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Geranda

This sizable island lies east of the Sartoran continent, far closer to it than to Toar, which is further separated by currents and wind patterns. It is possible to sail to Toar from Geranda, but it is a difficult trip, and for so many centuries the west-coast Toarans were so fierce and unfriendly, the trade and sail patterns established themselves in the other direction, eastern Sartorans sailing up through the strait the long way, or risking the extreme cold of the far southern latitudes for the shorter journey underneath Toar to the Land Bridge connecting it to Halia, through that, and to the more friendly east coast of Toar, with Sartoran-influenced kingdoms.

Geranda was pretty much a pirate port or place for those who wished to eschew life on the continents for whatever reason, until the Venn discovered it and settled there. A warm current cycling down from the equator along the eastern coastal waters of Sartor and eddying out to the volcanic island archipelagos and to Geranda making for pleasant seasons, many Venn settled there, and in fact strenuously tried to avoid having to return to the homeland. This caused a curious twist, an almost fanatical devotion to "pure" family lines, which drove a division between the governing Venn and the people there. When the Venn finally withdrew eighty years before the turn of the fourth millennium, the only ones permitted to sail for the homeland were those who could prove their family line purity, which often came down to their coloring--pale skin and hair. Those who'd intermarried and had become darker (dark brown eyes being particularly targeted) were left behind, causing a bitter reaction against the homeland. Those left spoke Venn, had Venn customs and world view, but renamed themselves Behrons -- a word deriving from the Venn behrt or bright, light which also could mean brilliant as in smart or enlightened.

The Behrons took the island name as the name for their nation, no doubt confidently expecting to rule the entire island. The Behrons were too tough even for pirates, and established enough order, at least at the north end. But the southern end stubbornly resisted, having been settled by a group of mages and scholars wanting to get away from strife on land, and remaining, and by pirates. The Venn-style sunken roads remain from the early days and are mostly maintained all over the island.

The Behrons of Geranda have one main export item, the fabulous gold-threaded brocades they had learned to make in their homeland, and refined with the benefit of southern-made silks.

There are three small kingdoms and a principality in the south: Setazhia which was settled by the mage-scholars, Choree which was settled by outcasts from Chor who turned pirate and privateer for a time, and Landir which was settled by refugees from all other the eastern end of Sartor. The principality of Kenthbelongs to Landir, and its rough terrain and difficult weather has made it ideal for a place to send troublesome heirs for the local aristo families. The Choree remain fairly tough, priding themselves on their individualistic background, and they have been successful in warding off occasional forays by the Gerandan/Behrons.

All rely on trade from the smaller islands, which have better weather and can grow crops, and of course with the eastern end of Sartor. One of the main attractions of Setazhia is the school established by the mages. You can get the same education there as on the mainland, but without the heavy thumb of Sartoran self-interest, and thus a more neutral or balanced sense of history. Mage training is also available, but the tests for joining the Council on the mainland are extremely rigorous for those who learned in Setazhia. Many independent mages thus never join the Council. They know they are watched, but from a distance, which makes for a benign state of truce.

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Page last modified on January 24, 2008, at 02:56 PM