The third primary human race in Averlorn sometimes found in the islands consists of the men of Ardrois stock such as those found in Thebos and similar civilizations such as Chalcyx, Ertris and Manthinea. The Ardrois dwell primarily on the mainland and in coastal areas and cities such as Harbor Reach and Zarathus, and further inland. They are modeled after the ancient Greeks and Romans and even Germanic peoples in both appearance and culture.
The Volkyr – In the Archipelago beyond the
dominant culture is that of the Volkyr and their stalwart allies the Sea Elves.
These two communities have lived in peace since the earliest days of man's
recorded history, a situation unique among the various tribes of humanity and
demi-humans alike. They share technologies, many customs and to the casual
visitor it appears that the Volkyr (folk of the sea) have modeled many aspects
of their culture after those found among the sea elves. The Volkyr aren't
ancient Egyptians so much as they are a fantasy culture which posits
Egyptian-esque culture in a medieval setting. They style themselves as
the most civilized of the human cultures concentrating more on trade then on
warfare. The Volkyr are a Polynesian
like people who originally migrated to the Archipelago from the southern
islands of the Great Banks among others. Shallow Sea
The Volkyr place a great value on learning and the arts. They consider their society to be a model of civilization and take great pride in the relative cleanliness of their cities, in considerable contrast to the squalor that can be found in the Theban cities of Harbor Reach and distant Grand Oryx. Personal appearance is of considerable importance to most Volkyr and they are fastidiously concerned with personal hygiene, bathing often and keeping their facial hair neatly trimmed. Men folk wear their hair in very short, practical styles, often displaying rather ornate goatees or smartly trimmed moustaches. Some Volkyr warriors go so far as to shave their heads and faces, thus denying enemy combatants anything to grab onto during battle. Both men and women use scents and makeup, eyeliner in particular is common. Volkyr warriors often paint fierce-looking designs on their face which adds to their reputation for being savage opponents in battle.
Physically, the Volkyr are a dark-skinned race of humans with black hair and piercing dark eyes. They are on average a bit smaller than the Ardrois folk and not as muscular as the average Thugee. They are exceptional seamen and ply the waters the
in their sleek triple-lateen ships.
Volkyr weaponry is finely made and shows a distinct Elven influence. They favor
the longer Elven spear style, the subtle curve of the Elven Sword, and the Sea
Bow. Shallow Sea
The Sea Elves - the other predominant race found in the Archipelago is that of the demi human Sea Elves. The Sea elves generally live along the coast, are a nautical trading race, and are quite hardy for elves. They usually live in small coastal villages near the Great Banks and in small kingdoms scattered about the Archipelago. The Sea elves are far more organized than the elves found in Thebos and other areas inland and trade regularly with the Volkyr.
To the Sea Elves, the Archipelago is considered their ancestral homeland though part of it is currently under the guardianship of the Volkyr. There exist several small Sea Elf kingdoms and holdings scattered about the Archipelago on some of the smaller islands.
The Sea Elf Kingdoms of the Archipelago - The Sea Elf King or Archmagi holds dominion over three principle realms, holding court according to an ancient schedule understood only by the elves themselves. The exact nature of governance employed by the sea elves is quite mysterious and appears to also be part of some long standing tradition of rotating kings. Within each realm lies one of three magnificent
which is the local seat of
authority for each realm perched ever watchful on the cliffs above the endless
waves. Elven Sea Towers
The Sea Elves are often at odds with the Thugee and there exists racial enmity between their two peoples as the Thugee seem intent on raiding their holdings and generally causing them harm when given the chance. The enmity that exists between elves and the Thugee (the Northmen of Averlorn) is long standing and encounters are usually a “no quarters asked, none given” sort of affair. In matters of warfare and defense, the Sea Elves favor the Elven Longsword, the Sea Bow, and the Elven Dragon Spear. More info about the Sea Elves, the Elven cast system and Elven culture in Averlorn can be found here:
The Thugee – the Thugee are a Viking-inspired race of sub-humans, strong of limb, but dim of wit, possessing brutal features and slightly pronounced canine teeth. They are the Norse raiders of the Middle Ages raiding the coastline and islands in their sleek and sturdy long ships and striking terror into the heart of their victims. They can be found in the Archipelago living alongside the primary native human race of the area - the Volkyr, and in a few scattered clan holdings in the north of the island chain.
Though the Thugee often raid in the Archipelago and are viewed as savage barbarians by most civilized cultures, quite a few have actually settled in the area. Although they are not the native or predominant race of humans, their numbers are on the rise due to continued raiding and settlement activity, not unlike the Vikings that settled in England, Russia and other places they raided in our world - in the end they were just looking for a better life than the harsh cold north. Their ancestral homeland can be found in the distant Northern Reaches of the mainland along the coast and in a region called fallen Leutra where the ancient reptile races once held sway.
The Thugee in the Archipelago are scattered among the islands like the pebbles along the beach. They have a few permanent communities in the islands immediately off the coast of
at what one might call the edge of the Northern Reaches. They are not given to
city building and rarely dwell in communities larger than a few hundred
families. They view any non-Thugee as inferior and a source of goods, slaves,
wives, etc. A considerable number of Thugee have fallen under the sway of
Ravishar resulting in a daunting presence of Northmen residing in Malithorn.
Still others have found their way to Caeursetti and environs and now live in
relative peace as subjects of the God King.