Greyhawk: From the Ashes
Furyondy - Barony of Kalinstren
Barony of Kalinstren
Ruler: Baron Kalinstren
Capital: Formerly Crockport
Standing Army: 7,200
This Barony has suffered the most because of King Belvor’s continuing struggles against Iuz the Evil. There are more border skirmishes and battles fought here than anywhere else in Furyondy. This realm has lost nearly one-third of its lands to the evil empire over the last century. Baron Kalinstren is the foremost advocate of launching a direct war against Iuz’s kingdom.
Baron Kalinstren, a strong devotee of Trithereon, has few friends in Belvor’s court or among his fellow nobles. Only Jakartai of Crystalmist is on good terms with him. Kalinstren’s uncompromising attitude does not do his cause any good, and even Belvor wouldn’t be sorry if the Baron perished in one of his forays.
The orderly folk of this province live in a state of chronic fear and tension. They are jumpy, nervous people who try to avoid contact with anyone they do not know. Morale is not poor, for the growth of defenses here is rapid. However, many people have relatives who have disappeared into the clutches of Iuz’s forces and the nightmares about their fates haunt them. This is hardly a happy land.
Locations & Settlements:
- Brancast Keep — Brancast Keep was a castle being built before the wars and has almost completely destroyed in the fighting. Today, one of the many restoration projects is taking place as the castle is being repaired and finished according to the original plans. It is now nearly finished, but completion has been delayed due to scarcity of building materials. When complete, it will stand across the river from the village of Brancast where trading vessels negotiating the Crystal River provide supplies for the Barony from the eastern edge of the Kingdom. Primarily a logistical base, it is an anchor for supply routes to the boundary lands. Militia posted here may have seen more arduous periods of service along the Flare Line during the war.
- Castle Ehlenestra — This castle gets its name from an Old Elvish variant of the name of the goddess Ehlonna. It marks the western boundary of the Flare Line. The castle’s construction is unusual, with a stonewall surrounding internal buildings made of fine Vesve wood. What makes this castle most remarkable, however, is its highly magical nature. Lady Sharnalem, a swanmay Knight of the Hart who possess the innate ability to control canines, rules the castle. Within a magically protected wood, filled with powerful illusion spells to fool the unwary, numerous faerie creatures such as brownies and dryads can be found. Many of these creatures act as spies and messengers. By night, large packs of canines wander within the castle walls including Tyrgs and Mist wolves. The tyrgs are famous throughout the land and are specially trained to hunt and attack orcs and goblinkind on sight. Sharnalem is known to have many friends among the Highfolk. While she is a shy and elusive woman her gifts of tyrgs to Kalinstren have earned his gratitude. The castle serves as a valuable recruiting post and many who are friendly with the Highfolk can be found here seeking refuge or searching for guidance. Clerics of Corellon and Ehlonna are often found here, serving as advisors to Sharnalem.
- Crockport – The former capital of the Barony currently ruled by Iuz’s forces.
- Crying Spear Keep – This stone keep fought off two massed attacks during the wars. Powerful wards protect the keep, cast by its ruler, Pashenden, a human cleric dedicated to Trithereon. The keep takes its name from a great-silvered spear rising atop it. Pashenden is on excellent terms with the Baron Kalinstren and supports him in favoring a resumption of war. There is no doubt that he sends forces from his resident militia, well aided by protection and combat spells, into the wild northern lands even after the war has reached a stalemate. For this reason, Belvor has craftily “helped” Pashenden by placing heavy cavalry there. Their leader, Captain Arcturin, is an influential and clever man who reports what Pashenden is up to back to Belvor through diplomatic channels. Pashenden is aware that Belvor is spying on him. He and Belvor continue to play a game of blindfold chess over the years. Pashenden reduces the number of his raids, and Belvor overlooks the rest.
- Harkwood – Harkwood is a small barony on the edge of the Vesve Forest. It is known for the quality of the wooden goods and furs which come out of its forest, and for the baron’s prize tournament held twice a year. While the area did come under direct assault by Iuz’s forces in 583 CY they were quickly driven off through the heroic efforts of Darrek and the soldiers of the town. Additionally most of Harkwood’s soldiers and citizens endured great hardship fighting in the war or helping the refugees fleeing the Old One’s savage army. While he is loyal to his cousin, Baron Kalinstren, Baron Fenmarc is at odds with him politically urging his liege to exercise caution in the pursuit of another war.
- The Razing Line — The Razing Line is a one of the most horrific constructions the forces of Iuz have developed. Located north of Kalinstren, this area is a quarter mile wide zone that clerics of Iuz have defoliated and blasted into barren, dead soil with fire and acid. There are no living plants or animals in the area. Sages and military advisers know this unholy area can have only one purpose, to boost dark magic, which can raise the dead. As of this time, this power has yet to be demonstrated.
- Redoubt — Redoubt is a huge military garrison town, protecting the approach to Chendl. A great five-towered stone castle dominates the road and the town. Repairs to the damage suffered in the wars have only recently been completed. The siege of Chendl left this castle as a single point of light in a sea of darkness as Iuz’s horrors swarmed around it, and having it whole once again has lifted the spirits of the people considerably. The garrison of Redoubt numbers 1,500 men at present, and every able-bodied soul has at least some leather armor and a hand weapon. All the native Furyondians here saw what orcs, goblins and fiends did to their brethren during the wars. Redoubt’s people do not forget the horrors of the long days, and the stalking nightmares of the black nights. Belvor wishes to increase the numbers here, and is actively seeking financial support for such a venture. Redoubt is also a center of one of the major religions of Furyondy. Located in the rebuilt city is the primary church of Trithereon. The Baronesses spiritual advisor Darden heads the church. The faith of Trithereon is very strong in this province and in the city of Redoubt in particular.
- Spinecastle — A military outpost that once guarded the Flare Line opposite of the Swarming Ground. The fortress gets its name from the design of its battlements, which were a veritable nest of archery holes. The castle sustained massive amounts of damage in the war, but never fell completely to the forces of Iuz. This castle was once garrisoned by nearly 400 soldiers, many of them the best archers in the land. Now less than 300 soldiers and archers, all veterans of the battles, man the castle.
Faith in Kalinstren is the most apparent example of the “law versus chaos” dichotomy in most good-aligned kingdoms. While lawful faiths like Hieroneous, St. Cuthbert, and Mayaheine are widespread, the largest and most prominent church in the area is the church of Trithereon in Redoubt. However, while these churches often differ on the means, they tend to agree on the ends – providing the barony with ample means to physically defend itself from future assaults from Old Wicked. The only exception is the Raoan church in the area, which has gained recent popularity but still lacks an organized presence in the province.