Crawn Disputes — Will there be War?

Knowing Naldrin

A weekly column about everything Naldrin City

Clara Flettwell

By Clara Flettwell, Reporter at Large, the Naldrin City Expose

Kogu 48, SP~5,020

There’s some big news coming out of the Council of Drawnwyn meeting this week, and the Naldrin City Expose has the story here, first.

Insiders tell us that hostilities may be heating up between the Karrin Crawn Lands and the other major crawn kingdom on the Tamarra Continent, the Northern Kingdom of the Szaskar Crawn.

For those of you who follow the politics of the Continent this is nothing particularly new.  The crawn Kingdoms across Tamarra are constantly bickering, usually about territorial boundaries.  We’ve even seen a few incidents of crawn troops from one kingdom (or village) getting into a brush-up with their crawn neighbors.  In the last few weeks, though, the disputes have gotten a lot more serious.

My fellow reporter at the Expose, Carton Ododo, has passed along his finding that there was a two-day pitch battle only last week between forces from the Karrin Crawn Lands and the Szaskar Crawn.  The clash took place east of Naldrin City, along great Naldrin Road just a few miles from the Mizzanur Iron Works.  The battle raged on for two days as a sizable contingent from each of these mighty Crawn Empires engaged.  Carton estimates that there were at least two thousand troops on each side, and rumors were that another thousand or more had been dispatched by the Szaskar to join their comrades.  It is quite interesting how far from home the Karrin forces were.  Their lands lie on the western coast of Tamarran many hundreds of miles from this field of battle.  Several of my own sources have told me that these Karriners were marching toward the Szaskar Kingdom when they were intercepted by Szaskar forces, and that their intent was to march into Szaskar lands.

Apparently, the two sides fought to a draw even though there were significant casualties for each.  To put it another way, the Crawn way, each side claimed victory.  The leader of the Szaskar regiment claimed they had repulsed the dishonorable invaders from the west, and the Karrin forces claimed that they had convincingly defeated the larger but weaker Szaskar fighters and left them alive out of an abundance of generosity.

It looks like that was not the only ramification of the fight.  At yesterday’s meeting of the Council of Drawnwyn, there was a venomous war of words between the representatives of the two Kingdoms.  Inside sources tell me that not only were harsh words thrown between the two parties, but that swords were drawn!  The Council guards were able to intercede before any serious damage was done, but the Karrin Crawn members stormed out of the proceedings shouting that the Szaskar would regret their actions, and regret them very soon.  Haffress, the head of the Szaskar delegation then gave a rambling five-minute rant to the Council members who were still in the chamber, and then declared the meeting over.  He then tossed his chair and, along with his entire delegation, swept out of the Council chamber “with their snaky heads held particularly high”, as one member said off the record.  Of course, neither Crawn delegation was actually in charge of the meeting, so the Council, after a short break, continued with other business.

It looks like things are heating up between Karrin and Szaskar, folks!  Keep your ears to the ground and your eyes on the Expose.  We’ll bring you the latest news as soon as it becomes news!

The Ancient Ishiri Temple of Ocheegogo

This blog post is written as a newspaper column from the in-game personality, Clara Flettwell.  Clara is a reporter for one of the largest newspapers in Naldrin City, the Naldrin City Expose.

More of Clara’s columns can be found in our BeyonderRPG Patreon and in upcoming blog posts.

Knowing Naldrin

A weekly column about everything Naldrin City

Clara Flettwell

By Clara Flettwell, Reporter at Large, the Naldrin City Expose

Kalkix 27, SP~5,021
The Ancient Temple of Ocheegogo

A few days ago I and my good friend Lorleena decided to visit the ishiri Temple of Ocheegogo (OH-chee-go-go).  This still active house of worship is a little known jewel in the Naldrin City region. It is considered one of the great architectural wonders of our region and one of the greatest examples of ishiri architecture on the Continent.

The temple is maintained by an ishiri organization known as the Okogans.  For many centuries they have kept the temple in pristine condition, and protected it from the general public.  On occasion they do offer tours to small groups of select individuals. My cousin Lorleena and I were lucky enough to join one of those groups on a recent afternoon.

What strikes you first, as you see the temple from the roadway, is its height and slender grandeur.  It rises over a hundred feet into the air above the surface of Old Naldrin Way, the ancient roadway that winds across the steep mountain ranges from the Second Tier of Naldrin City deep into the abandoned parts of the ancient city.  A warning to all travelers — the road beyond Ocheegogo is not safe and should be absolutely avoided!

The inside of the temple is even more spectacular.  The broad stone doors open easily into a long hallway with high vaulted ceilings, lined on either side with one alcove after another as far as one can see.  It is well-lit by lamps of a strange design that hang from the walls.

The alcoves, each dimly lit, varied in size.  With the help of our guide, we quickly discovered that each was its own history lesson.  The alcoves nearest the front doors we had just entered were the oldest and those with the most recent history were furthest away.  The walls of each were covered with friezes, paintings, and intricate abstract designs that told stories about the ishiri and our city.  Some stories were of heroic individuals. Others recalled great feats performed by the ishiri folk or individual clans. The ceilings often had their own art works to embellish the story told in that alcove.  Many of the larger alcoves held display cases or lecterns for maps, books, and other writings that seemed very ancient.

Gagallo

Our ishiri guide, a female named Gagallo, was patient with us, willing to take as much time as we needed to explain the artifacts we were seeing and the history they represented.  There seemed no end to her knowledge.

Near the end of our hours-long visit, I asked Gagallo if there was an alcove for Drawnwyn and her crown of Seven Eyes.  It is hard to read the reactions of an ishiri, but over the years I have known many and many of those are my friends. I could see that she was surprised at the question and somewhat disconcerted.  I immediately felt the gentle probes of Energetic Powers, likely Physic Energy, trying to detect my capabilities and what I might have in my possession.

Gagallo quickly told us that those collections were under repair and not available.

“I am sorry for the inconvenience,” she said.

At that moment several guards approached Gagallo.  They were clearly letting her know that the tour was over.  Seeing these well-armed soldiers prompted me to notice that the temple had been well-guarded since we entered.  Allowing others into their temple was obviously something the Okogans did not do lightly.

We thanked Gagallo and the guards for a wonderful and instructive afternoon. They bowed in the customary ishiri manner and stood at the doorway as we made our way out of the temple, back to Old Naldrin Way.

For Lorleena and I the journey back to the city was filled with lively discussion of the many wonders we had witnessed, and great curiosity about the things we had not been allowed to see.

If you are interested in the history of our city, the ishiri, or just a bit of mystery, the Temple of Ocheegogo should most certainly be on your to-do list.

A New Danger in Tarnath?

By Timmarint Block, Politics Reporter, The Tarnath Weekly Chronicle

Timmarint Block

Kalkix 21, SP~5,021

Timmarint here, your source in getting to the bottom of rumors.  This time it’s about city officials. According to sources in the government and a few influential organizations, a search is on for a jewel from the Crown of Drawnwyn, a very powerful artifact that could affect who controls  Tarnath, and perhaps the entire region.

Our leads almost all concurred that Teetl and Yov, the best known private detectives anywhere on the Continent, have been hunting down this artifact for a well-placed client.  As most readers will know, Teetl, a dwaheely, and his partner Yov, an ushen, have been working together for over two decades now. And they don’t come cheap. This reporter was determined to get the scoop from the famous duo about what part they played in this hunt, if any.

We arranged to meet at the Hungry Oogert Inn in the Great Northeast, one of the best neighborhoods in Tarnath for excellent dining.  I’d met these masters of sleuthing on several occasions, but never one to one (or two). When I saw them approach, I was immediately struck by the sight of these two walking down the dusty street.  Teetl sets a quick pace as if he’s always in a hurry, and Yov, who dwarfs his tiny companion, takes one large easy step after another.  Even so, it works. Somehow.

We sat down for an early breakfast, just after sunrise.  I had the eggs and several slices of phrellas belly — best in the city in my opinion. Teetl is the more talkative; Yov tends to be quiet, but he’s sharp as a nail.  We spent some time with pleasantries as well as details of some of their most recent cases, which they were happy to discuss. The conversation got loose and fluid, and then got to my real questions.

TB: I hear that you recently did a bit of work for Mayor Sympriono.

Teetl: We’ve worked for the mayor a number of times over the years. He’s a good guy – he’s always treated us fairly and honestly.

TB: Yes, I agree.  We’ve always had good things to say about him in the Chronicle.

Teetl: I like your paper.

TB: Thanks for that.  Yes, I consider it a point of pride to get the details right on every story I write.  Like, I’ve heard from a number of contacts, I won’t name who, that the tunnels under Old Naldrin City are pretty nasty.

Teetl: Yup.

TB: And mostly under water now.

Teetl: A bit.

TB: And, when you get down far enough, well, lots of wenbelnym…

Teetl: No question.

The Wenbelnym

TB: I mean one wenbelnym is dangerous, but a swarm of them?  Emotional daemons are tough enough when they’re physical weaklings, but these guys are like twenty-foot long eels, and they can take you out!

Yov: Tee…

I see Teetl glance at Yov, who gives him a knowing look.

TB: How did you get past ‘em?

At this point, both of my breakfast companions begin to squirm a bit in their chairs, so I go for the big question.

TB: I mean, you don’t get a chance to snag an Eye from the Crown of Drawnwyn every day.

Teetl: (ahem) I don’t know what you’re talking about.

TB: The Eye of Amdrath, right?  The one that controls Emotion Energy?.

Teetl: I think you’re confused.

TB: You gotta have a lot of courage and smarts, taking on all those wenbelnym and coming out alive.

Yov stands up abruptly.  Teetl rubs his left arm as if remembering something unpleasant.

They give each other a knowing look.  Teetl stands up.

Teetl: Our thanks for the meal.

TB: So the mayor’s a very happy client, I assume?

Teetl (who stares in a way I wouldn’t have imagined he could), through pursed lips: We don’t discuss our clients!”

Next thing I saw was the backs of these two as they briskly made their way out of the Hungry Oogert.

And now, dear readers, we have some pretty convincing evidence that at least one of the famous Eyes from the Crown of Drawnwyn may be among us, and –  dare we speculate – in use against us?

The Adventurous Traveler’s Guide: Hidden Treasures of Tamarra

Lusa Lockless, Travel Editor, Tarnath Times

By Lusa Lockless, Travel Editor, Tarnath Times

City of Tarnath, Kalkix 60, SP~5,021

Tired of the same old vacations: fishing the Kellith Sea off the city of Darak, or viewing the mountain vistas from Hammon? You may not know it, but the three major cities of the Continent have unexpected treasures! I recently visited three areas that are off the beaten tourist path, and I highly recommend them to you!

Tarnath and the Sessmaryth Valley: Mysterious Remains

Tarnath, a very old city, was always small but important. Its location off the northern shores of the Bay of Perrin makes it one of the best seaports on the eastern side of the Tamarran Continent. The ancient remains of the City of Sessmaryth is perfect for exploring the mysterious remains of the infamous Emperor Samron.

There remain many mysteries dating back to Samron’s time or before.  There’s the North Gate, which served as the entrance into the City of Sessmaryth during its heyday.  Is there really a series of tunnels below the city and region, once used for travel throughout the valley?  And what is hidden beneath the hill that once held on its crown the massive Palace of the Emperor Samron?

Naldrin City: Architectural Splendor

Naldrin City was founded by both ishiri and dwarves, and is known for its architectural splendors.  The five tiers of the city were made by ishiri and dwarves. The ishiri, who love rock and stone, built along the mountain ranges; the dwarves built below it.  Over the years, there have been many altercations between ishiri and dwarves, each claiming original ownership of the territory, but they have managed to co-exist. Home to the Council of Drawnwyn, which speaks for almost all of the most powerful kingdoms and nations on the Tamarran Continent, Naldrin City is often considered the unofficial capital of the Tamarran Continent.

The Region of Jowea: Undead Zones, Spycraft, Metalwork

  • The Quiets are ruined areas, casualties of the Stillness Wars, that lie outside of Jowea.  The Quiets are areas of Stillness energy, and are controlled by undead.  This makes travel into and out of the Region of Jowea quite dangerous, and as a result the region is isolated in many ways from the rest of the continent.  However, good guides can be found both in Jowea and in some of the non-Quiet areas outside.
  • The City of Afforin is known for its political intrigue and spycraft.  In this city, politics is a game:  in fact, it is the game, and it can be a bloody one, so be careful where you venture.  The city is ruled by a single lord, who rules over four separate areas of the city (the Orchards, the Merchant District, the Villas, and the Circle), which are each ruled by their own underlord.  However, the political hierarchy goes much deeper and pervades all of the culture of the city.
  • The City of Dovvan, which is almost entirely populated by dwarves, is known for high-quality metalwork and jewelry.  The Jowen Dwarf Clan, which lives under the neighboring mountains, produces artifacts renowned for their craftsmanship and delicacy.  These crafts are a source of much of the trade flowing within and outside of the Region of Jowea.

Wherever you end up going, enjoy the places you see and the creatures you meet.  Happy adventuring!

The Galguhn War

Another Galguhn War?

By Toodla Oblodt, City Desk, Naldrin City News

Naldrin City, Kalkix 39, SP~5,021

The Galguhn War and Northern Goblin Uprising was the single greatest threat in the last century to the continued existence of Naldrin City.  This uprising, and subsequent war, was led by the powerful Galguhn Goblin Kingdom of the Nashem Mountains.  Soon after the war began in earnest, it was joined by a number of other goblin kingdoms of the area, including the dozen or so kingdoms west of the Gaghzzen Mountains.  The goal of these united goblins was to conquer the northern half of the Tamarran Continent.  The conflict ran for thirteen long years, beginning in SP~4,975 and ending in SP~4,988, just eighteen years ago.  

Almost every resident of Naldrin City has family and/or friends who perished or were bloodied in this savage conflict.  In the final three years, much of the northern part of the Tamarran Continent worked in concert with Naldrin City’s populace to push back the legions of goblins and their allies; hateful gurv, berserk ravagers, and even some gamol who saw an opportunity to easily ensnare some souls.

It is therefore deeply disturbing to report that the goblins of the Nashem Mountains and those of the Gaghzzen Mountains, to their west, may be on the rise again.

In the 60 days of the preceding month, Sula, there were reports of as many as a dozen incidents on the portion of Naldrin Road that runs west from our fair city to the Nashem River.  This 200-mile stretch passes over rolling hills and plains, and for some miles runs along the southern borders of the Nashem Forest.  Incidents along this road are not unusual, but these attacks are more frequent than usual.  The fact that all but one occurred at night, the preferred time for these creatures who so strongly dislike the light of day, also suggests that goblins were involved.

The Naldrin News has interviewed eight folk, from four parties, who were attacked.  They are consistent in their descriptions of their attackers:  they were covered with long strips of coarse, black cloth wrapped many times around their entire body.  This effectively hid their appearance, but each interviewee has stated that the creatures’ walk was distinctly shambling and goblin-like.  The few times the attackers communicated to each other or shouted at their victims, they used the distinctive guttural, almost choking pattern and harsh tones of goblin speech.

Two incidents near Old Naldrin City may also be goblin-related.  One account is from a small party of dwarves who were in some of the more ancient parts of the Old City, ostensibly looking for areas they might repair (although a reporter suspects other reasons).  They state that they were attacked by creatures wielding traditional goblin blades, which are relatively short, with barbs along all the edges.  Their fighting style, attacking in groups of threes, was also highly reminiscent of goblins.

The other incident was an attack against a group of almost two dozen ishiri stone workers who were repairing the Temple of Loshodo, a part of the ancient city ruins that lie on the side of the Nashem Mountains.  The workers were unprepared for armed conflict and quickly withdrew, but, sadly, lost five of their own.  These ishiri workers left no doubt that their attackers were goblins, having seen them in plain view.

Two attacks so close to Naldrin City are of great concern to Lorren Matts, the current Mayor.  Matts told this newspaper that she is currently consulting with the Guild Enforcers to combat the threat.  She has also notified the Council of Drawnwyn, although their response is likely to be the usual, “We are monitoring the situation.”  We will publish their response once it has been issued, and we will keep the public informed of all developments pertaining to the potential for another uprising.

The Shem Amaum

Shem Amaum on the Rise: Council of Drawnwyn No Help

Toodla Oblodt

By Toodla Oblodt, Naldrin City News

Naldrin City, Kalkix 7, SP~5,021

The dreaded shem amaum have launched two highly visible attacks against key sites on the Tamarran Continent in the last day.  As readers will recall, the shem amaum are the savage beasts created by the Nulentians and used against Tamarra during their most recent invasion of our Continent in the years SP~4,970 – 4,974.  Physically, they stand between four and five feet in height with extremely tough, thick hide that is quite rough, like small sharp rocks packed together with matts of course, stiff hair.  According to accounts, simply running your hands lightly over the body of a shem amaum will leave you with cuts that then blister due to a thick toxic substance that covers parts of their bodies and oozes from the fissures that criss-cross their bodies.  Their tails are long and thin with barbs running along their dorsal side.  Their heads are broader at their base than their peak, with a flat noseless, and strangely smooth, face.  They have a highly keen sense of smell, but none of the experts we consulted seemed to know where that sensory apparatus was on their bodies.  Beyond doubt their oddest anatomical attribute is the ability to stretch their body out to two or more times its normal height, or length, as you perspective dictates.

One of the recent shem amaum attacks occurred yesterday, the 6th day of the month of Kalkix, pitting a force of slightly more than a dozen of these beasts against the guards and workers at Port Naldrin, less than 10 miles from the metropolitan areas east of Naldrin City.  The second, in today’s early morning hours, was an attack against the North Gate of the City of Tarnath, hundreds of miles southeast of us.

The local port master at Port Naldrin, zweyjen Deldrin Zheshallay, said the attack came from the edges of the Nashem Mountains that lie between Naldrin City and Port Naldrin.  According to him, some 12-15 shem amaum attacked the section of the port that performs repair work on large ships.  The attack occurred at mid-day, when most of the workers and guards were on their mid-day break.  When they burst out of a copse of trees near the repair docks, the shem amaum were armed with their traditional curved scimitar-like swords and long plain daggers.

According to Port Master Zheshallay, “They were beasts.  They had no mercy.  They cut through my folk like a fall harvest.”  Current count is that 26 workers were left dead, and as many as 50 wounded to various degrees.  The toll would have been much higher, but a troop of dwarven knights on leave happened to be in the area.  Within fifteen minutes they had engaged the shem amaum and driven them back into the hills.  As is typical of a battle with shem amaum, if any the hateful creatures died in the battle their bodies were taken away by their comrades.

The details of the second attack are still unfolding, as it happened only hours ago, and we’ve had only scattered reports via blink bats.  It is clear, however, that the attack came from inside the North Gate enclosure, which was built during the early days of the Emperor Samron.  The walls of the Gate are 30 feet high (in some places even higher), and can hold a guard of several hundred, although there were not nearly that many people there at the time of the attack.

We are in contact with our colleagues at the Tarnath Times and will provide more details about that attack in later editions.

Council of Drawnwyn President Kissalki Narradi, popularly known as “the wellyn with no humor”, released a statement that, “the council is seriously concerned by these recent events, and the perpetrators will be dealt with.”  The reaction from Naldrinians was, generally, disbelief and rage that the Council was oblivious to threats so close to the city.