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A Gazetteer of Limn part 3by Hausman Santos and Geoff Gander from Threshold Magazine issue 14
A Gazetteer of Limn
Lining up the maps, Part 3 (South region)
By Hausman Santos and Geoff Gander
This article presents and compares the versions of Limn maps published in the Mystaran Almanac (AC 1018) with those developed by Bruce Heard on his blog circa AC 1000 / AY 2000 with a brief general description (with this part focusing on the south lands) and proposes an alternative to unite the unusual passages in each version of the maps in order to put them together.
This article also makes extensive use of the material previously developed by Rodger Burns, Francesco Defferrari and Geoff Gander in their descriptions of the region.
The previous parts of the Gazetteer were published in Threshold issue #11 and #12.
The southern region of Limn was the place where the greatest confrontation between Ymathra and Alphatia was concentrated, and was also the one who presented the biggest surprises in terms of alliances and twists.
Region of barbarian peoples, elves, giants and even djinni. Understanding its geography and structure is a very important criterion for understanding the whole kingdom.
TORPES MISSING NOTES
When this city was built, it was imagined an impressive defensive wall along the neck of the peninsula, some of which may still stand today, though modern Torpes is built upon the ruins of Grønborg the city1.
Created with a fjord/inlet west of town, which offers some natural defences (cliffs - which explains partly why Grønborg was hard to conquer). On the eastern side, the Alphatians dug out a partial moat to restrict access. A bridge connects the orcish quarter (which will be walled internally). What remains is a very defensible neck of land.
City of Torpes
TRACES AND HISTORY ON SOUTH LANDS
As a starting point for the open conflicts in the southern region of Limn, the goblinoid invasion of the plains and the coast against the Antalians generates a series of actions that will define the current formation of kingdom´s lands.
Conflict after conflict, the Hundraal, a clan of Antalians of Ystmarhavn origin are forced to get closer to the hills and forests further south of Limn and limited to the margins of a few territories Sheb-Nigosh and now have a hard time living on land close to the goblinoids.
A point of support for the Hundraal in the lands to the south, are the barbarian peoples who lived in the hills of Sheb-Nigosh; These seemed to have a distant and almost forgotten origin coming from the more eastern lands in the current Alphatia2.
This situation only improves when Ystmarhavner seafarers (current Sea Guard) secure the domain of Aroth-Dag Hills and when the Ymathrans establish a hold in the south (near Hundraal River) and mediate (through his powers of manipulation and charms) for a peaceful coexistence with the goblinoids on site.
The expansion of the Ymathra to Limn (after confrontation with Alphatia in the present Haven) brings a cohesion and union with the goblinoids (subjugating with influence and magical abilities) in the plains and regions near Sheb-Nigosh.
The next target of the Ymathra are the local barbarian tribes (also eliminating their shamans, wokans, and sorcerer leaders) who are also brought into an imposed covenant; The Hundraal more intelligently also adhere to a policy of good coexistence with the Ymathra.
Map of Limn
Caption: Map of Limn including locations from Bruce Heard’s Map (published here http://bruce-heard.blogspot.it/2012/05/alphatian-province-of-trollhattan.html in Bruce’s Blog, with Thorfinn Tait’s version here http://pandius.com/stoutfellow-stonewall-limn-8.png in the Vaults of Pandius) and Geoff Gander’s map from AC 1018 Fan Almanac, which can be seen here: http://pandius.com/limn2.html
ELVES FROM THE SHIYE LANDS
Internal conflicts between the Shiye and the fall of Ilmaryl3 in the north, provoke the migration of several elves to Norwold. In AY 740 / 260 BC Several Shiye elves united as a minor clan (Celebryn) move out from Shiye-Lawr (after conflicts with the king). A few houses teamed up to create a domain between the forests of Tal- Burud and Maskin-Xul south of Limn.
Conflicts and clashes in the plains encouraged sylvan folk to ally themselves with the Shiye elves in exchange for mutual protection. A defensive wall among the trees at the forest frontier (consisting of archers, scouts, forester patrols) caused great goblinoid casualties before they could enter the forests, but elves and sylvan folk had their numbers reduced too. This model followed until the arrival of the Alphatians on Limn.
THE ALPHATIAN INVASION
The arrival of Alphatian armies in AY 884 / 116 BC, the recognition and consolidation of allies and enemies finally began to define the territory of Limn. Alphatia tries to make a geographic political analysis of the region before starting a campaign.
Its previous experience with the elves makes them the first logical alliance option against goblinoids and lizardmen in Trollmark and Ymathra.
Around AY 100 / 900 BC Ymathra already was defeated and officially under Alphatian rule by AY 100. A few individual domains still remain in Limn mountains. Since then, Limn remained as one of his last refuges until Alphatia arrived at last. An imminent confrontation was necessary and Ymathra began to prepare his allies for battle. Its front line was the goblinoids (tribes of the plains) that are easily defeated by the Alphatian coalition. Yamathran Lords reinforce their territory awaiting the advance for the final confrontation. In AY 900 / 100 BC the few surviving Ymathran leaders launch their goblinoids, their peasant militia and several undead against the Alphatians.
In a council, war agreements are closed by securing (by the Alphatians) the security of the elflands in exchange for alliance. The elves continue to mediate the agreement with the sylvan folk who also agree to an alliance (in exchange for Alphatia securing their lands and forests east of the Dar-Engal River).
In view of the alliance, the fairies from the old winter court abandon the sylvan folk, feeling outraged and betrayed by the agreement with the Alphatians.
Alphatia makes a prior (and secret) agreement in AY 65 / 935 BC with the Antalians from the south coast of Limn (Hundraal) and with the Antalian tribes of the coast (current Seahome Guard). The alliance remained secret until the definitive attack on Sheb-Nigosh against Ymathra.
With Alphatian alliances in place (elves, the Antalians south of Limn, and a few
sylvan folk) the goblinoid tribes are defeated and ultimately surrender to the Alphatians, saving themselves from extinction. Finally, the strongholds and homes of the Lords of Ymathrans are located and destroyed in Alphatian attacks.
Alphatian armies in the area, supported by the Draconic Orders sent
from Randel, come into conflict with undead troops just as often as they do with Ymathrans. The main position to fall is Sheb-Nigosh (now Castle Zychnier).
SOUTH LANDS AFTER ALPHATIAN INVASION
The Alphatian campaign in Limn officially ended with the defeat of Ymathran4, the taking of Trollhattan and the victory over Grønborg. After this, the Alphatians give benefits of lands and domains to their allies.
Hundraal established Alphatian cities in the south of Limn’s coast and settled the Ystmarhavner seafarers on En-Hadoth building a naval port in conjunction with the Alphatians in Aroth-Dag (Seaguard Tower). Subsequently, it is ceded to the Dracor a domain of defence on the southern border of Limn on castle Zychnier.
Dul-Marag was another goblinoid community established by the Dar-Engal River as well as the sylvan folk village of Zerantha.
THE FAIRY - FOLK5
“The Winter Court was composed by members of all Fey races: sprites and pixies, dwellers of forests and glades; wooddrakes and pooka, masters of shapechanging; tiny leprechauns, craftsmen of the Wee Folk; brownies, kind and hard-working; and last but not least, the true princes of the Fey, the fair Sidhe, similar in physique to elves but vastly superior in power.
Thanks to their amazing magical powers, the Fey made Frisland, then called Fridland (or Land of Peace, in the Yanni language), a true paradise where humans could raise cattle in green pastures and hunt game in the sprawling forests of the Fairy Kingdom.
Everything changed with the Landfall of the Alphatians, who according to Yanni legends, had used force and trickery to steal the land from Fey and humans. [...]
Anyway, both accounts mention the bloody war between Alphatians and Fey in the V century which led to the exile of the Fey, mostly slain and finally mysteriously disappeared...”
Excerpt from the notebook of Abraxas
Ayendir, student of the School of
Thaumaturgy of Gowola (Frisland),
regarding the Eye of Huldra and the Fey.
Eimir 17th, Alphatian Year 1778
Like the Known World, the Empire of Alphatia has its hidden kingdoms of the fae, existing alongside but apart from the mundane realms of human, elf and dwarf. Alphatian wizards don't much like to discuss the matter, though, because the fae of Alphatia are quite independent of the Empire and in fact arguably hostile to it - using ancient cunning, and alien and unpredictable magics to humiliate their would-be overlords and maintain the bounds of their realms. Though the fae of Alphatia have neither the numbers nor the desire to conquer or despoil Alphatian territory, their presence in the heart of the Empire is still an embarrassing threat that most loyal wizards would love to be rid of. Unfortunately, this is easier said than done.
HOUSE OF DLAGANA: SONS OF OLD GANDHAR
Long and lost is the story of the old Gandhar6. Among the giants of the region only a few heirs remain to represent their people. What can be supposed by the scholars and sages is that it was a government of provinces united by the greater clans, however the migrations and diverse conflicts resulted in the isolation and seclusion of this nation.
In addition to the mountain giants that follow the Martoth7 in the north and some other clans isolated in the mountains, the best known in the south are those of the Dlagana house (since its origins point to the Ridge of Dlagana, besides the Glacier of Baradum), currently concentrated in the Kerothar Spur.
It is probable that there were other great halls of clans, as above Dag-Atur near the Glacier of Kazarn, since ancient times. They maintained their power in the northern Kerothar Mountains (from the Kerothar Spur near the Maskin-Xul Forest and to the north near the Glacier of Kazarn) and extending south on the Ridge probably until Mogban Ranges and Bolgrim Mounts.
It is believed that their numbers have been much greater and theories are of great confrontations when dragons began to migrate to the Kerothar as well as some possible exodus, but there is no trace of their passage to other regions.
As Alphatia brought relative peace to the region and proved to be a good ally of the more peaceful races, Dlagana's house agreed to maintain relations with the court of King Drushiye by sending representatives of his clan to Trollhattan. The giants are also allies of the djinni of Zaanadar Sanctuary.
NOTES ABOUT ZAANIDON
In the hills south of Limn (near Sheb-Nigosh) there is a tribe of barbarian peoples dating to before the arrival of the Alphatians and the Ymathran. These had already established a prior contact with the Antalians of the Limn coast (as the Ystmarhavn). Unknown to local history and even by learned scholars, they came from ancient peoples called Zaanidon (from the eastern lands).
From the Central Alphatia, in the present-day Imperial Territories. The natives of Zaanidon (translating to 'Stormwatch' in the common tongue) were human in ancestry, but also had contact with djinni and other natives of Elemental Plane of Air and Elemental Plane of Water. Their spellcasters were few in number but generally quite capable and versatile, limited more by lack of vision and ambition than by lack of power. While the lives of the Zaanidoni were by no means ideal - they had comparatively crude skills in agriculture, metalworking and construction compared to the Alphatians, and they were threatened both by native prime plane monsters and infrequent incursions of wild elemental beasts unleashed from air and water vortexes - they were steadily improving their lot and likely could have grown to dominate their home continent, if left alone.
The magic leaders of the Zaanidon in the mountains were decimated by the action of the Ymathran and the rest of the tribe was brought to a truce. The sanctuary of the Zaanidon in the mountains was abandoned and the place was inhabited by the djinns from the Plane of Air who had previous contact with the Zaanidon elementalists now decimated. The shrine was converted into a domain of the djinns (landhold), who came to ally with the local giants to remain neutral in the Alphatia war / invasion and free from the influence of the Ymathra.
PLACES OF THE SOUTH
620 military inhabitants - Like a large black spur between the hills above the entrance to the bay, is the watchtower of the Seahome Guard, a home of Ystmarhavn seafarers, experts in navigation and dominion of the seas. Here is the largest military port of the Limn fleet. Guarding the entrance to the Trollhattan bay and confronting any threats from the sea of Alphatia and the dreaded deep and dark waters of Alphaks Island. A lighthouse serves to guide the boats over the area of shipwrecks and troubled waters along the coast.
It is said that a small community of Reef Giants live near Bay and are allies of the Seahome Guard.
590 inhabitants – Home of the Ystmarhavn seafarers and part of the Hundraal (the political and mercantile elite). This town is further south of the Bay of Trollhattan where the waters are quieter and the commercial port is more productive. The predominance in the city is of Antalians besides some houses of Torpes that have representative for businesses here (Enemos, Cymia, Sigebyr8). The strength of local industry is fishing (octopus / squid / sepia) and paints (sepia ink).
4500 inhabitants – The structure of this town is defined by a cohesion of goblinoid tribes governed by a council of shamans. Keepers of the old customs, Dul-Marag has a religious and political importance. Many goblinoids believe that the council of shamans and sages make this place protected and blessed by the goblinoid immortals. The town is also a training centre for hunting in the forest and gathering raw materials and some monsters to produce potions and magic components. The work of many hunters and scouts within the Alal-Xul forest and Tal-Burud lead to the occasional confrontation with sylvan folk, fairies and Zerantha people. It was necessary for King Drushiye to establish a military troop (around 200 troops) to supervise and patrol the trade and intervene in the conflicts of Dul-Marag with Zerantha to maintain peace. It is unnecessary to comment on Zerantha's disapproval that they can do little more than complain to the king, but part of the clashes in the forests are beyond the actual intervention of Limn, maintaining itself as a zone of confrontation.
4100 inhabitants – Even that established in the forest, an urban dwelling of the Celebryn-Shiye was necessary for trade and politics with Limn. From this point, Nin-Burud emerged, a portal to Maskin-Xul. The city gathers representatives of elven families to lead the city government. The idea came when the Celebryn, united by the few nobles of the Shiye house of Aradeyth10 (who accompanied Drushiye in exile) came to Limn.
Nin-Burud is also the trade centre for elf production (ceramics (production / export), bows / arrows (production / export) and hardwood (fine woods). There is also a large flint (mining) trade where some goblinoids and humans command the work of slaves and convicts for the extraction of flint. The predominance of the guard in the city is elven (200 troops) with units of air cavalry.
Admission to Maskin-Xul is not permitted without the permission of the elves, and the patrols are harsh and ruthless with transgressors (who are judged according to elven laws or, in rare cases, taken to Nin-Burud for judgment).
350 inhabitants - Plus the nearby tribes and 700 military personnel in Zychnier Castle11, established by the Dracor to defend the Limn border. Its ruler is Lord Zain Zychnier, personally sent by the “Count” Mzilikazi12. Their policy of conviviality is cordial and peaceful with the barbarians of the hills and a few Hundraal, including many who are hired for hunting services and border patrol.
DOMAINS OF DLAGANA
30 inhabitants – Located in the Spurs of Kerothar, this community of several families of frost giants and mountain giants form a clan of noble lineage. Their families are ruled by a Jarl known as Dralgard. The caves, castles and halls are protected by polar bears, wolves and, unusually, one or two white dragons.
20 inhabitants – Over time, the abandoned mystical place was modified and improved by the djinns (after the end of the Zaanidon elementalists) to a typical Landhold state, as the standard model normally used in the Plane of Air13.
The djinns’ help also aided the Dlagana's House Giants against the dragons' attacks, using spells and charm monsters abilities. The southern giants are going to have better luck with these allies on their side.
The domain is currently ruled by a Sheik or Pasha, who shows up in neutral terms with the court of King Drushiye of Trollhattan having appointed a vizier to discuss political affairs. Their origins and nation are unknown by Limn, but it is known that they know Al-Samaa - the djinni kingdom14.
200 inhabitants – The largest exclusively Sylvan community in Limn. Governed by a council of forest beings who owe allegiance to King Drushiye and Queen Mellora (among its members are actaeon Grabulg and Tarmugh and the dryad Kamina).
The status of the fairies in Zerantha is curious: there are fairies close to the sylvan coalition, but some have remained more secluded in the forest (such as dryads, pixies, sprites and other treants). Other are even more separated and distant, including some renegades from the old Winter Court that did not leave for Shiye-Lawr or their hidden realms (sidhe, brownies and leprechauns). They appear taciturn, spiteful and distrustful, after they left the Winter Court and the elves of Celebryn for allying with the Alphatians. Some of them also went to live with a few fairies in Shiye-Lawr or other faerie realms like the faerie court in Redstone on the Isle of Dawn.
Blakor Gotison (LN male human F6) - Leader of the Seaguard Tower and warlord of the Limn fleet at the port at Aroth-Dag. Old wolf from the sea and experienced advisor to the royal military accessory. Despite his age, his physical bearing and height still intimidate enemies. He wears a sea-scuttled armour to make clear his influence and leadership among the Seafarers.
Horborgg Seaman (NG male human C6 of Protius) - Silent and mysterious, this Protius priest is a friend of the sea and sea creatures. It can be seen on several occasions paying homage and ceremonies to its immortal and enjoys swimming in the deep waters of the reef at leisure. He has a dependable friendship with Nergalu, a giant of the reefs. His omens are much sought before voyages to the sea.
Bersi Seaguard (N female human W4) - Blakor's niece, Lady of the Sea Breeze, Lady of the Seaguards at En-Hadoth. She runs the family business in Blakor’s Hall and is on good terms with the Hundraal.
Nergalu (NG male Reef giant 18HD) - Giant of the reefs, ally of the Seaguard, his people have lived near the port for some time and have in the Seaguard Seafarers a lasting friendship. Nergalu and his people also have friendship with other nearby maritime peoples and join forces against any threat coming from the depths of Alphak's Island.
Hahkror Hundraal (N male human F5) - Descendant of Hadoth, leader of Hundraal, loves hunts and parties. An admirer of the ancient Ystmarhavn and Yannivey ways, he lives to recount the ancient conquests of his ancestors and the legacy that his family and clan left them (En-Hadoth). He does not hesitate to defend his honour at the tip of his sword or axe (whatever the moment or situation demands of him) but he is not very aware of how much age or party life and little training has weakened his combat skills.
Koniholm Hundraal (N male human F3) - Hahkror's nephew, is one of the family's closest relatives, and Hundraal merchant (the son of Hahkror-Harom, left a few years ago for Norlan court in Qeodhar to render service and gain fame and glory). Koniholm takes care of the port (goods and transport) and conducts business with the barbarians of Sheb-Nigosh.
Balda / Ank´shatu (CN female human/Aranea 4HD) - Balda is a witch and wise woman widely sighted and sought after for omens, divinations, and sorceries in Eh-Hadoth. She has a particular interest in ancient stories and has searched for one or two times the League of Sages or the barbarians in Sheb-Nigosh. In truth, Balda is a disguise for Ank'shatu - an aranea of Thothia - and she came to Limn a few years ago following orders Of Aketheti, the Queen of Thothia and daughter of the Night Spider. Her goal is to find some relics and artefacts that have been stolen since the goblinoid migration to Limn and she should return to her people. But until the moment without success. She follows without hesitation any information about magic mirrors (mirror to contact planes), mantle of spiders, book of rituals with spiders in its cover, etc (rituals used to contact Thiphatia or the Isle of Night Plane). For these mission, 3 araneas accompany her.
Theore (NG female human F3) - Young leader of the barbarians of the south, Theore has maintained a peaceful existence in the region and has good relations with the Hundraal and also the Dracor. She also deals occasionally with the dwarves and men of Daevar to the south.
Baerwy (N male human F4) - Barbarian mercenary specialized in hunts and patrols, offering the services of his men (around 25 troops) for a good price and goods for his people.
Ozur (CG male human W3) - Young air elementalist, wokan barbarian. As a young man he possesses abilities for magic and pursues the lost magical legacies of his people. He has heard of ancient ruins and forgotten places in the mountains once belonging to his peoples, and plans someday to set up an expedition to investigate these places.
Kutulamag (LE male ogre 5/Shaman 4) - Great ogre shaman of Jamudaru who is part of the council that governs Dul-Marag. Guardian and protector of the ancient tribal ways and customs of goblinoids, Kutulamag believes to be a protective force of the ancient ways and this attracted the support of strange spiritual forces that help him (secretly sent by the Immortal Kiranjo).
Rodog (CN male gnoll F4) - Backed by Dul-Marag, Rodog is a trainer for the hunting groups that search the Alal-Xul and Tal-Burud Forests to collect rare items and magic components and have already conducted two or three clashes with fairies and sylvan folk inside the woods.
Gashakk (N male beholder 11HD) - This beholder of Trollhattan was sent as a conciliatory representative, not too sensitive to the infractions of the laws in Dul-marag and Zerantha, to ameliorate conflicts that threaten the stability of the kingdom.
Aredyn Aradeyth (LN female elf W4) - Young council regent and clanholder - not yet named Clanmaster of the Celebryn Shiye, Aredyn rules her elven subjects and maintains the alliance and support to Drushiye in the southern lands in Limn.
Anduil “the old” Aradeyth (NG male elf W7) - An ancient and wise elf shiye, Anduil is a distant relative and friend of Lady Penaria and Arashiye II in Shiye-Lawr (and therefore a relative of Drushiye in exile). He has a vast knowledge as former nobleman of the ancient Shiye ways and customs. So he also assists young Aredyn when necessary and also King Drushiye when summoned to the palace of Trollhattan for audiences.
Arwel Aradeyth (LN female elf F4/W3) - Captain of Celebryn's air cavalry and protector of the Elven lands. Disciplined and dedicated to military life with devotion, she was decorated as a member of the royal guard of the king as a tribute to her efforts, even so remaining in the guard of Celebryn.
Galore (CN male human F4) - Barbarian of the southern lands and captain of the quarries, overseeing workers, convicts, and slaves in the work of the flint mines. Strong personality and dark humour, always answering questions with vague words. He is usually accompanied by men and goblinoids for his safety.
Millaene (N female swanmay 2HD) - Ally of Queen Mellora, she and her Swanmay sisters descended from one of the original daughters of Belotra the Beautiful - Guardian of Green Realm16 and accompanied the Celebryn on their migration to Limn. Soon afterwards she was entrusted to Mellora's care to become a druid, but still remains in training. Among her assignments is to represent Mellora's interests in Celebryn and Maskin-Xul and to report those in court in Trollhattan.
Offiron (N male elf T2/W2) - Official imperial representative in Limn, Offiron was forced to leave Shyie-Lawr after the conflicts involving Xerdon on the southern borders of Blackheart. He has commanded a contingent of boltmen and responds to the imperial officers in Trollhattan.
Jamiah & Stelliara (N female swanmay 2HD) – Both are swanmay in Alal-Xul and live in a cottage in the woods. Stelliara stays longer while Jamiah is part of the council meetings in Nin-Burud (Celebryn) when Millaene is absent. They live on good terms with elves in Maskin-Xul and occasionally help the elf forester patrols.
Zain Zychnier (CN male human vampire 9HD) - Lord of the castle at Sheb-Nigosh and member of the House Dracor. He assumed the duties of leadership and border protection with hard working personnel and dedication against excesses from Stonewall. Over time, however, he has lost some of his relationship with Count Mzilikazi. Perhaps because it gained more mystical strength and resistance to the sun (like the nosferatu) after making use of a strange medallion found among ancient coffins in the subterranean chambers of the ruins of the old castle. But he has suffered from strange dreams in which he feels a call from some being or force to the north in the Kerothar mountains around Dag-Atur and Mitrestu Castle (he has not talked of this with anyone). A small contingent of the knights of the order of Dracor is parked in the Castle.
Domains of Dlagana
Dralgard (CE male frost giant 15HD) - Jarl of the Dlagana Giants. Descending from a lineage of clans of Gandhar, Dralgard feels tired in a struggle that can no longer be won against the various races that came with the migrations. He has good relations with the djinns in Zaanadar and for the well being of his people he has established an alliance with Drushiye, sending representatives to his palace in Trollhattan. In his subterranean vaults, he keeps old relics and treasures of his people with the help of Duorakh, his personal sorcerer.
Duorakh (CE male frost giant 14HD/Wokan 5) - Sorcerer of the Dlagana and Wokan. Duorakh is dedicated to the history of his people and ancient magics now forgotten, the Odin runes that were used by older giants and sages who now no longer exist to guide and teach him. Duorakh has some daring plans to strengthen his dispersed people: follow ancient expeditions to other ruins of the Gandhar peoples, gather knowledge, magic and legends and try to contact the ancient world of origin of the giants - Jotunheim.
Duorakh believes he has collected the fragments of an ancient magical portal of his people that made use of the runes, but it does not work anymore. For this, he has established a secret alliance with a strange entity called Grothar (see below).
Farid Mahad (CG male djinni 15HD) - This djinn Sheikh has established his hold in the ancient sanctuary of Zaanidon and wants to keep his secrets and study the magic of humans. His relationship with Al-Samaa is unknown and he does not comment on it. His greatest ally in the region are the giants of Dlagana.
Musha-al-Mahir (CG male djinni 7+1HD) - djinn Vizir of Zaanadar, observer, judicious and answers questions with new questions, always deceiving the most curious and inquisitive. At Trollhattan court it is usually reserved and quiet, but always observant. Rarely allows access to Zaanadar, stating that his Sheik does not allow visitors.
Kamina (N male dryad/wokan 4HD) - Wokan dryad, Zerantha council member and one of the main political articulators of the city and relative of Mellora. Kamina discusses with the council the day-to-day of the city about the nearby goblinoids (Nergath and Dul-Marag), visits Mellora in hearings and contacts other dryads and hamadryads in the forest about possible incursions and conflicts with invaders.
Tarmugh (N male actaeon/druid 11HD) - Druid and council member in Zerantha. Tarmugh belongs to a circle of druids that can be traced to Foresthome and the sylvan folk. Mellora is linked to Tarmugh's circle and it looks out over the forests around Limn. Lately Tarmugh's mission is to contact Dreadwood's power in the forest (still not fully understanding what happens) and the actions of fairies, goblinoid incursions and occasional magical conflicts and disappearances in Akh-Kharu (which has previously sent Grabulg - another actaeon of the Council to investigate).
Sage Hs´wah (LN male hsiao 13HD) - Hs'wah is a council member in Zerantha and a member of the League of Sages in Trollhattan. Devotee of the Immortal Ssu-ma and dedicated to finding solutions to conflicts with scholarly and historical investigations, the learned Hs'wah is highly sought after and consulted in Zerantha, Trollhattan, Nin-Burud (Celebryn) and woodland creatures in general as the bearer of ancient knowledge among the Sylvan folk.
Forest of Alal-Xul
Dreadwood (N male gakarak 18HD) - Actually a Gakarak, a great treant in Alal-Xul and remnant of the oldest trees in the whole forest, Dreadwood has seen many springs and winters to continue tolerating so many migrations, invasions in their lands and has fomented some of the treants closest to him Not to tolerate any more damage to their ancestral lands. After obtaining relative fame and extreme results against enemies, it managed to attract the attention of some fairies of the Winter Court and some Vengeful Fairies (see below), that united with him in the fight to keep the region impenetrable to invaders. Dreadwood sees itself as the punitive force of Ordana itself, the Purifier of the forest. Among his allies are treants, hamadryads, and a few sylvan folk and fairies.
Aglon (N male sidhe F5) - Lord Sidhe of the Vengeful Fairies of Aglon was sent to establish mystical holds in Limn through menhirs. The Vengeful Fairies use powerful magics to plant enchanted menhirs in the area they want to claim, then warp a pocket universe around the menhir to serve as a stronghold and spread withering, disease and mayhem to crush any opposition. For the success of his mission (having even put one or two in Akh-Kharu) it becomes important that Dreadwood succeeds in isolating Alal-Xul so that he can strengthen his position in the place and in the future be able to confront Alphatia directly. Sidhe are uncommon but powerful among the ranks of the Vengeful, forming its officer corps and elite heavy infantry. They almost always have class levels, invariably as warriors, and carry weapons and armour made of ‘coalsteel' - a hard, dullish-black alloy of iron that is not poisonous to fae. Physically, the Vengeful sidhe are almost perfect, but appear almost unnaturally gaunt, their skin stretched grotesquely over their bones.
Grothar -(NE male wraith 6HD)- This former Antalian sorcerer has enjoyed in the past the status of a minion of chaos17, But failed in its mission of collecting energy from the dead and declined as a mere major wraith - more precisely during Alphatia's confrontations with Grønborg. Demoted in the prime plane of Mystara as a mere undead, Grothar has restarted his climb to power by joining forces with others. He has visited Zain Zychnier in his castle and also joined forces with the frost giant Duorakh in Dlagana (without revealing his true plans). He has tried to remain hidden from Argaloth and from the Mitrestu.
DM PLOT INFORMATION
This kingdom of fey is new to Alphatia, having arrived only within the past fifty years. The Vengeful have openly proclaimed themselves to be the military arm of an unidentified but powerful kingdom of the faerie-folk located somewhere in the depths of Nentsun. The Vengeful have great enmity for the Capricious (another Faerie kingdom far away), though they refuse to explain the cause of this; they also have equal spite and disdain for the Alphatians, who they view as either collaborators, dupes or pawns of their wayward kin. As a result, the Vengeful are just as willing to make war on any Alphatians that get in their way as they are on the Capricious - and since the Alphatians are far more numerous and visible, they usually bear the brunt of any conflict.
Currently, the Vengeful maintain their main strongholds in the sparse pine-forests of the southeastern Yannivey islands; they have also recently begun claiming a beachhead near the coastal lands of northern Foresthome. As an invasion force, the Vengeful work slowly and circuitously; they use powerful magics to plant enchanted menhirs in the area they want to claim, then warp a pocket universe around the menhir to serve as a stronghold and spread withering, disease and mayhem to crush any opposition. By striking only two or three times a decade and keeping their territorial claims away from major human settlements, they have advanced so far without raising large-scale human attention. Whether this will continue into the future, and whether Alphatian wizardry is able to deal with such a threat, remains to be seen.
WRATH OF THE FOREST
So many incursions and clashes with the goblinoids generated some resentment within the forest. From the goblinoid migrations and the Alphatian invasion, from the Dul-Marag foundation to its scout hunt groups, a response of terror echoed inland. It is said that an old magic was released giving life to the forest to take revenge against the invaders (now doubly more cautious). These legends have echoed even among Zerantha's circles.
This fact is correct, with a bit of exaggeration by those who are unaware of the real reason. One of the ancient beings among the treants (actually a gakarak) decided to gather a group of few isolated treants to take revenge on any invasion or desecration of the forest. His influence has now extended beyond Alal-Xul across the Dar-Engal River thanks to his new allies: strange renegade fairies from some distant place (the Vengeful kingdom) were presented by the hamadryads to the gakarak Dreadwood. These fairies (under the leadership of Aglon) have powered his magical punitive ability against invaders, and so the rumours and legends of the living magical forest remain. Tarmugh of Zerantha, the actaeon druid, has tried a dialogue, but the tensions remain at a level that may have no limits.
THE PLAN OF GROTHAR
Grothar suspects of the whereabouts of a few menhirs and monoliths of Odin's runes around Torpes and already has begun to investigate the League of Sages to have some clue. If he could not only have access to these monoliths, but also to some of the ancient magical runes, he could make some worthy gifts for Hella, like having access to tombs of ancient heroes of the Grønborg era and bring them to revenge against Alphatia. This would also alter the runes of the ancient portal of the Gandhar giants to favour access to Niflheim19 (making the frost giant Duorakh think he would be contacting Jotunheim20, see below) and thus obtain as reward a dignified status among the world of the dead of Hella.
VAULTS OF DLAGANA
Below the jarl halls, Duorakh’s research to restore the remains of an artefact known as the Giant Gate received the help of Grothar in order to reopen a magic passage to the giant's home world (Jotunheim). Unfortunately, Duorakh is having momentary problems with the use of the ancient runes of the giants (which were created from Odin's runes), but Grothar presented a reasonable solution: to complete the Giant Gate with some rune bearing monoliths, that he affirms will complete the scriptures of the Gate. Duorakh’s idea is to convince his entire clan (with some reinforcement to be obtained at Jotunheim) to return Gandhar to his old time of strength and power in the Kerothar Mountains.
- Bruce Heard, “Ar: A Dream of Djinni” from About Bruce Heard and New
- Bruce Heard, “The Alphatian Province of Limn” from About Bruce Heard and New
- Geoff Gander, “Torpes”, from the Vaults of Pandius, originally from the Mystara Mailing List 30 January, 1999.
- Geoff Gander, “Antalians of the East”, from the Vaults of Pandius, originally from the Mystara Message Board, 1998.
- The Almanac Team, “Mystaran Almanacs” AC1018-1019, from the Vaults of Pandius.
- Geoff Gander, “Genealogy of the Shiye Court ”from the Vaults of Pandius, current as of 7 August 1999.
- Rodger Burns , “The Fairie-Folk” from the Vaults of Pandius, originally from the Piazza posted 29 August 2009.
- Jamuga Khan “The Conquest of Alphatia” from the Vaults of Pandius, current as of 26 January 2000.
- Rodger Burns “Alphatia: Kingdoms Before Landfall” from the Vaults of Pandius, from The Piazza posted 5 October 2010.
- Francesco Defferrari “Lost Civilizations of Thyatis and Alphatia” on Threshold issue #11.
- Geoff Gander “The Fall of Ilmaryl” from the Vaults of Pandius, from the Mystara Mailing List posted 16 September 1998.
- Marco Dalmonte ,“On the fey of Frisland and the Eye of Huldra” translated by Giampaolo Agosta on Threshold Magazine issue #06.
1 For more description of Torpes See more about it on “A Gazetteer of Limn” part 2 on Threshold issue #12 and Geoff Gander, “Torpes”, from the Vaults of Pandius.
2 Information about Zaanidon further on this article and also on Rodger Burns at “Alphatia: Kingdoms Before Landfall” on the Vaults of Pandius .
3As related in “The Fall of Ilmaryl” by Geoff Gander on the Vaults of Pandius
4More info about Ymathra see Rodger Burns at “Alphatia: Kingdoms Before Landfall” on the Vaults of Pandius and Francesco Defferrari article “Lost Civilizations of Thyatis and Alphatia” in Threshold issue #11.
5From Marco Dalmonte interview: On the fey of Frisland and the Eye of Huldra translated by Giampaolo Agosta on Threshold Magazine issue #06
6See more about Gandhar on Francesco Defferrari article “Lost Civilizations of Thyatis and Alphatia” in Threshold issue #11.
7This Character was explained on previous “A Gazetteer of Limn” part 1 in Threshold issue #11.
8These minor families was seen previous “A Gazetteer of Limn” part 2 in Threshold issue #12.
9Also known as Celebryn according to Limn version map from Mystaran Almanac AC 1018.
11This location was depicted on the version of the Limn map from Mystaran Almanac AC 1018.
12This character was originally presented in “Mystaran Almanac AC 1019” available at the Vaults of Pandius.
13Details on Manual of planes AD&D TSR publishing page 35.
15This town is not present on version of the map by Bruce Heard, however you can find it on the version of the map of Limn from Mystaran Almanac AC 1018
16See more on Twilight Calling, TSR publishing page 7.
17See description about Lord of Chaos and Minions of Chaos (and Limbo) in the “Voyage of the Princess Ark” article on page 48 of Dragon Magazine #180, TSR publishing page 48.
19Plane of immortal Hella, can be seen on GAZ 07 northern Reaches -TSR publishing, page 63.
20Plane of Giants, can be seen on page 63 of GAZ 07 The Northern Reaches - TSR publishing.