Palace of Lords
Situated on the central island of Loch Mesner, the Palace of Lords serves as the heart of Troth's politics and commerce.
Purpose / Function
When it served merely as a military fort, it was mostly used as an outpost for policing trade around Loch Mesner and the connecting rivers. Following the Northern Secession, it serves as the governmental center of Sonheim and meeting place of the ruling lords of Troth. In present day and with the help of advancements made by the Artificer's Guild, the Palace acts as source of navigation and policing for watercrafts sailing in the Loch.
As it's purpose shifted from military to governing, the interior was renovated to better accommodate the regular usage by nobility. While the local garrison still had offices in the Palace as an administrative headquarters, the barracks and training grounds once housed within the fort were moved to a new facility on the main shores of the Loch. In the late 1400s, in response to increases in boating traffic in and out of the Loch, a new tower was constructed with equipment developed by the Artificer's Guild to communicate and direct crafts sailing around the Loch.
The base structure of the original fort is a pragmatic stone and mortar construction reaching three stories high with an interior courtyard and ramparts atop exterior walls. The entrance halls located on the first floor are decorated with hardwood paneling with exposed beaming along the vaulted ceiling. Flags hang from the rafter bearing the icons of the five noble families of Troth. Beyond the entry ways and well out of site from most visitors, most of the rest of the floor is used for utilitarian purposes such as cooking, storage, and housing staff. The second floor is used for administration, housing offices and conference rooms used in the course of governing the region. The third floor holds a series of apartments both for the ruling family presiding over Sonheim as well as visiting dignitaries. Built into the exterior of the fort is a four story tower, at the top of which is a system of shuddered lamps used to communicate with watercrafts below via semaphore. Located towards the back of the Palace is a small series of docks and boathouses used securing crafts docking at the island.
Outside of the docks, the only way to enter the Palace is via one of the three bridges that connect it to the shores of Loch Mesner and through the iron gates thereon. A small garrison of guards are housed and armed on the premises, acting as the Palace's main security force. It is also long rumored of secret passages and escape routes being built into the Palace in the event of a siege, though none have ever been able to prove the existence of such.
The Palace was originally a military fort located on Loch Mesner used as a meeting place for the nobles of what was then the Northern region of Calios in the lead up to the Northern Secession. As the fort and the surrounding land became the de facto heart of the new country, the fort was converted into a house of governance. In present day, what was once a mere military outpost has transformed into the seat of power for both the immediate region as well as Troth as a whole.