The Valian Bank is undoubtedly the most powerful financial institution in the Centerlands, providing funding to most of the major political organizations, while at the same time secretly bankrolling thieves’ guilds and disruptors such as the Reavers. There is a saying amongst the knowledgeable of the lands concerning the Bank: “When blood flows, profit grows.” It is widely known that the Bank thrives off of war and unrest—just as long as the debtors can always pay their debts on time. If not, the Bank’s ruthless, elite collection forces, known as the White Masks, will make sure that the debt is paid, either in gold or in blood. In addition to the dreaded White Masks, the Bank has contracts with some of the most deadly mercenary groups throughout the lands, humanoid and monstrous: the Brash Bastards, the Mithril Fist, and the Bloody Tusks. It is rumored that they are even aligned with the illithid of the mysterious Qirtiak-siik—and with the mind flayers’ formidable telepathic powers, it is difficult indeed to hide anywhere when the debt collectors come for you.
The Valian Bank has always been headquartered in Trademeet
, and originally drew its vast wealth from the plentiful ore and gemstones found in the Valewalls. For much of the first millennium and half of the second, the Bank was merely a branch of the Treasury of Eoland
, ruled by the Eorls of Fallsmere
through their seat of power in the Vales, the massive castle of Valethrone
. As the gold and gems continued to flow, Trademeet changed from a small outpost to a bustling city by 1200 AFR, and its connection to the increasingly despotic Deepvale became more entrenched. The leaders of the Bank created the Triumvirate around 1400 AFR and promptly formed a lucrative alliance with the expanding military power of Voranor
as the grip of the Eolians began to loosen. Voranor became the Voran Empire
, spreading across the north and using the Valian Bank as its financier. The Bank’s wealth grew with the Empire, swallowing up other banks and smaller kingdoms in debt and bloodshed. It helped the Voran Empire defeat the Devil Hordes of Urda
during the Second Ruination
, and literally opened the gates of the Vales after the war for the annexation of the conglomeration of small nations into the much larger Voran Empire. It wasn’t until the Revolt of the Vales
that the Bank, always hedging its bets, abandoned the crumbling Empire to side with the combined rebellions of Deepvale
and the Vale of Spires
to achieve Independence in 2166 AFR. Since then, the Bank has followed (or led) the position of the Six Oligarchs to remain neutral in the affairs of other nations, even during the War of the Vales. It is rumored that the Bank is planning for another war, and it is left to speculation whether they will remain neutral or side with whichever faction they deem the most profitable.
Headquartered in the city of Trademeet, the capitol of Corevale in the heart of the Vales, the Valian Bank is ruled by the Triumvirate, a council of three incredibly powerful Human lords and ladies. The Triumvirate is always Human and currently comprised of two males,Lord Shadiri
(the current representative to the Six Oligarchs of Corevale) and Lord Kasytos
, and one female, Lady Blacklace
, an ancient widow of six considered the richest and therefore most powerful person in all the Vales, save perhaps the Archaeomancer Ofestolus
of Deepvale. The influence the Triumvirate wields over the Six Oligarchs, the Vales, and the entire Centerlands is undeniable, and goes far beyond finances.