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Garacaius, ruler (mage-emperor) of the land of Darien, has divided his empire into four kingdoms—Aramon, Taros, Veruna, and Zhon—and assigned one each to his two sons and daughters: Elsin, Kirenna, Lokken, and Thirsha. Following the simltaneous coronations of his children, Garacaius disappears, and the sibling monarchs engage in a struggle for domination of the whole of Darien.

Kingdom of Aramon[edit]

The Kingdom of Aramon is ruled by the mage-king Elsin I, the eldest son of Garacaius. Prior to his accession to the throne, Aramon was ruled by four distinct nobles houses: Aidenfel, Buriash, Dernhest, and Heldain. Following his coronation, Elsin significantly develops Aramon, commissioning the construction of stone roads, defence mechanisms, and the city of Kaluen, which he makes his capital.

House of Aidenfel[edit]

The house of Aidenfel, whose lands lie in eastern Aramon, claims to be the most ancient of the royal houses of Aramon. It has produced a large share of Aramon's artists, men of learning, and inventors. There is a rumour that the House of Aidenfel is directly descended from the Kandrans, and this is certainly the house that has the most links with the rest of Darien; its men and women often take spouses from overseas.

The most recent of these intercontinental marriages, is that of the current Lord Aidenfel with a beautiful Tarosian aristocrat, and has added tension between Taros and Aramon. It's said that every Tarosian noble dreamed of possessing this particular beauty, and there have been drunken boasts of taking her back by force.

House of Buriash[edit]

Buriash is one of the royal houses in Aramon, and is probably one of the most powerful. Its lands occupy most of northwestern Aramon, and its lords ruled the majority of the country before Elsin's accession as mage-king. The present Lord Buriash is rumoured to retain grievances about the way his family was removed from power. The Lords of Buriash have always been warriors by nature, and the peasants inhabiting their lands don't have an easy life.

House of Dernhest[edit]

The house of Dernhest is said to have come into existence as a result of a union between Verunan sailors and the fair maidens that northeastern Aramon is famous for. Traditionally, the Lords of Dernhest have acquired wealth through commerce, rather than warfare, so there may be truth in this. However, the present Lord Dernhest is determined to make his mark as a military leader and certainly has to talent to become one. His one weakness is an inordinate fondness of good food and drink.

House of Heldain[edit]

The lands of the house of Heldain lie deep in the interior of Aramon. Its nobles traditionally aspire to become chivalrous knights. The morality of the Heldain lords may be questionable on occasion, but there is no doubt that this house produces the finest cavalrymen in Aramon. All men of the Heldain house seem to have an instinctive understanding of their beasts, the rider and the horse acting as one in combat. The House of Heldain has been somewhat divided in its attitude to Elsin. Interestingly, the Heldain noble most famous for his independence, Joreth, has always been a staunch supporter of Elsin.

Kaluen[edit]

Kaluen is the capital city of the kingdom of Aramon. It was built by mage-king Elsin not long after his accession as king. It is located in Northern Aramon, and is said to be the most beautiful and defended city in the whole of Darien.

Kingdom of Taros[edit]

Taros is a dark and fiery land ruled by Lokken, the younger son of Garacaius. Lokken built his capital city, Elam, in central Taros. Since Lokken is a Necromancer, Taros has been overrun with supernatural beings, all of which he enlists into his armies to fight against Aramon and Veruna. Taros has four distinct noble houses.

House of Balistan[edit]

The House of Balistan is famous for the bloodlust of its sons. Legend has it that many centuries earlier, the founder of the House Balistan had a vision in which he saw Paradise. The contrast with his own living surroundings inspired such hate that he turned into a homicidal maniac and subsequently passed the appropriate genes to his sons.

House of Ontinor[edit]

Ontinor is the least violent of the Noble Houses of Taros. Most of Ontinor lands lie on a large, semi-isolated peninsula on the western shore. This piece of geographical good fortune has meant that Ontinor has escaped involvement in most of the bloody quarrels that have turned Taros into a constant battlefield. The lands of Ontinor lie right across the water from Veruna, so its not surprising that this noble house is the principal importer and exporter of Taros. In addition to supplying other Tarosian Houses with imported goods and weapons, Ontinor maintains relations with most of the Noble Houses in Aramon and Veruna.

Kingdom of Veruna[edit]

The Kingdom of Veruna is governed by Kirenna, the youngest daughter of Garacaius. Kirenna allied herself with Elsin in the war against Taros and Zhon.

House of Aenir[edit]

Aenir is one of the two houses that share Veruna's biggest island, Vidara. Originally a clan of hunters, the House of Aenir entered commercial scene later than its rivals. It's relatively weak commercial presence is compensated by the fact that the house has produced the majority of Veruna's fighting men - most of the archers onboard Veruna's fighting ships come from the lands of the House of Aenir. The House of Aenir has been an especially loyal supporter to Kirenna, hoping to score points over its closest rival - the House of Iuli. It has also been recently successful in having old territorial quarrels resolved in its favour.

House of Yddyn[edit]

The House of Yddyn originated as a clan on the island of Athri, on Veruna's eastern flank. Gradually, it moved on to colonize the neighbouring islands of Caora and Gudrun. In later years, its ill-timed attempt to establish outposts in the barren land of Kuvera, led to a sharp short war between Veruna and Aramon. The House of Yddyn is said to produce Veruna's finest navigators, endowed with an almost supernatural sense of direction. However, this is not really surprising once one learns that Veruna's eastern islands are covered with mist most of the time.

House of Jatha[edit]

Most of Veruna's thinkers and government officials come from the House of Jatha. Its lands occupying just a few small island's on Veruna's southern fringe, the House of Jatha had always sought to spread its influence through wise diplomacy rather than commercial or military power. However, the members of this illustrious house are no meek pacifists. Present command of Veruna's war fleet lies in the hands of Lord Il-Jatha. The House of Jatha has close ties with Aramon. After the Great Civil War, many Jathans settled around the city of M'Hari on Aramon's northeastern shore. The close relations with this noble house and Aramon's house of Dernhest have greatly contributed to an alliance between Veruna and Aramon.

House of Iuli[edit]

The moment Garacaius rehabilitated the Kandrans, confessing that he had been a student of their sciences, at least one noble house on each continent began to claim blood links with the mysterious, ancient race. In Veruna, it was the House of Iuli. There is some evidence to support the claim that the House of Iuli was Veruna's first merchant house, dating back long before the islands were united into one nation. The House of Yddyn might have produced the finest seamen Veruna ever had, but it was the House of Iuli that made all those voyages possible. Originating on the island of Vidara, the House of Iuli led the colonization of the island of Irgiron, establishing Darien's then-premier city, Estoril. Several centuries later, when Garacaius arrived on the island, it was none one other than the First Lord of Iuli that gave the future ruler of Darien help and support he needed. In recent years, the power of the House of Iuli has waned. Its reluctance to pay the taxes needed to main Veruna's war fleet has earned the house Kirenna's disfavour. As a result, a disputed village passed into the hands of the House of Aenir, and the house also lost control of the Office of Customs and Commercial Taxes.

Kingdom of Zhon[edit]

Zhon is a mystical and forested land ruled by Thirsha, the elder daughter of Garacaius. It is also the homeland of the siblings' mother, Lasha. Thirsha built her capital on old Kandran ruins and named it Ulasem. Zhon lies in southeast Darien and is exposed to eastern Aramon. Thirsha has allied herself with Lokken and wages war on Elsin and Kirenna.

Ulasem[edit]

Ulasem is the capital city of the kingdom of Zhon, ruled by Thirsha. It lies deep within the interior of Zhon, and no foreigner that has come to Zhon's shores uninvited has ever made to Ulasem. As it is engulfed by the deep jungle, Ulasem is the most isolated city in the world. Most people outside of Zhon do not even know it exists.