The Far Tales
As literacy expands throughout the Empire, one of the most common things you'll see in homes from the capital to the farmlands is The Far Tales, a book of stories collected by members of The Reeds of the Dell. As the guild travelled throughout Ishen, they wrote about the people they met and the places they saw. While not always entirely accurate - Skyla Swiftbird was especially known for her more florid additions - the stories were an excellent way for young and old alike to learn something about those living nearby. Most working citizens wouldn't have the time or the funds to pack up their things, put the kids in a wagon, and travel for two months to reach Oran'belle. By recording both their own observations and the stories told to them by local residents, the Reeds were able to return to the Empire with a both entertaining and informative collection. The first chapter of The Far Tales focuses primarily on the Hearthridge Mountains. Known as a stronghold of smithing knowledge, the stories collected there ranged from ancient dwarven folklore to a more scholarly report on modern, multicultural influence in metalwork. The second chapter describes the northern coasts of the continent, and features poetry composed by local fisherfolk. The third section of the book includes pieces of mythology surrounding the great forests and hundred-foot-tall trees to the east. A favorite of many readers, Markus Knotts' passage about his harrowing trip down the River of Three Falls - yes, that means three waterfalls - is full of hilarious and terrifying moments. The smallest of the collections, the fifth chapter discusses the mysteries of the Wasteland, though not it great detail since the harsh landscape and magical storms have made exploration nearly impossible for hundreds of years. The sixth and final set of entries highlight the southeastern jungles, the volcanoes of Omegu, and an interesting encounter with a Serpent of the Swamp where the party was saved only by a well timed and expeditious retreat. The publication and distribution of The Far Tales was an unexpected financial windfall for the Reeds of the Dell, as their collection became far more popular than anyone expected. Teachers began using it in schools as a way to encourage young students to learn their letters, and within a few years copies had found their way back to some of the very places the contents were collected.
Text, Literary (Novel/Poetry)
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