Thrones of Dust
Setour is a deep, forested land, with a long history of wars and barbarism. It is a proud, belligerent nation, with strong hardy folk.
|Geography and Climate|
|Groups, Factions and Orders|
Geography & Climate
Setour occupies the north-western quarter of the continent. It is a densely forested, mountainous country, criss-crossed with a network of rivers and flanked between a massive chain of mountains on its eastern border and the frigid, glacier-haunted Gray Sea to the west. The climate ranges from temperate to cold, with mild (if wet) summers and mighty winters. Setour is known for impressive raintorms in summer and massive snowfalls in winter; the winds from the Gray Sea carry great winter storms deep inland, piling foot after foot of snow, which floods the riverlands, forests and valleys with every spring thaw.
- Angeval, the great chasm
- Ausiel, the stark, majestic highlands
- Azurein, the golden heartlands
- Ilnor, the forbidding frigid tundra
- Rivemar, the wooded riverlands
- Trimont, the barrier mountain chain
- Verderoc, the fog-bound marshlands
Though humans are found in all the four nations, Setour has the largest human population by far. The country has always been considered the seat of human civilization, and the common belief is that the humans in other nations can trace their ancestry back to the wooded lands of Setour.
Additionally, a number of secluded, semi-nomadic Wood Elf tribes can be found in various parts of the country, descendants of those elves that fled Tir’Heth rather than face cultural assimilation.
There are small communities of Halflings in the southern and western provinces, living in fishing villages, coastal towns and in chains of river barges. The mountains and highlands in the north and west are home to dwarves (unsurprising, since they border Ilbakov) and the mighty, savage barbarian tribes that were pushed there when Setour was unified.
In the deeper forests and marshes, one finds a surprising number of Lizardfolk, who some believe are distantly related to the draconic people of the south. At several points during Setour’s tumultuous history, the Lizardfolk civilization has risen to claim large areas of the country for extended periods of time before being driven back into the deep wilds, leaving the land pockmarked with old, ruined temples and cities, usually half submerged in the rivers, lakes and swamps that the Lizardfolk called home.
In recent years, rumors abound that a new race has become the dominant force in the country; Demons. Little news of the provinces reaches the three other kingdoms since Setour’s war in the north began a century ago, but rumors and mutterings from merchants and travelers speak of of Demons, Tieflings and Cambion walking the streets of major cities, partaking in craft, military and politics. Their numbers are unconfirmed.
Setour was a monarchy, divided into seven provinces. Each of these provinces were once unofficial, isolated countries or territories of their own, and were united at the founding of Setour. While Azurein was the center of the country and home of the country’s capital city, each province retained a measure of independence.
Provinces were ruled by Barons, each of which had a network of local Lords overseeing the counties within their lands. The title was awarded by the Crown from their seat in Azurein, usually for great service performed for the good of the province in question, and the good of Setour as a whole. The Barons all swore fealty to the Crown of Setour, and took their orders directly from the royalty.
In the fullness of time, when the king or queen died, it was the Barons who crowned the next monarch, rather than a matter of heredity. Bloodline did play a big role in the decision, but there were instances of major upheaval, where a new bloodline, sometimes even a commoner, was elevated to the Crown. There were few limits to who can be nominated for the Crown; only the Barons themselves and those of their bloodline were forbidden from becoming monarch.
Groups, Factions and Orders
In the past, Setour had four principal knightly orders: The Knights of Stone, champions of Moradin. The Radiant Brotherhood, knights of Pelor. The Hand of Truth, and order of Ioun. And, largest and most politically powerful at the time, The Knights of the Towers, the order of Erathis.
In the present day, the orders are scattered, disbanded, or have moved to other nations. The Knights of Stone operate out of Ilbakov, despite the State’s efforts to stamp out the worship of Moradin. The Radiant Brotherhood underwent a series of schisms that broke them into small, independent orders, scattered across Andalona. The Hand of Truth vanished. And the last Knights of the Tower were reportedly killed on the battlefield during the hundred years of war in the north. Their keeps, fortresses, abbeys and holdings still exist, crumbled, overgrown and forgotten, or inhabited by squatters, bandits and beasts.
Currently, three major groups exist across most of Setour. The most powerful is the Demon Empire, which currently rules the country. Only slightly less powerful and widespread, though infinitely more secretive, the Web of Knives is an insidious cartel of thieves, smugglers and assassins; while not all thieves guilds or smuggling operations in Setour work for the Web, the cartel often pulls the strings of many of these operations through patronage, contracts, funding and infiltration. Finally, the monastic order of the Fianna Ioun can be found spread out through most of the provinces, though they tend to keep to small groups or moving as individuals, travelling isolated areas away from the demonic oppressors.