Pathfinder: The Fall of the Empire
Gorh is a human kingdom that is still considered to be officially part of the Sharayan Empire. Ambassadors from Sharaya still hold powerful influence here.
Gorh is looking for a way to successfully separate from the empire. Due to the recent conflicts from the north south and east, the Sharayan forces are tired and undermanned. Most of the soldiers are no longer even half-blooded elves and are often human and even dwarven and half-orcish.
The Gorhth Queen, Iliana, is a clever politician and the head of the church. After her husband died has taken control and consolidated the church, the state and the military under her rule. Shortly after Gorh annexed the nearest fresh water port that belonged to the neighboring, and also mostly human, Kingdom of Xafth.
Barbaric raider are pressing at her Eastern border. Up until now the Gorhish Kingdom was the buffer that protected the Empire from the eastern hordes, but with a clearly martial annexation of the port Lunas the Empire views the Gorh as a threat to their strangle hold of the land surrounding their city.
The lands surrounding Gorh is covered with lush rolling hills. It is home to great deal of grains and herding and provide a large supply of grain that feeds the mainland of the Sharayan Empire.
Directly to the west is the Moraxian Sea (Mo-rash-ian) whose western most end leads through the Strait of Dost and empties into the Kotic Ocean. Immediately to the NE of Gorh is the Purple Sea, thus named for its strange hue that ranges in color from deep blues to pale violets depending on time of day, stars and season.
Directly opposite is the industrious gnomish city of Quorukadania. The gnomes are the closest thing to scientific progress and are a “sturdy” ally to Gorh. The city trades for the Gorhish protection, trading in exchange a guaranteed monopoly on their shipwright skills. The Guild of the Seven Signs is one of the richest merchant guilds in the empire and are home to many a naval secret.
The city, which, depending on whom you ask is called either Quaroh or Dania, also trade their seige technology to the invading barbarians in order to be left alone. Thus guaranteeing that they are almost never involved in any spats and that both sides are sufficiently supplied to never win or lose. The leaders, merchants and general population of Quaroh/Dania are some of the shrewdest, savviest, cunning and least controlled members of the Empire. Sharaya considers them an ally and not directly part of their domain.
The shore on which Quaroh/Dania sits is saturated with a strange bluish coral. The colors of which bleeds into the sea, thus giving it the strange hue and a thicker consistency. However, when properly harvested the “starch” from the coral can be put to a myriad of nefarious and enlightened uses leading to a large trade of Alchemical concoctions. This, however, sours the reputation of the Quaroh/Danians. Multiple emperors of the Sharayan Empire have tried to annex the city for their own uses in the past but have always failed to bring the troubling colony under thumb for one reason or another.
The sea is also home to indigenous life forms that are unique as well but this is secondary and is also harvested by a number of fishing villages surrounding the sea.
To the SE of Gorh lays a large lake and strong river. The river flows SE away from the lake and then turns south towards and past the mountain range and into the jungles. No one has ever discovered the source of the natural spring. There are two cities that until recently belonged to the wealthy Kingdom of Xafth. The town that was recently annexed is called Launas and has been an out post / town housing a full Host of Imperial troops. The other, sister city Kaunas sits at the mouth of the river to the lake.
Because the lake and the river is not only the best source of fresh water but also the source of the best and safest southern trade route the sacking of Lunas is critical to both Xafian Shah and the Sharayan Emperor.
To the south and into the jungle lay the tribes of the fearsome Fire Orcs and Goblin Seers as well as a miriad of other human tribes that cause as much unrest as provide unique goods that are prized by so many of the wealthy.
Furthermore, it threatens the production of the miracle grain Osiah (O-sigh-ah) grain that transforms and contributes to the breeding and supply of their Mantra steeds by the Xafthian Shas.
These steeds are fierce out-breed of a horse that by this time only slightly resemble their predecessors. The animal possesses grace, strength, a natural armor, partial immunity to spells and when provoked breathes a mist that sears its unfortunate attacker. These steeds are for the elite and are part of the levies that Empire collect in exchange for a preferred status it bestows on Xafth.
It is because of this status that Xafthian people are extremely loyal to the crown even in these troubled times.
Directly north of the city of Gorh is the Duchy of Wraith. It is one of the last remnants of the original elven city states that is still functional today. Its descendants are a direct lineage to the High Elves that conquered the lands of the Sharaya over 7,000 years ago. This insane Hold is built into the cliff where for forever the elves have dug through the stones for the precious minerals. It is rumored that there half-elves serve as slaves and human flesh is used to produce slave offspring.
The last “news” that had spread from there are that the Duke had married an Elf of pitch black skin. That, of cause, was over 250 years ago. Trade is brought out of it for certain and it gets in there but what lays inside is privy for those with power.
Finally the invasions from the mountains in the North and the South have become an occuranse that most can count on. The invaders come for the lands rich in materials and all kinds of wealth that until recently could not be touched.
Unfortunately, the mighty Sharayan Elven Hosts are a thing of the past. Few troops are even half-blooded elves and the truly powerful sit in the City of Sharayah toasting their wealth. The Hosts, once mighty and swift, are tired. They can barely beat down one invasion when another invasion, on the opposite side of the Empire begins.
The Hosts themselves used to attract those who were of privilege to afford arms and armor and promises of glory, lands and wealth. Now the armed men are doled out pay like mercenaries, are armed by the Empire and paid by the minted Empire Thrones that a 300 years ago were 50/50 gold and now sport a meager 10/90.
The towns, villages and cities take a knee to anyone who runs up to their walls. The hope that the emperial forces will arive before they are sacked is non existent and all offer their allegiance to the one toting the biggest sword today.
The might Queen of Gorh, High Priestes of Alor, Lord of the Storms has glimpsed into the future. One where humanity will throw off the yoke of the eternal Elven Rulers and raise humanity to a new hight and freedom that shall lead them to the new Golden Age!
Temple Port is an oligarchy. Run by the Religious order who maintains a stranglehold of the navy. The kingdom has been a client kingdom of the empire for a very long time but it has never ceased its desire for either independence or influence of the Sharaya City.
A large segment of its lands are located around forests and much of the empire’s timber comes from here. The client kingdom possesses a section of the southern mountain and makes use of the dwarves living there for both mining and protection from its southern foes. The religion here is organized and while most God worships are permitted there is definitely a state religion.
Typically Ghorr and Temple Ports have always competed for possession of the Marxian Sea and often raid each other’s merchant transports.
Kingdom of Temple Port boasts a population of nearly 3 million citizens and another 1 million slaves. Because of its location amid the vast forests travel is difficult and every adult has some knowledge of combat. For that same reason, while Temple Port possesses borders its vast lands are poorly maintained and few dare to really veer off the beaten paths. The roads themselves are well maintained with many wayfair points that sprawled towns or villages around them.