Small City: Conventional (Prince Barzhaan and his Advisory Council. The priesthood of Zilchus wields strong influence in the city as well); AL LN; 15,000gp limit; Assets: 4,875,000gp; Population: 6500; Mixed (humans Oeridian/Suel (5681), halfling (282), elf (174, grey/wood), dwarf (156), half-orc/orc (131), gnome (68), other (8).
Authority Figures: Prince Barzhaan, leader of House Haxx (LN male human Fighter L14). Yarleven, High Priest of Zilchus (LN male human Cleric of Zilchus L13).
Important Characters: Captain Belva* (LN female human Fighter L10), Commander of the Naerie City Garrison; Admiral Aente *(NG female human Fighter L1/Rogue L2/Cleric of Osprem L6), Commander of the Navy; General Morres of House Oedil (LE male human Fighter L12), Commander of the Army; Captain Loxley Corbett (LN male gnome Beguiler L6/Nightmare Spinner L1), leader of the Nasranite Watch; Darvander of House Haxx, cousin of Barzhaan (NG male human Bard L8); Taryl Silverwing (CG female elf Cleric of Corellon Larethian L8), leader of the Olven community; Aromund (NG male human Cleric of Sotillion L9), High Priest of the Velaeri; Frulhen (NG female human Cleric of Osprem L8), High Priestess of Osprem in Naerie City; Towrin Ghan (LN male human Fighter L5/Expert L3), Head of the Royal Guild of Merchants of Aerdy in Naerie; Arem (LE male human Cleric of Hextor L7/Fighter L1/ Blackguard L1), leader of Hextor’s Temple in Naerie City; Diordis (NG female human Cleric of Lydia L6), head of Lydia’s Temple in Naerie City.
Temples: Zilchus (god of Power, Prestige, Money, Business & Influence), Heironeous (god of Chivalry, Justice, Honor, War, Daring and Valor), Hextor (God of War, Discord, Massacres, Conflict, Fitness and Tyranny), Lydia (goddess of Music, Knowledge and Daylight) Osprem (goddess of Ships, Sea Voyages and Sailors), Procan (God of Seas, Sea life, Salt, Sea Weather and Navigation), Sotillion* (goddess of Summer, South Wind, Ease and Comfort), Xerbo (god of Sea, Sailing, Money and Business), Corellon Larethian (Elves, Music, Craft, Arts & War) *Temple of Winds is dedicated to other Velaeri as well (Atroa, Telchur, Velnius & Wenta) but Sotillion is most popular.
Overview: The largest town in Derevendt, and indeed in the entire Principality, is Naerie City, or just Naerie as it’s called. It is also the capital of Derevendt and of the Principality as a whole and thus functions as the center of trade and seat of power for the ruling House Haxx. It has a population of some 6,500 individuals, Oeridian and Suel being the most numerous human groups with occasional Flan. Some Hepmonaland Suel arrived to Principality as a result of the war and now form an underclass of the society.
The Principality of Naerie differs much from other areas of the United Kingdom. Foremost, it was once a part of County of Idee, a bitter enemy of the Great Kingdom. As such, its ruler Prince Barzhaan has made sure that certain unsavory traits of the kingdoms heartlands do not become common in Naerie. So far he has been successful and the population has been content, not the least for the gratitude it still feels for its liberation from the Scarlet Sign.
Naerie is the edge of an empire. It is a relatively small coastal area with quite a few people, it is rich in natural resources and has thousands of soldiers in arms. In the south, the Azure Sea is contested by the fleets of the Scarlet Sign and Naerie, both striving to make sure that enemy soldiers never set foot on their homeland. In the west and east, Sunndi and rest of the Iron League are kept separated by the Ahlissan power, preventing a unified threat against the nightingale throne.
Yet the internal threats might form the greatest threat. Idee Volunteer insurgents, Sunndian rabble-rousers, competing noble houses and ever present threat of Scarlet Sign infiltrations keep prince Barzhaan busy, which so far prevents him from achieving his ultimate goal; an attack on the Kingdom of Shar, one that Prince Reydrich himself swore to achieve.
Naerie City is divided into several districts, though the exact borders of these districts are unclear. Not much effort was ever made to separate them from each other with walls and these days people accept the fact that, for example, the Trade District is around the central square. Many places in the city are brand new, built using the Brotherhood troopers as labor force.
Other distinct areas exist in Naerie City. The Burrow is the local halfling community. Fey Circle is a small, round area, where most of the elves and half-elves in the city live. Their informal leader and spokesperson is the charismatic Taryl Silverwing. The Foreigners’ Enclave is where outlanders with no friends, family, or business contacts in Naerie are assigned living quarters. Dog Alley is the red-light district – an area of narrow, lantern-lit passages where women cater to the jaded tastes of men named “wild dogs” in an old Oeridian euphemism. Derevendt and Naerie’s main supply of income is taxation, extensive cattle breeding, being a trade nexus and few other means such as mining in Radoc.
Food and water supply: Surrounding farming communities make sure that Naerie City is kept well fed. In addition, there are a fair number of fishermen in town. While there is not a river near the town to supply water, the Eddri rulers did build several collection points for rainwater within the town, along with wells. In emergency, these collection points can be filled with the help of two decanters of endless water, which are kept in temples of Osprem & Procan. Originally there were three but the third disappeared during the occupation. An ambitious project to build an underground aqueduct that would bring water from the Hollow Highlands was put on hold by occupation but it is speculated that work might start again in few years.
Sanitation: Alongside regular sewers, a large workforce (employing many Hepmonaland savages) in town is responsible for collecting horse dung and human feces that is carted outside the town as fertilizer for farming communities. Many items are re-used in the town. A few peddlers even make a living by collecting trash metal like old nails. Children call these individuals walking coppers as they can occasionally take items they find and sell them. Organic waste which is not used in town is usually carted outside the city where it can moulder.
Rulership and Law
Power in the city of Naerie rests firmly in the grasp of the prince. However, the Royal Guild of Merchants of Aerdy, along with Advisory Council holds limited power in the internal affairs of the principality.
The Nasranite Watch (the city guard) patrols the streets and are well trained, have good equipment and excellent leaders. They usually move in groups of three to six guardsmen and one officer. They are typically equipped with a chainshirt, a shield, a longsword and a crossbow. In addition they have all the usual trappings of a city guard such as whistle, lantern, and so on. Nasranite Watch have grey tabards. Halfling and elf communities have a small number of their own guards that maintain security in their own communities if the need arises, though they are still under the authority of the Nasranite Watch.
Prince Barzhaan maintains his court in a massive mansion, surrounded by extensive walls and gardens in Noble District. It is the original building used by the Eddri rulers and subsequently, Elder Brother Vasiliek, but has been recently been expanded and improved with magical defenses. Two new statues (massive stone men carrying large ever-burning torches) are said to actually be stone golems or animated constructs under command of Prince Barzhaan. Further information on the nature of magical defenses is a closely guarded state secret but it is suspected that precautions against teleport, scrying and other such spells have been taken.
Following the defeat of the Scarlet Brotherhood by Ahlissan troops in the 580’s, many of the surviving Hepmonaland warriors were put into labor camps. Most of them still remain there. Those that have been released from servitude are unable to return to Hepmonaland or the Tilvanot Peninsula because of almost certain reprisal and loss of face due to their defeat. These newly freed individuals barely survive, and carve out a subsistence-level existence of second-class citizens as beggars, serfs, and common laborers. Those who evaded capture have settled in the northern parts of the Menowood, where they have made a life of sorts, being a thorn in the side to the farmers on the edge of the forest and Ahlissan troops that are still forced to patrol the perimeter of the forest.
A labor camp named Okalasna for Scarlet Brotherhood prisoners and other undesirables is near Naerie City. Priests of certain chaotic deities have been known to incite rioting in the camp.
Okalasna and other, dismantled labor camps were a mixed blessing initially as they provided labor that was used to build fortifications and city walls around Naerie City. However, now its usefulness has more or less been exhausted. In 597 CY, a large number of Hepmonalander prisoners and other Suel prisoners were transferred to the ghetto of Shar Hesiyev. Current population includes a mixture of Idee Volunteers and Scarlet Brotherhood prisoners.
While some of the ethnic pariahs are too busy surviving to question their future, others seek an improvement in their status within the Principality of Naerie. Within the tangled alliances that characterize Naerie politics, some view the Hepmonalanders as pawns that can be used. The Scarlet Brotherhood wishes for the Hepmonalanders to become useful as a fighting force again. Idee Volunteers seek alliances wherever they can find them. While some in the noble houses are guided by ethical considerations regarding the quality of life for these savages, others would pursue any course that might cause embarrassment to House Haxx’s position that the Hepmonalanders must be kept out of mainstream society.
More subversive elements also have an opinion as to the disposition of the Hepmonaladers. The Patriotic Knights are vehemently opposed to having Hepmonalanders “walking around town” and have caused public disturbances in the past to try to undermine those who would protect the Hepmonalanders (Nasranite Watch).
The faith of Zilchus, the god of Power, Prestige, Money, Business and Influence, is the dominant religion of the Kingdom and its priesthood is the strongest in Naerie. However, that does not mean it is the most popular. Osprem, goddess of Ships, Sea Voyages and Sailors, was very popular in the Old Idee and her worship is perhaps the most populous in Naerie. Worship of Lydia, goddess of Music, Knowledge and Daylight, is also highly popular because her priests travel the countryside, teaching common folk many useful skills. Oeridian and Suloise agricultural gods are both worshipped, along with the sea gods Procan and Xerbo.
Ahlissan soldiers of course brought with them the worship of Hextor. Common people see no need for him but temples for have been build to Naerie City & Poelitz among others. Worship of Heironeous is also popular but because of actions by Staceus of Felten, founder of the Idee Volunteers, the church was forced to make a public acceptance of Ahlissan rulership and revoke affiliation with the Idee Volunteers. Common soldiers still worship him but the Idee Volunteers have moved extensively to Trithereon, God of Individuality, Retribution and Self-Defence, whose worship is outlawed in Naerie. Worshipping of vile cults and deities such as Beltar are also forbidden.
It should be noted that worship of Wee Jas was quite strong among sages and some nobles before the Brotherhood occupation but as it was the only church that supported the occupation, its temples faced extensive purges by Ahlissan soldiers and the vengeful population and now the only established temple can be found in Poelitz.
Trade and Commerce
The Principality has three notable resources; foodstuffs, gold, and copper. The south of the country is extremely fertile and produces much of the foodstuffs that Naerie trades. Naerie has some mineral resources, mining copper in the northwest and gold in the northeast. Banditry and piracy (mainly on routes across Azure Sea) are the two traditional scourges of trade in Naerie, and the military is kept active by hunting them down. Letters of Marque are given out to ambitious privateers to hunt down pirates.
As cattle breeding is the trade of choice for House Haxx, an ambitious program is underway to improve the cattle in Naerie by breeding with strains brought from the old Haxx homelands in the heartlands of the United Kingdom.
The export of grain and the taxation of commoners are the two main sources of revenue in the baronies. When Prince Barzhaan came to power, general taxes were raised but trade tariffs were reduced. During the last few years taxes have been somewhat lowered since profits from grain export are once again up.
Nobles are exempt from tax in the Principality, but written agreements between the Prince and the Barons stipulate a yearly tribute to the Prince that can take the form of money, goods, land or soldiery. In reality, this means that Barons who cannot muster enough soldiery or who have no surplus goods must tax their local population to pay the tribute.
The coastal waters are plied by cargo ships transporting grain and other goods between local communities. This sea route extends north to Irongate. With liberation of Onnwal, this route now extends past the ruins of Scant and onto Hardby and Nyrond. Trade to Onnwal still goes to Longbridge on Onnwal’s Azure Coast as Scant won’t be accepting Ahlissan goods until the town has been rebuilt. The ships of the Nightingale throne patrol the waters of the Gearnat because of the renewed slaver activity in Pomarj.
Commoners are quite content under Ahlissan rule. The Eddri rulers, relatively nice as they were, still ran a feudal system on Idee, collecting taxes from farmers in form of coin or products. The Scarlet Sign was a shock to many people and troops from the South Province were seen as a return to old ways.
Barzhaan knows that it is not required to keep people under an iron fist. While laws are harsh as is common in Ahlissa, the authorities do not go after people unless there is a reason. As such, most people prefer the rule of Kalstrand to that of Hesuel Ilshar.
The scars of the occupation still run deep within the population. Anyone may sometimes meet situations with pureblooded Suel, which lead to conflicts when paranoid commoners see Brotherhood agents where there are none (though of course exceptions can happen).
Most rural people are farmers, working their feudal obligations in fields. Many do simple secondary jobs as well. Some work in more specialised jobs such as charcoal burners or blacksmiths. Commoners in cities can be found doing nearly any job, from streetsweeper to construction worker. More expert ones generally work as assistants to specialised experts such as shipbuilders or salt makers. Fisher is also a common profession in coastal towns.
Notable Locations in Naerie City
Palace of the Prince: Prince Barzhaan of House Haxx maintains his court in this massive mansion, surrounded by extensive walls and gardens. It is the original building used by Eddri rules and subsequently, Elder Brother Vasiliek, but has been recently expanded and improved with magical defenses. Two new statues (massive stone statues of Oeridian warriors) are actually said to be stone golems or animated constructs, under the command of Prince Barzhaan. Further information on the nature of magical defenses is a closely guarded state secret but it is suspected that precautions against teleport, scrying and other such spells have been taken.
The area around the palace is called the Noble Quarter. As the name indicates, this the area where the upper class of the society lives. Most houses here are large and more often than not have gardens surrounding them. Individuals such as Darvander Haxx, Yarleven & General Morres live here.
Chapel of Heironeous: This is the only chapel of Heironeous in Naerie City. It is quite small but has a large number of worshippers among local population, Nasranite Watch and garrison. It is currently tended by Thanlok (LG male human Paladin L6), replacing the previous priest Remismund (LG male human Cleric L7) who was killed mysteriously in 593 CY. After his death, it was revealed that Remismund had been supporter of Idee Volunteers who used chapel as a meeting place. It is unknown if this practice continues..
The Bathhouse of Ranet: This place is named after the long dead Suloise goddess of fire, though very few of the clients know this. It functions as a public bath for the town. The water comes from an underground spring and is circulated through heated pipes in the boiler room. A Suel man Avrat Mogor (LE male human Wizard L5/Bonded Summoner L3) is the owner of the place and well respected in social circles. It is actually speculated that Avrat uses skills learned from his master to run this place and that he has some sort of magical items helping him. Some people argue that there is no underground springs anywhere near the town, at least for operating a bath and that Avrat is using some sort of magical device for his water needs.
Star of Aerdy: One of the best taverns in the town is the Star of Aerdy. The building has stood in this spot for half a century and has always been a tavern. When Idee was independent, it was owned by a family of dwarves and called Iron Flagon. When the Scarlet Brotherhood took over it became a mess hall for worshippers of Bralm and was called the Beehive. The latest owner, Ideean soldier named Wulfric (LN male human Warrior L2/Expert L4), took possession of the place after the occupation (as its previous owners had been killed) and renamed it the Star of Aerdy in honor of the Ahlissan army. Wulfric celebrates the anniversary by offering a special drink called the ‘Iron Bee’ for his customers. This mixture is a combination of powerful dwarven ale, Ahlissan mead and lots of honey and it is of course drunk from an iron flagon. Interestingly enough, Wulfrics most loyal customers seem to be among Nasranite Watch.
Nasranite Watch Compound: The main Nasranite Watch compound is surrounded by 10ft high stone wall and accessed through two large gates. Several smaller guard houses are located throughout the city but this is the one where one can talk to the Nasranite Watch leaders; Captain Belva (LN female human Fighter L10) and Damar Rocharion (LN male human Ranger L2/Fighter L8).
After the disaster during Richfest 594 CY the Nasranite Watch has recruited several clerics and battlemages to combat any further magical disturbances and guard members underwent further training to tackle such problems.
Marketplace: This large square is also known as central square. It is a place where many local farmers and traveling merchants gather to sell their goods. It is also a popular place for sell swords who are looking for a change to hire themselves as caravan guards to merchants who continue to Sunndi or further up the Coast Road. In the square is also a large statue, which shows three blacksmiths (human, elf and dwarf), forging a weapon. It was originally put up by House Eddri to symbolize the Iron League and had many symbols dedicated to member states. The Scarlet Brotherhood defaced the statue but Prince Barzhaan had it restored, but without any Iron League symbols.
The area around market place is called Trade Quarter.
Temple of Zilchus: The grand temple for the Moneycounter looks over the proceedings of the market place. Yarleven, the high priest of Zilchus can be found here most of the time.
Headquarters of the Royal Guild of Merchants of Aerdy: This house stores much information about shipping routes, local merchants and their activities. Towrin Ghan, guild representative in Naerie can be found here.
Temple of the Winds: This large temple has always been dedicated to the Velaeri except the time Scarlet Brotherhood controlled Naerie when it had shrines to Beltar, Pyremius, Llerg and Syrul. Nowadays it has been restored to its original glory and Velaeri are once again worshipped. All faiths have their own sections dedicated in the temple but high priests cooperate in practical matters concerning the temple, with one priest functioning as ’head of temple’ for 3 year period. Currently the title is held by Aromund (NG male human Cleric of Sotillon L9) who was elected in the early 596 CY.
Chapel of Procan: This slightly dilapidated building houses the local temple of Procan. A priest named Gardienko (CN male human Cleric of Procan L7) can be found here.
Harbor: Dozens of ship can be anchored to piers at any given time. Most of the waterfront consists of warehouses and stowers are kept busy as ships from as far as Keoland arrive, bringing cargoes from exotic lands. In recent time, with a help of Brotherhood slave labor, several watchtowers have been build across the harbor. They are topped by ballistas and catapults and form the first line of defence in case of an attack. Master Pilot here is Jave Norntag (N male human Commoner L10). Some of the well-known captains who frequent the harbor include Gerdan ‘the Lame’ (CN male human Rogue L6), Eryn (CN male human Cleric of Xerbo L3) and Valetta (N Female human Rogue L2/Ranger L3). A small shrine dedicated to Xerbo is here as well. It is tended by Suel man named Dorelan (CN male human Cleric of Xerbo L5).
Chapel of Osprem. This large temple stands near the harbor and is (naturally) very popular with sailors. High Priestess Frulhen (NG female human Cleric of Osprem L8) maintains the temple and assigns her acolytes for duties at merchant vessels when requested and many times offers free healing to those who need it.
Military docks: The elite Azure Squadron is based on this section of the town. It also houses the navy headquarters and office of Admiral Aente. At least one squadron of three caravels is always present. A stonewall was recently build, again using slave labor, to separate this area from rest of the city. Two guarded gates allow access into this area.
Breakwater: Using the Brotherhood slave labor, a massive breakwater was constructed further away from the harbor to protect the fleet from attack. It also shelters vessels from storms. If need be, breakwater can be turned into fortified military position.
Silver Eel Inn: This inn is one of the many in the waterfront. It is a three-story building and can offer modest accommodation to those who need it but mainly it is just a drinking hole for sailors, stowers and other commoners.
Dog Alley: This area is a red-light district – an area of narrow, lantern-lit passages where women cater to the jaded tastes of men named “wild dogs” in an old Oeridian euphemism. Law enforcement is generally left to the hired fists of the brothel owners and thieves guilds. “The code of silence” applies and Nasranite Watch rarely interferes, except in more severe cases. An infamous case in 592 CY saw a raid by Nasranite Watch where two well-known merchants were caught with child slaves. They were subsequently dragged to the street, guilt confirmed with magical means by a cleric of Hextor and then executed on the spot.
Burrow & Fey Circle: The demi-humans of Naerie City live in their own area. Halfling & gnome residents call it Burrow while elves call the area Fey Circle. This is purely figure of speech as houses here are pretty much like elsewhere in the town. Few Halfling holes have been built though. Small shrines to Yondalla & Corellon Larethian exist here.
Foreigners Enclave: The Foreigners’ Enclave is where outlanders with no friends, family, or business contacts in Naerie are assigned living quarters. This usually means refugees and emigrants, though recently elements of Sunndian 11th army where stationed there as well, while waiting for transport to Onnwal. Elsar Irtuva (N female human Expert L5), refugee from Lordship of the Isles, has established herself as unofficial ‘point of contact’ to all foreigners arriving here.
Temple of Lydia: This temple is painted in bright colors and kept impeccably clean. This temple is the main educational institution in the city and many people send their children here to learn valuable skills. The area outside the temple serves as a ground for each years Richfest celebrations.
Breddol the Sage: This old house in Luna Way is the home of Breddol Fhals, aka ’The Sage’ (LN male human Rogue L7/Expert L2), scholar of great repute and collector of exotic items. Statues are especially close to his heart and he maintains perhaps the finest collection in the entire Principality. Some suspect that quite a few of these statues are actually petrified creatures. Rhengott Fhals (LN male human Rogue L4), who is a nephew of Breddol is responsible for hiring outsiders who work for Breddol.
Temple of Hextor: This foreboding building was originally dedicated to Kord when the Scarlet Brotherhood took over. Clerics of Hextor captured it during the fight for the city and summarily executed many captured brotherhood members on its stairs afterwards. These days the banners showing the gauntleted fist of Hextor fly proudly from its pennants.
Street of Smiths: This long street starts from the temple of Hextor and extends almost up to south gate. It is the home of for most of artisans of Naerie City. As the name suggests, high quality iron products are available here. However, it also has many specialized shops that sell anything from glass products to high quality artwork. A statue for Fedorik Eddri stood here before the occupation but Scarlet Brotherhood destroyed it.
City administration: This building functions as administration center for city. Of interest is a the city architect Olphan Vinn (LN male human Expert L6) who is said to have in his possession the most accurate maps of the city, including sewer maps and future building plans for city defenses. Treasurer Faal (LN Female Fighter L5), leader of tax collectors (perhaps the most hated person of the city) also works here.
Home of Eurynymos: This large house is a residence of wizard Eurynymos (CN male human Wizard L5/Bonded Summoner L7) who is well known for his research of elemental planes. His apprentice Cawyr was responsible for Richfest disaster of 594 CY but despite protests, Cawyr did not have to pay with his life. Neither Cawyr nor Eurynymos have been seen in public for a while though it is said they both occasionally visit Irongate and Sage Keep.
Chapel of Wee Jas: This chapel has been empty for years now, ever since Ahlissan forced killed its priests.