HAAKUHL, TOMB OF Final resting place of the noted Haakuhl family, who were once a powerful influence in Vetoojah. Having provided much of the wealth required for the town’s infrastructure, and for the northern trade route crossing The Baked Plains, the entire family was afflicted by suspicious misfortune over several years. Sightings of a ghostly male figure, dressed in a fashion said to be reminiscent of the late Johahn Haakuhl, began to be reported nearly twenty years after his demise, occurring shortly after the sudden death of the youngest son – the last surviving family member. The manifestation keeps silent vigil of the family tomb, its cloak formed of fog tendrils, and the body and face are said to be of a limitless blackness.
HAAQMOAH The massive Haaqmoah (pronounced Hark-more) are terrible flightless birds living only in forested regions. Although herbivores, these giants are feared by humans and other creatures due to regular bouts of aggressive behaviour, where they use their powerful legs and talons, and beak thrusts, to attack with dire intent. One of the island’s few original inhabitants, the Haaqmoah had no natural predators prior to human arrival, hence their evolutionary pathway discarded upper arm-bones. Their enormous beak is scissor-like in its action, and is able to efficiently clip large quantities of leaves and twigs. The tallest examples stand at an amazing 9-10 feet in height with their neck extended upwards, and they regularly weigh 2.5-3 times the average weight of an adult human.
HADRAUG When severe mist and fog descends upon those on the water, regular seafarers begin to fear the ungodly presence of the murderous sea spirit Hadraug. Materialising from within thick fog, it appears as a spectral humanoid, low flying and rapid, wrapped in a tattered, flowing cloak. Blood-red eyes glow from inside its skinless skull, and long, bony fingers featuring sharp, elongated fingernails reach out with an icy touch that instantly chills the soul. Wailing constantly in a guttural voice, this savage is apparently able to encourage and manipulate the surrounding fog to assist it, and will attack without respite unless shelter is sought or atmospheric conditions favourably change.
HAHMLON Master weaponsmith operating a small store on Kahdullan Road, Balquis. A tall man with a clipped white beard, Hahmlon’s one- and two-handed bladed weapons display exceptional workmanship and many fine details. Greatly respected for his talent to both make and wield his beautiful swords, Hahmlon believes in the rule of authority and seeks respect from those he meets, offering civil hospitality to all. Abandoned by his parents when still a child, he soon found solace in the art of war, finding success with determination and bravery.
HAUGHSTED, ALLENDRA & GHAVIT Agriculturalists living on land located west of Ustahm. Once provided helpful advice and assistance to a neighbour – a luckless woodworker – who upon deciding to travel a considerable distance, soon abandoned his home and embarked on a long journey to begin anew on the southern coast. The Haughsteds are an agreeable, honest couple, striving diligently to reap rewards from their daily toil.
HEAD ARBITER (BALQUIS) A powerful official responsible for overseeing all activities within Balquis, the Head Arbiter administers many responsibilities and enacts the city’s laws, which are strictly enforced by the city guards. His daughter Ehlaneprit (aka ‘Prit’), a modest woman given to rewarding honesty and thoughtfulness, acts as his personal assistant. It is a punishable offence to proceed inside the Offices of the Head Arbiter carrying weapons, so any such items worn or carried must be temporarily relinquished if you desire to conduct any business within.
HELHEARN A bustling port that never sleeps, Helhearn is the second largest settlement on Quahnarren’s western seaboard. Located beside the Bay of Innehki and Rahm Island, the town is a key component in the maritime trade route that extends around the coast. Helhearn’s hard-working people have a love for entertainment and performance, with this appreciation resulting in substantial and enthusiastic crowds. The Hammispohr Roundhouse and other venues stage many acts, and a large number of masked performers are featured in the annual sunrise parade celebrating the Invocation of Korrikin, where the sea spirit is asked to replenish the waters with abundant seafood.
HELM OF ENLIGHTENED DESTINY An ancient helm infused with the powerful protection and guidance of Likothi. Those who wear this stunning armour gain a greater awareness of their surrounding environment, helpfully avoiding dangerous situations, noticing hidden enemies or valuable items, and traversing the land with care and skill. Beautifully sculpted from precious metals blessed with fresh water, the helm reflects the natural world: elegant curves, fine details and a functional performance. Exceptionally light and comfortable, the hinged cheek-plates and curved noseguard enable clear vision whilst still providing plentiful protection. Etched runes on the rim pay respect to the earth mother, and the dramatic side wings are tipped with copper, adding movement and grace to the overall form.
HEZTAAL Substantial town situated west of Velkonnen Plains, linking the central cities of Gamleden and Suqern. Heztaal is a welcome overnight stopping point for weary travellers, featuring numerous taverns and guest houses, stables, tradespeople and other essential services. The area is noted for its fine aromatic honey, and production of a wide variety of useful beeswax products. The rocky landmark known as Fhorf Hill – regarded as a meeting place for lost spirits – stands above the plains to the south-east.
HIGH CRESCENT Non-religious order established by principled men and women following the teachings of the great Tahsanook-Lai. The High Crescent’s operational probity and fundamental principles allow it to intervene in the affairs of local administrative authorities only as a last resort, preferring to pursue beneficial activities such as civil programs and social initiatives that develop shared strategic improvement through the actions of many participants.
HIKKAEL Located south of the Uhnst Ridge, Hikkael is an unremarkable, aged town where time seems to have stood still. The surrounding land is steeply ridged and unsuitable for many crops, so a variety of animals are reared here, together with other industries not reliant on highly productive soil. Several men temporarily living and working in Hikkael were found guilty of abhorrent acts in recent times; all were swiftly hanged in sombre procedures. The true horror of these crimes is unknown, but tavern rumours tell of ceremonies involving shamanistic spirit talking, gross consumption, and the mutilation of immature bodies.
HIMUBASS A gifted, curious thinker and learned scholar, Himubass works at the Travalla Academy in Duquellah, where he follows his interest in the sciences of numbers, matter and energy. Having recently proposed the existence of many celestial bodies invisible to the naked eye, he now meticulously studies the night sky for answers regarding time and place.
HOQ A large, wealthy city wielding considerable influence over Quahnarren finance and governance, it is the home of many powerful and distinguished families, who seek to enhance their reputation, and welfare, whenever possible. Built on either side of the Shaarir River, Hoq’s narrow thoroughfares are busy with constant traffic, endless commerce and the spreading of questionable news and gossip; in the less salubrious sections of the city keen-eyed pickpockets and other rogues prey on the unsuspecting. The Cartographers’ Guild was formally established here many decades ago, and its impressive guildhall is found east of the city’s centre. Hoq is regarded as a place of endless opportunities, where you can amass a considerable fortune, or lose one unexpectedly.
HOUGHST One of Quahnarren’s most historic settlements, Houghst was built two years after the Guahns’ migration to the continent and the establishment of the now-flooded Arkronan. Devised as a small town supporting those working on surrounding farmland, eventually Houghst also suffered from the blight of unrestrained logging that resulted in unproductive soils and contributed to Arkronan’s decline. Although slightly expanded and with many new buildings replacing those from centuries ago, the town still retains much of its earlier character and original infrastructure, creating a sense of former times when the Quahneri were boldly exploring their new homeland.
HOWLING PINNACLES OF CERRIHDOR, THE Located 12 miles north-west of Valcere, near the small village of Cerrihdor, this gathering of unusual, rounded pinnacles has bemused and entertained visitors to the region for centuries. Situated within a band of low hills, the Howling Pinnacles are a collection of irregular obelisk-like rock columns heavily weathered by erosion. Most feature one or more holes or larger internal cavities that produce a range of uncanny whispers and moans in strong winds; local elders say that these are the voices of despairing incorporeal lost souls calling for release.
HRABBIS Blind, bedraggled beggar found sitting by the side of Southern Parade, outside the walls of Balquis, not far beyond the southern gate. A former traveller before his loss of vision, this skeletal man offers knowledge of every path rising up the northern side of the Morning Mountains.
HUSKAAN, DAENOHR & ORPHIT Sibling owners of the business Huskaan Brothers ~ Stonemasons, located on Silver Street, Balquis. The Huskaan brothers’ self-designed, imposing stone building exhibits the considerable expertise of these two craftsmen, showing the wide range of impressive stonecutting techniques required to create long lasting monuments of admirable quality. The eldest brother, Orphit, is a master mason of great renown across the region, and Daenohr, younger by seven years and therefore less experienced, will soon achieve the same due recognition.
HYLDAKKAR Large bipedal animals standing upright on muscular legs, featuring misshapen red snouts, curved horns, deadly clawed hands, and an acute sense of smell to compensate for limited eyesight. Hyldakkar are nightmarish creatures possessing wild and intemperate dispositions, unrelentingly exhibiting a reckless single-minded determination when threatened. They are surprisingly quick and agile for their overall size and weight, and are ferocious and determined fighters, prepared only to kill or be killed. Despised by humans, they are known as diabolical spawn from the bowels of the earth, and regarded as a significant feral menace. They are regularly hunted and slaughtered, ensuring that these hellish creatures do not increase their populations.
IKAARVUNTA Spiritual leader of the Yagyhen Monks; a ‘spirit talker’ who converses with gods, incorporeal entities and the deceased. Bald headed and strikingly tattooed, the Ikaarvunta is central to the Monks’ belief system, delivering wisdom and instruction to the group who accept such insight as divine directives. Thought to live for an extended period, these often silent men spend much of their time in prayer and worship, regularly performing sacred rituals in near nakedness within darkened caves.
INNEHKI, BAY OF Wide, sheltered bay on the central western coast, within which is located the bustling port town of Helhearn that forms part of an important maritime trade route. Sheltered by the large Rahm Island, the Bay of Innehki offers calm winds and low waves, with several channels of deep water providing easy access and trouble-free navigation. Rich in marine life both in and above the water, the picturesque bay is constantly visited by a great number of vessels, each busily loading and unloading their cargo at one of the many docks, wharves and piers.
ISERRE See: DAUGHTERS OF THE TRUE FLAME.
ISSAHTA Elderly shoemaker located on The Circuit, Balquis – operator of the oldest shoe store in the city. Long established in the industry, Issahta is considered a master practitioner, with unmatched skills, knowledge and working experience. His long-lasting, highly resistant leather boots are purposefully made for adventurers depending on sturdy footwear for their travels.
ITKORI, NAIYA A lifelong wanderer with an unknown birthplace, Naiya was regarded by those who received her aid as someone of upstanding moral character and fierce determination. In her early days she sought adventure without purpose, but after maturing and subsequently tiring of directionless journeying she found her true calling as a Corvaelen, helping those in need throughout Quahnarren. After years of outstanding service Naiya suffered a grievous wound in a mass ambush that would have stopped many others, however, she fought on with inhuman fortitude, defeating scores of assailants, before death finally called her name.
IXTIS Small coastal village located approximately 20 miles east of Danshok. Built within a wide, rocky amphitheatre overlooking the sea, Ixtis was once a pleasant settlement but is now cruelly ruled by Vuhgarran the Vulgar, a loathsome tyrant of questionable values and hygiene. The dictatorial control now imposed upon the people of Ixtis has bled all life from its residents, who are forced into slave labour and brutish acts against others under fear of terrible reprisals. Talk of an armed uprising has recently spread among those who wish to end Vuhgarran’s boorish leadership.
IYDARRIN Seafaring sun-bronzed raiders of the western and southern oceans. Fierce, determined fighters who sail in manoeuvrable ships equipped with plentiful weaponry, the Iydarrin attack on both land and sea whenever and wherever they choose. They believe that the spirit Korrikin delivers great fortune to brave souls dedicating their life to the sea, and claim ownership over all peoples and goods travelling via man-made vessels over their waters.
JAQMAH Small variety of black crow featuring a sturdy grey bill with red markings, plus vibrant red patches on the top of its head and the underside of the throat and neck. Found mainly within western coastal regions, a bright yellow iris highlights the Jaqmah’s dark pupils, and its keen eyes are said to ‘see and observe all’ – a belief directly related to the intelligence and cunning of these clever avians. The Jaqmah is regarded as a sacred citizen of the Seven Temples and many other protected historical sites.
JARRESEN Folkloric monster physically described as a wild animal fiendishly consumed by nightmarish spirits intent on the decimation of all living creatures. The parasitic presence within a Jarresen corrupts its carrier’s temperament, resulting in the desire to feed on others in a surge of diabolic bloodlust. The host exhibits extreme physical deformities as a consequence of this internal mutation, as grotesque lesions and boils, and repellent growths of abnormal proportions now devastate its body. With the parasite consuming from within, the host will soon perish in an excruciating death. As the Jarresen can appear in any animal form, they are regularly incorporated in fables conveying moral warnings from the gods, or utilised in dramatic performances as wild, violent aggressors.
JATHORN Knowledgeable, talkative resident of Ustahm now beyond middle age, who regularly frequents the Bahdum Inn on Koq Walk. A large man with a rugged appearance, bleached hair, and a long thin scar that extends from the bottom of his right ear across to near the edge of his mouth, Jathorn’s piercing gaze and sonorous voice add significant weight to the information he chooses to share. Some of those who know him well say that a criminal enraged by stories told about him inflicted the scar – of this matter Jathorn has nothing to tell.
JEGHUR Industrial port town located on the coast at the north-western end of the Bhoolgan Ranges. A large, sprawling settlement built around the wide mouth of the River Haarg, Jeghur is heavily polluted by its many industries, which endlessly inflict thick smog, hazardous waste and noxious odours upon its hard-working residents. Serious impropriety has recently spread throughout the town as a new underground source of high-grade copper ore has been located nearby. This valuable discovery has triggered an escalating wave of greed and theft as workers, investors and speculators arrive from afar to seek their fortune.
JHENTHRA, NAIIDI Experienced adventurer by land and sea, Naiidi has journeyed across and around much of Quahnarren, undertaking dangerous quests in places that few have ever visited. Now middle-aged and knowledgeable about many different aspects of this island nation, she has become a recognised scholar at the Institute of Wisdom in Moornehm, teaching young minds to respect the land and all of its intriguing flora and fauna. A believer in both tradition and progressive ideas, Naiidi shares her hard-fought wisdom with the authority of someone who has seen and overcome great challenges during a remarkable lifetime.
JHIBERUU Wading bird capable of travelling vast distances, the Jhiberuu is known as the Carrier of Knowledge, said to fly away with mankind’s troubles to then return with the beneficial wisdom of the ancients. Favouring grasslands or shallow wetlands, these tall, elegant birds are hook-billed with mainly black bodies, feature spectacular iridescent plumage on their upperparts, and have an orange mask around their eyes that extends up to an erect crest. Mystics, healers and other spiritual practitioners widely use the Jhiberuu as a symbol of enlightenment, and many of these believers will also reverentially drop to their knees in a display of respect whenever one passes overhead.
JIARMA, AIYANNA Dark-skinned woman from the north-western town of Sholthum, enslaved by human trader Juhliic Corrikaer, and forced to compete in the Pit of Redemption. A fierce and deadly fighter, Aiyanna was highly skilled in both short and long range combat, and fought with the righteous fury of someone determined to win her freedom. Tall, muscular and fleet of foot, her extended reach proved to be too difficult to overcome for all but the best opponents. Honoured with the enthusiastic crowd chant of ‘Ai-Ji’ when in battle, she returned home upon release, harbouring dark thoughts of retaliation against all those who participated in her capture and sale.
JUNCTION TRADER General store in Balquis, located on the sharply angled corner of Harness Road and Rohaq Street. The Junction Trader is a large, triangular wooden building with a rough façade now heavily weathered and begrimed by age. It features large black lettering in the upper section of the store’s frontage, boldly announcing ‘All equipment & supplies bought & sold. Best prices’. The owner, Ruhdan, buys and sells an impressive range of items, including: tools; textiles and garments; spices, grains and other dry foodstuffs; building materials; small weapons and leather armour; household wares, gifts and much more.
JURRINGOL Woody, forest-growing shrub found in moist locations throughout Quahnarren that receive only limited sunlight. Unremarkable in appearance, the plant is hardy once established in favourable conditions, and grows vigorously whenever rainfall is frequent and plentiful. The small leaves of the Jurringol are a key component of the medicinal brew Aahn, which is used by the Black Earth Wilderpeople to treat common mouth and throat ailments.
KACH-TALLAH, RUINS OF Mountaintop ruins located near the north-eastern town of Yeddam. Early inhabitants of Quahnarren, determinedly led by a wise spiritual elder named Kach-Tallah, erected this former settlement, which is now a sacred place of pilgrimage for the Black Earth Wilderpeople. They believe that Oderrad and Ukomme – two of their powerful spirit-gods – are able to meet at this elevated location during the September equinox. Here the gods converse with each other to finalise their plans for a forthcoming reckoning; true believers attend the site to demonstrate their humble observance.
KALOSH Tall, broad-shouldered ironmonger living and working in the small village of Kuhldin. Always helpful and good-humoured, Kalosh operates a fine shop abundantly stocked with weapons and armour (short and long swords, daggers and knives are his specialty), which is combined with a forge and stables at the rear. His professional reputation, practical knowledge and tolerant nature have resulted in a constant stream of customers seeking the finely-made products of his industrious toil, and to ask the ironmonger’s advice and opinion on all manner of important and trivial issues.
KAMBOHR, KANTU Legendary surveyor and rogue, who charted many miles of the south-eastern coastline during his reasonably short, yet very adventurous, lifetime. A larger-than-life raconteur, Kantu was a tireless explorer, storyteller and self-promoter who regularly contributed a substantial amount of coins to needy causes; established a fund that built several learning institutions; and volunteered his time to educate children, based on his many experiences. He died at sea during a severe storm triggered by The Southern Furies.
KEMPUHL STONE Mystical sources of everlasting energy that radiate heat during chilling temperatures. Said to be spiritual talismans possessing the power of the sun, fused by Rhast to assist his followers. Small enough to be held in the hand, and coloured a deep red-brown with many darker bands, only those who follow the volatile sun god can activate their life-giving warmth.
KHAMENKI Seven-eyed forest spirit worshipped by the Yagyhen monks. The enormous, spider-like Khamenki is a ravenous devourer of souls, fearsome in its wild hunger for such sustenance; believed only to choose those who do not possess ‘true faith’. The monks’ deep anxiety and respect for this spiritual consumer is woven into their teachings of the world, in which various otherworldly forms of hideous design and intention may deliver personal judgement. The Khamenki only feeds at night, so those of the order are rarely seen outside in the hours of darkness.
KHARDHUM Large, multi-industry town in the central south, known locally as ‘the gateway’ to all parts of the continent due to its strategic position at the meeting point of six important trade routes. Khardhum is viewed as a progressive settlement, where advancement through innovative ideas and new processes is widely encouraged and supported. A large marble and limestone mine is located several miles north-east of the town, from where great quantities of these rocks are extracted for use in various building and sculpture projects throughout Quahnarren. The luminous white marble blocks of the Shrine of Rhast in Balquis were sourced from this productive mine.
KHOORVERE RIVER Lengthy waterway originating in the northern highlands surrounding Arrkael, the Khoorvere flows through the lawless settlement of Bruhgog, then divides into two, widens and rejoins before reaching the coast east of Skahren. The environment found on either side of the split river north of Bruhgog is spectacular, featuring sheer cliffs of striated rock, thick vegetation, many species of water birds and ephemeral wetlands. Much of this unique region still remains unexplored due to the extreme difficulty of traversing this complex land by foot.
KIST ISLANDS When the connecting land bridge joining the old world of the Guahns to the newly discovered Quahnarren once again sank beneath the ocean, the rocky Kist Islands remained above the waves, now separate from the continent. Named after an early settler with a geological interest, these three rugged islands reveal the uppermost sections of a range of submerged mountains. Together they take the name of the largest island (Kist, featuring an area of roughly 133 square miles), with the two other isles significantly smaller in both overall area and height. Colonies of seabirds and small mammals populate these windswept environments, with thick old-growth forest covering most of the lower land.
KNOOHDLAN, VASSA Owner of Knoohdlan’s Inn, Balquis, Vassa is an energetic and highly active member of the community despite his advanced years. He generously provides free meals to the needy, financially supports welfare programs for child health, and occasionally offers reduced pricing to travellers seeking temporary lodgings. A pleasant man with a weathered face and an inquisitive nature, Vassa knows nothing but hard work due to an upbringing on the land without a father and with six younger siblings.
KNOOHDLAN’S INN Popular inn located opposite the park on Garden Way, southern Balquis. An affordable, family owned and operated establishment offering generously large rooms of outstanding comfort, the original single-storey Knoohdlan’s Inn was erected in the earliest days of the settlement. Now extensively expanded to an impressive three-storey building, the inn is known for the friendliness of its staff, the panoramic views of the city available from its upper floors, and the quality of its food, which is locally sourced and always uses the freshest ingredients.
KOHPOC Legendary chimeric creature from age-old adventure stories; known as a harbinger of death. This mythic monster is derived from three source animals: the body of a very large Fahnden, the wings of an enormous Kookahna, and the serpentine head of a Forest Kannaga. The unwelcome arrival of this startling airborne messenger indicates the imminent termination of life, dispiriting all but the most resilient and heroic. Recorded as a portentous visitor appearing over the field of significant battles, they issue eerie cawing sounds that some witnesses describe as the final song of life.
KOLLOSJA, SAREAL Experienced adventurer and explorer, and the teller of many astonishing, barely believable tales. Born in the small eastern settlement of Saquinn, Sareal was born a wanderer, only ever at home when traversing the wilderness with what he could carry, happily living under the sun and the stars. Adept at tracking and hunting, applying logic to complex situations, and able to correctly identify natural foods and medicines, he has discovered many of Quahnarren’s secrets – only revealing a select few to interested audiences.
KOOKAHNA Solitary scavenging birds of prey predominantly living in remote mountainous regions, they feed on carrion detected by their strong eyesight and keen sense of smell. Found over undisturbed forests, grasslands, mountains and valleys, Kookahna soar at high altitudes before detecting a fresh animal carcass to feed on, or locating suitable live prey, such as fish, reptiles and various small mammals. Their plumage is generally a darkish orange-brown with black, and their featherless neck and distinctive bald head are a muted pink-grey, with a large blue-grey hooked beak featuring a pink tip. Adventurers regularly hear their long and plaintive ‘koo-KAH-na’ cry as they watchfully fly over the landscape, gliding effortlessly high above the Quahneri far below.
KORRIKIN Spirit of the sea. The Invocation of Korrikin is celebrated in Helhearn with an annual sunrise parade, whereby the townspeople ask for the waters that provide their major food source and support local industries to be replenished with plentiful seafood for the upcoming year.
KUHLBULLAR Enormous winged serpents found soaring purposefully above their mountaintop breeding grounds, watchfully patrolling the landscape for any threats. The Kuhlbullar features impressively wide black wings ending in short talons, and has mottled, drab olive leathery skin, which is used as an advantageous camouflage to conceal its location amongst the fractured, rocky landscape that it inhabits. Its key destructive weapon is a burning acidic solution, which is projected vigorously from its mouth over a wide area – a highly effective offensive tool against ground-based opponents not adequately protected.
KUHLDIN Peaceful village located not too far from The Skar, south-west of Ustahm above an underground aquifer. A small, watchful and protective community of farmers, fruit growers, herbalists and craftspeople, Kuhldin is generally quiet and untroubled; a place where travellers often stop to relax in the shade of the magnificent oak tree that stands at its western end. The respected ironmonger Kalosh operates a shop combined with a forge and stables – his valuable advice and opinion if often sought by the region’s residents.
KUTUHL Located on the banks of the Evighwand River, Kutuhl is one of Quahnarren’s least populated cities. Although an important port with plentiful infrastructure, productive land and fresh water, the city is generally unfavoured, likely due to the strong ocean winds. One of Kutuhl’s most famous residents was Rholann Bahdumas; an outspoken, overweight man who often sought to ridicule prominent people in confrontational public performances. Missing for nearly two years, bones identified as belonging to him, featuring teeth marks, were unearthed in a building collapse that became the subject of much conjecture. Wild rumour soon suggested that Rholann met a grisly death: roasted alive over an open fire before his ample flesh was greedily consumed, with the marrow then sucked from his bones.
LAKE OF LIUHN Situated south of Tulkka, this small lake will sometimes shimmer for several hours with a beautiful glow on still, moonlit nights. This spectacular natural phenomenon is triggered by an overabundance of blooming algae, yet a local legend suggests that it reveals the location of a hidden portal to a vibrant subterranean world, where luminous, mystical beings frolic in their underground kingdom.
LEAHSLEE Songwriter and singer, Leahslee is a balladeer or wandering minstrel of the south-western region. An agreeable man, he is well liked and favourably received for his gifted voice, beautiful and enchanting melodies, and exuberantly told tales of manifest improbabilities. As befits a musician, his hair is long and wildly tousled, and he has a look in his eyes of someone regularly elsewhere, yearning for an unrealised destiny. To locals in his place of birth he is known as The Dreamer – an appropriate moniker for a free soul who performs with honest spirit and obvious passion.
LENAHR Attendant at the Haanstrom Inn, Ustahm. Son of Malthurn,Lenahr is a polite, conscientious young man, eager to improve his and his family’s financial situation. Achieving this long-held desire will subsequently enable his parents to move into more agreeable lodgings, and himself to seek adventure on the road.
LETAQ Known as the City of a Thousand Spices, Letaq is Quahnarren’s most important trading market and distribution hub – for transport by either road or sea – for the continent’s substantial spice industry. The commercial heart of many trade routes, the city’s prosperity is built on the value of its various imported and exported goods, and the many cultural influences it accepts and openly encourages. Letaq’s bustling port is a hive of activity, and the city’s broad and busy streets equally demonstrate the profitability of this trading centre – a place of diverse influences, sights and fragrances. The experienced and respected Warden Vharssen is a townswoman of Letaq, maintaining a modest residence in the city’s affluent southern quarter.
LHORUX Hefty, armoured wild animal with an aggressive disposition and the ability to inflict mortal injuries. The Lhorux population across Quahnarren is not large but small groups can be found throughout all non-mountainous regions feeding on various types of plant matter. Brutish when provoked, and surprisingly quick, their massive, thick-skinned 2,700 lb bodies can easily crush any opponent in close proximity, and the unique vertical protrusion above their eyes can slice and tear through skin with little resistance. Adventurers encountering a Lhorux are advised to quietly distance themselves immediately, as only professional hunters possess the knowledge and equipment required to subdue such dangerous beasts.
LIGHTBOWL Simple yet elegant ceramic candleholder typically used as decorative earthenware to safely hold a cylinder of wax. The popular design featuring seven small windows and a thicker base has been widely used for many generations, with the upper section of the small, upright bowl usually finished in a lighter tone.
LIKOTHI The protector of Quahnarren and of all living things upon it, Likothi is the revered female partner of the intimidating sun god Rhast. Also known as the ‘earth mother,’ the spectacular natural beauty of the land, and resilience of its flora and fauna is said to be derived from her personal qualities. Observant, dignified and nurturing, she maintains the delicate balance between mankind and nature with careful governance, and may offer hope or direct intervention to her followers in times of need. Most shrines to Likothi are painted in a striking shade of red, with the slim shrine located in Fountain Square, Balquis, also featuring many natural patterns on its walls, and an eight foot stone effigy placed at the centre of its sunken interior.
LINNHA Wife of gemstone miner and jewellery manufacturer Jaqsun, Linnha sells her husband’s highly desirable creations at Hahpen Supplies in Balquis. A chubby and enthusiastic saleswoman, she offers talismanic ‘Living Stone’ black opals to interested customers.
LIUST Coastal town in south-eastern Quahnarren, now transformed from a small seafaring population to a bustling ‘city’ of high commerce, employment and influence. Built on either side of the Ballur River, a steep slope separates the walled, upper township from the old town. The citizens of Liust look to the future, and currently also keep an eye on the neighbouring settlement of Fexfohr and the nearby Bhoramere Forest, where a large wolf-like Jarresen, known as ‘The Bhoramere Beast’ has devoured a great number of livestock, and reportedly mauled two local children. The Windless Bay features the magnificent 14-foot bronze monument of legendary surveyor and rogue Kantu Kambohr on its eastern promontory.
LIVING STONE Remarkable black opals favoured by adventurers that regularly shift in colour, showing red in dangerous situations and green when all is safe. Often carried as talismanic jewellery to warn of danger, or to indicate an advisable choice when important decisions are to be made.
LOST SPIRIT, THE Small, uninviting tavern located on The Hollow, Ustahm, seemingly in need of investment to improve its shabby and forlorn appearance. Owned and operated by Kaleen and Duclorn – a young couple recently arrived from the city of Moornehm – this establishment is only of a basic design, featuring unwashed floorboards begrimed with dirt, alcohol and other fluids, and rudimentary fittings of inconsistent quality and manufacture. Although patronage is often poor, those who do decide to pass through its doors often engage in uninhibited insults, threats and ugly, drunken brawls.
LUCIANN Respected spicemonger and owner of the store Zanjibahr Spices, Balquis. Luciann is a dapper gentleman of a friendly and personable demeanour, with receding hair and a short dark beard, usually wearing colourful clothing and sparkling jewellery. A keen conversationalist, he enjoys good company, the sharing of information, and the telling of stories – especially those concerning his contribution to the spice profession, and of his early days in the city. His special spiced tea is both delightfully delicious and rejuvenating.
LUTHORN, HAAHN Parasitic aristocrat who corrupts others for outrageous personal benefit. Gifted the beautiful daughter of a rich and ruthless merchant, Luthorn holds her captive within his expansive residence as if she were a caged bird. A tireless schemer continuously plotting to ensure that he remains as a foremost partner in all local machinations.
MAHLOKKE Partially empty town located just beyond the south-eastern edge of The Baked Plains. A plague of voracious, disease carrying rats recently descended upon Mahlokke, bringing misery and death, and destroying the region’s only sizeable grain harvest for several years. As a consequence of such misfortune, many residents abandoned their homes and fled south to the city of Gamleden. The Caarnithia movement flourishes in Mahlokke and surrounding settlements; locations where rare relics from ancient days are plentiful upon and under the surface.
MAHNSUR, TUN Rebellious and sometimes wayward, the headstrong Tun Mahnsur is arguably the greatest warrior to have ever won their freedom from Juhliic Corrikaer’s barbaric Pit of Redemption. His short, thickset body, elevated intelligence and aggressive outlook provided him with the tools necessary to survive such intense competition and eventually earn his release from slavery. Now a free man taking on the many challenges of farming, Tun resides on the forested southern outskirts of Otahn, determinedly reshaping his large landholding to increase the land’s potential.
MAHRANST Larger than a village, yet much smaller than most other towns, Mahranst is a somewhat curious settlement on the mainland’s most easterly point. Creativity in all its forms is on display here: artists, musicians, stage performers, and craftspeople of wood, metal and fabric – expression and experimentation are alive and well in this enlightened community. The Ungahna Theatre is at the heart of most of these creative endeavours, offering a communal display, performance and indoor/outdoor market space for everyone to contribute to or patronise. Mahranst’s few streets are also pleasingly decorated with public art; their appearance, structure and colour respect local heritage, and hint at new ideas likely of future cultural importance.
MAKKHRA Unmatched colossal strength, and reckless, frenzied attacks are the characteristic features of the feared Makkhra. Likened to the Minotaur from Greek Mythology, these bull-like bipedal creatures possess impactful and muscular human-shaped bodies, and are very capable of brutish aggression and savage destruction. Their short prehensile trunk is used skilfully to wield additional weapons – notably their small, dual-bladed throwing axe – or to attack with directly in close combat. Extremely dexterous and adaptable, Makkhra are quick to recognise any environmental advantage, and are punishingly sudden with their offensive movements, repeatedly striking with weapons, hands, horns or trunk. They are also accomplished toolmakers and metalworkers, and their handmade armour and weapons are highly prized throughout Quahnarren.
MASTER ERRDUE Owner of the temporary exhibition stall Curiosities of the Dead, located in Market Corner, Ustahm. An animated, portly man, Master Errdue is a conscientious showman currently staging a fine exhibition of fantastical creatures within a large canvas tent. His enlightening display of curiosities must be seen to be believed, containing wonders from Quahnarren’s past: skulls and other bones, stone and wood implements, bizarre shells and skins, and enormous skeletal recreations almost beyond human comprehension. He also sells unusual jewellery, including a pendant that may prove to be more than just a simple memento.
MALTHURN Old man living in Ustahm; father of Lenahr. Malthurn has a weathered face, scraggly grey beard and long thinning hair, and has developed a taste for ale in recent years. Fit and able when not frequenting the local inn, he continues to work on the land despite his age, determined to provide for his family until death claims him.
MEHNDREN Owner of the supply store The Forest Nook, located not too far from The Skar in the small, peaceful village of Kuhldin. Mehndren is a chubby, generous man with a massive nose and abundant nasal hair. A supporter of the surrounding community, he regularly purchases a wide variety of local crafts, foodstuffs and other goods for his store, supporting those living and working within the region. Resourceful and successful in business, he is known to occasionally offer discounts to those he appreciates or is impressed by.
MEIHUAN, YANDIN Elderly, spectacled proprietor of Meihuan Jeweller, Balquis. A master jeweller capable of intricate detailing and inspired workmanship, Yandin designs and manufacturers original personal ornaments, and exclusively sells items featuring sunstones sourced from western Quahnarren. Often seen exploring the forested areas surrounding Balquis, he has a special interest in insects, and is officially credited with the identification of two new beetle species: the Golden Forest Beetle and the spectacular Red Moganna Beetle.
MEIHUAN JEWELLER Business owned by master jeweller Yandin Meihuan, located on Brass Lane, Balquis. Yandin creates and sells elegant rings, necklaces, bracelets, brooches, pendants, decorated pins, chains and other accessories. His jewellery is expertly crafted with gold, silver, glass and a variety of gemstones, and is widely desired by those who know of his store. His reputation continues to grow as greater wealth is acquired and spent in the populous city.
MIEAKANN See: DAUGHTERS OF THE TRUE FLAME.
MISS ALLIET An elderly forecaster of the future, Miss Alliet operates from a small, candle-lit stall located within Market Corner, Ustahm. Describing herself as a Master Fortune-teller capable of visions from beyond, the deeply wrinkled Miss Alliet also possesses small, cold hands and startling luminous eyes, and offers stone talismans to her customers, spiritually connecting them to the earth mother. Those who have sat for a reading with her later speak of the accuracy of her predictions, noting that she was somehow aware of information known only to themselves.
MOHCJA STRONGHOLD Impregnable mountain fortress mostly hidden from view by towering spires of rock. Built by northern troublemakers hundreds of years ago as an outpost marking the boundary of ‘their’ land, the Mohcja Stronghold now houses a militant, murderous group of ruthless men seeking to take greater riches from the lands beyond. Despite its state of disrepair this lofty stronghold remains an imposing barrier to overcome by force, as the steep and winding pathway to its sole entrance is a tiring climb of unseen danger and potential ambush.
MOORNEHM Growing city in the central east located beside the picturesque Lake Temunka, which is fed by the Kahfell River – a short tributary of The Skar. Built around three large public squares and a connected grid of broad thoroughfares, Moornehm has recently experienced an influx of new residents as seasonal fluctuations cause many in the region to seek the opportunities believed available in a large settlement. The city presents an appearance of order and methodical expansion, however, behind this respectable façade lies the disheartening truth, as wretched slums, significant homelessness, depravity, and unruly gangs of disillusioned citizens pose a frequent hazard to health and safety. Moornehm’s streets are no longer places to linger in for too long, and darkness is only a friend to those of undesirable intentions.
MORNING MOUNTAINS Named by the ancient wanderer Suhmai, the Morning Mountains are a substantial range of flat peaks located in the south-east of Quahnarren. Split by the Upper Evighwand (a lofty river that extends down to the coast at Kutuhl), its elevated and mostly forested land is sparsely populated by humankind; many creatures and troublesome spirits dwell here instead, seeking an existence without human interference. The Morning Mountains are an imposing, spectacular landmark visible across the region, covering approximately 680 square miles of rugged territory. Adventurers desiring an easy passage to locations beyond them are advised to follow a route along the surrounding roadways, as trails over the mountains are notoriously unsafe or often difficult, and local weather conditions will test any who traverse them unprepared.
MYTH OF THE MOONLESS SEA The fantastical ‘myth of the moonless sea’ began in Valcere, after reported incidents at sea involving a dark, many-limbed creature of gigantic proportions. This menacing behemoth is said to patrol the southern ocean, seeking to inflict terror on those passing overhead. Clouded nights appear to bring forth this lurking, unimagined horror; its rage at mankind’s unchecked progress causing it to froth and boil the water with urgent thrashings of its appendages, creating turbulent whirlpools that tear apart trapped vessels and send all on board to a watery grave.
NAHQURAH DRUMS Hemispherical percussion instrument constructed from baked clay with treated animal hide tautly stretched over the flat side. Nahqurah drums vary considerably in their overall shape, design and materials used, and are always played as a pair of different sizes, often with a connecting cord tying the two together. Most children are taught the techniques required to make the Nahqurah, and are encouraged to practice their performance skills for family gatherings and community events.
NAMMUZ, LYSSIAH Professional gambler with heightened natural insight, Lyssiah is an intelligent and successful player of the dice game Fours. Something of a rebel in her youth, she quickly sought profit and adventure on the road after repeated conflict with officials in her home town of Seraf. Deadly quick in both mind and body, and also skilled with weapons, she routinely conceals a slim throwing dagger in her left boot – several tricksters and bandits have felt the extreme sharpness of her blade, and the accompanying cruel sting of her uncouth tongue.
NARRAN RIVER Deep but narrow river located in south-western Quahnarren that runs parallel to the coastline for some distance before joining the Oppekha at the town of Aquiauah. The Narran is used heavily by commercial operators for the transportation of a wide variety of goods (foodstuffs, cattle, timber, etc.), and is also a popular route for water-based traffic utilising human-powered vessels of many different designs and sizes.
NATURAL ROOT, THE Long-established apothecary offering an array of natural medicines derived from plants, herbs, roots and particular animals famed for their beneficial properties. Located on Ember Street, Balquis, within a building constructed from the trunks of many trees, their remedies improve general health and vitality, boosting energy or preventing the effects of disease, infection or poisoning. The old, hunched owner of The Natural Root also has an interest in purchasing Bathouk horns, however, his prices are less generous than those offered by his competition.
NEHLINN Ancient, peaceful race of peoples from the forested region surrounding Caelen. Easily recognisable due to their youthful appearance, elongated ears and fair skin, the Nehlinn are friends of the forest, respectful of all plants and animals. Known to possess great knowledge and insight of the natural and spiritual worlds, only a remnant population survives today, quietly shunning contact with all others.
NIGHT VISION ELIXIR Medicinal potion that enhances human eyesight in dark circumstances. A single vial of the Night Vision Elixir will allow the liquid’s consumer to see effectively during gloom or total darkness, as if low-light conditions were reasonably well lit and the surrounding environment therefore suitably defined. The actual ingredients used to create this remarkable mixture are unknown, however, it is believed that a combination of protein enhancers are used to trigger increased retina sensitivity to light.
NORTHERN SCOURGE Aggressive horde of northerners, formed and led without mercy by the fearless Buhldaag. The Scourge have embarked on numerous destructive incursions – both large and small – in central and southern areas of eastern Quahnarren, seeking to take what they claim has been unjustly denied to them in their northern homelands. Their tactics are simple and direct: terrorise and loot at will, delivering deserved recompense to any that cannot match their strength of body and mind. The Northern Scourge suffered considerable losses in The Battle of Velkonnen Plains, where Buhldaag’s men were overwhelmed by the hostile reception prepared by local authorities.
NUKANNAH Wild perennial flowering shrub found in mountainous forests that produces an edible berry. Featuring seven soft lobes ranging in colour from a yellowish white to a dull orange, the fruit of the Nukannah is tart when eaten fresh but sweeter when over-ripe and their texture has turned creamy. These berries are uniquely red- and gold-striped (darker when ripe), made up of around 25-30 individual sections. Tasty and high in vitamins, Nukannah berries are a popular find for foragers, able to be consumed in many different foods and alcoholic drinks.
OATH OF ULNHOR Pledge made by Corvaelens, binding then to a lifelong commitment of truth and humility, and wholly dedicated to their responsibilities. Thullian Ulnhor was a man of many admirable qualities, who established the Corvaelen service to assist those in need of expert skills and personal integrity, especially when official assistance is unavailable or deemed to be inadequate. A Corvaelen corrupted by any form of impropriety faces immediate expulsion and eternal shame – as yet no individuals have strayed from the correct path.
ODERRAD Formidable deity of the Black Earth Wilderpeople. Spirit-god of the land and the sea, Oderrad is a stern white-bearded man of impressive size and advanced years, wise in the deceptive ways of mankind. He is an unrelenting traveller, constantly in motion as he tends to his otherworldly duties by imposing conditions and administering fortune or failure to those under his authority.
OHLUK, SALAADOR Cloak-wearing, self-important assistant to Warden Vharssen of the south-eastern region. Possessing a disagreeable temperament and greatly skilled with a blade, the sure-footed Salaador frequently wields an impressive broadsword to quickly settle disputes and forcibly apprehend those who disrespect his authority in performing official duties. Greedy and destructively egotistical, Salaador is a troubling character best avoided, whenever possible.
OHRRAN Major distribution and passenger hub on the south-west coast – the only city in this region for 88 miles. Impressively large in its size and design, and the scale of its unceasing commercial activities, Ohrran is a vital component of the trade route along the west and south coastlines, which carries all types of cargo vast distances by ocean vessels. Outcrops containing precious jade are found within the broken mountains located north-west of the city, where veins and pods are now exposed by many years of erosion. This tough stone is highly desirable and therefore of great value, and is fashioned into a range of bladed weapons, tools and impressive ornaments.
OHRRTHIX Evil, incorporeal presence that intrudes upon the dreaming state. These traumatic interlopers affect their victim’s thought patterns by incorporating fears of doom and death into a phantasmagorical storyline consisting of constant observation and pursuit. Ohrrthix is the ancient Quahneri name given to this unwelcome presence, meaning ‘the name of the nameless’. Experienced as a silent and unseen instigator, this creeping shadow in the mind cannot be forgotten or disregarded due to the unstoppable intensity of its menace.
OJUTT-TAGHLMA Deceased elder of Letaq; respected by many in the east for his harmonious manner and rich voice, and his comprehensive knowledge of the old days. Ojutt-Taghlma travelled widely throughout his long lifetime, only settling down within the last decade to compile written records of the past, and record ancient customs soon to be forgotten. Wise in the deceit and avarice of those who claimed to be ‘of the people’, he maintained a personal collection of incredible treasures – written and otherwise – now gifted to form the centrepiece of Letaq’s impressive Korrobahr Institute.
OORGNU Large, domesticated ruminant and sometimes beast of burden, the docile Oorgnu is a popular type of livestock raised for their meat, milk and hides. Strong and sure-footed male Oorgnu are often used for transporting heavy loads, ploughing fields, or to provide the necessary power to operate mechanical apparatus. Even-tempered and able to understand a range of audio commands, these capable animals provide various forms of labour to assist many different industries.
OPPEKHA RIVER Fast-flowing river located in south-western Quahnarren. Originating from the southern side of the Uhnst Ridge via several sources, and emptying into the sea south of the town of Aquiauah (where it meets the Narran), the Oppekha is the widest watercourse in the south-west of the continent. Much of the lower land found adjacent to the right bank is part of an extensive floodplain that supports rich ecosystems and many productive forms of agriculture.
ORRELAI Surrounded by dense forest, Orrelai is an unpretentious town of skilled makers and repairers; community-minded craftspeople with a simple belief in doing a job well. Unanticipated mystery surrounds the current whereabouts of the town’s middle-aged wheelwright, Asthull Udhuyen. Known to have travelled to Hoq three months ago for a short visit, his return is now long overdue, with no evidence yet discovered to determine his fate. Visitors to the Lucky Lamp Inn should look out for a man named Duemmin. A small-time hustler and full-time oddball, he may know something about cheap deals on questionable products, or be interested in passing on details – for a price – of the little known activities by some of the region’s most eminent people.
OTAHN Located between the Remmen Gulf and the Bay of Nolloc, the small seaside settlement of Otahn enjoys stunning ocean views and other natural beauty. Set at the north-western base of the steep hillside found on the blunt peninsula, its townspeople are quiet and unhurried, living off what the sea provides or from what they can grow on land. Many of Otahn’s older residents possess musical or poetic talent, and can often be heard sharing their art in public performances at local cultural events.
OYUKHAGA RIVER Slow-moving river located on the central western coastline, originating in low hills north-east of Aeseer. The Oyukhaga is part of a forested region that extends around the waterway for approximately 9 miles from the coast, with some sections almost inaccessible due to rolling hills, smaller streams and extremely dense vegetation. This verdant environment is the home of many small ferns, flowering plants and insects, and is also said to be the domain of the giant hominid Yahuii – a fearsome creature of many myths and much conjecture.
PACCOLO Striped, horned primate found in remote forests and wooded grasslands, the territorial Paccolo live in groups of up to seven individuals. Known for their wide range of vocalisations, the Paccolo is able to mimic an extensive list of creatures; a unique trait that provides protection from threats and disguises communication with remote members. Leaves, fruit, seeds and specific flower varieties form the majority of their food sources, however, they will often consume plant stalks, insects and arachnids when desired.Inquisitive and boisterous, Paccolo are known to harass adventurers, escalating their unruly behaviour to confuse and trap their target with an unending cacophony of distressing sounds and excited, threatening movement. Sticky seeds are an effective deterrent.
PAHRTAAN Talented young troubadour from Saquinn, gifted at playing the Bharboud. An animated musician, balladeer and storyteller, Pahrtaan is often found performing in Balquis and other eastern settlements, usually wearing a marvellous woolen jacket made by his mother. Having learnt to play the Bharboud and other instruments at a very early age, his considerable virtuosity entertains all who appreciate the musical arts.
PEACHBIRD Small, colourful birds found throughout Quahnarren. Known for their raucous, excited chattering, Peachbirds inhabit woodlands and forests where they noisily feed on fruit, pollen and nectar. Only 7” in length (including the short tail), the distinctive pinkish-yellow colouring of their plumage is enhanced by a bright yellow bill and a black cap over the forehead that extends around and beyond the eyes. Swift and highly manoeuvrable in flight, they also display peach-coloured underwing linings, and a slim, yellow underside on the tail.
PESHKKA Partially-sunken wreck located on a shallow reef a few miles off the coast of Qudel. The Peshkka was a frequent visitor to these northern waters, plying a profitable route between the cities of Skahren to Ohrran, servicing many settlements along the coast. Disabled after striking a series of undersea rocks due to errors in human navigation, the vessel now lists to its starboard side, its hull still securely captured by an unseen jagged rock lying below the surface. One crewman was lost overboard during the incident – his remains have never been discovered in the many years since the incident occurred.
PEYTAHR See: DAUGHTERS OF THE TRUE FLAME.
PILLAR OF SEVEN TRUTHS, THE Ancient monolithic pillar carved by Guahn artisans in the early decades after their mass migration. This towering seven-sided, 70-foot wooden monument stands at the top of a hill west of Yeddam, and features carvings of the ‘seven truths’ on each smooth face. Many Guahn peoples followed a complex set of differing cultural beliefs – these were consolidated upon arrival to form seven overarching ‘truths’ for the new homeland: respect, resolve, heritage, community, commitment, faith and foresight. The pillar’s inscriptions record these ideals and prominently communicate them across the land.
PIRRAYINCAH Hardy perennial with purple-blue flowers found throughout the south-eastern region of Quahnarren. The attractive five-petalled flowers of the Pirrayincah can be eaten, however, although sweet tasting, they can only be safely consumed in small quantities. The highly poisonous seeds and roots must be avoided due to their toxicity, and may be fatal. Herbalists frequently use Pirrayincah flowers in concoctions to treat abdominal pain and bloating, and some shamanic rituals incorporate the ingestion of a few seeds to assist access to the spirit world. The Yinka River is named after this plant.
PIT OF REDEMPTION Common name for Corrikaer’s Arena; a fighting pit located on the outskirts of Bruhgog. Built within a natural flat-bottomed hole with a diameter of roughly 26 feet, and featuring a 4-foot fissure extending off either side, the pit is adorned with spiked wooden protuberances embedded around the stone walls. The complex includes underground cells and connecting corridors where participants prepare for battle, tiered spectator seating, and exclusive covered areas for officials and invited dignitaries.
PUHTAH Isolated by both distance and its residents’ ideological beliefs, Puhtah is a seldom-visited town on the northern coast. Its residents believe in the sanctity of the land that supports them, and obediently follow a set of truths ascribed to the righteous earth spirit Quannah, whom they build shrines to within their homes. Punishment is swiftly delivered to anyone who disrespects the earth or their spirit through words or acts, with lengthy imprisonment and servitude, and lifelong banishment most prominent among their harsh penalties. The town itself is exceptionally neat and without non-natural colours, and the way of life is rigidly pious and austere.