The Stolen Lands
Across the northern frontier of the River Kingdoms runs a hinterland not even the most brazen bandit lords dare to claim. Sharing borders with strange barbarians and the scions of a proud kingdom, this wilderness invites few intruders, out of fear of provoking the ire of empires. For untold decades this land has lain fallow, left to the devices of nature and deadly beasts, while strange things lurk amid its swamps, forests, and peaks, and the remnants of an ancient, near-forgotten history sleeps amid ruins and weeds. These are the Stolen Lands, a lordless realm having defied untold conquerors, yet ripe with potential for any bold enough to prove themselves its masters.
The regions called the Stolen Lands takes its name from Brevoy, which claims this realm as rightfully its own. The fertile plains of the Brevic demesne of Rostland spill into the region, coloring the fractious nation’s claim on the wilderness. This makes the border between the River Kingdoms and the northern realm hotly contested, with the descendants of Choral the Conquer—the unifier of modern Brevoy—and ancient Rostlandic nobles claiming right to lands as far south as Hooktongue Slough and the Kamelands, and some brash families asserting their reach extends as far south as the bandit city of Pitax.
Beyond the plains, to the east stretch the craggy forests of the Narlmarches and rugged hill country that gradually rises in the walllike mountains called the Tors of Levenies. To the west, the many rivers and bogs of the Hooktongue Slough transform the region’s lowlands into a vast swamp, eventually giving way to the Spinefields, weedy plains threaded over with bony crags, with the forest of Thousand Voices and the steeps around Mount Branthlend beyond. Diverse in both vistas and dangers, the Stolen Lands hide a variety of dangers, from tales of hauntings and eerie lights in the west to claims of ruins from forgotten empires scattered across the east, with the dens of bandit gangs, strange recluses, and deadly beasts scattered throughout.
Those who travel the land, whether as traders or conquerors, find it a rugged, unforgiving region, one that has defied ages of settlers as if it consciously preferred to remain a realm of brutality and beasts. Yet endlessly, new generations enter the land with ambitions and steel, ever hoping to carve out a piece of the Stolen Lands for themselves.
Dominated by the woodland known as the Narlmarches and the rolling hills of the Kamelands, the country known as The Feylands was established in this region. Though this region is dominated by The Feylands, it is often still referred to as the Greenbelt due to the rolling farmlands that dominate the northern regions.
|The Narlmarches – The northern stretch of the region’s great forest.|
|The Margreve – The southern reach of the great forest, a place of mystery and horror.|
|The Kamelands – The wild and untamed rocky hills that dominates the southern Greenbelt|
|Tuskwater – A great lake that feeds the region’s numerous waterways.|
|Lake Candlemere – A large lake that sits below the Tuskwater.|
|Rivers of the Greenbelt – The many rivers of the Greenbelt.|
|Hollow – A small village hidden in the southern Margreve|
|Sootscale Kobolds (Silver Mine) – A small tribe who live and work in the silver mine.|
|Calathes’ Lonely Word Guide to The Greenbelt|
|Fauna of the Greenbelt – The rich diversity of both plants and trees.|
|Flora of the Greenbelt – Of creatures great and small, magical and mundane|
|Sites of the Greenbelt – Places of wonder and interest.|
The Nomen Heights
With a southern skyline dominated by the ragged, stony mountains known as the Tors of Levenies, the Nomen Heights are named after the aggressive tribes of Nomen Centaurs who view the eastern steppes of the region as their own. Ancient ruins dot the Tors themselves, hinting that the region may have once been the most civilized of the Stolen Lands.
This land has been given to an renown adventuring band known as the Varnling Host to explore and settle. The town of Varnhold now sits upon the eastern side of the Tors of the Levenies.
|THE NOMEN HEIGHTS|
|Tors of the Levenies – A sweeping mountain range that cuts the land in two|
|Dunsward The eastern most range inhabited by xenophobic centaurs|
|Lake Silverstep – A beautiful crystal clear lake fed by the many streams flowing from the mountains|
|Waterfall of the Nomen Heights – The numerous natural wonders that inhibit river travel.|
|Varnhold – The Capital of the Nomen Heights|
|Restov – The Capital of Rostland, the southern region of Brevoy.|
|Nivakta’s Crossing – Southern most village in Rostland.|
|Calathes’ Lonely Word Guide to The Greenbelt|
Beyond the Narlmarches sink the lowlands of the Stolen Lands, a great murky swamp of rotting trees and moldy mosses. Threaded through with hundreds of slow-moving rivulets and algae-clogged brooks, the Hooktongue Slough sprawls in a massive slime pit, home to all manner of stinging insects, sickly rodents, and croaking predators.
Among the northern reaches, large snakes and strange water-striding creatures hunt in close proximity to Lake Hooktongue. To the south, several tribes of boggards inhabit high mound-islands, defending their lands against all interlopers while avoiding the ill-reputed northern lake. Trolls also make occasional forays into the southern swamps, but in wariness of the frogfolk and their strange magics rarely attempt to expand their territory.
With such obvious dangers and countless more unknown, few humans would even consider entering the slough were it not for the azure lily, known to grow only amid the bogs just south of Lake Hooktongue. Reputed to be able to cause paralysis in any creature that breathes its grainy blue pollen, the elusive lily has long been hunted for by bandits and assassins of all walks. While most believe the plant to be nothing more than a myth, occasionally a few pinches of a dangerous blue power appear in Pitax or Daggermark, spurring renewed interest in and searches for the plant. Such hunts, however, usually culminate in nothing more than more deaths and disappearances in the depths of the Hooktongue Slough.
As the most vital trade route from the south, this area has been the most important to Brevoy – as a result, a large group of diplomats and high-ranking soldiers were sent into this area to ensure the trade route is open and safe. Baron Hannis has founded Fort Drelev on the western reaches of the Slough.
The Glenbon Uplands
The black hills of Glenebon march from the Stolen Lands into Numeria. Moody gray grasses and tangled scrub meander over rocky hills, regularly blasted by fierce winds in the spring and autumn and by summer brush fires. Few trees stand above the craggy hills and little shelter exists in the dusky land, with the hilltops mounted by barren stone and the valleys filled with scrub and scree. While rain comes too often to transform the hill country into true badlands, the rugged plants that thrive in the area mean that little more than beetles, rodents, snakes, and mangy wolves prowl these hills. Several small prides of manticores find the region to their liking, however, and range from the Branthlend Mountains across the hills and into Numeria, fighting each other for dominance and impaling any creature larger than a hare that falls under their shadow.