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Far to the west of the Thunder Sea, the island of Estar may be considered a distant and insignificant frontier, but for the longest time this place has been a constant draw for settlers and adventurers come for the promise of opportunity and undiscovered lands. It is littered with ancient ruins dating back to the Attaran Empire which has made it a draw for both scholars and adventurers keen to study and plunder it’s warded riches, one of the few corners of the world where such sites have not been stripped entirely bare by the curious and the greedy.
Since its discovery by Rugnor the Explorer in C.F. 923 it was settled by several expeditions in the centuries that followed, leading to the founding of various, independent cities originating from a variety of realms in the mainlands continent.
The country of Honevray is a large, multi-raced realm consisting of three major cities, four large towns, and five small towns/villages. The south-eastern region is largely unexplored, and by rights not owned by King Elgaroth - although he would say otherwise. The rumours are the forests are occupied by unfriendly wood-elves, though none can confirm that as fact.
The two halves of the country are highly contrasting with climate, with the northern half known for it's harsh, cold weather, whilst the Southern for its opposing heat, sandstorms & sweltering sun. South Honevray, depsite containing the capital city Endavcra, is a fairly unexplored area, mainly due to the fact it consists of large deserts, forests and home to numerous creatures and beasts.
The capital city of Honevray is Endavcra to the South, although many would protest that the capital should really be Highpoint, which dominates the north-east of the country - on top of that, it is in a far safer location and can much easier gain control of the entire Northern territory. Endavcra struggles to maintain control of the surrounding miles, let alone the rest of the southern half.
Other key locations include Aquatos, the supplier of warships & sea trade for the land; Gradron - surrounded by fields and known for its horse-riders and cavalry; Azaaval, the kingdom of the Dwarves and its famous Mevorche Mines; Silagost, island of mages & sorcerers and Ellevrone; a small elven settlement (elves friendly with humans, anyway).
The threats to the land primarily come from the woods of Celedron, Xaih the desert-land home to a host of unfriendly desert-people of mixed races, the sinister land of Drenclamb to the south-west and the tower of Killidranclo to the north-west. Little is known of these lands.
One of two regions extending into the uttermost north of the realm, World's End is a mostly frozen wasteland that is sparse in resources, sparse in settlements, and most of all; sparse in civilization. Those that dare enter the frigid wastes of the north tend to be foolhardy adventurers in search of fortune and gold, lured by the promise of riches lying beneath the ice.
Yet World's End was not always the cold hell that it is in present time. Scholars and traders alike whisper of an ancient, forgotten Drow Empire buried and lost to the throes of time; The Xala'agorinian Empire, once a shining bastion of Dark Elven might and supremacy. Legend has it that, at the height of it's power, the Empire had the capabilities to potentially conquer all of Aranor, but a mysterious event known as "The Ruination" destroyed Xala'agorin before it's ambitions could be realized.
Today there are only very few who call the wastes their permanent home - but rumours of an ancient vault unsealed have begun to attract people from all over Aranor, all desiring to uncover what lies underneath...
The Darian Archipelago is a stormy region that lies in the middle of the Thunder Sea, uncharacteristically warm and humid owing to the volcanic activity around it's various islands. While it is home to several local races who have long lived both below and above the waters, it is best known for the free city of Daria and it's pirate lords.
With it's reach across all of the important trading routes of the Thunder Sea, the ruling elite of Daria, it's admiralty exercises control from the comfort of their flourishing city with wealth claimed from passing merchants - extracted either by the hands of a toll collector or the point of a sword. By assuring safe passage to all whom pass through the city and pay it's hefty tariffs, the city maintains a steady flow of wealth; and by letting their pirate fleets loose on those who attempt to skip the toll, the bloodthirst of it's unscrupulous ruffians is sated.
It is by the virtue of a unique weapon manufactured only in Daria that the city maintains it's stranglehold on the archipelago and much of the whole Thunder Sea, a mysterious and destructive alchemical conconction called black powder. Even to the locals it is an enigma how it is made, the rumours ranging from complex arcane procedures to eldricht rites pulled straight from the nine hells.
Whatever the origins of this strange weapon, it has altered the destiny of the Thunder Sea since it's conception and has shaped the city of Daria to the melting pot of hot-blooded rogues and scoundrels it is today.
On the far southern shores of Aranor lies the Golden Coast from which begins the ostensibly boundless deserts of sun-blasted sand, where nestled among oases and life-giving rivers, ancient cities untouched by the devastation seen across the world following the Curse of Falandine were rediscovered. Little is known of the great cities and their towering monuments, found to be brimming with treasure and gold-encrusted relics, vacant palaces and estates by the first cautious explorers - guarded by monsters, magical wards, and traps, but no sign of their previous inhabitants responsible for these wonders.
First claimed by the nomadic tribes of An-khamon, they would not enjoy their new home for long before word spread across Aranor of these untapped treasure troves and unclaimed, with it settlers from across the known world arrived on the coast in search of their fortune, culminating in competition and conflicts throughout the region. Appalled by the infighting and intrigues of their new neighbours, the elders of An-khamon instead urged their people to return to their nomadic lives away from the grief that their new-found wealth brought them. This was the beginnings of the first rift in their culture, divided between those who would return to their traditional, humble lives in the desert and they who desired to hold onto their new home.
Through centuries of shrewd diplomacy, intrigue, and open warfare, the Khameni carved out an empire of interconnected cities, driving out foreign invaders or absorbing them as their subjects, rendering the modern make-up of the Golden Coast into a colourful mish-mash of races and ethnicities as the locals and foreigners have continously intermingled. In spite of this the ruling family has carefully maintained it's Khameni blood, as does it's nobility, whose status is often associated with how closely they can relate their bloodline to the original settlers.
In the year 1159 C. F. Empress Aui made the ill-fated decision to split the empire between her two twin sons Akhari and Adhio, intended to see her sons rule jointly as twin-emperors, the differences of agenda between the two boys has led to the division of the empire into two separate entities: the western An-Akhar Empire and the eastern An-Adhi Empire. Even while the present-day tensions between An-Akhar and An-Adhi brews around the coast the people of An-Khamon continue roaming their ancestral lands, staunchly maintaining their nomadic lifestyle in the face of temptation that the cities bring, especially among the many nobles who would take any chance to bring pure Khameni blood into their pedigree.
Even in the shadow of these civilizations the Golden Coast remains a dangerous place to travel between monsters lurking in the sands, marauding tribes, and bands of unscrupulous treasure seekers, untapped tombs and even the whispers of as of yet discovered cities lying farther south draws both well-meaning adventurers and greedy villains to it's shores. Existing between the civilized cities and nomadic tribes are the Great Caravans, long trains of wagons and towns of tents in the desert, not quite tribe nor organized company, taking on all creeds of peoples travelling the coast for as long as they can pull their own weight. These caravans of merchants and entertainers, adventurers and explorers, thieves and charlatans, serve as the connective tissue in the vast distances between the cities and tribes, both literal and metaphorical.
The Ranjavani are a cluster of landmasses in the southwest of Aranor, consisting of the western corner of the Golden Coast and the three islands of Garanja, Ziranja, and Neranja. The Ranjavani were first discovered by curious explorers of the former Khameni Empire to the east, though the islands' inhabitants had settled there long before the founding of the empire itself.
Like most of Aranor, the Ranjavani were not spared the destruction of the Curse of Falandine thousands of years ago, bringing about the ruin of entire kingdoms situated in the south. Despite this, however, a few pockets of civilization have managed to endure through the turmoil of the Curse, most notably the hidden kingdom of Chicomecoatl, which hid itself away through powerful barrier magic on the island of Garanja and remains undiscovered to present day, instead masquerading as a scattered, disorganized tribe of primitive Tieflings. The city of Fen'Sharan, home of the enigmatic Star Elves, holds control over the Gulf of Neranja with it's sizable fleet and formidable magic, trading regularly with the coastal towns of Azur, whilst further south lies the city of Besher, a mercantile republic with a navy that is powerful enough to match the might of the Darian Admiralty itself. Kavani Stronghold is Azur's most prominent fort and settlement in the region, keeping watch over it's coastal roads and guarding against attempted incursions into the land.
With it's relatively safe waters and easily-accessible sea and land routes, the Ranjavani have become a popular destination for travelers and traders from Kiran and the Heartlands seeking an alternative to the oft-hazardous and extortionist ways of Darian "diplomacy", in addition to drawing in many curious adventurers wanting to explore it's unmapped and unfamiliar jungles in the west and the south. This has led to a rise in tension throughout the region as Darian ships attempt to maintain a small foothold in the region, sending out scouts to Garanja to try and assess it's potential in riches and resources - much to the agitation of Chicomecoatl, who find their territory regularly being encroached upon by explorers from all over Aranor, and the fury of Besher, who wish for the jungles of Garanja to remain undisturbed.
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