Gods and Empires
Ruler: King Baerd
- Northern County: Coranthir – Lord Markellan the Just
- Eastern County: Borderguard – Duke Alexander Strongblade
- Western County: Hillsboro – Duke Windsor Greenloft
- Southern County: Riverdale – Duke Balaric Orcsbane
- South-Eastern County: Durloch – Duke Zander Mithrandius
The Vale is the easternmost province of The Imperium, located in the central part of the northern half of the continent, with Ulmordia to the west and Dothengar to the south. The Vale is bordered on almost all sides by mountains and other geographical features that have long served to isolate it from its neighbors. The Blood Plains and the mighty Dragonspine Mountains form the northern border, beyond which lies the tundra and ice fields of the Northern Wastes. The Valorian Mountains and the Andiron Mountains to the east separate The Vale from the Eastern Kingdoms, which remain independent of The Imperium. The imposing Grimwall Mountains form the western border between The Vale and Ulmordia. The Plains of Dust and the Baldread Mountains to the south separate the province from Dothengar, while to the southeast lies the Dräken’myr, one of the largest fresh-water lakes in all of Faeregoth, which forms the border betweem Imperial lands and Elven lands.
Despite its seemingly large size, The Vale is neither the largest, nor most populous, of the Imperial provinces. After the fall of ancient Valoria, much of The Vale was overrun by savage tribes of goblins and orcs. For many centuries, humans struggled to maintain their hold on the land. Only in the last few centuries have humans solidified their hold and begun the process of expansion once again. For this reason, many areas in the north and south are considered ‘frontier land’, where human settlements attempt to reclaim land that once was a part of Valoria. These areas prove attractive to people of all walks of life. Minor nobles and younger sons of nobility seek out lands of their own, followed by peasants seeking a better life. Merchants and craftsmen come seeking opportunity as new towns are established while others come to avoid the restraints of Imperial law. Treasure hunters and adventurers seek out lost wealth in the ancient ruins that dot the landscape, wizards and scholars seek out seclusion for their towers, while mercenaries and soldiers come to defend the lot from the barbaric humanoids who inhabit the lands.
Due to its location, the Vale is an important hub for trade. Its location, along with the wide variety of geographical features, serves to make The Vale one of the most diverse provinces in all of The Imperium. Nearly a quarter of the habitable land area of The Vale is taken up by the Briarwood, one of the largest old-growth forests still in existence and purported stronghold of the Fae. Furthermore, the province is crisscrossed with rivers, which have long aided in the transportation of people and goods, and helped to connect The Vale to its many neighbors. Of all of the provinces, The Vale is perhaps the most tolerant of the use of magic, standing in stark opposition to its neighbor Dothengar, and also the most accepting of non-human citizens as well.
The Vale, like most of the other provinces, is a hereditary monarchy that owes allegiance to The Imperium. The current ruler, King Baerd, is a benevolent ruler who is devoted to the teachings of Elyr. His ancestors were responsible for driving out most of the orcish tribes that once overran the Eastern Baronies, as well as uniting the inhabitants of the area into the thriving, successful kingdom that eventually became a part of The Imperium.