Today in my broad sweep of the Realm I will describe the remaining parts of the Northern half of the map. Since yesterday’s part turned out longer than expected and I’m making attempts to cut down on my post length a bit, I’ll just dive right in today. As always, feel free to share any thoughts, feedback or whatever other comments you might have!
The Islands of the Realm
2. The Western Island (as of yet unnamed)
The westernmost island is among the more inhospitable in the Realm. Over a third of the land is covered by a massive desert wasteland known as the Desolate Plains. The plains are uninhabited aside from its southernmost part, where the world’s only habitat of the great sabre-tooth tigers can be found. Bands of desert raiders have made their home in the mountains east of the desert and come out at night to prey on unsuspecting travellers. South of the Desolate Plains the walled city of Sarkansa* can be found, stretching from the East to the West coast. Its inhabitants are often in conflict with the more primal barbarian tribes to their south. Even further down, a notorious group of pirates is based on the tip of the southernmost coast. Just North-East from Sarkansa, the port city of Kahlar Zana* and its people of traders are located. Lastly, just North of the Desolate Plains the desert abruptly ends, making place for an eerie forest called the Dark Wood. Here a powerful Demon Prince resides and has his Arena where he challenges anyone passing through to deadly games.
*Both these names are on the map, but hardly visible anymore. I’ve taken some good looks at them and eventually managed to find out what they very likely were. Sarkansa is actually one of two names I found where the name of the walled city was written (the other being Sarkantah). For now I’ve decided to go with Sarkansa, though it might be subject to change later on.
3. The Island of the Cold Blooded
This mostly warm and humid island is where the Lizardfolk reside. Although they consider themselves one unified people, they consist of various species, each of which has their own territory. In the North-Eastern area live the Skinks, the smallest and most numerous of the sapient Lizards. East from there the Pantathiëns or snake people can be found, as well as the Serpent Well where they and the giant sea serpents are born. From the well the Serpent River flows all the way into the Sea of Serpents on the North-West of the island. The South-Eastern part of the island is home to the Slan, large toad mages and the rulers of the Lizardfolk, as well as the Lizardfolk’s main stronghold. In the mountains to the South-West the brutish crocodile-like Kroxigor are located. Finally, in-between the mountains and Serpent River is a valley where various kinds of giant non-sapient wild lizards roam.
The Crown of the Sea
While not one of the islands, this hard to miss and remarkable landmark certainly deserves at least a mention. The Crown of the Sea lies at the centre of the Northern seas, in-between the Western Island and the Island of the Cold Blooded, and stretches out almost from coast to coast. It is a long range of massive and sharp rock spires sticking out of the water, with a single high arch in its centre. The spires stand closely together and their height above the water’s surface alone ranges from three to seven meters. Only through the centre arch can one travel through at all, although many a ship has been claimed attempting to do so.