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NARVAEZ (Baronía de)
Location: Northwest of Saragón, north of Gargoña, south of Torreón. SC
Area: 15,477 sq. mi. (40,085 sq. km.).
Population: 16,000, including 12,300 in Puerto Morillos.
Coinage: Oro (gp), dies (sp), centa (cp).
Taxes: 35% income tax.
Government Type: Independent barony part of the Treaty of Tampicos and Signatory Council.
Industries: Agriculture, mercenaries.
Important Figures: Hugo "El Despiadado" de Narvaez y Montoya (Barón, human, male, Pr(cr)15 of Ixion War Priest).
Flora and Fauna: Standard for its warm temperate climate, including kudzu, tomatoes, potatoes, maize, plains grasses, deer, armadillos, prairie dogs, turkeys, and eagles. Dangerous monsters include the vast number of goblinoids that raid from the Yazak Steppes and from an unnamed swamp on the coast of the gulf. Normal animals with Legacies can also be very dangerous.
Further Reading: The Savage Coast online document, previous almanacs.
Description by Hernando Cagliostro.
Narvaez. The name of this baronía alone is enough to cause fear in most people, and with reason. Narvaezans have always be intent on conquest of all the Savage Baronies, and they intend for everyone to worship the flames of Ixion and his Inquisitor.
Narvaez is the largest baronía of the Gulf of Hule. It is mostly fertile farmland situated in the valley of Rio Guadiana. Forested hills mark the borders on either side of the valley. Many villages can be found along the river, but most have been destroyed and are nothing more than ruins thanks to the holy war Narvaez embarked upon a decade ago. Only two main towns are still left in that region: Paz del Sol and Punto-Eseobar.
The southern part of Narvaez turns eastward and goes all the way to the sea, where Puerto Morillos stands. This is the capital of the nation, where Barón Hugo rules with an iron fist and his Matónes thugs enforce his laws. Life in Puerto Morillos is very subdued, as to try and be lively and entertaining marks one out for the dreaded inquisitors, who will most assuredly come and visit.
North of this stretch of land, and east of Rio Guadiana, lies las Colinas Grutescas and an unnamed swamp. Bandits and religious refugees have made many a hideout in this area, and it is rumoured to be filled with ruins and ancient treasures.
Narvaezans are an oppressed people who have no freedom to do as they please. The dreaded inquisitors and their goddess, aptly named the Inquisitor, make sure that everyone is extremely devoted to Ixion. Those believed to have performed the slightest heresy are burned at the stake.
The populace is heavily taxed so the barón can afford to build his military forces. With these, he insures that there are no revolts in his nation, and enforces the worship of Ixion. Many such mercenaries even serve abroad, although most other countries are afraid to hire them because of their religious convictions. Those that do serve outside of Narvaez must still pay taxes to the barón or they will be declared heretics.
The barón even exports the food of the commoners to other nations for money, often leaving them starving in his own baronía. Then El Despiadado [The Despised. Ed.] wonders why he has so many revolts and has to pay for so many soldiers. The famous Matónes, the elite guards of Narvaez, are nothing more than thugs who take pleasure in bullying those weaker than they are. And any who complain to the officials are soon found burning at the stakes; the inquisitors find their devotion in Ixion to be lacking merely days afterwards.
Narvaezans view afflicted as those punished by the Immortals, in particular by Ixion. Since cinnabryl is rare in Narvaez, only the clerics of Ixion can keep the Red Curse at bay with their maintain spells. Those who become afflicted are therefore viewed as those who have not been faithful to the church and therefore suffer the punishment they deserve. What I believe is even worse is that the afflicted themselves, so caught up in the religion of Ixion, believe that they are to blame for their curse. What kind of religion puts such false and destructive ideas into the heads of its own people?
These days, afflicted are automatically viewed as heretics and are to be killed on sight. Also, druids and mages are equally viewed as heretics, since they obviously worship other sources of powers for their spells. It is because of my arcane studies that I was forced to flee my own homeland.
Narvaez was the first baronía along the Savage Coast, created many years ago by Ispan [a group of Thyatians. Ed.] colonists at the turn of the last century. They claimed the entire coast of the Gulf of Hule where almost all the other baronies now lie.
Soon after its creation, several towns declared their independence and formed their own baronies. Then, in AC 913, the first barón died and the nation was divided in two by his two heirs. The northern baronía remained Narvaez while the southern one became la Baronía de Sotto. Over the next decades, Sotto fell apart to numerous civil wars and eventually became what are known as Gargoña, Almarrón, and Cimarron.
Meanwhile, Narvaez itself was facing many revolts and declarations of independence as well. Tired of these secessions, the barón started building his forces and attacked the rebellious towns. By AC 937, Narvaez had reclaimed all its lands, not including those that were given to Sotto. El barón continued to build his forces to prevent any other uprisings. Narvaez became known for its infantry and military throughout the baronies. They held their land and remained peaceful until the next century.
Then in AC 1005, Narvaez fell into civil war over their religion. El barón managed to unite his people in AC 1006 by claiming that it was the other nations which were heretics, uniting the factions into a holy war against the rest of the baronies. Torreón, Texeiras and Vilaverde joined Narvaez against the other baronies. This war ended when Hule invaded, forcing the barons to work together or lose all their lands.
Near the end of AC 1009, the Red Curse spread throughout the land and many Narvaezans became afflicted. This has begun causing many troubles within la baronía, and many believe that another religious civil war is inevitable. In AC 1014, Barón Hugo began stockpiling smokepowder, and many feared that la baronía would again start a spree of conquests and expansion. In consequence, they have created sanctions that thankfully forbade the export of smokepowder to Narvaez. Unfortunately this hasn't stopped Barón Hugo, who attacked and conquered most of Gargoña in AC 1016.
The one thing I enjoy in Narvaez is to see the daring swashbucklers in Puerto Morillos. They wear masks and go about taunting the inquisitors, the priests of Ixion, Los Matónes, and even el barón. Sadly, many of them have been killed and burned at the stake, but just as many always manage to escape and harass the fanatical Narvaezans even more.
Unless you are willing to become a near-slave to the whims of the Matónes and the inquisitors, I recommend avoiding Narvaez as much as possible. If you must go, stay in small villages where you will be harder to find.