of the Vilhon Reach!
Sharpsword, collector of bits of travel and geographical information,
brings you further details about the Vilhon Reach area. Rand provides
these to supplement the information found in the Forgotten Realms
Vilhon Reach Locations
These jagged beaks mark the southeastern limit of the Shining Plains.
They harbor all manner of ferocious beasts, especially red dragons and
other winged monsters (hence the region's name).
Relationships with Sespech were tense for some time. Dediana's son,
Dmetiro (LE male pureblood yuan-ti Sor6), has romanced the baron's eldest
daughter for a few years. His suit has not yet met with success, but
the lady has not sent Dmetiro packing, either. Beautiful buildings are
going up, the most wondrous being the great aviary of Extaminos, completed
in 1368 DR.
Nimpeth, like its fellow city-states, guards its independence carefully.
Its citizens are deeply suspicious of Chondath and sensitive about their
own power and accomplishments. Visitors who speak poorly of the city
or its products are apt to be attacked or challenged to duels, and local
authorities invariably favor their own over any outsiders.
Lord Woren (NE male
human Wiz14) owns the largest vineyard and the largest slave emporium
in the Nimpeth area. He also runs the city, using diplomacy and guile
to keep Chondath at arm's length.
This meandering stream flows from the west side of the Orsraun Mountains,
through the Wetwoods, north to the Lake of the Long Arm thence to the
Sea of Fallen Stars. It sees some use as a trade route, with most goods
loading and unloading at Assam.
Hundreds of years ago, Elbulder was a logging town that used the River
Arran to float logs to the Sea of Fallen Stars and the rest of the Vilhon.
The Rotting War and the disapproval of the Emerald Enclave put a stop
to the logging. The Enclave's objections were well taken, as the Chondalwood
once extended south of the river, and miles of prairie lie where trees
once stood. During the logging boom, magic boats transported logs up
the Arran, so magic is better received here than anywhere else in the
Alaghôn's ancient vaults and catacombs contain secrets best left undisturbed.
During the time of Anaglathos, for example, the blue dragon allowed
a lich queen from Unther to reside below the palace. When Anaglathos
died, the lich quietly stayed on. A few ancient tomes make reference
to the lich, but Alaghôn's citizens remain ignorant of her presence.
The half-elves in Gildenglade primarily serve as the physical labor
for the woodcutting efforts, but they enjoy their work and are treated
as equals by both the elves and the dwarves of the community.
Morningstar Hollows was once a quiet village of farmers and craftsfolk.
The nearby Alaoreum River continued to flood its banks year after year,
so the residents finally left the village and moved to nearby Velorn's
Valor. The floods have continued, creating a bog. Lately, reports have
surfaced that indicate that about three dozen lizard folk have taken
over the abandoned town, from which they fish and hunt.
This slim northwestern branch of the Orsraun Mountains next to the Gulthmere
is home to a family of giants who keep the area safe for travelers.
The giants are known to have a good rapport with the Emerald Enclave.
City, 10,000): Located at the edge of the Holondar Valley, Xorhun
serves as a garden spot for nonhumans, especially elves. The city is
nicknamed "Corellon's Cradle" and "Lifeblood Falls"
by the residents.
Xorhun has an unusual
effect on elves and gnomes; it increases their fertility rate. Children
are born at a rate two to three times the norm for their races. One
must live in the area for five years before the fertility effects begin
to show. Other than this unusual property, Xorhun serves primarily as
a stopping point along the Holondar, the road that connects Hlondeth
to the south and Alaghôn to the north. Primarily craftsfolk and merchants
populate the city.
More Turmish Life
The Turmians have
a well-known respect for their land, and they have a custom of burying
a small amount of valuables on their property. These caches are intended
both as gifts to Chauntea and also as "seeds" for future wealth.
Needless to say, the Turmians take a dim view of strangers who go about
with digging implements in hand.
The people of Turmish
have a habit of marking their foreheads with small dots of colored ink
or chalk to show ability. If they wear one dot, individuals can read.
If they wear two, they can write. If they wear three, they can use magic.
The locals usually assume visitors who have not so adorned themselves
are illiterate or worse. Different variations of this scheme are used
throughout southern Faerûn. Visitors are warned not to treat this custom
lightly. Guards and even civilians are apt to stop marked strangers
on the street for a demonstration of the abilities noted by the markings.
Civilian questions are usually polite, but will not take no for an answer.
Guards are more direct and insistent. People found wearing marks falsely
are put to death.
Plots and Rumors
When a recent bandit attack wiped out a caravan, Honlinar scrambled
to assemble a group of trackers to bring the miscreants to justice.
He eventually recovered most of the caravan's goods, but several bandits
escaped, and Honlinar still seeks to bring them to justice.
Lord Quwen once more seeks to know who or what lurks in the Wetwoods.
Parties answering his summons learn that grazing lands south of the
Wet River have suffered mysterious nocturnal attacks that left the animals
strangely weakened. Herders who have survived the attacks have seen
nothing. Several herders were killed, though none of their animals were.
Several different kinds of creatures could have made the attacks. Perhaps
a flock of nigh-flying stirges has descended on the area. Or perhaps
the attacks are the work of a vampire and its attendant vampire spawn.
The latest rage in Nimpeth is to dine on Vilhon eels -- long, ribbonlike,
black (with green mottling) creatures that were the bane of net-fishers
in the Reach for centuries. Eels are marinated in wines, fried, then
slit open and stuffed with herbed eggs and cheese. In recent months,
over two dozen eels were found to contain gold rings, gems, and bracelets
of linked, chased plaques of electrum, mithral, and silver, set with
eyeball-sized sapphires. Where are these riches coming from? How is
it that eels end up swallowing them? Where can more be found?
Lord Eles Wianar devotes his time to reading and influencing the deeds
of others inside Chondath and around it. He has multiple spies (none
of whom know of each other) in the households of all self-styled nobles
of Arrabar. He openly confronts and slays those who try to assassinate
him or launch serious attempts to wrest his throne from him. He is equally
jealous of his treasury.
Lord Eles Wianar's current plan for invading Sespech involves an overland
strike against Elbulder along the Old Road, timed to coincide with an
amphibious assault on Mimph. Wianar believes the two-pronged strike
will divide and confuse Sespech's defenders. The previous assault on
Elbulder was merely a reconnaissance in force, and the naval harassment
of Mimph has the same purpose