Coast Haven

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Cities

Angst, “The City of Thieves”

Known commonly as the City of Thieves, Angst boasts a reputation as the single worst place in all of Arawyn.  The city is teeming with cut-throats, low-lifes, and pirates, none of whom fear the dangers of the legal system (or what little remains of it).  What once stood as a beautiful sister city to the noble state of Faust, now lays crumbled under economic duress.  The grand structures rot away while brothels, bordellos and seedy taverns crop up across the cityscape.  Few noble houses associate themselves with the city anymore, but for those who do, it can be assured they hold some stake in the black market dealings that are known to exist.


Faust, “The City of Poison”

The city of Poison, as it is now known, was built in 543 in the inlet directly north of where Angst would eventually be built. The city of Faust became known as the city of Nobles thanks to the inordinate number of wealthy families which moved from Septufas to found the city during the initial expansions of Coast Haven. However great the city may have seemed for all its delightful architecture, art and the delightful canals which were built to run through the city, the nobles of the city were renown for their greed. In 647, it is said that one of the more powerful houses made a pact with a demon to try and gain an advantage in the constant political turmoil that plagues this city. This brought on a small war between the noble houses and left the political situations their on eggshells for generations, and now, much of the political dealing of the city are done with a poison dripping dagger rather than sweet diplomatic honeyed words.


Bordertown

Built in 758 by the Estaro household, Bordertown has served Coast Haven well as a trade post for land and sea travel between the Kormyrian kingdom and Coast Haven. Bordertown features one of the largest trading posts within Coast Haven, processing and managing all land and sea traffic coming down the Anteries coast and through the Frameth valley which extends between the two nations.

Septufas

The pride and economic center of Coast Haven. It is said that all roads of the east lead to Septufas. The first built of the Costadori cities, this particularly robust city houses the esteemed Catrazza School of Soldiery and their great Arena, the Caldera DiGata. Many of the finest swashbucklers in all of Arrawyn were trained within the school’s halls and their name has been attributed to many great heroes of the past 180 years. Aside from the Catrazza school, the city also boasts quite a few noble houses who lead the city towards greater and greater economic heights, often advising the other cities in their trade negations to the outside world.

Lieghyre, “The Jewel of the Light”

The bells from the Cathedral of Light in Lieghyre’s central square ring out every hour. The Guiding Light Mission is found with it’s many cloistered monks and dedicated servants working to manage the daunting task of bringing the good word of Valos to the rest of the world. The city, controlled by the pious Quito family, was built as the port sister city to Septufas, who is her primary trade partner. The city, of course, also is the launch point for many of the Valosian missionary projects around the world, thanks to the generous donation of 5 ships and the land for the cathedral given by Regina Quito in 932. The city stands as one of the few port cities with good reputations along the Coast Haven coastline.


Culture

Coast Haven is a melting pot of trade and business.  Each of the city states within the kingdom all build on the bustling trade routes and merchant houses or guilds that constantly bring in goods and gold.  Some say it has a more diverse lifestyle than that of the barony of Travance.  The people rely heavily on the import and export of goods to create a meaningful life.


Many Costadori view the oceans as the most important thing. It is more important than any land, and so they tend to prefer anything that gets them off land and onto water.


The kingdom celebrates two major holidays:


Noche de Avivamiento

This holiday, celebrated in the month of August, though the night seems to differ for each of the cities and even some families, depending on the region.  On this night, people celebrate the Ma’khet, dressing in caricature fashions of them to show praise.  This began from the myth of when Dama Amal had passed on into the afterlife believed to be gone from this world forever.  The other Ma’khet began the celebration to revel in the wondrous life and accomplishments she had wrought, and the Costadori have continued that tradition for the Ma'khet and their own loved ones.


La Victoria de Valiente

In the year 1062, the C.H.S. Valiant set out to sea along with several others in the armada to seek and destroy pirate activity on the Anteries Trade Union shipping lanes.  What they encountered was a trap laid by merchant houses of Khitan that decimated the fleet.  It was by the determination of the Valiant and her crew under the leadership of Commodore Jorge Velasquez that they returned home, having won against the Khitanese.  While the holiday itself is on March 23rd, the whole month is often used to celebrate the heroic efforts of Commodore Velasquez.


Religious Beliefs

Many within the city states of Coast Haven do not worship the traditional divine gods, but rather spirits known as the Ma’khet.  While the preachers of the Guiding Light Mission have tried to convert the people of Coast Haven toward the light of Valos and the gods of light, the majority of the population still revere and pay homage to the Ma’khet.  The Ma’khet were revered as “Guides of the Soul” who would, when called upon, aid in all facets of life.  Each one held dominion over different facets of the lives of mortals.  Simple prayer and offerings to the spirit guides are common enough in the city states, but few go further into the practice of summoning them via shamanistic and more widely recognized druidic rites.


Political Relations

Coast Haven is first and foremost a trade nation.  Rarely do they deal with landlocked nations because they primarily use their extensive navy and port cities to import and export.  Because of the diverse nature of the people who live there, they hold very little contempt for most kingdoms.  Everyone has money and goods, so the merchant houses who control Coast Haven do not care too much for where it comes from.


On Kormyrian Relations

The establishment of Bordertown in the late 750s allowed for tensions between Kormyre and Coast Haven to be eased. Before then, the Kormyrian government saw Coast Haven as a dangerous host to pirates and ruffians who were interrupting their trade with the Isle’s of Rinn’Quinell Nurbonis. However, the Estaro family saw the wisdom in creating a joint venture city to the north and since then have had strong economic ties with the Tarthan shipping guild, one of the largest trade guilds of the Kormyrian kingdom. While there are still suspicions that Coast Haven does not do enough to stop piracy, accusations of them supporting it have faded.

On Bedouin Relations

The Bedouins of the Dunes of Amon’zad have made a pact with the city states of Coast Haven to create the city of Selimport. Trade is strong with their merchant neighbors and the Coast Haven trade industry heavily relies on their Z'hadeem counterparts for over-land trade and travel, since, to this date, the Costadori have only really specialized in the finer arts of seafaring.


On Khitanese Relations

The Empires of Khitan all sit very poorly with Coast Haven, because they stand as the rival nation of sea-bound trade.  Often these two nations attempt to disrupt trade coming from the other and hijack goods to sell as their own.  No open declarations of war have come about since the just before the Demon Wars, but it is apparent that no peace of any kind will ever be met by these two nations any time in the near future.


Notable Figures

Queen Luiza de la Borrasca

Current queen of the City-States of Coast Haven.  She resides within Septufas in the castle where many of the heads of the merchant houses regularly do dealings.  She has reigned for nearly three decades since her coronation in 1188.  She is often revered in the more civilized cities, but in the twin Cities of Faust and Angst, she is openly spoken about with venomous tones.  It is unclear if this is a guise to protect her name or if they truly do not support her rule.  This fact has always remained unclear for good reason.


Hector Estaro

Current head of the Estaro merchant family.  He is noted as less reputable than his predecessors.  Rumors have spread throughout the merchant houses that Hector has made deals with some of the more prominent pirates on the sea to ensure his own trade is successful while others suffer.


Enrique Quito

Current head of the Quito merchant family. He regularly works with the church of valos within Lieghyre to spread the word of the Light everywhere that his trade routes take his business.  It is unclear if this is a front for criminal activity or if the church funds the family, but it is apparent that not all of the money the family has comes from the business conducted on the seas.


Captain Arsenio Herrera

Captain Herrera is known across the trade lanes more commonly as “Ironheart”.  More than stealing goods from others, he deals in slavery.  His name comes from his policy of no survivors and no deals.  His compassion for the laws of the sea and his fellow sailors are cold as iron, so much so that he has even sold his own men into slavery just to make more money.  Those who work under him aren't always there of their own free will, but those who are seem to keep up with his ruthlessness.

 
Captain Fross

Fross is truly one of the most vile and twisted pirates who sail the seas.  He has been rumored for years to have delved into dark powers and villainous deals.  He has done everything short of selling his soul, or so it's said.  He has had run ins with heroes before, narrowly escaping every time.  Very little is known about this pirate and his crew, but it is known that to cross him ensures death.  The only one worse to cross would be his wife.


Charlotte Tempest

If there is anything Tempest is known for, it is the raucous and wild parties she throws.  Wherever she sails, there will be a story to tell of the events that unfold.  Her drinking is legendary, her name causes men to loose coin faster than they can cry her name.  Charlotte Tempest is a storm that rolls into port and leaves everyone broke and cheerful.  As a privateer of the Coast Haven Navy, she regularly deals with the political leaders of nations, most commonly the Kormyrian Armada.


Folk Lore

Triton’s Shipyard

Long ago was a great beast; a monstrous sea creature referred to as a Leviathan by its size, but as Triton in name.  Triton was a primal spirit of nature who swam the seas, capable of swallowing ships whole and leaving no trace of survivors.  Rarely would anyone ever see Triton and live to tell the tale, but few returned to port from shipwreck with stories of a magnificent sea monster that was both awe inspiring and terrifying all the same.


It was said that any ships what sunk to the bottom of the ocean would belong to Triton, as no one should ever be foolish enough to delve down to salvage scrap from the sea floor.  Any who did were noted to be lost at sea and never seen again.


In time, the bottom of the ocean came to be known as Triton’s Shipyard, as any ship that sunk would remain there as his possession, along with all the treasures and crewmen aboard.


Antoinette, the Anteries Siren

Antoinette, for most of her life was a siren in servitude of of a vicious and evil queen, Agatha D’Delour.  After her release, she took back to the seas where she belonged, only to slowly rebuild her strength, though in new ways.  She claimed a ship that has since been dubbed “The Siren’s Song” to carry wayward sailors who give themselves to her or beg for life after a shipwreck.  In recent years, she is only ever spoken of in hushed tones among sailors and given the title of Sea Witch.  She herself has deemed herself Queen of the Anteries and lays claim to all the treasure and souls that become lost at sea.  She bargains and deals in the lives and treasures of all who call the sea their home and only the unluckiest ever find themselves dealing with her.


Mariner’s Burden

This is more commonly known as “the Black Spot”.  This curse is reserved almost exclusively for those who commit the most heinous of crimes at sea.  Few know where it comes from or who marks these wayward sailors, but it is very clear that anyone with the mark is guaranteed to meet their end soon.  Some have managed to escape the curse, but almost always at a very grave price.


Madeline Carver, the Spirit Thief

Many decades ago lived a young girl who always snuck away at night against her parents wishes.  Unfortunately for her, this didn't go well and she was kidnapped and officially declared dead.


As the story goes, in her captivity she prayed to any who would listen and the God of death, Galmachis, answered, giving her the key to her salvation, but at the price of serving him for eternity.  Nowadays, the tale of Madeline Carver is told to children to make sure they stay in bed and be good or else the Spirit Thief will steal their souls away!  Some say they see the young girl still wandering the streets of some Coast Haven cities, looking for wayward children to steal away.