In eastern Arantha there arose a mighty Empire...
Location and Extent
Situated in eastern Arantha along the Farsea Ocean, the Empire of Shalizan is one of the largest territories on the continent. Shalizan is bounded on the north by the Shining Peaks, on the west by the Great Desert, and on the south and the east by the Farsea Ocean, although the Shar Mountains on the southern boundary makes travel in that direction impossible.
Shalizan's capital city, Shalizar, is located on the eastern boundary of the empire on the Farsea Ocean.
Shalizan is home to humans (the Shar), halflings, gnomes, elves (Eben and Seren), and dwarves (Nurendwarves).
The area currently known as Shalizan was once part of the great Cerron empire before its fall, which stretched from Shalizan in the east, to the great mountains in the west, north to the edges of the grasslands and south to the tropical jungles. Crumbling ruins from that time long ago can still be found throughout the Empire of Shalizan, some unexplored and harboring secrets long forgotten.
Although few records from Cerron times survive to the present day and Nurmish oral history about the Cerr is spotty at best, modern Sharran historians have been able to piece together some events from the apparently violent history of the Cerr. The Cerr were human, like the Shar and the Thurlish, and seemed to be collectively gifted in the arcane arts. However, due to civil wars with the primitive Kulikan tribes of the jungles and raids across the grasslands by the orcish Dashiri, Cerron was completely destroyed and its people scattered long before the Sharran landing. It is not known if any decedents of the Cerr have survived to this current day.
Geographical Regions and Topography
The temperate, deciduous forest that covers almost a third of Shalizan. Ebenleaf has been explored extensively in its western reaches, as well as around the edges of the eastern edge of the forest. A great number of Eben elves live near the center of the forest in a community in the trees called Nafallir. The organization known as the Circle protects the inhabitants and travelers of Ebenleaf from fell intent.
The longest river in the empire of Shalizan, the River Shar originates in the western part of the Shar Mountains and flows east to the Dulyr Bay and Farsea Ocean.
A mountain range that stretches across the northern border of Shalizan, running east to west. The Sharran cities of Anvar and Cirdul bookmark the eastern and western ends of the mountain range, respectively. Deep within the Shining Peaks is the Dhargoss Pass and the Nurendwarf city of Asamyr. The Shining Peaks loom over the Ebenleaf Forest, which is to the south of the mountain range.
The Serenwood Forest
The second largest forest in Shalizan, the Serenwood is also the most dangerous. It is a strictly coniferous forest, its trees mostly towering pines and firs, with hemlock and juniper bushes growing close to the ground. In the western fringes of the forest, pine trees are logged heavily and carted overland to Danar for processing. Silkworm farmers harvest the silk from the mulberry bushes that grow thick along the banks of the Seren Stream. Deep within the forest is the main Seren elf outpost, but its location is a secret from everyone save those who have business there.
For the farmers and soldiers who live and work near the borders of the Serenwood, a day in the outskirts is time enough in that place of ill omen. Though the silks that come from the Serenwood's grubs undoubtedly contribute to Shalizan's place in the world, the forest itself is a dark place, dank and musty, in parts full of rot and decay, and of dreadful rumor.
Home of the Seren Elves, Arwyll is hidden in the depths of the Serenwood Forest. Only those who know where to look will find this unusual, underground city.
The Nurendwarves' hold in the Shining Peaks, deep within the belly of the mountains. Famed for their dwarf steel, the inhabitants of this fortified village have a strong trading interest in Shalizar, and were instrumental in lifting the siege in the latter years of the War.
The closest border fort to the northern desert, nothing of Cirdul remained after the Great War, and it is still being rebuilt today. Cirdul used to provide a gateway for those traveling from Shalizan to the lands of Thurlun in the north, but since the war the only travelers Cirdul sees now are legion patrols. Scattered pockets of undead can be found without too much trouble, both in the outlying wastes and further towards the desert. The Shining Peaks to the east harbor many other enemies as well as the undead, and the soldiers stationed at Cirdul rarely see a tenday of peace without fighting one raider or another.
Danar is the first town of size coming into Shalizan from the west and lies on the crossroads of the major roads. As well as having a large mercantile presence, Danar is home to a Legions garrison and is the hub for troops rotating to the outer limits of the empire.
Darlothan sits at the crossroads of the three major Sharran rivers. It was completely destroyed in the Great War by hordes of undead, but has since been rebuilt to its former glory. Most of the raw materials from across Shalizan are processed at Darlothan in the lumber yards and grain silos, and then floated down the River Shar to be sold in Shalizar.
An interesting settlement on the seashore, Farlah is the main city of the halfling people of Shalizan, the Hin. The Shar granted them permanent settlement rights to the area as a reward for their heroics during the Great War. Although the halflings lived here as long as any can remember, they are still proud of the fact that the land is now theirs by right and the big people know it.
When the gnomish community of Crosshands was razed during the Great War, the gnomes of Shalizan fled to their human allies to survive the rigors of battle. When the war ended, they were without a home. Weakened but unified, they constructed a new village, wrought from the legend of their greatest inventor and prophet, Gig Fivehands. The new location provides exciting horizons for both gnome technology and human-gnome alliances.
Strange noises are often reported in the vicinity by those passing nearby on the road from Medyllar to Seaford, but what they are none can say. The gnomes tend to keep to themselves, though a few can at times be seen peddling their wares up the coast road, to the capital.
Located on the shores of the Farsea Ocean, Medyllar is the southern-most post of the great empire of Shalizan. Governed by the Ve'll family, it is inhabited primarily by Sharran fisherman and is used by naval and merchant ships as a refitting port.
High in the trees of Ebenleaf Forest, Nafallir is the largest elven city and home to over a thousand eben elves. The famed Druid's Circle, an unusual rock formation, is located on the eastern edge of Nafallir and is the meeting place for the Circle.
Meaning "New Home" in the ancient Sharran language, Sha'Lizar is the capital city of the empire of Shalizan, as well as the biggest trade hub in eastern Arantha. A bustling city that is home to most of the races of the empire, the city itself is built on the banks of the River Shar, where it empties into the Farsea Ocean. Shalizar was the only major Sharran city to not fall to the undead horde during the Great War, although it was under siege for many months. The Lantar's seat of power is Shalizar, as well as the headquarters of the Legions of the Shar and the Crimson Order. The infamous L'ancaster family and their Swords of the Shar city watch protect and oversee the day-to-day governing of this large city.