vaunaphasuak to learn how to shut the chaos gates, or at least control their emissions to end the danger.

Jared T

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Re: [Written] Silverthorne - Duchy of Vaunephasuak

Post  Jared T on Fri Jul 22, 2011 3:41 pm

Barony of Ish'Ania
Found in the Old Lore Books on the Final Haven website.

From A Biography of Silverthorne by Sathin Maevers, 1000 P.E.W.

Population: 10,000
Exports: Fine wines, rare woods, rare animals
Location: 50 miles north of Vaunephasauk

Overview

Ish’ania is the city in Vaunepahsauk most commonly visited by outsiders. Her streets are well kept and paved in crushed alabaster. They flare outward in a gentle spiral from the central keep and are crossed at regular intervals with aquaducts above the thoroughfares and aquifers running beneath. It is not uncommon to see many of the city’s more afluent personages poled from stop to stop along the gentle waterways.

North of the city trappers ply the forest paths which have been sculpted over centuries by the constant vigilance of Vaunephasuak’s wardens. Here birds with magnificent plumage and odd creatures which wander into the trade lands are trapped for the menagerie of the Duke or killed for the pelts and feathers which find their way to even the distant lands of Alleria or Carthen.

In the manor lands of the thanes stand vinyards which have produced fine vintages for the last half millenium. To some it seems that Vaunephasuak never changes. Her buildings are all ancient by the standards of Silverthorne, having stood unchanged for nearly four hundred years. They have a stoic, old-world beauty to them. Each is crafted of imported stone, hauled from distant mountains by the serpent river.

Arches and soft curves predominate the architecture and many of the buildings are inlaid with ornate bronze or copper curliques along their plinth or arches.

The Baroness

Ish’ania is ruled by the lovely baroness Lydia Namio, and her husband Redwan. She is the primary figure of motivation and energy, working actively with the people and court, while her husband is often absent for long periods of time, both abroad in the lands, and deeply involved in his own husbandry projects.

The Thanes

Three thanes hold lands within her domain, and are if not loved by the people, at least respected. Thane Yllsem of the Tree has an estate to the north of Ish’ania, which produces much of the town’s rare wood export. Thane Margaret of the Vine has lands to the east, and produces many varieties of red and white wines which are considered some of the finest in the kingdom. Thane Deanfal of the Tooth has lands to the west of Ish’ania and is well noted for his zoo, and the domesticated rare animals which he provides to the rest of the duchy.

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Re: [Written] Silverthorne - Duchy of Vaunephasuak

Post  Jared T on Fri Jul 22, 2011 3:42 pm

Barony of Mill'Ania
Found in the Old Lore Books on the Final Haven website.

From A Biography of Silverthorne by Sathin Maevers, 1000 P.E.W.

Population: 10,000
Exports: Woven Cloth, Grain and Vegetables, Papyrus
Location: 50 miles south of Vaunephasauk

Overview

Mill’ania is a solid community of hard working individuals. The local nobles have the strange tendancy to work crafts up until their age of majority alongside the very people they will be ruling over. Many is the thane of Mill’ania who has shoed a horse or tilled the rich summer loam of the grain fields that produce such a ripe harvest.

Though they fight a constant war on the insects which seek to migrate in from the southern savanna and blight the good crops many of these people are full of cheer and in solid health. The streets of Mill’ania and her three demenses are all arranged in overlapping grids, like interlocking squares or boxes. Though it takes a bit of getting used to it seems to be a rather efficient arrangement for breaking up sectors of a city. In the center of the grid is the Baronial fortress, constructed of very solid, basalt like rock which seems to have weathered the turning of many years. Each of the outer grids is dedicated to one facet of the cities running business. All courts and law works as well as paper manufacture in one quarter. Another contains the granaries and foodstalls. Another the common market for goods and wears, and yet another all the necessities for the weavers trade, including looms, dyes, and fulling mills.

The Baron

Mill’ania is watched over by the careful, aleit absentminded Baron Weston Quarry. He was recently the duke of Vaunephasauk, and some believe that such a responsibility was quite trying for him. The death of his wife and brother has left him somewhat bereaved, though he revels in the myriad successes of his children and grandchildren.

The Thanes

Thane Malius sas estate lands to the south of Mill’ania, and it was through his hard work and dedication that the council of the Duke of Vaunephasauk finally agreed to expand the lands to the south to settlement, after petitioning the king for a jointure of land use. He contacted thane Mordin who had been living in the now decimated lands of D’albin, and convinced that good man to resettle on the unsecured southern border of the kingdom in order to protect it from further encursions of the pirates and swamp-dwellers that are continually a problem to the vast farmlands of southern Vaunephasauk.

Thane Sharbia Ildunsin holds her lands to the east of Mill’ania. She is a young woman, and relatively new to her post, having only had a few months to settle into the responsibilities of running estates since her parents stepped down to live quietly. She is adapting well to the challenge, and accepting suitors from the other high families in order to secure her seat with children.

Thane Petricia Longsarrow is holding the lands to the west of Mill’ania, and is currently looking forward to letting her son take over the duties of rulership when he returns from his service to King and country as an officer in Silverthorne’s army. He has been serving for the past five years in active duty, and she would much rather let him take over than see him continue to wage border wars.

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Re: [Written] Silverthorne - Duchy of Vaunephasuak

Post  Jared T on Fri Jul 22, 2011 3:43 pm

Barony of Tak'Amoria
Found in the Old Lore Books on the Final Haven website.

From A Biography of Silverthorne by Sathin Maevers, 1000 P.E.W.

Population: 10,000
Exports: Ore, Trained Soldiers, Oils
Location: 50 miles west of Vaunephasauk

Overview

Tak’amoria is well known for their skilled men at arms and militant sensibilities. Well do her people know the dangers of Vaunephasauk, and deal with them on a nearly daily basis. The town stands as the closest bulwark of Baronial power to the cursed nightmarish beings which wander out of the chaos mountains.

The entire city is ringed in black granite, its solid walls form intelocking leaves of acute angled triangles so that at any point an invader can be rained upon from two sides. The towering fortifications dwarf the surrounding scenery and even the Tower of Order, home to an elite military organization founded before the kingdom of Silverthorne appears insignificant next to the cold iron banded magesty of the Tak’Amoria’s baronial fortress at its center.

The great pyramidial structure rears nearly two hundred feet into the air and is cut into several stepped layers. The only entrance is from doors situated at the top of the giant flights of stairs, which alternate sides on their way up the fortress forcing the visitor to change directions as he ascends.

The Baron

The Baron of Tak’amoria is a gruff wizened old man by the name of Parnasas Kilbain. He served here as a fosterling, under the baron two generations ago. As such he is quite familiar with the many dangers of inhabiting the fell lands nearest to the Chaos Mountains. He maintains several divisions of troops which are doubly armed over any other line soldiers I have seen in wandering the kingdom. They look more like mercenaries and adventurers than your run of the mill soldier, but they fight well together, and are hardened veterans of a dangerous occupation.

You see Toevass, living on the edge of death gives a man perspective. He learns to trust his neighbor, and he learns to trust his blade. All else is nothing. The creatures that come here at night, the chaos storms, the wail of vibrating crystal in the hills. These things are real. In the capital they live in luxury, they spout philosophy and walk around in togas talking about the nature of man. Here we know the nature of man. Man is a killer, and he kills to survive. They live under the shield of our killing, and forget that it is that shield that insures their way of life.

Ah, sometimes I get a bit carried away, young scholar. The other baronies face many of the same dangers we do. We catch but a third maybe of the creatures coming out of the storms. The rest pass us by and must be stopped before they invade the kingdom, or turn themselves loose into the world. Luckily only a few varieties breed after the storms get done with em. If they all did, Phantera would be overrun in a year. By the way, piece of advice. If you leave town, and see a storm coming, if you hear a ringing in your ears, dig yourself underground and right quick. It may be the only thing that saves you from the change. I wouldn’t want to have to kill you later on. The ground dampens the vibrational harmonics created by the chaos amplification of the gate strata. Just a piece of advice from a dub soldier.

-Quallin Lionbane

Sergeant of the Tak’amoria Guard

The Thanes

Thane Lars Bene-Cadan has lands to the west of Tak’amoria. In the time since assuming the rule of his lands he has already lost one son. The other he has sent to enlist in the service of his king, feeling that it is safer to serve in the army than to live in his estate. The walls of his keep are more than a dozen feet thick, and lined with a layer of iron ore. The whole of the fortress can be sealed during the chaos storms, so not a single shred of outside light gets in. It is in this bleak fortress that Bene-Cadan rules his five hundred soldiers and two thousand peasants. They survive by living in the carved out bedrock beneath the fortress, and by posting sentries alert to every slight change in weather, and every possible movement in the surrounding wilds. When the beasts come in droves from the forests, reinforced battalions from the tower of order and Tak’amoria are called up to strengthen their line. Even so few reach old age here. So it has ever been. The brightest candle burns shortest.

To the north of Tak’amoria lies the estate of Thane Erdane and his daughters. They lost their mother a few years back, and were quite happy to remove themselves from the larger towns and cities, to live in grace and quiet in the countryside. Only the countryside is anything but quiet. Both girls have taken up the art of the sword since arriving, and now serve alongside the guardsmen and women of their subjects to hold the wild at bay. Because of their bravery, or perhaps the legend of their beauty, more new families have moved into the region in the recent spring than in many generations, and the bolstered defense has been much appreciated by the locals.

South of Tak’amoria, closer to the lands of Mill’ania lies the estate of thane Callia Raen. She has no surviving children of her own, but looks after her four grandchildren, and provides them with the best tutors and instructors that her mineral rich lands can provide. She is famed for her generosity to guests, and for the dedication that her servants and people hold to her. Even though she has been in attendence upon these lands for such a short time, she is well liked, and spends much of her time speaking with the free men and women of her lands.

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Re: [Written] Silverthorne - Duchy of Vaunephasuak

Post  Jared T on Fri Jul 22, 2011 3:43 pm

Barony of Hessinon
Found in the Old Lore Books on the Final Haven website.

From A Biography of Silverthorne by Sathin Maevers, 1000 P.E.W.

Population: 10,000
Exports: Books, Ink, Looking Glass, Ornate glasswork
Location: 50 miles east of Vaunephasauk

Overview

The towered city of Hessinon stands above the rolling plains and gentle cane fields to the east of Vaunephasauk. It is perhaps unique in Silverthorne for a city of its size in that it is completely lacking in walls. The brightly painted towers with their external spiraling stairs, which are entered through the roof seem to prove quite sufficient deterent in and of themselves to most attacking forces.

The people here keep many of their shops in stalls laid out in rings along paved and grassed gardens spread throughout the city and dwell within the towers themselves. The courts of the city also contain several intricate fountains and gentle waterways which help convey goods. The waterways often pass under the towers, and provide openings to winch systems to move heavy cargo up to the heights inside.

It is not terribly uncommon for Guthrie travelers to stop near the town to compose their stories and sell cheap goods. Sylvani do likewise, though they are careful to stay well clear of the mages guild representatives who always give them an evil eye. The Sylvani and Guthrie alike are probably attracted to the city by its open, joyous nature, and overlook the planning and long years of dedicated service that went into its creation.

My family has lived in Hessinon for nearly a thousand years. We have helped to build towers, and inhabit them, we have watched the grandprocession happen fifty times. Now there is a wonder, watching all the noble families, all those many twin sons and daughters move from city to city, each stepping into a new seat of power every twenty years. No other land has a procession like ours, and no other land has such good and generous rulers.

You see, the current Baron, Young James Kibilan, and his brother Tobias just arrived last this year. They will be taking wives soon, probably from a house in Ishania. And soon they will be raising twin children as well. Always twins in this great land, always. Means there is always a ruler to fall back on if the beasties or the intrigues get one. Not that we have much intrigue I don’t think. They all look far too honest for such things. Well educated too, know more books by heart than I can name, and I’m a scribner.

Well I’ld best get back to work, have to complete this listing of the peasants in outlying village 2B for Thane Honeras Renkulan. He likes to keep close track of the birth and deaths in his lands, census every five years that man. Twice as often as necessary, but it is a good thing. Keeps us busy in the shops.

-Unknown Scribe

The Dinner

During my brief stay in Hessinon I was invited to dinner with the Baroness and her family, and such a family they have! She has two sets of twins, all of which are married and have children of their own. A small family dinner has become quite an affair in its own right. They live in the central tower of Hessinon, and its flat roof keeps the two Griffons that the family is proud to call their own. Both of Baroness Valeria Xexicaoltic’s sons ride with great skill and daring, and both have served in numerous campaigns from high above the ground.

I was regailed with stories of such deeds, and even offered a chance to see the ground from above myself, which would have been a marvelous experience I am sure, but I politely declined. Alas, our dinner was interrupted by the call of state duty. The representative from house Jakoric, a man by the name of Kirklin Yemms had a complaint to lodge over mistreatment of several of his house members by members of a local mages guild chapter. Then a second wave of intruders arrived, headed by the local magistrate, a very imposing and stern man, Harkinin Skress, who the baroness’s daughter informed me was stationed here as punishment for allowing a criminal to go free.

The mutual dislike of DeVris and Jakoric representatives here was backed up by house Toevass, and all three houses were pressing for action, but the baroness was reluctant, as the guild is quite powerful in this region. She spoke calmly, and told the agitated parties that everything would be taken care of, and before you know it, they were all bowing and leaving like they had never been upset in the first place. Amazing woman, really.

I also happened to meet the baroness’s three thanes at dinner that evening, saving me a trip to their estates. Her hand to the south is Thane Irdi Pwanzi. He is a burly hulking man, still bearing the tattoos of his years at sea. According to local legend, when he was younger he taught several princes of the realm the finer points of nautical etiquette. Over a tankard of ale and the edge of a cutlass if you believe everything you hear.

To the east lay the lands of Owyen Llysdaon who is renowned locally for his excellent singing voice, and his marvelous stories. I can vouch for the latter, as it was he who informed me of thane Irdi’s many sea exploits, over that illustrious man’s outbursts and gaffaws.

The last of baroness Valeria’s thanes is a young woman by the name of Raeyissa Falconbridge. Some claim a distant link to the founder of the kingdom for her family, but she has long said it is merely coincidence. She is easily recognized for the birthmark upon her neck of a magnificent bird in flight, so vivid it could almost be a tattoo. She is generally quite cheery, given the long daggers she goes nowhere without, and was happy to speak to me, though I am but a lowly servant of house Toevass. All good things must come to an end though, and I bid my hosts farewell at the close of a marvelous evening, feeling much the better for having met them.

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