Haven City State
Haven is probably the safest city state of the Wildlands, although that honour may go to Pembrose. The state is run by the fairly decent and upstanding Traders Council currently headed by Captain Kennit; a young dashing naval captain who loves to bring pirates to justice. The Traders Council ensures that all trade in the city and surrounds (to a degree) is regulated. They even have road wardens who patrol their new road system and who do not tax people for using it (the toll stations do tax people, legally, and the taxes are quite high). The further from the main city you stray however, the less the law applies and the Council's reach is not strong enough to reach the fringes.
Haven suffers constant piracy raids from Land's End whom it considers an enemy. The Traders of Haven are pretty much constantly at war with the pirates of the west. The Haven navy launches regular strikes at settlements along the Lands End coastline, even risking attacks against the well defended settlement of Smugglers, but rarely ever being so bold as to attack Lands End city itself. Haven trades across land with Pembrose and Maard, and also conducts some of this trade across the Lake. However seeing as Haven's main surplus is foodstuffs and because both Maard and Pembrose have their own glut of these goods, the Haveners are forced to trade further afield. This is why they have developed to being the main trading state in the Wildlands. Haven Traders have even forged tentative trade links with Hishan and far away Khemit, both of which desire the rich selection of foods the Haveners harvest and hunt in the plains. The need to trade far away has seen the Haven fleet of merchant vessels swell. As this happened the need to build long ranging, fast and well armed ships grew. As a result Haven city is now known as the greatest ship yard in the Wildlands. They import timber from Pembrose and also recently from a newly started company based in Lands End for this industry and use most of the ships themselves but they do sell some to the Maard navy on occasions. The odd rich Hishan noble has even been known to purchase Haven ships. Haven generates large amounts of foodstuffs on its sprawling Haven Plains. Much of this area is farmed but it is also hunted for the large herds of herbivores which roam the plains. These plains are also home to a substantial population of big cats which equally hunt the herbivores. The Western Cliff mines are able to generate most of the mineral requirements that Haven has for its shipbuilding industry. The minerals are mined and then brought into the settlement of Bluff for refinement and collection. From there they are transported, under guard, up the toll road to the city. This wagon train is a constant target for bandit raiders and Captain Kennit has recently been forced to upgrade the levels of protection afforded this important link. Rulership of Haven is by the Trader Council. This comprises the Trader from the twelve families who founded Haven City generations ago. The Trader is the head male of the household. Typically their first son goes on to become Trader after them and run the family. Rule in the council is passed by vote with the leader of the council's vote being worth two. However usually Captain Kennit makes his feelings on a vote known and most families vote with his suggestion, so he clearly has overall control of the council. The Council Leader is voted upon yearly at the Traders' Annual Meeting. Captain Kennit has been voted in for the last five years. He continues to hold a large majority of support on the council for his charismatic leadership and brave attacks on the pirates of Lands End.