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LIMN (Kingdom of)
Location: Ledge on the west-central rim of the floating continent of Alphatia between the Kerothar Mountain Range and the precipice, south of Frisland and north of Stonewall. HW
Area: 9,977 sq. mi. (25,840 sq. km.). This is the official number as decreed at the creation of the kingdom. Unofficially the sphere of influence of Limn has extended into the less-developed areas of Stoutfellow.
Population: 225,000, including Trollhattan (pop. 30,000). Again, this is the official count. Which races should be included here is a constant source of bureaucratic struggles.
Languages: Alphatian (Limn dialect), Orcish, Goblin, Sylvan.
Coinage: Alphatian Standard: crown (gp), mirror (sp), judge (cp). Limn mints no other coins, but accepts all kinds of coins and other wealth as payment.
Taxes: 15% income tax on everyone of servant status or higher. Slaves are counted as the property of the owner and the product of their labour is taxed as income for the owner. An additional fee is charged to register monster variants created through experimentation. In order to encourage the kingdom to remain a haven for monsters, they have also imposed a 5% surtax on "normal" beings (humans and demihumans) living here.
Government Type: Monarchy, member of the Alphatian Empire.
Industries: Magical experimentation (especially modification and creation of monsters). Also some mining exports such as iron and gold.
Important Figures: Drushiye (King), Mellora (Queen), Count Mzilikazi (Lord), The Dragon (Lord).
Flora and Fauna: See Alphatia.
Further Reading: Dawn of the Emperor boxed set, previous almanacs.
Description by Derenwyn.
One of the many confusing properties of this nation is the extent of its borders. Knowing the minds of orcs, goblins and other barbaric humanoids, they don't have much regard for official borders in imperial decrees. This is, in my opinion, the reason why the borders of Limn have failed completely in containing its population. When travelling across the Kerothar Mountains, I met a goblin chief claiming allegiance to the "great chief" in Trollhattan, and collecting tolls on his behalf just after leaving the forests of Shiye-Lawr, while I technically had just entered Stoutfellow territory. From what I have found out, it seems like the sphere of influence of the king spreads from the official borders of Limn, and roughly to the summit of the Kerothar Mountains and the borders of Frisland.
The main portion of Limn is the great basin formed by the Trollhattan and Zerantha Rivers. This basin is covered in deeply forested hills near the mountains, which give way to fertile plains further east towards the rim. To the north, the plains give way to a set of more barren hills, which contain a lot of useful minerals. It is an outrage how these abundant natural resources are being wasted. Even in these days with a food shortage in large areas of the empire, there is almost no organized cultivation of the plains. It seems like the constant threat of raids by their neighbours discourages most creatures that even have high enough intelligence from putting a lot of effort into something as easily destroyed as a grain field. The same seems to go for mining. Mining seems to be restricted to those who are able to defend their territory, such as this entity referred to as "the Dragon" who protects his mines fiercely with a huge private army. This waste of resources could, however, actually be a blessing in disguise until the imperial armies clear out this land for more worthwhile purposes. The low food production of Limn makes it impossible for the population of the land to grow out of hand, at least.
I have also had reason to suspect that an extensive network of caves stretches under the whole area, possibly connecting the monster lairs that are everywhere in this land. It does not, however, seem to be generally accessible.
The "people" of Limn is another troublesome question in this bureaucratic nightmare of a nation. The population count of Limn as seen here is merely the result of the last imperial census. The administration of King Drushiye, on the other hand, claims the figure to be at least 307,000. This is a constant source of conflict between bureaucrats of Trollhattan and Alphas'ar. Of course, the liberal views of the Trollhattan administration clearly show that their own census is not to be trusted. I assume that they have both counted people who stay outside Limn's borders most of the year, in addition to counting various creatures obviously unsuitable for the imperial census. The official count includes about 2% dwarves, 11% elves (mostly outcasts from Shiye-Lawr), 9% humans, 71% intelligent humanoids, and 7% others. Non-aristocratic undead are not counted, even if they are allegedly intelligent.
With this highly mixed population it seems to be a wonder how they manage to avoid eating each other, especially with such low food production. From what I have been able to gather, there are indeed frequent small skirmishes between the minor lords and chieftains of Limn. As described below, however, it seems like the most powerful lords intervene whenever these struggles become too large, or when one chieftain manages to gather enough power. Barbaric as it may seem to more civilised nations, it seems like it is sheer fear of these powerful lords that keep the others in check.
The government of Limn is a chapter of its own. It is more fitting to a barbarian nation than to a kingdom of the Alphatian Empire. Any orc with who can cast a spell can be a lord here. The formal government structure is limited to the king and queen in addition to an advisory council of 50 aristocrats they appoint. Apart from this, gaining power in Limn seems to be equal to picking up a sword and killing every opponent. King Drushiye seems to be either too incompetent to do something about this, or unwilling to restore law and order to the land.
Even though I spent most of my time in Limn trying to avoid being eaten by hungry trolls and other hideous monsters, an experienced bureaucrat such as myself could not help but notice that something is not as it seems when it comes to the rulership of this kingdom. It seems incredible to me how this dreamer, King Drushiye, has been able to cling to power all these years. He commands far too small a force to be able to keep control here, one that has been reduced even more over the last years. In fact, it seems to me that there are at least two other lords, each of whom has a larger army than that of King Drushiye. It seems like it is these two armies that take action when the balance of terror between the chieftains of the different barbarian tribes seems to be upset too much, or when someone rebels against the king. These two armies belong to the mysterious lord "the Dragon," and the more publicly known "Count" Mzilikazi, which according to a search through some old archives salvaged from Sundsvall seems to have survived at least five emperors and empresses in Alphatia.
Emperor Tylion IV, when he created the kingdom, also divided rulership between King Drushiye and his consort, the dryad Mellora. It is my personal suspicion that it is the diplomatic efforts of Queen Mellora, rather than Drushiye himself, that have kept the lords of Limn supporting the crown rather than fighting over power themselves. It seems that the queen also has great personal influence among the sylvan races that infest the forests along the Kerothar Mountains.
The history of Limn has little of interest to offer, other than endless squabbles between barbarian "lords," but I will try to give a short summary of the most important events. The humanoids of Limn were first conquered by the imperial legions and established as an imperial protectorate in AY 531 [BC 469. Ed.]. Instead of subjugating the monsters living here, they actually did the mistake of turning control of the land over to the monster spellcasters, naming them lords of the empire and only maintaining a garrison at Trollhattan. The garrison posted there could in no way keep order in the land, and there are several accounts of it being overrun and sacked by humanoid hordes.
The city of Trollhattan itself was founded in AY 1007 [AC 7. Ed.] by the more lawful elements of the land as a centre for the study of beasts, monsters and non-humans. It has now grown into a great walled community, with battlements and fortifications to protect it from enemies both external and internal. Since then, the city has yet to fall to any attacking force.
In AY 1892 [AC 892. Ed.], the elven aristocrat Drushiye, after being convicted and exiled from Shiye-Lawr, was for some reason awarded Limn as a kingdom by Emperor Tylion IV. What is even more remarkable is that he even got the emperor to agree to a divided rulership with the dryad druidess Mellora, whom he took as his mate. He did bring some sort of order to Limn, but the kingdom is far from the level of civilisation we are used to from the rest of the kingdoms of the empire.
During recent years, Limn has seen a recession and growing internal unrest. For some reason, those settled near the rim seem to have lost their livelihood, and are getting more aggressive in their raids of other settlement. So far it has not gotten completely out of hand, but it seems to be only a question of time before the dreamer King Drushiye loses control.
I wouldn't advise anyone to put themselves through the danger of entering this volatile piece of land if it is not absolutely necessary. If you have to go there, bring a sizeable bodyguard and travel only by the main roads.
There is no part of this barbaric region you should not miss.