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Mauntea Houseby Aaron Nowack
"Power Corrupts. Never Again."
A Brief History of Mauntea House:
Mauntea House was established in 714 AC, during the reign of Santhral II, the Last King of Darokin. Already, the King was no more than a relic, and the Kingdom of Darokin was fragmenting into city-states. Mauntea House's first claim to fame was its masterful handling of the Akesoli-Akorros war following Santhral II's death and the official dissolution of the Kingdom of Darokin. Thomas Mauntea, then head of the family, played both cities against each other, selling weapons to both. When Akorros eventually triumphed, confirming its position as capital of the now independent Duchy of Amsorak, both cities were desperately in debt to Mauntea House.
Mauntea House would later use this debt to stop a threatened war between Darokin and Amsorak, firmly establishing itself in Darokin's power structure.
Mauntea House was the de facto ruler of Darokin City by 927 AC, and it did a vast amount of trade with foreign powers, including Alfheim, Heldann, Rockhome, Soderfjord, and Thyatis. When the Great Houses met to discuss the Great Merger, there was only one logical person to lead the nation... Charles Mauntea. In hindsight, the leaders of the other Houses would regret not establishing a firm constitution then and there, but they made the foolish mistake of not doing so. In the six years of Charles's reign, he ruthlessly exploited his position, nearly bankrupting many of the Great Houses and actually bankrupting many minor ones. With no checks on his power, Charles could run rampant... and he did.
Upon his death, the new Republic was ready to fragment. At the instigation of Corun House, Linton House was threatening to withdraw from the Merger, and with it would go most of the other Houses. Lydia Mauntea, Charles's widow, knew that something had to be done, as foreign powers were greedily awaiting the nation's collapse: Thyatis hoping to seize Darokinian assets in its territories, and Alphatia hoping to establish a vassal state to threaten Thyatis with. The humanoids of the Broken Lands were already sharpening their swords in anticipation of the bloodshed to come.
So, Lydia, regretting what was to come, gave an order her reputation would never recover from. For one night, the streets of Darokin's cities ran red with blood, as assassins in the pay of Mauntea House struck, slaying the leaders of every major House and all of Mauntea's main enemies. The House most grievously hit was Corun House, with every person bearing the Corun name dying in a fire set at their mansion. It would be a minor branch of the family that would eventually emerge to once again take control of Corun House's assets.
With the other Houses in disarray, Lydia unilaterally declared herself Chancellor of Darokin. By the time any other leaders could protest, troops in Mauntea colours were outside their homes and marching down the streets of the major cities. In 934 AC, Lydia called a Second Great Merchant's Council, and forced the other leaders to confirm her takeover at the same time as she set up safeguards to prevent any future Chancellor's from imitating her husband.
It would be over forty years before Mauntea House was trusted enough to even have a chance in the Chancellor elections, when Corwyn was elected.
[The vote in the inner council to elect Corwyn was: Corwyn Mauntea: Mauntea, Corun, Pennydown, Franich Bertram Hallonica: Hallonica, Al-Azrad
Lucius Linton: Linton, Toney, Umbarth]
Mauntea House Assets
Far too many to fully list here. Mauntea House maintains hundreds of caravans, warehouses all over the Known World, and many more mercantile operations. It's most significant foreign possession is the Mauntea Complex in Thyatis City, a massive collection of offices, warehouses, and hostels which acts as a hub for Darokinian caravans from all houses operating all over the Empire and beyond. The Darokinian Embassy and the local DDC Branch (one of the largest outside the Republic) are also contained in the Complex.
Mauntea House Relations
Al-Azrad: Neutral. The two house's businesses don't overlap, and neither is a threat to the other politically.
Corun House: Friendly. Before Lydia's takeover, Corun was one of Mauntea's staunchest foes. However, the Kalimi's, who eventually were determined to be the legal inheritors of the House, were actually close friends of the Mauntea's.
Franich House: Friendly. Franich did not suffer during Lydia's takeover, and owes its prominence partly due to that event.
Hallonica House: Neutral. Hallonica is not particularly interested in playing politics.
Linton House: Hostile. Linton has always been second to Mauntea, and the amount of hostility that has generated is astounding. Linton fiercely competes with Mauntea in the foreign markets as well.
Pennydown House: Friendly. Pennydown often serves as a domestic outlet for Mauntea's foreign goods.
Toney House: Neutral. Neither House is particularly involved with the other, commercially or politically.
Umbarth House: Neutral verging on hostile. An ally of Linton, Umbarth is slightly hostile to Mauntea.
Mauntea House Personalities
Corwyn Mauntea (3rd/3rd/1st level Rogue/Aristocrat/Wizard, NG) Corwyn is the great-grandson of Charles and Lydia. He has spent much of his life trying to restore his house's honour from his great-grandparent's actions. He has sharp blue eyes which shine with intelligence, though his once black hair has turned grey.
In his youth, Corwyn was actually somewhat of a disgrace to the Mauntea family, as he dabbled in thievery and other mischief. However, he quickly settled down, and became one of the greatest leaders the Republic has ever known. He has a piercing wit and is well suited to the job of leading Darokin into the new millennium. He is married and has two children.
Allana Mauntea (3rd/1st level Expert/Aristocrat, N) Allana is Corwyn Mauntea's wife. Their marriage was a political one, but has deepened into true love. She has grey hair and green eyes. If a adventuring party is hired to work for Mauntea House, she is likely the one they speak to.
Allana is quite popular in Darokin City society, and is in charge of organising the annual Masked Ball. She might hire adventurers to protect that event, should some threat to it appear.
Charles Mauntea (2nd/2nd level Fighter/Aristocrat, NG) Charles is Corwyn and Allana's eldest child. He has brown hair and blue eyes, and is being groomed to be the next leader of Mauntea House. He is quite adventurous, and might join a party for a time.
Ellisa Mauntea (2nd/3rd level Rogue/Aristocrat, CG) Ellisa is Corwyn and Allana's second child. She chose to train as a thief after her father, much to his embarrassment. Fortunately for Mauntea House's fragile reputation, she was never caught.
Since then, she has settled down, and is managing the Mauntea Complex in Thyatis. Rumour has it that she is engaged in an affair with Tahir Al-Azrad. that family's Thyatian representative. The Complex is always looking for guards and agents, and Ellisa might personally hire adventurers for politically sensitive missions.