More of the Unapproachable East!
By Rand Sharpsword
Rand Sharpsword, collector of bits of travel and geographical information, brings you further details about the Unapproachable East. Rand provides these to supplement the information found in the Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting.
More on Aglarond's Coast: Aglarond's coast is also home to a few hundred halflings, mainly expatriates from Chessenta. They work as farmers, traders, or fisherfolk, and they maintain good relations with the humans and half-elves of their adopted land.
Glarandar (Large Town, 4,500): This fortress, like the Watchwall in the Tannath Mountains, was created by the galeb duhr. Made of obsidian-looking, almost indestructible stone, it is now the center of a small town. Half of the nation's army is usually garrisoned here.
The Great Dale Locations
Mauberg's Oak (Village, 500): This town is populated by old rangers and druids who still wish to live within the forest but are no longer as active as they used to be. The other inhabitants of the forest provide them with basic necessities, and the residents take care of the rest. Many of the exports from the Great Dale are made here by these retired folk.
Bluefang Water: This lake has recently been inhabited by a mad young blue dragon, who not only likes the water but occasionally uses his breath weapon to aid local fisherfolk. At other times he harries boats and lakeshore towns.
Lake Tirulag: This cold lake is filled with hardy trout and is a common site for contests of enduring harsh temperatures. Great treasure is said to be at the bottom of the lake, guarded by a white dragon that is almost invisible to normal sight.
Phent (Large Town, 3,650): In addition to its trade and farming, Phent supplements its resources with iron mined from the Thesk Mountains and a small amount of wood scavenged from the Forest of Lethyr. The land south of Phent supports many farms, most of which are partly owned by the orc miners who live in small camps in the mountains.
Two Stars (Large Town, 3,800): This town profits from trade with Rashemen as well as that from the Golden Way. The proximity to the Rashemen berserkers has aroused curiosity among the orcs, and an annual series of games between the two types of "barbarians" has become a popular event in the city, particularly for gamblers.
More Rashemen Life and Society
Rashemen's harsh climate breeds fierce people, and its forces often hurl back huge invading armies from Thay. In the Battle of the Lake of Tears, Rashemen dealt a crushing defeat to the Tuigans, slaughtering a quarter of the Horde despite being outnumbered four to one.
Trade through the Great Dale brings a steady stream of visitors to Rashemen, but few are encouraged to stay. Outlanders are treated coolly or with hostility. They are allowed to settle only in Mulptan and Shevel, and natives watch these strangers closely. Outlander wizards aren't welcome to linger in the realm, all visitors are discouraged from using magic, and anyone suspected of being a Thayan wizard, spy, or agent will be challenged -- and attacked -- on the spot.
Plots and Rumors
Simbul's Children: Those living in Aglarond are appreciative of the Simbul's practice of taking those that show aptitude for magic, training them, and sending them out of the country to find threats against Aglarond (these students are known as the Simbul's Children). One such student has been missing for a year, and fellow students are now concerned about her whereabouts.
A Bit of Prospecting: Various merchant guilds in Impiltur sponsor expeditions into the mountains and remote ports in the hopes of discovering suitable mines or willing trading partners.
A Diplomatic Mission: Many independent paladins make their home in Impiltur. Their crusades to fight evil and overturn injustice are often at odds with the impartial stance of their country. Sometimes the merchants get together and send one of their number, along with a band of suitably adventurous and diplomatic emissaries, to talk to the paladins and attempt to gently remind them that they risk Impiltur's people when they perform their deeds.
Thay's Slaves: It's usually considered better to harm a single slave as an example than to punish many equally (which lowers morale). Red Wizards who need live subjects for their latest spells use these troublemakers and any slaves who try to escape as part of their experiments. Even should the slave become useless in all possible tasks as a result of this experimentation, it's forbidden to free slaves (the penalty is enslavement). As a result, ruined slaves often are either encouraged to become parents or are killed. Children resulting from any slaves are automatically slaves belonging to the owner of their parents. What happens if a Red Wizard becomes well known beyond even the boundaries of Thay for his or her extremes of cruelty, though? What would any nearby heroes do?
Specialization and Projects: Red Wizards tend to be the most powerful mages of their school, and to have many magical contingencies, magic item collections, alliances and secret pacts, and strange private "side projects" involving undead, monster creation, or automatons that make their sudden removal both difficult and dangerous. Sometimes envious spellcasters wish to gain knowledge of a Red Wizard's current project. How far would such a spellcaster go to gain information about a Red Wizard's work? Could it involve a bit of spy work for ambitious adventurers?