The Arden Empire

The Arden Empire
Mothers, tell your children not to do what I have done

Home to refugees who fled a great darkness far away to the west, the Arden Empire was born of conflict. The number of those who remember the first nights of their kin upon these new lands dwindles, but the stories of the war waged in the name of survival are still told. Trapped between the encroaching western dark and the cruel giants who roamed the untainted soil of the continent, the sword bearers and spell singers led their people on a crusade to drive the giants east, into the ocean. A necessary but tragic beginning, some of the oldest laments still recall those times of heroes and martyrs. Along the way, small encampments grew into holds and some few of these sprouted into the great cities of the Empire. Those lesser races they encountered were freed from the yokes of their giantish masters, to be guarded and secured against the day when the darkness finds its way across the great sea to the west. The Empire is currently presided over by its third Emperor, Taleth Arden.

Total population: ~ 8 million, approximately 5 million of which are Elves. The remaining is divided between the other races, including humans who chose to stay as subjects.
Currency: Electrum Thrones (Thrones, Ardens), silver wreaths (wreaths, drakes), brass pennies (pennies, tacks)

Capital City: Tír Silemorhan (City of Star-bright Crossroads, City of Rose and Gold), a city built upon the bones of one the massive structures of the iron-fisted giantish empire that spanned the continent before the arrival of the Kin. It was chosen not for its defensible location, nor for any symbolic reason, but because the land upon which it is built has a tightly interwoven pattern of magical ley-lines and wellsprings of arcane energy. Situated nearby is one of the massive Elven Heartwood trees, transplants from the lost Elven homelands to the west. The architecture of the city highlights the best craftsmanship the Elves have to offer, with carved spires that soar to dizzying heights that are joined to each other by bridges which appear to cross the sky unsupported. Nearly all Elves of any political import live in this city, and it is here that those who wish to learn the spell songs of old must come.

Major Cities: Tír Himsirion, a city whose main feature is the only remaining railhead in the entirety of the Empire- all others were sabotaged and badly damaged during the Insurrection, and the Elven craftspeople possess neither the skill nor the knowledge to repair the careful artifice of the humans. This city is joined to Tír Malduinë, and as such is a hub of trade with the humans to the West. Many Elves travel here to hear stories of the outside lands before preparing to undertake their own journeys.

Tír Inderest, located on the Eastern shore. Here lies one of the great Elven shipyards, where those who feel the pull of the sea eventually find their way. Many explorers set out to the East, hoping to find some answer to what it was that drove them from their ancestral homes millenia ago, or perhaps some way to combat it. Few return, and those who do speak only of vast seas, horrible creatures, and storms of unearthly power.

Tír Argeryn, located to the south of the Empire, it is here that the Kin send the masters of their craft in hopes of finding a connection with one of the Dwarves. Because neither race has yet to unlock the secrets of artifice, the ages-old tradition of meeting at this location to learn from the best the other has to offer continues on unchanged. Those items crafted here are said to be of ‘Argeryn make’, though the meaning of the word has been lost to time.

The Arden Empire

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