Isles of Refuge

Out of all the places in the world that I have seen in my travels never have I seen a place that lacks order and decency. For this place doesn't seem to want any of it and live in an age of barbarism and depravity. - Legate Horatio Bernan
Isles of Refuge

Geography

With the many islands that make up, Isles can be difficult to figure out which island one is trying to find. Especially when with the tropical environment of dense jungles that make it difficult to identify the area. Due to this problem, a simpler solution was created in the long run by having the island groups divided into different sets of isles based on geography, politics, and hazards that are located in them.  

The Isles

 
Savage Isles: A unforgiving place to walk in as the law of the jungle rules here with only a few places that are deemed safe to settle in. But it is by far one of the more exotic places to explore due to the unique wildlife. Along with ancient ruins of Eluku kingdoms that are found there. With their Jungle Elf descendants living off the land and fighting over one another over the remains of their legacy and anyone who tries to steal from them.
 
Lawless Isles: Never has been a more disgusting place of violence and villainy where pirates, smugglers, and thieves rest from their days of the crime. There is no law but the ones created by them as they carve out territory to continue their illegal actions. When they are not killing each other though they are working with each other to better profit from their crimes.
 
Forsaken Isles: It is a place that only is spoken in whispers and around the fire. It was said that long ago that a curse was placed upon it for reasons long forgotten. Whatever the case may be only the foolish and mad ever go there now. With tales of monsters and foul dark magic that has enveloped it. You always know that you are close to it when an eerie fog and jagged rock covered in unholy symbols and wreaks of ships that dare enter it.
 
Divided Isles: War is commonplace as those who flee from it and have gain nothing put misfortune. They declare a stake on the land they land on and are fighting just to survive. Hundreds of groups live on these islands from refugees to mercenaries all trying to gain a life in this place. Peace is all put a dream as at any moment the balance of power can easily be changed creating power vacuums in its place.
 
Green Isles: The Green Isles are some of the more peaceful places of isles that exist in the region as communities have put aside their differences to protect their interests by forming alliances and beneficial trade from any foreign threats. Though they follow their own customs and traditions, along with refusing to form larger forms of government. Making their military forces nothing more than militia groups that are disorganized and under-equipped.
   
Adak Sula: The last true bastion of the Jungle Elves call home. They have managed to protect their homes from the Humans that have spread across the isles. With many tribes uniting under their new kingdom known as Tel Shidar. They are hostile to uninvited guests and often isolate themselves from the rest of the isles.
 
Aleste Island: The largest Island in all the isles and one of the most mysterious due to the ruins that are found across it. With the Great Pillars being the largest of them. Many seeking treasures often go there due to the ruins often being unexplored, mostly due to the wildlife and the ancient traps and magics that were left behind to punish those who trespass.
 
Duo Islands: Two islands isolated from the rest isles that at as a neutral zone to all of the denizens of Isles. They are places of trade and information. Along with many other nations having a foothold in the Isles to ensure that their assets are protected.
 
Fire Rock Island: Everyone knows to stay clear of this place at all times due to the massive volcano known as the Burning Mountain that is on it. It forever spews a cloud of ash and once in a while, the very earth shakes when it stirs.
 

Places of Interest

Fort Aldan: A fort built by the Vatian Empire use to defend their trade routes and act as a deterrent to scare of anyone foolish enough to attack them.
 
The Pillars: Massive structures around the island of Alestes. The origins of their purpose and who built them have all been forgotten.
 
Shipwreck Harbor: A place where pirates and other criminals come to rest and conspire with one another. Only those who are bold enough to tread there can survive as death happen quite easily there.
 
The Burning Mountain: A volcano of an epic size that forever continues to spew lava and block out the sky with ash as far as the eye can see.
 
Arga Nuzuk: A great temple found in Adak Sula and is said to be one of the last great structures of the Eluka kingdoms to commune with their gods.
 
Heldorn: The only city in all the isles, it is a place of neutrality and trade where all can enter as long as they can behave themselves.
 
whi.jpg
White Coast: A large lengths of dunes that are built up across areas of the lawless isles that act as a means of travel and defense.
 
Bone Cliffs: One of the only place you can see clearly without going towards the Forsaken Isles, It is a series of cliffs that are said to have thousands of bones that are said to be covering it as if to be an offering or a message to stay away.
 
Ruins of Jucura: the largest ruins in the Savage Isles and it is said to have been one of the capitals of the Eluku Kingdoms. It is said that treasures can still be found there as long as you can survive that is.
 
White Shore: A large port controlled by the Vatian Empire that is used as a place to dock most of its fleet in the region and to build more ships as well. It is heavily fortified and very rarely ever been attacked.

Localized Phenomena

Tropical Storms: The region itself has a common occurrence of tropical storms that often come through during certain times of the season. But these storms can be very violent and can destroy settlements if powerful enough. But in some cases Þrumandi reiði at time from the north to hit the isles.   Volcanic Eruption : Though it happens less often than it does than it usually does, the Burning Mountian despite spew lava often, is still considered inactive. The last time the mountain erupted it smoke covered most of the

Fauna & Flora

The jungles have never been fully explored so there is no telling what is actually in there and if you want to ask the jungle elves you might as well let put your head on a stick while you at it. The plant life is easier to study, but much is either poisonous or can eat you. The study of trees and flowers is a better option since their fruits and ingredients for medicine and potions can be taken from them. But you have to watch your step since you can often fall into a Pit Maw, a carnivorous plant that hides under the ground until prey comes along and uses its vine to drag them into the ground to eat. Then theirs the animal, which is mostly birds, too many birds if might ask. They mostly eat bugs and flower nectar. But with Deraki, you might not be your type of bird to sing you a song since their claws are poisonous and can kill you in a few hours. Then there are the rest of the killers on the jungle, several dozen types of poisonous reptiles, jungle cats the size of dogs that can tear you to pieces. Being in the water isn't safe either since you have the alligators and sharks and they are the small ones, the larger ones are in deeper parts of the sea. Those are the real monster that can swallow galleons whole and will even attack you on land at times.

Natural Resources

The fruit is easy to come by with it often being found on trees and if you want you can eat whatever animal you want since there are so many, you just have to make sure they don't get you first. As for other resources, it's hard to say because of the terrain. A mine is difficult to keep open when your workers get eaten or die from the disease. Many people think that there are large amounts of gold for some reason, it could be possible but for now, it's nothing more than a story told by madmen.

History

A Brief History

  The Isles of Refuge is a place that only the desperate and criminals seem to be attracted to it. The isles were original inhabited by Elves that fled Kineth during the Beastmen invasion of the western lands. These Elves would later become Jungle Elves later on and inhabit most of the islands. Then Humans would soon arrive over different lengths of time, with those of the city-states coming first to find new lands to colonizes. Then refugees from the western lands would later arrive in the regions all of which would be from different peoples over the centuries.   It soon became a beacon to other less fortunate across the lands of men believing that better life would await them there. Most of them were driven from their homes by war along with criminals who would come along as well with many of them becoming smugglers and pirates to adapt to their new surroundings making the isles their bases of operations for centuries. Allowing so many different parties to so close together caused them to wage war on one another over the islands and resources. As time passed these islands would become chaotic lands that no one had control over and they prefer it that way. No one has ever tried to conquer the isles, not even the Vatian Empire, since they are more of a hassle to keep in check with and does not have that many valuable resources of strategic value either. It's nothing more than are war-torn region filled with pirates, exiled peoples, and savage tribes now. But it's also a hard life at that as well if the plants and wildlife don't kill you first.  

Arasha Lucarqa

  Arasha Lucarqa or the "Great Cleansing" was a crusade committed by the Jungle Elves to reclaim the isles from the Humans that had invaded their lands centuries ago and had led them to the brink of extinction. This was all started by a priest that went by the name of the Prophet of Reckoning as he claimed he would lead the people to a promised land where they would be safe from those who sought to kill them all. But the catch was they had to kill as many Humans as possible to achieve this paradise. Many believed him and would go on a warpath across the entire archipelago kill everyone they got their hands on. This massive army of Jungle Elves would be known as the Feta Ru or " True Blooded" as they killed many with their knowledge of the environment and their sheer number to overwhelm the smaller settlement. But rather the leading all-out war to kill every Human possible despite being outnumbered in great numbers they decided to just wipe out apart if the isles to claim themselves. The isles that would be targeted would be the Isles of Ruin as they were the least populated out of all of them. It is uncertain how many people were killed during the time of the Arasha Lucarqa, but it was believed that tens of thousands were killed with the Isles of Ruin being Human free and remained Adak Sula, the " Sacred Lands" where the Jungle Elves have made a home for themselves away from persecution and death. No one has bothered them since then and both sides decided to stay clear of one another lands to maintain the peace.  

Isle Campaign

  Only one attempt was ever made to conquer the isles under one banner and it would be carried out by the Vatian Empire over two centuries ago. It was lead by Legate Horatio Bernan in an attempt to control trade in the region rather than and rid the region of piracy that harassed imperial ships in the area. At first, the campaign was going quite smoothly as they occupied the Duo Islands and a few of the out islands in the region. Resistance was not all that strong as the natives were disorganized and divided and stood no chance against the Imperial Legions and the Imperial Navy. But as soon as enter deeper into the isles resistance increased and the environment began to take its toll on them. The Legionaries of the empire had little training when dealing with jungle terrain as they spent most of their time in the Western Lands causing exhaustion from the heat and outbreaks of disease claiming many despite having well equipped medical staff with them. Wildlife was also a concern as it often at some of the men along with their travel.   The locals were also causing quite the hassle, as well as their numbers, were never-ending and they knew the terrain better than anyone else and later a coalition would be formed to the coalition to drive the imperial forces out. The Human natives were easier to handle, the Jungle Elves on the other hand were something else entirely. The empire had never had conflicts with Elves since the failed Dageth campaign six hundred years ago and despite them not be equipped to face them, their speed and ferocity was some that Legionaries had difficulty with despite their training. The navy did not fare any better as the pirates in the region use the seas and their numbers to their advantage to sink many imperial ships to get them out of their water. Horatio himself would also meet a grizzly fate as he was eaten by a giant snake and with his death, his remaining forces fled back to the Duo islands and fortified themselves there. Abandoning all other territories they had captured to save themselves. Though a large force was created to drive out the imperial entirely, the imperial were dug too deep to be fully rid them from the region and locals gave up and went home. The Duo Islands and a few other islands were the only territories that were conquered after a six-year-long campaign and thousands were killed on both sides. The empire seeing the trouble of maintaining this region cut its losses and just made a foothold for themselves. Later creating the city of Heldorn, fort Alden and White shore to solidify their claim to these areas and creating trade within the region. The empire nor any other nation would attempt to conquer the isles as they were considered too difficult to actually control and occupy due to the many elements that came with the region.

Tourism

There are only a few people that decide to come to this place, merchants, treasure hunters, and explorers. Merchants often stick to the more civilized areas of the isles seeking exotic goods to buy and bring back home. As for treasure hunters and explorers, they often go and explore the more dangerous areas of the isles in search of fame and riches.

Maps

  • Isles of Refuge
Alternative Name(s)
Isles of the Elves, The Pirate Isles, Teka Munda
Type
Archipelago
Contested By
Inhabiting Species
Related Materials

Endless Conflict

  No matter if peace is achieved in certain areas of the isles, there is fighting somewhere by someone for some reason to gain power or to simply survive. It is not uncommon to find yourself in a territorial dispute or a battle even if you had no part in it.  

Crowed Together

  There is a total of six hundred groups that exist in all the isles and there is not enough for everyone to go all around making it all the more reason to kill each other for your belongings.    

Life as Human

 
Why have the gods have punished us by making us live in a shit hole like this. - Drunken Pirate
  To be a Human here is to be nothing more than survival as thousands of Humans are crowded into the most habitable areas. This means a shortage of resources and space meaning you are trying to be honest and work to make a living here or your a criminal kill and steal which most of them do. There is no law here and the only law is the one you make up. Along with actually dealing with nations with laws that have footholds in the region and will run you through if you cross them.  

Life as an Elf

These lands belong to us and blood willed spilled to keep it that way! - Hostile Elf
  The Jungle Elves have lost much since the arrivals of Humans, their lands taken and their people slaughter they are trying to retain their way of life and their civilization, well what left of it. They are always fighting to protect their land and trust very few outsiders. They often try to rebuild with what they have and will often march to war in a vain attempt to with back land.  

Life as an Half Elf

 
I really don’t understand why any of us alive if everyone hates us? - Depressed Half Elf
  Half-Elves are the product of a forbidden relationship between Humans and Elves. Neither side accepts them and just tolerates them. They are often allowed to live within both races but they are often ridiculed for their birth. This is why some of them decided to create their own settlements just for themselves. They often have to do whatever they need to survive as very few ever treat them with respect.  

Foreigner’s Perspective

  Most people often away from the Isles as it is a place of conflict and chaos. But the region is valued in trade and certain resources that have value to them. So outpost and footholds are made to allow them access. They often just stay away from the natives to be allowed to go about their business. But will often face them due to old grudges that force refugees to come here.  

Magic Unchecked

  Unlike most other places in the world, magic casters have more freedom in the isles due to their circumstances, making them powerful and dangerous without anyone trying the stop them. Leading to an increase of dark magic users to have control of certain areas and abusing their powers for their own gain.  

Wealth of an Old World

  The ruins of the Isles have value as they often predate most human civilizations which could give scientific and cultural benefits to those seeking them. But are often plundered for its riches and other secrets. Causing conflict with the native Elves in the process. Making conflict more likely to happen if anyone should try to enter one of these places without permission.  

Most Wanted Criminals

Many Criminals have managed to make a living in the isles, but there are always those that stand out from the rest that everyone just wants to see a rope around their neck. Though it is impossible to actually try to capture or kill them here as it is considered finding a needle in a pile of needles, the metaphor meaning everyone around them are criminals that would most likely just kill you slowly after robbing you if given the chance. But this does not phase those who serve the laws and try to catch them, these "Renegade" Lawmen often go out of their way to be transferred to the isles to find the criminals that escaped their clutches to find them. Of course, this does not mean that most of them are not untouchable by the law, some nations that have a hold in the isles often have bounties on their heads, and even navy forces on the lookout for them as well. Considering this is a place where everyone is desperately trying to survive there is no shortage of people try to collect the bounties themselves to get paid a large fortune. But it might as well be a fool's gambit as these criminals are still alive for a reason as both cunning and vicious to stay that way. Making it more likely for most of the fools to die trying to find them and the over half being killed by them. It is considered pure luck or skill for anyone to capture or kill these villains as sooner or later their luck will eventually run out for them like everyone else.  

Current Most Wanted

  Arvin Tideborn : Fleet captian of the Sea Kings and wanted for piracy by the Vatian Empire   Lorenzo Eleres : Infamous wizard wanted for the destruction of the city of Erutan by the Principalities of Ora.   Ju Sang Yu: Leader of the Kerto Jubi and wanted for treason by the Shungetsu Empire   Akebu Orege: Wanted for the kidnapping of Azar Ulmath Juthet, daughter of Vazir Hezu Keols Juthet by the City-state of Akbar.   Hilga Moren: Elusive rebel wanted for the muder of Imperial Govenor, Aesop Larus by the Vatian Empire

Comments

Please Login in order to comment!
Master Redclaw123
Elias Redclaw
20 Mar, 2020 15:53

Oh my. Pirates and jungle elves and humans all fighting against each other over a group of islands with ancient ruins and stuff like that? I am in love with it! I really love how chaotic this place is and that makes it very different from the other entries I have read so far. I’ll go over what I liked about this article before giving some feedback :). I know you are on a word count limit like me so I’ll try my best to keep the feedback effective XD   So firstly, I just have to applaud the theme for this article. I really love the lawless condition of this island and I think it could be made a bit better though by using some quotes and images. I always believe that quotes liven up an article a lot.   Secondly, I also love the air of mystery about this island chain! The ruins of the Eluku Kingdom do sound ominous and I’d personally love to be a researcher ( with enough security definitely!) and explore all the hidden artifacts of this civilisation!   Now coming onto the feedback part. I have a few questions first related to the content of the article.   1) Have there been any attempts by the Vatian empire or others to research these ancient ruins? If so, what have they found out?   2) Have the jungle elves ever tried to expand their territory again to include the entire island group?   3) Are there any notable individuals from these islands? Any Infamous pirates or people like them?   Now onto the formatting part! Now this is one part where I’ll be extremely personal and expressing what I want to see. If they go against your writing style, feel free to discard them!   1) I would love it if the article had a proper vignette, coupled with an image , quote and a music video because I really love those three to capture the attention of the readers   2) Quotes from the islands inhabitants or just people talking about the island would be a great way to liven this article!   3) I know it maybe hard ( I personally witness this problem a lot) but I think a bit more usage of artworks would be amazing too. If there are too many stuff to describe using artworks, then you can use one image for two similar island groups ( such as the savage and lawless isles) for describing them since I think they are pretty similar.   4) Some stuff in the sidebar would be amazing to read too! Stuff such as the daily life of islanders and such would be amazing to read.   In conclusion, I can say that this article is amazing but really needs a bit more polishing. I apologise if my feedback was bland or bad but I hope it helped a bit at least! Congratulations and keep up the amazing worldbuilding! :D

20 Mar, 2020 16:39

You have some of nicest things that anyone has ever told me. I understand what your going at, I have been searching for so many photos to match the locations, but I have to find the artist’s pages to credit their work which can be hard since not every leaves a link to them so it take longer then some. Along with finding the right video and making quotes I might as well be solving a physics equation as well. So it’s going to takes some time. So I just going to come back to it later when I finished on some other work. Thanks again and good luck in your world building too, I hope to have more viewers just like you in the future.

May you forever find your way on the journey you set out on and make yourself greater.
The Sagas world cover
8 Apr, 2020 23:11

You can get a lot more natural looking islands in Inkarnate if you choose the rugged outline (or what ever it's called again lol!) It makes small variations to the outline so it doesn't look so sharp. I don't think it's a payed feature but sorry if it is xD

9 Apr, 2020 02:24

Happy now:]

May you forever find your way on the journey you set out on and make yourself greater.
The Sagas world cover