Older even than Aerdy in the Flanaess is ancient Keoland, mainspring of the Sheldomar Valley. The foundation of Keoland, represented the birth of the first postmigration human kingdom in the Flanaess. For nearly a millennium, the Keoish heartlands have spanned the lands from Gradsul at the Azure Coast to the Rushmoors in the north, between the great Sheldomar and Javan rivers in the east and west. These lands are some of the most provincial and bucolic in the Flanaess, having been largely untouched by war and conflict for centuries. The climate is customarily temperate year-round and the soils of the central valleys are rich, allowing the kingdom to grow wheat, rye, and other grains in great abundance. The country has never been rich in terms of mineral wealth, and perhaps for that reason
it has always conducted a brisk trade with its neighbors, to whom it supplies staples such as foodstuffs in return for hard coin. The folk of the land can be friendly and generous, but they are primarily noted for their superstitious natures, particularly their wariness of foreigners. The people are a mixture of Suel and Oeridian bloodlines, well blended for the most pan in the provinces of the nation, except in certain rarefied circles such as the nobility and other closed societies. Flan still exist in small pockets in the kingdom, no longer numerous in the heartlands and now driven to the peripheries of the valley. The common tongue is spoken here, but the primary dialect is called Keolandish. The speech of the common folk is highly recognizable for its accent. For most of Keoland’s history, the study of magic
was banned to its citizenry, and its practice was restricted to secret societies and certain nobles. Little evidence is seen by the casual observer of powerful wizards’ magic, as commoners fear those who practice spellcraft. Many priesthoods are present in the realm, though religion was never a dominant force in the kingdom, either. Keoland is a true monarchy in that its kings rule for life and have great powers and authority at their disposal, but officially the government is a permanent
regency. Ruled in the trust of the noble houses, the matter of succession has always resided in the Council of Niole Dra. This deliberative body, composed of the major nobility and heads of certain longestablished guilds and societies in the kingdom, has
the responsibility to authorize succession and oversee matters dealing with the nation’s founding charter. It is the founding charter, penned some nine centuries ago, that ascribes rights and obligations on the part of all the citizenry of the country, whether lowborn or high. The Throne of the Lion, as the office of the king is referred to in Keoland, is currently held by Kimbertos Skotti. The monarch is besieged by factions who constantly demand his attention, making changes or decisions often
painfully slow in coming. Most of these petitioners are peers of the realm, who have varied and often conflicting self-interests.