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House Rules

“Races”

This world does not explicitly include the typical high-fantasy races. There are a number of… unusual bloodlines among the humans who dwell here, but all consider themselves men. In other words, we’re using racial stat-blocks, but not “races” per se. The kingdoms of this world have their own ethnic groups, and each might express tendencies onto which racial stats map (see kingdom descriptions below).

Kingdoms of the Known World

Ferntenrag

The city in which our story takes place, Vehrkplas (“trade place”), is in the central lowland part of the kingdom, on a river – of which its rising merchant class takes full advantage. Yet their growing power does not yet rival that of the royal court, represented here by a duke and duchess.

History
The current royal family is the House of Lichter. They came to the throne over two hundred years ago by military prowess (defeating the previous ruling family in open battle) and have since cemented their power by sponsoring/allying with the solar cult of Rithmas. The Lichters are married into a territorially adjacent dynasty, the Hesspurg, who both share their language and values and define the (current) eastern limit of their imperial ambitions.

the Haas-Averran Empire

Two nations united in the common pursuit of more wealth and territory.

The Averrae

An old and numerous lineage, the Averrae cling proudly to their traditions despite the political necessity of alliance with the Hesse tribes. Among these: a rigid caste system, peculiar seasonal rites, and a firm taboo against intermarriage that has only recently begun to fray around the edges.

Skin tone among them is uniformly grayish; hair is either jet black or platinum blonde, accompanied by either blue or green eyes, respectively. Body shape and size correspond closely to caste: tallness and broad shoulders are seen among the warriors; makers are short and stocky, with dexterous hands; and callers have round torsos (greater lung capacity) and long necks. Only walkers, the exchange caste, combine these features and possibly those of other ethnicities.

The Haas

They were once a loose confederation of intermarried clans: barbarians to some, nomads to others, depending on the vicissitudes of war and trade. Lately, however, the family structures have nearly evaporated for all but the most highly-ranked bloodlines, as the pressures of integration with the Averrae, industrialization, and colonial expansion explode the very ideas of lineage and loyalty to blood. Genealogy is considered an upper-class affectation (despite the obvious persistence of clan power) and has been replaced by burgeoning nationalism.

Voor

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Something's Rotten in the Kingdom of Ferntenrag MadFlacc