The Forgotten Throne
The Ice-Plains of Hyboth
The island continent of Hyboth is one of the largest land-masses in the world, and has been for much of recorded history. Humanity has many of it’s oldest root here, and the sea-faring ways that make up much of the industry to be found in Hyboth lends credence to this belief in the minds of many scholars. It is said the northern tribes of man were the first to master the dangerous Ocean of Winds, and to this day the mighty Hyboth whaling ships are the envy of every sailor.
The Cataclysm was felt here much as it was in other lands, with town-shattering earthquakes and massive tidal waves. But the Hyboth lived far north of the sea, so that the winter freezing would not creep up into their villages. Many were spared the worst of the Sundering, only to fall prey to the horrible invasion of the Vile that followed. Soon the entire coastline was in full retreat, trying to stay ahead of the Vile.
As they retreated, the warriors from the different villages united under their greatest warrior, Rhodan Greywind (known to history as Rhodan the Fearless). Under her leadership, the retreat became organized and directed, and her forces were able to win a few minor engagement. As they did, they learned something of great value – most of the Vile did NOT deal well with the cold. Many of the Mad hadn’t the sense to keep warm, and the undead ranks were incapable of it. The further north the tribes retreated, the greater advantage the cold temperatures and snow flurries seemed to give the northern warriors. They made the most of it, making the Vile pay dearly for every mile they advanced into the snowy plains.
As the war dragged on, the God-Spirit Natakra joined his chosen people at the front, bringing with him the most frightening and ferocious strains of Whyr yet seen in the world. Their presence turned the Vile advance into a stalemate, then a holding action, and then an outright rout as the Whyrkynde Ranks literally ripped the Vile to pieces in the snowy tundra.
When the war came to a close the tribes moved to reclaim their lost coastlines, but none of them could forget the importance of their collective unity in winning them their victory. Rhodan, already an older woman by this point, found herself elevated to the title of Queen. Never having been interested in having children of her own, she instead chose to adopt one of her finest and most beloved warriors, an Usenkynde woman named Rhuk, as her daughter. Before retiring to a monastery to pay her thanks to Natakra for the rest of her life, she left her new daughter with a throne upon which was carved the words that became the motto of the Greywind line of Queens:
“Here sits the Mother-Bear of all Hyboth. Trespass at your peril.”
Government: The Greywind Line remains strong in Hyboth, but in truth the crown chooses to wield very little power beyond the gathering of modest taxes and the maintenance of the military, of which the Queen is the highest commander. Most of the political power is left in the hands of the tribes & townships, allowing them to choose their own leaders. So long as the leaders make sure that taxes are paid on time and that order is kept, the royals have generally kept their noses out of things.
People from here are called: Hybothan.
Population: Some scholars suggest that this land may hold a link between the oldest ancestors of both Human and Orc, for the people of Hyboth are much larger, physically, than the majority of other humans in the world. Both male and female Hybothan humans tend to stand more than six feet tall, and have strong frames. Blonde and red hair are much more common here than in other nations.
Most of the “Kynde” bloodlines of Whyr also originate here (and are called such due to the northern dialect of common that most of them speak). Wolfenkynde, Ursenkynde, Vulpenkynde and Cevidkynde are all indigenous to this region, and the populations of them are higher here than eleswhere. These races tend to have the least traditionally “humanoid” features, with many of their faces showing the fur and long muzzled that are inherent in the animals they sprang from. This is actually considered a virtue amongst the Hybothan, though the truth is that inter-marriage here between Whyr and other races is somewhat less common than it is in other places.
Broadly speaking, the other races are poorly represented here. Dwarves generally dislike being at sea, and Elves and Orc are notoriously uncomfortable in the extreme cold. A few Gruen can be found here, but only those descended from coniferous plants, and even those tend not to live in the northern regions. Scalefolk are almost unheard of here, and seeing them is somewhat of an oddity to locals.
What is interesting about living here:
There has never been any doubt that this is the land of Natakra’s people. Statues of him are everywhere, and his clerics conduct the majority of the religious observances. Here, Natakra is also the patron if fishing, and since the fishing and whaling industry is what feeds and employs the majority of the people here, it stands to reason this his churches never lacks for attendance. The mining and timber industries are are also in high demand, but they are seasonal industries in most parts of the continent due to the severity of winter here.
Despite their distaste for the cold, a large number of Orcs can be found visiting the ports here. They are what is known as Handseekers – Orcish marriage-pilgrims. Orcs hate the cold as much as most of the other southern races, but the size and proportions of Hybothan people brings many young Orcs here for the business of seeking a mate to bring home to their village. This ‘romance tourism’ is one of the fastest-growing industries in southern Hyboth, and certain towns are becoming known as havens for matchmaking (regardless of race).
What is best about living here:
The truth is, unless you have a passion for fishing or a strong fetish for big, hairy people, there isn’t a lot of compelling reasons to come here. That said, leaving means a long journey south across the Ocean of Winds, which is a notoriously dangerous passage at many times of the year.
What sucks about living here:
It’s cold for six months of the year, and for about four of those months it’s colder than in any other inhabited place in the world. Most industry grinds to a halt, and people mostly stay indoors, sometimes for weeks at a time. Agriculture is sparse, meaning that most of the food comes from the sea. Vegetarians would find themselves with almost nothing to eat in most Hybothan homes.
Why are people from here traveling to the Forgotten Continent:
The ship that discovered the Forgotten Continent hailed from Hyboth. There are many legends that tell of the God-Spirit Natakra’s final words on the Plains of Ice – that he would journey west, and that one day if the fates were kind, he would call his people forth to him.
Many believe that day is as hand, and the fact that a Hyboth ship found the Forgotten Continent is a sign that Natakra may be ready to return to the world from his long hibernation. Many of his faithful now journey there, to make ready for his return.