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Page history last edited by John 12 years ago

Region 6: South-West Flanaess, Sheldomar Valley, Demographics



Old Arms      





Society and Culture: As Fenwick Astakane of Skipperton noted in 375 CY, Sterich is indeed a hive of low nobility. The original mining booms brought many fortune-seekers and adventurers into the realm, who swiftly organized themselves into a spider web of noble titles and responsibilities, with much of the expected jealousy. Often, the earl (for it was then an earldom) of Sterich would have a terrible time keeping control of the various factions underneath him, often turning to the serfs and peasants as a balancing factor. Thus, for centuries, political power would swing like a pendulum, with the nobles claiming power at one moment and the peasants doing so the next.

Ironically, this stabilized the nation, as neither faction could exist without the other. The ruling family was able to play both sides off against each other, and thus maintain its control over the entire realm.

The people of Sterich are good and honest, though hard and grim, for they have seen much bloodshed ever since they claimed this land. Even before the Migrations, the Flan tribes of the area fought fiercely with each other to the extent that, even among the Flan nobility, rivalries exist to this day. Giants and orcs perpetually followed the Davish River into the lowlands to loot and plunder. This forced Sterich to develop a much harder, more Spartan approach to life than their Geoffite neighbors. Many nobles from Keoland, unhappy with King Skotti's social reforms, emigrated to Sterich and helped the nation's attitudes crystallize.

While little overt racism exists in Sterich, the people prefer to keep to themselves, banding together only when necessary. Only Istivin was a large city, with every other habitation being a noble's manor surrounded by peasant farms, where the residents kept to themselves.


Military Structure: The light cavalry and sword-wielding light infantry are of excellent training and morale, with additional dwarven foot from a certain kingdom in the Crystalmist Mountains. The archers of Sterich are also among the best in the Sheldomar, and the light hobilars are also of good repute. Sterich's levies, however, do not fight well together except when they are with their neighbors, and so these must be relegated to small skirmishing bands only. Heavy troops and cavalry, except among the dwarves, is not numerous or well-trained. Gnomish engineers, however, provide a strong defense against the orc siege works and giant boulders. While the nobles all live on their own estates, these are superbly constructed, withdrawing into underground tunnels to wage guerilla combat against the invaders.


Ruler: Earl (now Marquis) Querchard was known as a rakishly handsome half-elf, who openly and proudly displayed his heritage to all who would witness it. A man of biting wit and cocky bearing, he was a master at the harp, guitar and flute, being able to charm crowds and visiting nobles without even resorting to his powers as a bard. Despite his quirks, he was a man capable of deep and lasting friendship, which he held with all his neighbors, and most of his nobles, despite Sterich's petty aristocratic rivalries. His gleaming blue eyes, waist-length blond hair, and muscular frame caused many a maiden to blush and tug at her collar when he passed by.

Since he mysteriously disappeared after returning to Krelont Keep, his home in Istivin, his wife Resbin Dren Emondav has guided the realm, although Sterich law forbids a woman from ruling of her own accord. A large Flan woman, some people have wondered what Querchard had seen in her, as she is no great beauty. Quiet, grim and blunt, she rarely entertains visitors, instead working through her justices to deliver proclamations to outlying nobles and resolve disputes.

Her greatest preoccupation has been to weed through the many demands on noble estates and fortunes since the Wars-many aristocrats were killed, leaving their estates open for the taking. Different branches of the same family will feud over a count's estate, while con men and criminals seek a share of the rich mining take for themselves by setting themselves up as noblemen.


Foreign Relations: Obviously, Geoff and Sterich have the strongest relations. Both of them are talking of secession from Keoland and declaring independence, which Lashton and most of Keoland's court do not take well, although Skotti himself has been trying to calm the tensions. Sterich's relations with the dwarven kingdoms of the Crystalmists vary from rocky to strong, as the alliances and blood feuds among these dwarves change as well. The Yeomanry and the UIek states still visit Sterich regularly, though many are upset at the disappearance of Querchard.

Region 6: South-West Flanaess, Sheldomar Valley, South-Western Flanaess, Sheldomar Valley map

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