Fifty-three years ago, the first Elven explorers discovered a new Northern landmass which they named Isalath Damre, and claimed for the House of the Moon and the Sun and the Glory of All Trueblood Elves. Fifty-two years ago, having heard of the Elven discoveries, the human kingdom of Saelfyr sent its own ships to the new land. They dubbed it Northgate, and established the first settlement, the harbor-town of Midpoint. It became an invaluable asset to the Saelfyrri, who used it as a stopover point between the Eastern and Western continents. Forty-four years ago, having heard of the new land from Saelfyrri traders, several Orc nations sent scouting parties of their own. The new land was a fine opportunity for hunting, fishing, and fighting- favored activities of the Orcish culture. They dubbed it Akran, the Harsh Land, and took to it like fish to water. Not long after, the Great Race began. In their ventures further inland and North than any of the other races had dared to go, Orcs stumbled across the greatest resource on the planet: Dragons. Fearsome beasts, nearly impossible to kill and foul-tempered besides, they posed an immediate threat to any attempt at inhabiting the inland. However, their presence drew in tens of thousands of people from every race, for one simple reason: Dragon scales, bones, horns, and teeth are among the most valuable substances in the world. Impossible to break, bend, or dull by mortal means, a man who wears Dragonforged armor or wields Dragonforged weapons is very hard to stop. In ages past, the great kings and lords of yore hunted all the Eastern Dragons into extinction out of greed, looking for more and more Dragonforge. Now the same seems likely to happen up North... but the dragons are not the only ones engaged in combat. Every race wishes to claim this new continent and its resources, dragons and all, and all see the presence of the others as a threat. Settlements are constantly sabotaging each other's food and water supplies, declaring petty trade embargoes, or making a big show of banning other races from their gates. Really, there is only one subject which all races can agree to: the Shah'Ailef, the Feral Elves, are a nuisance which must go. A cousin species to the Trueblood Elves, the Feral Elves reject both magic and civilization, living in harmony with nature... and disharmony with all those that would exploit her. They have declared the dragons the next things to gods, and vowed to protect them if it costs the life of every last Shah'Ailef. It's an offer most of the other races are willing to take. Out of the confusion and chaos, many mercenary companies have decided to set up shop. Among them are the Fair-Fortuned Orphans, a rag-tag troop who refuse no one who can earn their salt. It's a young company, still untried and unproven, but eager to rectify that situation. And this is the perfect place for a small company to take root and grow. GEOGRAPHY Volcanic and rugged, the continent is largely inhospitable and unsuited to agriculture, though it is rich in natural resources and home to many indigenous species. Most of the Western coast is mountainous. Though the mountains are rich in many types of ores and gem deposits, the large Dragon population makes mining settlements a dangerous proposition. Only the Dwarves have settlements along this coast, and those are tunneled deep underground, protected by huge crossbows and catapults. Humans have settled the more mild South, where Dragon threats are more rare and a few small cities have even sprouted up. Due in no small part to a few deep harbors and flat land suitable to fields, this region is the heart of trade and entry point for many newcomers. The East coast is somewhat forested and receives more rainfall than the other regions, though it also receives heavy winter snow. The High Elves have declared most of it their own though the Northmost part is the realm of the Feral Elves, where few dare to tread. The entire region is rather poor in both farmland and ore, though it is the greatest source of timber and has an abundance of other food resources. Inland, the Orcs dominate. They are primarily nomads, retreating to their settlements the Southwest or the outskirts of the Eastern forests only for the worst of winter. They avidly hunt the caribou herds and wild goats that dominate the region, have become master herbologists, and seem the least bothered by Dragon attacks.