Tales of the Iron Ring
PEOPLE OF THE NENTIR VALE
There are many different races of beings that live in the world. Some are civilized, clinging to the hope of building a new and lasting peaceful culture. Others are barbaric, in that they desire dominion over others or the destruction of all. While the average person has heard of all these different racial groups, some are rare enough to have never be seen in a lifetime while others are quite common. All of the civilized races are accepted to some degree in society regardless of their racial prevalence. Some prejudices may exist to varying extent, yet for centuries the Empire of Nerath served to unite the civilized races under its banner. Fortunately that sentiment has survived the nation’s fall.
Rarely seen, the deva are not a race native to the world. They are immortal spirits who have served the divine powers from the dawn of creation in their battle against the forces of the primordials. The deva came from the Astral Sea to protect the world, but fell in love with its natural beauty and chose to cast off their planar forms. Here they have remained throughout the ages, some still serving their original deity while others have found new benign causes to support. If a deva dies, he is reincarnated in another adult form, the memories of his current life added to the dreamlike history of his past existance.
Descendants of the ancient empire of Arkhosia, the dragonborn are noble creatures who were created to serve the mighty dragons of the past. They are now a scattered race that continues to seek its place in the world while yearning to rekindle the majesty of their past. Many solitary dragonborn wander the world, searching for forgotten treasures of their lost empire.
The dwarves call themselves the children of Moradin and they revere the god of the forge above all others. They are the greatest craftsmen and engineers of the world, and are commonly seen at work with the other races in society. The dwarves have fought terrible wars against the orc tribes, yet they save their fiercest hatred for the giants, who had enslaved them in the past age of creation.
The eladrin are magical creatures who live in the Feywild, an enchanted plane of existence that mirrors the natural beauty of the world. They are a race with incredibly long lifespans, and dedicate themselves to various pursuits of art and knowledge. Eladrin will sometimes venture into the world, alone or in small groups, for this purpose. They abhor the drow who turned away from the eladrin to follow the ways of the spider god Lolth.
The elves entered the world in an age long past to escape the struggle between the eladrin and the drow of the Feywild. They have a great love of nature and make their homes in the forests and wilds, often assisting the more rural members of other races. Although they are a peaceful race, they have no love for the goblins, whose aggressive nature threatens these same regions.
The gnomes are another fey race who have come to the world from the Feywild. They have arrived as escaped refugees from the tyranny of the Fomor, evil rulers of the Feydark – an enchanted reflection of the Underdark caverns of the natural world. These small folk are few in number and rarely seen. They seek peace in the world and search for means to help rescue the remaining imprisoned members of their race.
Another rare race, the Goliaths make their home high in the mountains of the world. These tall, powerful creatures are friendly with dwarves and share a hatred of the giants. They look to compete and test themselves in all they attempt to do. Therefore, occasional members of this race will venture down from the mountains in search of adventure.
Half – Elves:
Originally arising from rural areas where elven and human populations are mixed, half-elves are now considered a singular racial type. They are adept at social cooperation and can easily integrate with any population. Their skills often lead them to interaction with others as diplomats and clergy, so they are commonly encountered in most cities and towns.
Halflings are commonly seen near communities of other races. At home near rivers and lakes, they are suberb boatsmen and porters. These skills as well as a strong sense of curiosity often lead them to excel as traveling merchants, plying the civilized waterways in search of profit or adventure.
Half – Orcs:
The half-orc racial origin is lost in the past. They are a true, singular race that is few in number and normally encountered in the wilder areas, away from cities and towns. They are fierce and proud, suspicious of others but loyal and steadfast to those they accept as equals.
While there are certainly more humans in the world than members of any other race, they are far from dominant. While many are driven to aqcuire power and achieve wealth for good or evil, their rash and impulsive nature keeps them from maintaining any racial sense of ascendancy. The strength of the human race lies in its adaptability. They can be found in any environment and are well-suited for any task at hand.
Originally a race of humans cursed by lycanthropy, shifters have come to terms with their heritage and have used the benefits of their unique gifts to find their place in society. No longer able to fully transform to a bestial shape, they still serve as excellent bodyguards, hunters, and spies. They are few in number and often solitary, but are equally at home in urban and rural environments.
The tiefling ancestry hails from the ancient empire of Bael Turath. Tieflings are accepted in society but are sometimes mistrusted. This is as much a result of their silver-tongued nature as their infernal heritage. They are known to be well-mannered and highly educated, and their pusuit of knowledge often brings them to interact with others. As such they are most commonly encountered in cities and towns.
Originally members of the eladrin race, the Drow chose to follow the teachings of the god Lolth and made war upon their former brethren. They came into the world in ages past and made their home in the Underdark, a vast labyrinth of underground caverns.
There are many different offshoots of the giant race but most share the desire to enslave, torture, or devour the other races of the world. These terrible servants of the primordial titans are fortunately few in number.
Gnolls are perhaps the most rapacious and barbaric of all the races. They are prone to demon – worship, and when united under a strong leader they can be devastating (It was a force consisting largely of gnolls that spelled the doom of the great Nerath Empire).
This race, including the militaristic hobgoblins and the brutish bugbears is most numerous in the dark forests and caverns of the wilderness. They are sadistic, cruel, and utterly without mercy.
Kobolds are cunning and ruthless. They are stealthy creatures and often raid outlying areas in search of wealth and slaves. They regard chromatic dragons as sacred creatures.
Descendants of a long – lost empire, minotaurs have devolved to an almost bestial state. They make their labyrinthine lairs in remote areas of rugged wilderness.
Large, strong, and dull-witted, ogres are normally encountered with raiding bands of orcs or goblins. They are simple creatures, lured by temptation of wealth and food.
Regarded as the most destructive and bloodthirsty of all races, the savage orcs are split among many tribal factions. These groups often make war on each other as well as other folk, squabbling over territory and wealth. On rare occasion, a powerful leader will arise to unite the orc hordes to plunder and destroy. These quickly become times of peril for civilized folk of the world.