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    The Sud Graufult: Overview
    Posted on Fri, August 10, 2001 by Toran
    Taras writes "Stretching along the southern banks of the Greyflood river is the Sud Graufult, a land in dispute between the Iron League and Aerdy. Nobles and commoners scheme against each other, and the loyalties of no one are certain. Hidden amid this backwater are terrible secrets and the possibility of treasure, if one is brave enough to sieze them.

    Author: Taras Guarhoth


    An Overview of the Sud Graufult

    by Taras Guarhoth (montand@canonfire.com)
    Used with Permission. Do not repost without obtaining prior permission from the author.


    The Sud Graufult is comprised of the lands between the Greyflood River (known locally as the Graufult) and the Rieuwood, between the Hollow Highlands and the Glorioles. To the east, the land is covered in rugged hills as it rises into the mountains, gradually becoming less rugged as one travels into the center of the territory, where gentle, low hills dominate the landscape. As the Hollow Highlands are approached, the hills begin to rise in size and become more frequent, but never reaching the heights found in the east of the region, nor becoming quite as rugged. The expanses of trees found in the Rieuwood thin out in the Sud Graufult, becoming light woods around the margins of that forest, and dispersing into pockets of woodlands as the Greyflood river is reached. Numerous streams run to the north, emptying their waters into the Greyflood, making the land relatively well-watered, easily allowing for the vineyards and orchards which make up the bulk of the agriculture in the territory.

    Settled long ago, the Sud Graufult remains a relatively civilized area, with small towns and villages dotting the land, nestled among the hills and woodlands. A good number of these settlements can trace their history back to the days of the Aerdi conquest of the south, having been founded around forts or upon the ruins of even more ancient places. Some, however, can trace their roots back farther, some to the days of the Suel migration through the region, others to times before that, when the native Harashim (a Flan people) were the only humans within the area. A much smaller number can trace their origins back to the demi-humans who live in the regions around the Sud Graufult, to the elves of the Rieuwood, the dwarves of the Glorioles, or the gnomes and halflings of the Hollow Highlands.

    There are six major fiefs within the Sud Graufult, which are further divided down into smaller and more numerous fiefs. Five of these major fiefs are centered around the towns of the region, Noshirat, Olvanstaadt-am-Graufult, Malfurt, Dwurmarkt, and Olvanfurt. The sixth is much smaller in size, and exists within the margins of the Hollow Highlands. All of the towns, and most of the villages with more than a handful of inhabitants, can be found located along either the small rivers which flow through the territory, or along the banks of the Greyflood river. Smaller villages can be found dotted among the hills away from the waterways, but these seldom reach more than 50 people, unless they sit near a mine or other source of wealth.

    Surviving mainly on trade, the Sud Graufult serves as the main land route between the Iron League and the Great Kingdom, even though the entire region is in dispute, being claimed by Sunndi, Aerdy, and Ahlissa. Goods from Ahlissa and the Iron League lands of Idee and Sunndi travel into the Sud Graufult, where the natives purchase them, and then carry them to merchants from the opposite side, making a small profit themselves, and allowing trade to occur between these two hostile neighbors, usually at the urgings of House Darmen, which conducts most of the actual trade on both the Iron League side and the Aerdy side. Travel on the rivers within the Sud Graufult is not possible for anything larger than a canoe or raft, and travel along the Greyflood west of the town of Olvanstaadt-am-Graufult isn’t possible for barges.


    The Fiefs

    The fief of Olvanstaadt-am-Graufult sits on the southern banks of the Greyflood for the majority of it’s length. As such, it controls the majority of the trade from this region into the lands of South Province, as well as some of the trade with Aerdy itself, with most crossing the Greyflood by ferry and bridge from the town of Olvanstaadt-am-Graufult, although some does go overland along the Greyflood to Hexpools. A number of smaller villages can be found within this fief, along the banks of the Greyflood or the streams that empty into it. Also found within this fief is the ruins of the town of Torvald (where the Teshan enters the Greyflood), once the seat of the Harashim-Suel House Toshna, who had violently opposed the Aerdi expansion into the region, and paid for that opposition with their lives.

    Noshirat, to the south of Olvanstaadt-am-Graufult, sits astride the center of the region, straddling the banks of the Halmach River, which flows north into the Greyflood. This fief sits along all trade and travel routes of any importance through the Sud Graufult, being where the roads to Idee, Sunndi, the heartlands of the Aerdy, and Ahlissa all meet. As such, the fief is a wealthy one, and serves as the center for all activity within the Sud Graufult that deals with trade. As with most of the fiefs within the Sud Graufult, a number of smaller villages dot the land, along the steams and roads through the province. There are rumors of an ancient Aerdi fort-town located within one of the wilder woodlands in the southern parts of the fief, although no one has actually seen this ruin in living memory, as most avoid that area.

    Malfurt is located in the northeast of the Sud Graufult, where the Thelly and Greyflood meet, and marks the terminus for all trade headed into the heartlands of Aerdy. Ferries regularly cross the Thelly, leaving good and passengers at the small town that functions as the port of Kalstrand. Fewer villages dot this fief, as the majority of it consists of the rugged foothills and craggy peaks of the Glorioles. A number of mines can be found in these hills and peaks, often worked by both dwarves and humans (while those deeper in the mountains will be worked by dwarves alone). Rumors place the tomb of the infamous False Prince somewhere within the confines of this fief, although it has never been found. Of more immediate notice, the Hielearch Monastery stands, like a number of others, atop a particularly rugged peak, brooding above the lands below. The monastery was abandoned several hundred years ago when something was released within the confines of it, and killed many of the monks, driving some to hurl themselves from the peak to fall to their deaths in the village which lies far below it. None who have ventured there since that time have returned alive.

    Dwurmarkt sits along the Teshan Gap, the strip of land between the Rieuwood and the Glorioles. As such, it controls almost all trade passing south into Sunndi. This fief has the most varied racial mix of the entire Sud Graufult, being the only one to contain significant numbers of both elves and dwarves. Small villages lie within the margins of the forest, harvesting lumber under the watchful eyes of the native elves, while others lie within the foothills, harvesting the ores of the Oerth alongside their dwarven neighbors. Surprisingly, there are very few tales of ruins or ancient sites within this fief, if one discounts abandoned mines.

    The fief of Olvanfurt dominates the southwestern portion of the Sud Graufult, and sits astride the road to Idee. A number of old mines still exist in the Hollow Highlands, scratching out a meager number of treasures from the Oerth, although these won’t last more than a generation or two. Thankfully, the dwindling mining within the Hollow Highlands represents only a minor source of income to the fief, with most coming from the road through the hills into Idee and from the local vineyards. Villages are dotted along the Halmach, which the road follows, servicing the caravans and travelers, while other villages lie within the fringes of the hills serving the mines and vineyards of their steep slopes.

    The last fief of the Sud Graufult, Hoehle Bergland, is the seat of House Nashalla, and lies wholly within the fringes of the Hollow Highlands and the Rieuwood. No major towns dominate this fief, as they do in the other five of the region. The road to Idee passes through the northern part of this fief, so some small amount of income from it does trickle in from it it, but most doesn’t. Very few villages dot the landscape of Hoehle Bergland, for it is mostly taken up by the broken hills and marginal woods from the Rieuwood. The vast majority of the humans within this fief are of Suel descent, with a significant percentage of them being purebloods. There are ancient tales which place an ancient Suel cult within the area, being similar to the cult which built the ruins found on the Isle of Serpents in the Sea Barons, although it was believed to have been wiped out long ago during the Aerdi expansion. The ancient temples were all believed to have been sacked, but their locations have been lost to time. It is known that they resided in remote and hidden vales of the Hollow Highlands, and a total of five of them were discovered and destroyed within the fiefs of Höhle Bergland and Olvanfurt, but rumors of a sixth temple persist to this day.


    The People

    The human inhabitants of the Sud Graufult come from four different groups. The first is the Harashim, which is a native group of Flan, who once dominated the entire region. Today, the Harashim are confined mainly to the large towns, where they have adapted their culture to an urban existence. The second group is the Aerdi, who are primarily of Oerid stock, with some Flan and Suel mixed in. They tend to predominate in the northern sections of the region, although at least some can be found in almost every village and town. The third group is the Sunnd, who are culturally almost identical to the Aerdi, differing mainly in their native language. The Sunnd are of mixed Oerid and Suel stock, and tend to dominate the southern regions of the fief, although like the Aerdi, they can be found everywhere, and in many places, the Sunnd and Aerdi have interbred for so long they are no longer distinguishable, except by choice of language. The last group of humans is the pureblooded Suel. They primarily inhabit the western reaches of the fief, typically in the less desirable hill country. The Suel are xenophobic, paranoid, and do not like to mix with the other inhabitants.

    Demihumans inhabit the land, too. Dwarves are most often found in the portions of the Glorioles and their foothills which are part of the Sud Graufult, in the eastern end of the region. Elves, unsurprisingly, tend to live in and near the Rieuwood, although small numbers of them can be found elsewhere in the fief. Half-elves, while an uncommon sight, are hardly surprising, and even tend to dominate certain families, including the noble House Cranden-Guarhoth. Gnomes and Halflings compete with the xenophobic Suel for the Hollow Highlands, although they represent a much less important group of people in the region than do the dwarves and elves. Also, certain kinds of humanoids, especially orcs and hobgoblins, have importance in some areas as a civilized race, although few accept them as equals.


    Different Eras

    CY 576 - No changes are necessary from what was written here (since that’s the year it was written for).

    CY 585 - The Glorioles Army marched through the Sud Graufult on it’s way into Sunndi, but no damage came from that, as the Sud Graufult is still “friendly” territory at this point in time. Osson followed on his way to liberate Sunndi, and passed through without event. The Ahlissans fled back through the Sud Graufult after their defeat, and did inflict some damage in the fief of Dwurmarkt. The town itself escaped damaged, due to it’s walls, but the villages around it were often looted, and many suffered hard winters after that with a lack of food. The rest of the territory was unaffected, although income has sharply dropped, due to the closing of the road to Idee, and the lack of any trade from that direction. Ahlissa is building the Greyflood Keeps at this time, in preparation for completely abandoning the increasingly undefendable territory.

    CY 591 - Sporadic looting by the withdrawing Ahlissans occurred within the territory, but little lasting damage was done, and none of the towns fell. Finally abandoned by Ahlissa, the Sud Graufult was quickly claimed by Sunndi, although although they have failed to occupy the land with more than a token force of troops. Idee has been retaken, and the road re-opened, although less trade than before comes from that area, as it now belongs to Ahlissa and they no longer need the Sud Graufult to act as middlemen. Overking Xavener I of Ahlissa extended a half-hearted offer for the Sud Graufult to join the new United Kingdom of Ahlissa, but was politely declined by the nobles of the land, although some are rethinking that decision after some heavy-handed tactics by the “King” of Sunndi to try and secure his control over the region, like ordering them to change their family names, which many have refused to do.


    Additional Articles on the Sud Graufult:
    Geography & Map
    The Fief of Olvanstaadt-am-Graufult
    The Fief of Noshirat
    The Fief of Olvanfurt
    The Fief of Malfurt
    The Fief of Dwurmarkt
    The Fief of Hoehle Bergland


    Note: Aerdy, Ahlissa, Sud Graufult, Sunndi"
     
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    Re: An Overview of the Sud Graufult (Score: 1)
    by Dargarth on Sat, August 11, 2001
    (User Info | Send a Message)
    I have always enjoyed reading this information. Sud Graufult is by far the most interesting addition to Greyhawk by a non-professional writer; and is by far better than a great deal of the material that has ever been published for Greyhawk.

    I ask now as I always have. More? More? More?!



    Re: The Sud Graufult: Overview (Score: 1)
    by Man-of-the-Cranes on Thu, November 15, 2001
    (User Info | Send a Message) http://www.ManoftheCranes.com
    I have to agree with Dargoth, these articles are of very high quality. Taras has certainly done much research into his campaign background and presents here a very well detailed base for his players, with plently of rumour and danger to explore.

    I like the presentation of the area at different times, makes it easy to adapt to a given home campaign.

    Taras promises more, and I would be keen to read it. I would also be interested to know how his campaign went within this setting.

    Cheers
    Man of the Cranes




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