Geography of Goertha
The Mir-Rue and its Basin defines the Goerthan land region, excepting the Moriandan Plain. Essentially a circular sea fed by a radiating network of rivers, the region is about nine hundred kilometres in diameter and bordered by hills and mountains on all sides except the west.
Eastern Lowlands: These are gently rolling hills and quiet valleys formed by dozens of small streams running from the Gledharring to the Sea of Rue.
Gistlon: The soggy coast south of Lock-Saghleas. A branch of the Targelon forests swing around Lock-Sagleas through here. Gistlon is so-named for the shrouds of fog which hang perpetually over her dark needle-leaf canopy. Despite its dismal appearance, Gistlon is home to a tribe of peoples called simply Gistlings. They fish and hunt along the coast and in the forests, and dwell in simple villages of wattle and daub huts.
Somberflow Basin: The valley of the mighty Somberflow is the heart of Worlorn. The Royal Domain of Sollon and the Duchy of Brissenmor are the largest political divisions, half of the basin. Upriver beyond Brissenmor are the border highlands, beginning at Moell.
Torrent Valley: A plain including the valleys of Flood Torrent and the Graff rivers. The Feards and the knights of Galfmor fought many battles here.
Gledharring Mountains: The great range of mountains running from Braghan to Ralubia. The kingdom of Gedringale is nestled in its peaks. South of Gedringale, these mountains are called the Sialinns by the folk of Merglan. Here the mountains valleys and foothills are the home of primitive tribesmen. Simple Axe, the founder of the original bandit chiefdom Anech, was one such hillman.
Haifen Hills: Hills between the dales of Haifen and Riud, they rise up to the Geshirt Pass. The haifen is an elegant, golden water fowl of surpassing beauty. In these hills in the vicinity of the town of Haifen are several ponds and small lakes home to great flocks of these creatures.
Broic Highlands (Copper Hills): Cold and rugged hills of Fearthlond's northern fringe. They are inhabited by the Brolings and crossed laterally by the Copper Road. Like other parts of Targelon, the Broics are draped in needleleaf forest. The Brolings themselves are human hunter-gatherers who occasionally trade with the Fearth, but are also rumored to have relations with the grueslin followers of the Copper King. Following the Copper Road leads to a network of mines controlled by this legendary figure, who is believed to be a younger Cromir well on his way to adulthood.
Lock-Saghleas: A barren plateau whose single highlight is Angerny Eldon. Lock-Saghleas (Saer. Loch-Saglis) is haunted by the mysterious Kolmerlang, Guardians of the Mountain.
Riding Moors: The hills between Darrack Wood and Lock-Saghleas, the Riding Moors are split lengthwise by a winding river whose source is somewhere in the forest.
Durbrach Hills: The range of hills which form the divide between Goertha and Ralubia. They are steep on their southern slopes where there are many cliffs. The northern slopes fall gradually into the valleys of the Mir-Rue, and are extensively forested. The Durbrach hills are largely unexploited, except for the iron mine at Durbrach Keep.
Groth Hills: Hills of Grueslin Wood, between Cro-Carlon and Durth. The Groths are wild, inhabited by grueslin and primitive hill tribes. These folks live in caves or the boles of trees, sometimes building thatch huts.
Between the Somberflow Basin and Halribia is this wooded, upland area. The largest town is Glan. The people are predominantly herdsmen and thus the region is a sparsely populated one.
Cromirlon Mountains: Not actually within Goertha, this is a range of alps on the coast of Albir Gulf. The most important peak is Domber, which houses the subterranean fortress capital of King Haroz, the elder Cromir once sought by Hueor. The rest of the Cromirlon Mountains are infested with grueslin, beastmen, and other Cromirlings, and networked by mines and cave-dwellings. Active volcanoes exist among the peaks of the western edge, overlooking Albir Gulf.
Lorn Hills: These hills fringe the Raenwood around Glan, keeping the area around the town sheltered from bad weather.
Merandine Mountains: A northern branch of the Cromirlons, which begins at Erevarche Pass and ends at the southern border of Morianda. The Merandines are lightly patrolled and scattered villages exist, but the area is still infested with outlaws and an occasional band of grueslin. They pose constant problems for folk of Halribia.
Tembirdam Heights: Foothills of the Merandine Mountains which extend further along the top of Glumwater Valley and into Raenwood. The Tembirdam Heights form the upland backbone of the Duchy of Tembirdam. Only the lower, southern, slopes are settled, and then only lightly.
Rivers and Waters of Goertha
Rue, Sea of: A large saltwater inland sea of Goertha. Goertha generally includes the entire catchment basin which feeds the Sea of Rue. The rivers feed the sea over lowlands that tend to be marshy, with the worst at Gistlon. There aren't any good coastal ports on the Sea of Rue, except at Mirsach, but Flood Torrent is navigable to Doell and Somberflow to Moell. Fishing boats large and small are the primary traffic on the sea. A few barges also follow the coast to transport supplies between coastal villages and river towns.
Abran-Lach is known to sail upon the Sea of Rue in a magical boat, which he has lent to heroes in the past. Often disguised as a crusty old fisherman, Abran-Lach keeps a watchful eye over the waters, in part as his duty to guard Welgonell, the cloud castle of Malladun, which floats somewhere over the sea.
Fearthlond is drained by numerous streams (include the River Riding) that feed Lake Balffing which in turn empties out into the Mir-Rue via Flood Torrent.
Balffing, Lake: A large lake (or tiny inland sea) at the head of the Flood Torrent and central to Fearthlond. Three major castles of Fearthlond sit at ends of Lake Balffing like three points on a triangle. The lake itself provides the principle means of communication between them.
On the eastern side of the lake the Gledharring Mountains drop as cliffs into the lake. High up these lofty crags is said to be the dwelling hall of the crone goddess Troella.
The other sides are hills, creased directly to the west by the Riding. Here is the heartland of the kingdom of the Fearth, surrounded by the needleleaf forests of Targelon.
Flood Torrent: Runs from Lake Balffing to the Sea of Rue. Its course did not exist until washed out by the Great Flood. The Flood Torrent Valley was the site of many battlefields during Pallon's wars with Fearthlond.
Graff River: The southernmost major waterway of the Galfmor heartland, the Graff flows past Gaith and Loglan to the Sea of Rue. The Graff valley is the most heavily populated region of the heartland both because the climate is better than the valley of the Flood Torrent, and because the area has been relatively untouched by war. Loglan is also a prosperous river port and the largest town in Galfmor.
Gedring River: Flowing from headwaters near Gedral to the Sea of Rue, and passing Haifen, Durth, and Saint, the Gedring is the primary waterway of Merglan.
Riud River: The river flowing from the Gledharring to the Sea of Rue through the small town of Riud. It joins the Gedring not far from that river's mouth, near Saint.
Morse River: Flowing between Worlorn and Galfmor, the Morse begins in the Gledharring and passes through Cro-Carlon. Morse-town was once a thriving river port, but suffered massive damage in the latest conflict between Galfmor and Worlorn.
The most important drainage system of Worlorn is that of the Somberflow.
Glumwater: A tributary of the Somberflow. The Glumwater is the major waterway of Tembirdam, running along the feet of the Heights before meeting the Somberflow at the town of Moell (in Hidmor). Here are clustered the castles and villages of Tembirdam; quiet, backward, and stable compared to much of the rest of Worlorn.
Somberflow: The major river of Worlorn, which carries the accumulated watershed from the Durbrach Hills and the Merandine Mountains. A days ride after Staed, the river is broad and sluggish, but ideal for boats and barges. The Somberflow is navigable all the way up to Moell.
Wede: A tributary of the Somberflow, which runs north through the Barony of Riudsech. The Wede is wide enough to require a ferry crossing as far up as Tanhalm.
Omenarcas, Lake: This is a freshwater lake on the borders of Worlorn, Morianda, and Halribia. At the southern extremity of the lake sits the Halribian castle called Omen. It is of solid, blockish Ralubian design, ominous compared to the simple structures of the Goerthans, or the fancier architecture of the Mori.
Darrack Wood: A forest of proud arach trees on the northwestern border of Fearthlond, home to grueslin who acknowledge the Copper King as their lord. Peck tribesmen make their home in the arach trees, and wandering bands of Krick or Reudlang from Targelon or Lokkevan occasionally make forays into this woodland.
Grueslin Wood: The farthest east portion of Somberwood, which is the southeastern border of Cro-Carlon. Grueslin Wood is named because it is the part of the forest Hueor did not slaughter every grueslin in sight. (And if you ask one of the older folk what it was called before, they'll say Grueslin Wood. But it's still called that 'cause of Hueor).
Raenwood: A smallish forest on the borders of Halribia, Morianda, and Worlorn. The highway connecting Omedon and Glan crosses it. Raenwood is fairly well-patrolled and inhabited by folk from all three realms.
Sioncarwood: A finger of Somberwood which forms the division between Brissenmor and Hidmor. Like Somberwood proper, this forest is hilly and difficult to cross. Arachs dominate more here than in Somberwood. Sioncarwood is mostly wild, though occasional settlers can be found along the fringes.
Somberwood: The deep, dark forest carpeting the Durbrach Hills. At lower elevations, arachs predominate. Where the forest reaches the heights of the Durbrachs, pines take over. Inhabited by bandits, woodsmen, and the priestesses of Lidach, Somberwood is also infested with all varieties of nasties. The Ralubian/Forest Road runs through the forest, patrolled by knights from Brissenmor and Tharam.