Kingdom of Nacjaseste - (NOK-yuh-ZES-tsay)
- Parent: Nations
- Capital: Togli
- Population: 516,050 (humans 95%)
- Government: Monarchy
- Religions: Shebboleth, The Nine Daughters
- Imports: Magic, textiles, livestock, ships, lumber
- Exports: Iron, steel, fruit, coal, silver, copper, tin
- Alignments: CG, CN, LN, NG, NE
Life and Society
His Most Learned and Scrupled Benevolence Orbrahem (O-bruh-hem) Lourde sits on the throne as the nineteenth of the Lourde line, supreme and all-powerful king of Nacjaseste and all she surveys.
The kingdom is a small one, hardly two hundred miles long and seventy-five miles wide. But it sits in a strategic point, sandwiched between the marching peaks of the Sunscrape Mountains and the cold and furious currents of the Strait of Whitelocke. Nobility through the male line rules with spirit and strength across these fertile lands, and a healthy suspicion of all strangers helps make this a country clean of all but the Agnethe and their influence.
This is a feudal land, and land where peasantry and nobility adhere to a strict caste system that has little use for the lawlessness and animistic intent of other areas and nations across the continent. They make use of alliances and trading partnerships with elements inside nations such as the South March League and Galthean, without officially partnering with the nations in treaties or even officially recognizing them in diplomacy. The Kingdom of Nacjaseste benefits from deep mines that bring gemstones and precious metals (especially iron and carborane) to the surface, a pipeline of riches that has insulated the kingdom from unrest for a long, long time.
Man and woman have traditional roles, though it is not uncommon for a woman to take on a business or trade. Nobility is decidedly chauvinistic, and duties not performed by women or servants will never be managed by any self-respecting Nacjest male. Current fashions favor ornate fabrics and accessories, with silver jewelry being very popular. Women keep their facial hair sculpted in pencil thin designs that accentuate the cheeks and chin. Men are growing their hair long and loose.
Major Geographical Features
Nacjaseste is mostly a nation of sloping plains and savannahs, easing from the sharp foothills of the Suncrape Mountains to the coasts. There are still large herds of wild deer and elk, though most of the flatlands are used for grazing the numerous rothe herds and for wide farmlands surrounding towns, villages and the castles of the nobility. A trio of cold, swift rivers come down from the mountains, and spring sees them flooding the surrounding farmlands. The river mouths that meet the sea are wide and deep, making great locations for the harbors and shipyards.
The widest of the three rivers that divide the country, the Silverwash is also the deepest and swiftest running. There are miles of its coast where horse-drawn barges can be guided west against its flow, but the currents even a hundred feet off of the banks are so swift as to prevent westward travel by boat. The river is heavy with east-bound traffic carrying ore from the mountains, and defensive plans for the country include rapid redeployment of forces to the coast from the strongholds along the Silverwash.
This escarpment of granite feeds the trio of rivers that flow across Nacjastese. Plunging two thousand feet from the a half mile-wide lip gashed across Mirror Mountain, the falls are deafening, frigid, and vital to the health of the entire nation. Thousands of birds nest among the cliffs, and the valley below is a complex delta of rivers, ponds, lakes, and streams that ultimately coalesce into the Polla, Silverwash, and Dryan Rivers.
The Whitelocke Coast
This stretch of land along the Strait of Whitelocke is composed of the Tower Coast, the White Coast, and the Bronze Coast. The entire coastline is gradual and smooth, affording visibility for many miles in all directions but posing a huge challenge in defense. Halls, keeps and redoubts are built all along the coast, often on man-made ramparts to allow for tactical advantage.
Antimasse (Village 1.456)
This town is nestled in the foothills of the Sunscrape Mountains along the southeastern border of the Kingdom of Nacjaseste. Hundreds of acres surrounds the main group of buildings, soft and well-tended lands dedicated to farming and grazing. Industry is small and unassuming within its fences, subsistence efforts for the town's population and the rare traveler reaching this far into the wilds.
The low profile the town keeps is by design, as it does not look kindly on the prospect of the crown intruding into its daily affairs. The citizens of Antimasse are an oddly individualistic bunch, distrustful of other agnethe more than they are of outsiders and unwilling to relinquish any measure of their freedom. Without a heavy tax burden, such villages and towns are common in the countryside of Nacjaseste, with some passing unnoticed for generations at a time.
The nearby Tosotwa Creek provides water and fishing for the folks about town, though it lacks the size for anything but small, shallow fishing boats. A single road leaves town due north to join with the Peak Walk that tracks northwest by southeast in view of the Sunscrapes. Many game trails and worn paths web the hills and woods around town, leading to hunting cabins, swimming holes, and hidden areas in the mountains.
Greymaisto (City 11,150)
This city on the northwest Tower Coast is a gateway to the rest of the continent and the most diverse city in Nacjaseste. The deep harbor here is the home port of a hundred of the navy’s fastest and most powerful vessels. With heavier classes of ships taking long tours and cruises, customs and ideas of all sorts are imported as well as goods to this city. Many different races share space and tales, and are constantly under the watch of the king’s agents who look everywhere for evidence of outside influence pushing beyond the borders of the city. Within the city walls most everything goes, but the gates that lead off into the heartlands of Nacjaseste are manned with loyal troops who search and question in the name of national purity.
Togli (Metropolis 81,100)
The largest city in the nation, Togli is also the capital and seat of the monarchy. The Cinnabar Palace has its own district that spreads along the grasslands on the eastern edge of the city, and from there it is a winding path through multiple walls and gates through noble, merchant, temple, and common sections. The wharfs are furiously busy year-round, with ore, metals, and gems heading out of the city under heavily escorted vessels bristling with armaments and soldiers. Poverty is hardly noticed here, with less fortunate folks driven from the city by high rent and limited opportunities for advancement for non-residents.
Vault of Serenity
This open-air, natural cathedral dedicated to the Shebboleth faith spreads across several acres in the plains to the west of the Bronze Coast. Worked stone forms hundreds of rows of seats, with altars and podiums fashioned of basalt surrounding the faithful and interspersed with the masses. Dozens of lay clergy assist the high priests with the liturgy four times a year during a grand mass for the expected savior, and the nobility goes out of their way to charitably give up their seats to the less fortunate, if only to add to their own vanity around their peers.
The swath of land between the Sunscrape Mountains and the Straight of Whitelocke was once a thick forest land. The three main rivers provided plenty of fresh water for huge herds of deer, elk, rothe and aurochs, as well as mountain cats, wolves and hyenas all come to grow fat on the prey. Gnolls and bugbears grew thick in the mountains of the east, while hogoblins spread across the coasts and rivers. Humans landed along what became the Tower Coast almost a thousand years ago, establishing trading posts, spreading settlements along the edges of the forests and rivers, and bringing custom and trade to the hobgoblins.
Marauding humanoids were the largest threat to the humans and hobgoblins in the area. Plenty of opportunity to unite against the raiders from the mountains came and went, but racial divides grew stronger, not weaker, as the predominantly agnethe humans began dominating the landscape.
Cities grew around the rivers, and the first great veins of ore were found in the mountains. Clashes with gnolls to the north and bugbears to the south took a large toll on the efforts to begin mining, and the individual towns combined under the Lourde Compact, with the first King of Nacjasetse Gohrim Lourde, uniting the people and launching the Spire Wars that would plunge them into the Sunscrape mountains to establish strongholds, mine the earth, and destroy the humanoids keeping them from their prize. Eighty-five years passed before the mountain passes were pacified and the humanoids driven into their underground lairs.
Without the shared enemy of the gnolls and bugbears, tensions began increasing between the pure agnethe who saw themselves as deserving stewards of a rich land, and the hobgoblins that wrote their tales as dispossessed of their homes and lives. Clashes began with small outbreaks of violence, and spread through a century of ferocity and destruction that saw the forests cleared for fuel or war, the hobgoblins butchered to a man or exiled back to Ait, with the humans rising on the ashes as a rich and xenophobic nation.
Four hundred years has passed, and the humans continue to dominate with vast riches pulled from the earth. Trade goes on with other nations, yet the animosity remains between Nacjasetse and the hobgoblins of the island across the Strait of Whitelocke. Both sides maintain well-equipped and manned navies, enforcing a détente which has been the closest they can get to peace.
- Recent storms have revealed the foundations of a sea-side fortress from a time of antiquity. Locals have dismissed it as a hobgoblin relic of little import, but some have investigated and found cunning traps suggesting something valuable lies beneath it.
- The ridge forts along the border between the Kingdom and Krajnarod have been reopened, with the Regent in the Kraj certainly returning to his war time footing and threatening the Kingdom. The crown is considering sending spies to the border to discern the intent of the Crimson Nation and are loathe to use official troops.
- Something sinister stalks the streets of Greymaisto. Disappearances are reported, and victims returned, but they seem different than when they went missing. No one can put their finger on exactly what has changed, but the urban investigator Hewerd Telm has posted requests for adventurers to help delve among the barrows on the city’s western border.
- A trio of goblins from Guljak have been captured on the Bronze Coast after their steam driven ship foundered and sank. They claim to be seeking an escape from their homeland and its deprivations, but who can trust anyone from that evil land?
- No word has come from the Revastile Mine for nearly three weeks. The family admits that the return from the gold and topaz veins have been diminishing of late, but they still begrudgingly feel a responsibility to the seventy-five workers that toil deep in the caverns.