The Great Forest
The Great Forest, "Dionna Tarnia" in Menicean, covers the whole south of Menicea, from the Eastern Desert to Odelia. The biodiversity there is unmatched on the continent, thanks to the region's perfect oceanic climate. Like its name implies, the region is mostly covered in dense forests with unusual quirks. While most of the population is one of the more chauvinistic but friendly of the continent, the size of the region and the density of its vegetation make it a perfect hideout for outlaws and dangerous animals.
Make sure you don't wander too far from the roads, friend. The forest isn't what it used to be anymore, countless bastards hide in the trees waiting for that stranger to get curious. A pity to be stripped from our lands, but we don't have any other choice for now.
RiversFour rivers flow in the forest. They are essential pivots of both trade and life for the inhabitants of the region. Among the four rivers, two gather all the others and the many streams in the forest before reaching the ocean. Both come from Insdyl and enters the forest by its north.
Viana fil OrtinThe "Viana fil ortin," the "Sun's thread," commonly called "Viana" rises in the Insdyl side of the Sun mountain that separates the plains and the desert. Flowing close to Nelandra, many boats depart each day for the forest's capital, Sylvan-Haven, which the river also blesses by its presence. Its estuary is in the south of the region, after passing through many plains and villages which the river grants drinkable water.
Nestaria"Nestaria" can be translated into both "Unknown" and "Stranger" depending on the context. Gérouns named the river this way as it rises in the north of Odelia, which access is forbidden by the Nelandrean Cult. It reaches Insdyl, providing water to many of its villages including Brightmoon before entering the north-west of the forest. There, many communities once again chose the river's shore as a place to settle in. Just like the Sun's thread, many boats used to populate the river to trade with the cities downstream. This, however, quickly came to an end as Parbora's criminality rose.
Three mountain ranges dot the region from west to east. Most of them are vastly avoided by locals as they are known for sheltering outlaws. Still, some areas were secured to provide stone and metal sources for nearby cities. The only range that is somehow safe is the one on the far east. There, the Fireguard hunt Lorianortis away just like they do in the desert. This has the side effect of dissuading bandits from settling in the area, as disturbing the fireguard could prove fatal to them.
These idiots don't fear the soldiers, nah. They fear what would come from the desert if the army stopped watching over the mountains. No one wants to be roasted alive by white fire.
The Giant Oaks ForestThe Giant Oaks Forest stretches in the north-east of the region. This portion of the forests is dotted by countless enormous oaks that are said to be one of the last remnants of the . Some people even say that the tallest are as old as Menicea itself. Like many similar phenomenons on the continent, no one can really tell how and why trees grow this large at this specific location. To many people, the trees are another proof of Giraun's influence over the lands. He blessed this part of the forest with tall trees to protect it from storms and provide shelter to its inhabitants. Gérouns could not see a better place to build the Great Forests' capital.
The JungleThe Jungle is the Giant Oaks Forest' unfamous counterpart. Located on the opposite side of the region, near the likewise unpopular Parbora, this part of the forest is highly avoided by any kind of traveler. What used to be another magnificent natural greenhouse, home to many plants and small villages is now an impracticable mess as its population dropped at the same time Parbora's criminality rose. The Jungle now shelters many dangerous animals, such as the Tiaplos or Sakkitis herds that grew more territorial as people deserted the region. Outlaws did not miss the opportunity and many groups are also said to have established their bases in the green hell.
Don't be fooled by the jungle's peaceful looks...
The Sakkitis PlainsTwo hundred years ago, the Sakkitis were all over the continent, one of the most prolific species but more importantly, the most territorial. After decades of huntings, Gérouns managed to significantly lower the population all over the continent but decided to keep the Sakkitis plains intact.
In fact, hunting the quilled buffaloes is a very complicated process and entered the culture as a noble sport. While scattering the beasts away made the roads safer, the people quickly came to miss the yearly hunting festivals. That's when the queen decided to grant the hunters with a permanent hunting ground that are the Sakkitis Plains. Far in the central south of the Great Forest, surrounded by one of the highest mountain range of the continent, the Sakkitis Plains are where the animals still thrive. Yet, their peaceful life is disturbed each year during the Great Hunting Festival. The gratin of the nobility and the best hunters of the continent gathers in Portelta during a week. The festival is, in fact, a competition where the hunter that brings the most stunning beast home wins.
Clearly, Portelta only exists thanks to the hunting festival. I think Haven would have needed another mining town anyway, but we wouldn't be this far and this big if the hunt wasn't a thing. I guess that's why everyone is grateful over here and welcomes whoever comes for the festivities.
DemographicsGérouns natives from the forest cultivate their interest in nature's sciences. Children are taught from a very young age how to find their way in the woods and what each of its plants is and does. They also enjoy the immense playground that is the forest and thus grow to be the most agile gérouns in the continent. Lots of the inhabitants are natural hunters, and almost each one of the natives at least tried it once. Chauvinistic as possible, they, however, like having visitors and equally enjoy showing them around their homeland, which they love so much. Intruders who would illegally damage their environment are warned; they will face severe repercussions if they do anything without authorization from the council.
If you think that gérouns are overly proud of their homes, you haven't met the Sylvans yet. They are in love with their homeland, and you don't want to mess with it. Having bandits settling in around made them really wary, and I heard some stories about outlaws being discreetly executed rather than given a trial like the cult told us to do.
capital and Sylve-Haven. Despite all its wealth and size, the city's inhabitants remain like the people from the villages all over the region: humble and close to nature. The town is famous for its leatherwork and the beautiful festivals organized in the nearby forest.
Being located in the north-west, the criminality rise led to the whole south-western part of the region's massive emigration.
The Fireguard's base and Sylvan-Haven's metal provider. The city was strategically located next to a river that flows into the Viana so that the wares could be taken by boat.
menicean nobility, that hunters from all over the land join in hunting as many beasts in the plains as they can. The rest of the time, Portelta resembles Easthold: it provides metals to the rest of the region and watches over the Sakkitis.