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Tilsha and the Commonwealth
Ruler: King Euthan of House Ancoret
Govn’t: Democratic Constitutional Monarchy
Language: Antarish (official)
The Commonwealth Kingdoms are comprised of four independent, but united nations on the western side of Tarrona. All are closely allied militarily as well as economically. These nations are Tilsha, Alandar, Braondel, and the Eldrien freehold of Tir Andraith. Among these, the greatest and most powerful kingdom is the kingdom of Tilsha, once known in ancient times as Tir Ultar. Tir Ultar was an idyllic, pastoral kingdom composed of both human and Eldrien communities that eventually fell to Maradian occupation forces during the Age of Marada.
Following the War of Golla and Marada and the horrific ravages of the deadly Thanathage, the world plunged into a new dark age. A period of feudal warfare consumes the many petty kingdoms and fiefs of western Tarrona, today known as the Broken Kingdoms, beginning the First Feudal Period. Eventually, several warlords mustered together their kingdoms, including the kingdoms of Alandar, Calamor, Laradel, and Tilsha. Duntara became the great capital of Tilsha, an soon after, the kingdom of Alandar was restored with its capital as Tandalga. Alandar became both an enemy and an ally of Tilsha over the course of several centuries.
During the 800s and 900s, the Second Feudal Period began in western Tarrona as hundreds of regional lords struggled to seize power, forming countless warring states. Chaos and anarchy reigned over all, but it was also the dawn of a new age of adventure, chivalry, and legends.
In 980 CA, the kingdom of Tilsha was restored by King Komesh of House Talboran. Within a few decades, Tilsha was once again the dominant kingdom of western Tarrona, a power second only to Antaria in the east and Suddaea in the south. During the War of Tyranny, Tilsha and most of the realms of Tarrona were quickly conquered, and Duntara itself was smashed by relentless sieges. The Tyrants rebuilt Duntara as a port city for their empire, and many structures of Tricarian architecture still form the backbone of Duntara today. After King Clovis liberated Tarrona, another hero of the war, Ulrick Ancoret, took the throne of Tilsha.
In the years that followed, Tilsha enjoyed a golden age of growth, becoming one of the most powerful nations in Tarrona. Tilsha eventually came to dominate most of western Tarrona and brought about the formation of the Commonwealth Kingdoms with an accord between Tilsha and her neighbors for trade and mutual military protection. The Commonwealth Accord was established in 1455 CA against the rising threat of Kendes.
Kingdom of Suddaea
Capital: Bahar Hashad
Ruler: King Kibar
Govn’t: Absolute Monachy with Centralized Government
Language: Amarhic (Suddaean)
The desert kingdoms of southern Tarrona are a collection of loosely allied nations, of which the kingdom of Suddaea is by far the wealthiest and most prominent. Much of the region is covered by vast stretches of desert—chiefly the arid Ruballi Desert (also known as the Burning Waste) separating Ambricar and Dralia, and the Suddaea Desert, which spans eastern and southern Suddaea. Contrary to its popular image as a lifeless desert kingdom of rolling dunes and swirling sandstorms, much of western and southern Suddaea is graced by fertile farm lands, rolling plains, rich savannas, and great tropical oases.
The Thanathage unleashed at the end of War of Golla and Marada killed some fifty to sixty percent of the native population—which was devastating, to be sure, but far less than the death toll suffered in more populous regions. The primary reason for the lower death toll in Suddaea was likely due to the dispersed nature of the population and the isolation of the more remote tribes. The largest of the surviving tribes, the Baytuhn, had established several fortified settlements by 400 CA. From there, the Baytuhn chiefs consolidated dozens of smaller tribes. Following his victory over the rival city-state of Abur Sutar in 442 CA, King Selhaddon the Great of Bahar Hashad declared himself king of the Suddaean.
Gold, silver, and diamond mines supported much of Suddaea’s economy through the Age of the Three Realms. As absolute monarchs, the kings of Suddaea owned the entire wealth of the nation and spent lavishly to support the construction of towering palaces, temples, statues, and monumental public works dedicated in their honor. The Grand Palace of the Laiht Mahal was constructed in Bahar Hashad between 715 CA and 732 CA, and was made with white and blue marble, golden domes, tiles of lapis lazuli and gold-etched marble, rich silk carpets, and even an expansive mosaic composed entirely of gemstones. The War of Tyranny brought the Kingdom of Suddaea crashing down. Its large army, aided by powerful mages and enchanters, did offer considerable resistance against the Triclops forces, but by 1322 CA, Suddaea had been effectively defeated. What remained of the surviving Suddaean army retreated deep into the desert, where they hid with the nomadic tribes and worked to build up their forces. In 1325 CA, Prince Azzard, rightful heir to the throne, took his forces to join up with the remnants of Antaria and forge a new resistance army. Together, Clovis and Azzard eventually liberated Suddaea from the Tricarian Empire.
Azzard returned to the Kingdom of Suddaea and took the throne as king, restoring Suddaea’s traditional line of kings. Thanks to its valuable gold, silver, and diamond resources, the Suddaean economy quickly recovered. Suddaea is one of the most powerful nations in the world today, and is ruled by the benevolent King Kibar. Its capital is a hub of trade and activity and a bustling metropolis of nearly one million people. The Suddaean army consists of over thirty divisions comprised of juggernauts, airships, aircruisers, and a formidable naval fleet. With the onset of the War of Wars, Suddaea found itself threatened by the rapid southern incursions of Kaldean forces into the Baronies of Ambricar and declared an alliance with its long-time trade partners, Tilsha and the Commonwealth Kingdoms.
Baronies of Ambricar
Ruler: The Grand Council of Lords
Govn’t: Confederation of Baronial Estates
Language: Antarish (official)
Ambricar is one of the youngest nations, although it is more of a collection of separate confederated baronies and earldoms than a single, unified nation-state. The region of Ambricar had been a wilderness frontier until the rise of the first kingdom of Antaria, when new settlements and trade routes opened much of the eastern territories. By 800 CA, cities such as Arbital, Balencraig, and Rodreth had been well established. Under the rule of Antaria, the region was divided into six earldoms, four counties, and sixteen baronies.
During the Great Tyranny, Ambricar was held under the brutal regime of the Kaldean mercenary forces, but was liberated by the resistance armies of Clovis and Azzard between 1326 and 1327 CA. Following the final victory in 1330, Clovis returned to eastern Tarrona and restored the kingdom of Antaria. Kaldea’s devastating siege against northern Antaria in 1380 effectively toppled the kingdom again. After the destruction of the capital city of Antarus, the Kaldean forces burned and plundered every town and village north of Antarus, established a desolate buffer region known as the Ruined Lands. Chaos consumed the former territories of Antaria and the baronies and earldoms in the region of Ambricar were thrown into a period of feudal war.
In 1491 CA, the earls, counts, and barons of Ambricar worked out a mutually satisfactory treaty. The individual earldoms, counties, and baronies would be self-governed, and the Council would meet twice a year in Eddonkeep in Tareneth, to be attended by the lords or their appointed representative. In these meetings, laws, treaties, and other matters of state would be attended. As a concession to the earldoms, the baronies agreed to grant three votes on the Council to the earldoms and counties (seven in all, for a total of twenty one votes), with the twenty two baronies each allotted one vote. The baronies thus maintained a majority when counted as a whole and could collectively wield greater control than the earldoms and counties.
This current system of governance, while proving itself less than perfect, has nevertheless maintained the region of Ambricar under a relatively stable period of peace for the last fifty years. In 1539 CA, the ruthless armies of the Grand Imperium stormed through the kingdom of Strigovia and swept full-force into the unsuspecting territories of the Baronies of Ambricar, bringing the coalition to its knees.
Kendes and the Grand Imperium
Ruler: The Imperatrix (formerly the Ramahaj)
Govn’t: Totalitarian Empire
Although the northern nations of Tarrona are commonly called the Dark Kingdoms, this moniker actually originated from Antaria. The phrase simply means “the Unknown Kingdoms,” since nothing was known of them at the time. Today, the alliance is formally known as the Grand Imperium of the Supreme Autocracy, or simply the Grand Imperium. It is ruled by an Imperatrix (formerly by the Ramahaj), and its governing body is the Samadha Hajrahan (the Imperial Ascendancy). The Grand Imperium consists of the nations of Kaldea, Kendes, and Darmania. Leleka is also a strong ally and under the totalitarian control of a puppet Tzar. Strigovia was forcibly annexed, or conquered, in 1537 CA.
The foundation of the Kendes and Kaldean alliance began just after the War of Tyranny. Between 1340 and 1360 CA several Marahadi (noble warlords) and barbarian kings banded together, constructing nations and consolidating power. These nations continued fighting against one another, but eventually the strongest prevailed, leaving three distinct kingdoms: Kaldea, Kendes, and Darmania. Around 1350 CA, all contact with these nations ceased, and outsiders were turned back, and most who entered never returned. Because of this, and the strange and terrible rumors that abounded, the people of Antaria and Tilsha began calling these nations the Dark Kingdoms.
By 1450 CA, Kendes had become a highly industrialized nation. The capital, Kalkhemed, was a city of mighty towers, reaching spires, and iron walls. Their technology appeared to be well ahead of Tilsha and Armillia, and their military might grew with every passing year. In response to the formation of the Commonwealth, the then-ruling Ramahaj of Kendes began to build up his own military forces and strengthen political alliances with Darmania, Leleka, and Kaldea. Darmania was given over to the control of the Blood Barons and Kaldea to the Commander General of the Central Kaldean Regime.
With much of Kendes falling into decadence and moral corruption, the Ramahaj instituted the Tenebrean Order to enforce order and obedience in 1520 CA. Through fear, the Tenebrean Order consolidated political control for the Grand Imperium and enforced the will of the Samadha Hajrahan across Kendes, Darmania, and Kaldea.
However, around 1535, a massive political upheaval occurred in Kendes. It is unclear to outsiders what happened, but the ruling regime of Kendes, the Samadha Hajrahan, was overthrown in a sinister conspiracy that was backed by the Tenebrean Order, and the Ramahaj was brutally assassinated. Shortly thereafter, the Imperatrix ascended to the throne and exercised absolute rule under her sorcerous regime. In the year 1537 CA, the Grand Imperium invaded Strigovia and the Baronies of Ambricar.
So began the War of Wars.