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POPULATION: 600K   RULER: Prausecci Unta, Duchess of Andarco   CAPITAL: Arieyes   CITIES: N/A   TOWNS: Chici, Mercon   VILLAGES: Deight, Novagemily, Elliked, (Navirdi: Wedsoren, Auvn)   Andarco - once the Kingdom of Andarc - was absorbed as a Drakoyan territory around 1032, during the first expansion of the Middle Empire. Unlike most of the Empire's territories, which were conquered, Andarco joined willingly, and its people maintain a deep sense of independence and pride because of it. Two dominant ethnic groups dwell in the region: the seafaring Baskim and the landborne Gradore. Arlokian culture left an added imprint on the area from the time of Eannelk Occupation roughly 7 centuries ago, and trace elements of it remain to this day.   The Duchy shares a border with the nation of Qa, and much of its conservative religious character with this western neighbour. Andarco's populace are strict adherents of the Congregation of the Ascended and tend to live lives of quiet faith. The ruling Duchess is an exemplary figure who inspires through grace and good works. Her family crest of three shells on a red ground, along with its motto "In waters deep", is often reflected in the design of devotional buildings.   This same red ground from the crest symbolizes the Duchess and her people being of one blood, and also the brilliant red sands of Andarco's beaches. The sand is used to make a special glass used most often in stained glass windows, called Andarco Glass, and is a substantial source of regional wealth. Such a preponderance of mages from the Column of Haldorm seem to hail from areas near the sands that the latter have been implicated in the arisal of the Gift, though no connection has yet been proven.   Fishing is one of Andarco's strongest industries, and no ship sailing in Lake Qadreas near the village of Elliked may miss Tharul Odur, a famous lighthouse of the old world whose fires remain alight. Along more fanciful nautical lines, sailor's tales abound of mermaids in the waters of Dhimouri Cove to the north.
Above: Crest of House Unta
Andarco glass

Cover image: Red Sand Beach by Matt McGee


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