Morzindaen of Therengia (book)
The Morzindaen of Therengia
The Morzindaen, Gamgweth for "Great Houses," are the most major and powerful Houses in the entire province of Therengia. While there are other, lesser noble Houses in Therengia, the Morzindaen each control a portion of land, which they oversee in the name of the Baron Theren. Generally, a Morzindu Lord possesses a keep of his own, from which he controls the land given him by the sovereign.
The list of Morzindaen has remained fairly constant throughout the long years of Therengia's history, as it is relatively rare for the Barons to elevate a House to this stature. It is even less frequent for a Morzindu to be dissolved completely, and usually quite drastic circumstances bring that about. In recent memory, only Houses Dunshade and Valsef have been dissolved, their lands absorbed into those of other Houses.
To help those unfamiliar with Therengian nobility acquaint, I shall provide a listing of the Great Houses, and a small portion of their histories.
Trigomas is one of the most respected Therengian Houses, with a history dating back to ancient times. Traditionally, the Gar Rae Raenaden is raised from Morzindu Trigomas, adding to the power of the House. Trigomas rules over the bulk of the Ker'Leor Mountains and so is instrumental in guarding the western approaches to the capital, as the keep looks over the sole navigable pass through the mountains. The House's crest is the image of a golden ram's head encircled by ivy vines above a gauntlet forming a fist, on a field of forest green. Their motto is "Feas ia lyba rae keraen." Currently led by Lord Paragon Larohald Trigomas, the Gar Rae Raenaden.
House Dekera is one of the two Morzindaen located within the thick forests west of Abriyit land and northeast of Kwarlog. Dekera is not an overly wealthy House, as most trade with Kwarlog is conducted by House M'Henral. Due to unsuitable land and lack of any strong sources of income, the house's territory has slowly grown smaller with the passing of years. Their crest is an evergreen tree with a longsword displayed across it, upon a red field. Led by Lord Jardain Dekera, following the death of his uncle, Lord Caranry.
House Ananthor controls one of Therengia's 'border territories,' those lands along the northern border of the province. Beyond that border lies an endless and uncrossable expanse of wastes occupied by barbaric tribes and savage creatures. Ananthor is strong militarily, in order to protect the border. An old House, with a history of military excellence, Ananthor is the highest ranking of the northern border Houses. Their crest is an image of a charging boar run through with crossing spears on a green and gold field. Currently led by Lord Paragon Dunith Ananthor.
Located only slightly northeast of Kwarlog, House M'Henral controls the only bridge over the Faldesu west of Langenfirth. Most Therengian trade with Kwarlog is conducted by House M'Henral, as the only portion of the Kwarlogian Road in Therengian hands lies on M'Henral land. This has given influence to the House, as well as coin, though it is still not the wealthiest of the Morzindaen. House M'Henral's influence was rewarded when, upon the dissolution of House Dunshade, M'Henral was awarded much of that lordless land. Their crest is a wooden bridge above a single grey tower, on a field of light blue. Led by Lord Idrast M'Henral, following the death of his grandmother, Lady Alianhra.
Though controlling perhaps the smallest territory of any Morzindu, House Vanuerin has proven mildly prosperous. It has remained relatively untouched by major battles, due to its close proximity to Therenborough. To the north are the border territories, and to the east is Therenborough and Ker'Leor, keeping Vanuerin protected. The peacefulness held here has aided in keeping their ancestral wealth intact. The House's crest is a large Ker'Leor winter emerald in the center of a purple corbane flower, upon a black field. The Vanuerin motto is "Usho cam naronas." Currently led by Lord Cristic Vanuerin.
House Kuthvaz controls much of the forestland northwest of Riverhaven along the Lake Gwenalion shore. They are bordered to the north by the Badlands, limiting their ability to acquire additional land. This downside makes Kuthvaz one of the weaker Morzindaen. The crest of House Kuthvaz is a single silver feather beneath a golden seven-pointed star upon a black field. Currently led by Lord Dorraent Kuthvaz.
House Kisarta rules the land of the Meram and Siato Peninsulas south of Langenfirth and west of Riverhaven. The bulk of Therengian farmlands lie on Kisarta territory. House Kisarta also contributes assistance with the route between the two lakeside towns. Their crest is a swooping hawk clutching a sword scabbard in one talon, upon a gold banner. Currently led by Lord Danarden Kisarta, following the death of his grandmother, Lady Soludar.
Like House Dekera, House Chancar possesses land in the forests east of Kwarlog. While both were respected and powerful Houses long ago before peaceful relations with the Dwarves solidified, their glory has long since passed, making Chancar one of the weakest of the Morzindaen. The crest of House Chancar is a snarling wolf clutching a silver globe in its maw, upon a violet field. Led by Lady Eshaness Chancar, following the death of her grandfather, Lord Solysi.
House Dacawla is the wealthiest of the Morzindaen. Controlling the town of Hvaral, all trade and travel into Muspar'i is overseen by Dacawla. Strangely enough, Dacawla is also one of the younger Houses, having been made noble relatively recently in time, when Therengia occupied the formerly-Dwarven Hvaral. The crest of House Dacawla is a frost-capped mountain beneath a dagger on a grey field. Currently led by Lord Elbaeryn Dacawla.
Much of the road connecting Fornsted to Hvaral lies on the land of House Macwe, and so House Macwe has shared in a portion of the wealth acquired by their neighbor, House Dacawla. Though nowhere near as powerful or prestigious, Macwe still holds a significant degree of influence within the province. The crest of House Macwe is an armored man mounted on a golden lion, upon a grey field. Currently led by Lord Asmar Macwe.
House Abriyit holds jurisdiction over lands along the shore of Gwenalion, lake and river. The fishing town of Langenfirth is on Abriyit land, as is the Langen Brewery. They also have some of Therengia's rare farmlands. House Abriyit's crest is the image of three black towers beneath a row of white clouds on a grey field. Currently led by Lord Enaldar Abriyit.
House Rethlon, like Houses Ananthor and Avshotin, controls a portion of the lands making up Therengia's northern border. Because of this, Rethlon land is well defended, and the House possesses much honor for its defense of Therengia. Their crest is the image of a prostrate Human before a golden seven- pointed star, on a field of violet. Currently led by Lord Bamario Rethlon.
House Weyato is one of the more significant Morzindaen, as the bulk of the road leading from Langenfirth to Therenborough is upon their land. Weyato is an old and respected House, even having an Emperor in its history. The keep of House Weyato, being one very old, has suffered damage in recent battles, and so they have begun efforts to refurbish a Gorbesh-built fortress as their own. The House's crest is an oak tree divided into blooming spring and leafless winter, on a field of half gold and half white. Currently led by Lord Ereic Weyato.
West of Weyato land, south of Macwe, and north of M'Henral lies the thick ancient forest land of House Darpam. There the trees are as tall as a keep's tower. Darpam is a young House, raised to the Morzindaen for their valiant actions during the defeat of the Dragon Priests. Their crest is a rearing bear beside a half-moon axe on a field of green. Led by Lord Raffaele Darpam, following the death of his grandfather, Lord Haleran.
The ferries which run the Faldesu River from the Northern Trade Road to the port of Riverhaven are operated by House Shillat, whose lands are located to the east of Riverhaven. The crest of House Shillat is a small boat suspended above a black hammer, upon a blue field. Currently led by Lord Astenad Shillat.
House Avshotin is the third of the northern Houses. Its territory rests directly north of Therenborough, with the lands of House Rethlon to the east, and House Ananthor further east than that. House Avshotin has acquired great honor, which accords it considerable influence among the Morzindaen despite its relative lack of wealth. Their crest bears the image of a large grey stone wall, with twin crossed swords upon it, on a field of black. Currently led by Lord Paragon Gavena Avshotin.
Though not one of the Morzindaen, I must make mention of House Theren. House Theren is the Zozindu, the One House. Every lord in Therengia bends knee to the Baron Theren, every arm they wield is held in honor of House Theren. The Baron rules over all of Therengia, and rules directly over Therenborough and a sizable amount of land around it. The remainder of the land is ruled by the Lords in fealty to the Baron. The nobles operate under a strict Code for which they fulfill duty and honor. The crest of House Theren is a black tower beneath a golden seven-pointed star, on a field of royal blue.