Monday, April 1, 2013

A is for Avalandia

His Fey Majesty, Elerossë Míriel, High King of all Elves (Neutral 10th level Noble Fighter/Wizard)

Capital: Avalandorindë [City of the Elves] (pop. 16,000)
Humans: 50,000
Demi-humans: Elves (100,000), Half-Elves (60,000), Halflings (30,000), Gnomes (10,000)
Humanoids: Few (many raiders from the northern and southern Verdhulann)
Monsters: Few (many incursions from the northern and southern Verdhulann)
Languages: Common; Elvish, Guidhel, West Gottish, Halfling, Gnomish.
Resources: Furs, gems (alexandrite, emeralds), silver, spices, wood (rare)

The largest kingdom of the Verdhulann and the largest elven realm in the Olden Lands, the lords of Avalandia claim the whole of the Verdhulann, though for long centuries they have only properly held the heartland, less than a quarter of the whole. The elves, once the dominant race of the Olden Lands, have faded from their ancient glories, and today spend their time in revels and reverie, roused from their fey domain only by threats to their own peace or great threats to the Verdhulann as a whole. Here the great trees of the Verdhulann grow tallest, their trunks thick as castles, their branches spread as wide as a town.

The High Elves, as the elves of Avalandia are known, are old and tired. Fewer are born every year, and more pass on into the Halls of the Dead or move on to the land of Faerie every decade. The first of the mortal races to arise, the elves were once the most powerful and potent race, but today they are deep into their twilight. The land of Avalandia reflects this, for though there is great joy to be found there in meadow, copse, and field, there is also far more sorrow and weariness. One gets a sense of fading in the land and its peoples.

The only vibrancy remaining is in the half-elven population. Their strength is in their human blood, for it burns as strongly with ambition as that of any human, tempered with the long-term planning and ideals of their elven ancestors. If there is a future for Avalandia in the Olden Lands, it is among the half-elven kin of the founders. The patrols that guard the borders are all of half-elves, as is most of the standing militia, while trade is handled by the gnomes and most craftsmen are humans or halflings. Most full-blooded elves spend their days reveling or in reverie.

The elven city of Avalandorindë is the oldest non-ruined city in the Olden Lands, founded more than 30,000 years ago after Moerdreth was chained. It is thus the least elven of all elf settlements, as elven architectural styles have changed drastically over the last 30 millennia, but in their capital they maintain the original styles. Here the elves build in stone, marble and lavender jade, with crystal domes and tall fluted columns. Many of the ancient buildings lay ruined, covered with vines, flowers, and trees, monuments to lost elven glory.

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