Of all the human nations in East Colassia, Marginalland is the most geographically removed from Kahdisteria and were the last nation to join the Colassian Confederacy.
Marginalland is the most geographically removed from Kahdisteria, so they suffered the fewest dark elf incursions. Initially they declined to join the Colassian Confederacy "Not wanting to be dragged into conflicts that don't concern us" because dark elf raids were so rare in their neck of the woods. Once the rest of Confederacy solidified itself and started regularly making the elves pay for their trespasses, the number of dark elf raids against Marginalland increased tenfold. At this point they literally begged the Confederacy to let them join. The Confederacy admitted them in fairly quickly, but no one lets them forget that they were the last to join. The reason why Marginalland has lots of salt and lots of gemstones is because during they are sitting on the lands were a lot of epic battles were fought during theSecond Unmaking . Unfortunately this means that Marginal Land experiences a disproportionately high number of random Void Demon and undead attacks. That's also why they were reluctant to join the Confederacy. "We have our own problems, thank you very much!" Officially the charter of the Colassian Confederacy states mutual defense against dark elves and dabeshi. It does not include Void Demons or undead. On rare occasions, Marginaland's allies have aided them against the minions of the Void, but not often.
Demography and Population
85% humans, 5% gnomes, 1% half-human half-elves, 5% goblins, 4% other.
Given that they have a small population but relatively rich mineral resources and a strong equestrian culture, the backbone of their army is naturally heavily armored knights. They also have some effective light cavalry too.
Worship of all of the Nine is permitted. Hallisan and Korus are the two most commonly worshipped deities of the Nine with Zarthus and Mera competing for third place. Hallisan is sort of viewed as the nobles’ god and Korus is sort of viewed as the peasants’ god. The various priesthoods have some influence over the king and his vassals but Marginalland is pretty secular on the whole.
Marginalland may be the last nation to join the Colassian Confederacy, but at this point, the Confederacy is their only option for friendly foreign relations. Marginalland's western border happens to be the Demonic Strait. That used to be a good thing because it meant that Marginalland could trade with West Colassia quite easily. That was before the kingdom of Uskala conquered the smaller nations that used to be Marginalland's trading partners. Uskala is so big they don't have much incentive to trade with Marginalland. Uskala has a long history of slow and steady expansion. Uskala has few options left to expand outward. They can try to tame the barely inhabitable frontier to their north, they can scuffle with the powerful sorcerer nobles of Swynfaredia or they can try their luck conquering the wood elves of Nation of Codenya who have famously never lost a war in 3000 years. Or Uskala could sail across the Demonic Straight and take over the much smaller weaker Marginalland. If and when Uskala decides to expand into East Colassia, Marginalland happens to be the closest. If the Uskalans invade, reinforcements from the rest of the Confederacy may be slow in coming because the other member nations are somewhat bitter that Marginalland joined the big war against the elves late.
Agriculture & Industry
Marginalland has least fresh water of any of the nations of the Confederacy. Their agriculture is very dependent on good rainfall and mostly relies on root crops such as potatoes and carrots. They also have modestly productive mines for iron, tin, and precious metals, but their main mineral resource is salt mining due to the high number of battles that raged in the region ages ago during the Second Unmaking. Marginalland does much of their mining work with goblins. Officially classified as "serfs," these are goblin slaves by any other name. Something the other nations of the Colassian Confederacy considers very hypocritcal though most the locals will be happy to explain how 1) the goblins kind of deserve it for being goblins and 2) Marginaland treats their goblin labor much better than the dark elves do. While stories are exaggerated, the lands of Marginalland have more gems than most. A lot of gem prospectors come back empty handed or die in the wilderness but a small few come back wealthy. Enough to ensure a steady stream of optimistic prospectors to hit Marginalland's frontier year after year.
Trade & Transport
Marginalland is the only land in the confederacy that has no access whatsoever to a navigable river, though the nation does have a long coastline which eases transport. Most of the population thus lives fairly close to the coastline. The lack of navigable and a lot of inland spaces has bred a culture that values horsemanship out of necessity.
StereotypesBuy a drink for Taahir, sell sword captain and he’ll tell you what he thinks you need to hear. Musselanders: We have problems with a lack of good water, they have a lack of good soil. We both make do with what Korus’ gave us to survive. Mooringslanders: They say we don’t contribute to the Confederacy, yet they can hardly be stirred from counting their coins to do any fighting. "Marshlanders": I find them agreeable enough…as long as I’m not standing downwind of them. Magiclanders: Must be nice to be able to make all your problems go away with a few spells... Meralanders: They are strong allies and treat us better than most of our other so-called allies. Why then do they frighten me so? Mineralanders: I’m glad they are holding the frontlines against the dark elves and not me. Mereshnari: For a people living in a hot desert, they can act very frosty. Still they are staunch allies. Midlanders: Oh right, I think they herd sheep… Riverlanders: They have the most fertile land on the continent but their people eat worse than mine. The nobles take everything here, but fortunately the nobles don’t like to fight their own battles so I can always find steady work here. Half-Elves In my observation, no one is more enthusiastic about killing dark elves than one who carries their blood. Goblins: As long as they stay in their hidey-holes, I will leave them at peace, but if they so much as look at my food or coins, I’ll take their heads. Kahdisteria: The dark elves rarely bothered us, but every time they did it was a great tragedy. This is why we eventually had to join the Confederacy despite the limited aid they provide us. Dabeshi: A scourge on our lands to be sure. Our allies say we don’t contribute but we kill far more of these brutes than all the others, not counting the Maresh. Uskala: Why did King Drosst build a base north of us? Why do the rest of our allies pretend like this is no big deal? Ice Biters: There are too many sightings by too many people to deny that East Colassia is no longer free of orcs. Yet again, the rest of the Confederacy heeds us not. Yeti: Perhaps if the Confederacy forsakes us, the Yetis may prove worthier allies. It is sad that we have more common cause with these furry monsters than our fellow humans.
Marginalland’s greatest resource is their vast forests which fuels Marginalland’s most important industry: ship building. They are the only place where the Confederacy can reliable get tall timbers capable for tall masts. They also export salt.
Given the lack of water for irrigation, Marginalland is very susceptable to unexpected droughts. Marginalland is ruled by a hereditary king with hereditary counts serving as vassals. So far the kings have generally been harsh but fair managers of the royal funds. During plentiful years the king charges heavy taxes and builds up a sizeable treasury. During drought years, the king opens up the royal coffers to import food from foreign nations that the king then distributes to his subjects. This system worked out great except that one time when dark elf raiders managed to loot the treasury.