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The History of Keese

Contents: -
[Founding] [The Council] [Keese Now]

The Founding of Keese

Keese lies in the Larcax forest, where the river Skarr meets the Eber. It was built as the last major outpost on the Great Northern Road before the Deltara Pass in the southern mountains.

The Deltara pass is the only trade route through the Barren Peaks to the mysterious land of Stanilov. It is guarded against the many dangers of both the forest and the mountains by Fort Deltane.

To add to the importance of Keese, a number of ancient ruins have recently been unearthed in the surrounding forest. Speculation that they might be traces of one of the Elder Races has led many to believe that they hold uncountable riches, and the secrets of limitless power.

It is because of the importance of the Deltara Pass, and the myriad dangers and potential riches of the surrounding region that Keese has attracted its abnormally high population of adventurers, and become the major town that it is.

With such importance attached to it, it is not surprising that Keese has had a colourful history in its relatively short life. At differing times it has been controlled by the military, by the mages and by the churches.

Now, and for some time now, it is controlled by the council.

The Keese Council

There are twelve members of the council, plus the chairman. Of these, 6 are representatives of a guild. The guilds of Adventurers, Rangers, Merchants Craftsmen and Mages have permanent council positions, and the chairman is the former head of the Adventurers' Guild. In addition, the churches of Hagol and Elna (the two main churches in Keese) have seats.

One seat is held by the Baron's representative, to try and ensure that the Baron's interests are upheld, and the remaining four are filled by elected representatives.

So politics in Keese revolves around the guilds, in particular around the Adventurers' Guild. Decisions that effect every aspect of society are argued over by people who all have vested interests, laws are invaribly a compromise between opposing needs and desires. Frequently, the final decisions hang in the balance, and it is decided by the four elected members. Then politics becomes a matter of who does the most effective bribing and coercing.

Keese Now

Since the Wolfman War, the Adventurers' Guild has become the major influence in everyday life, and Keese is now very much a town of violence. However, as the Adventurers' Guild itself is relatively disciplined, and the vast majority of the population is a member or in its employ, the town is kept from descending into anarchy.

Under the direct control of the council, and thus under the indirect control of the Adventurers' Guild, is the city guard. These are, as a rule, little more than a motley bunch of ruffians and wannabe adventurers who like bossing people around. However, nobody's interests are served by chaos, so the Adventurers' Guild keeps the guard in check, and the guard generally succeed in keeping a certain amount of order in the town.

But the more covert activities - the backroom politics, the illicit trading, all the intrigue and backstabbing - are less under control. There is a lot of money to be had in adventuring, but even more risk. The Merchants' Guild has become one of the most cut-throat institutions in town, while the Mages' Guild is such a hotbed of betrayal and poilitical climbing that traditionalists of but a few years ago would not recognise it, and these are legitimate guilds. There are persistant (denied) rumours of an organised Thieves' Guild that controls much that goes on in Keese. If this were true, the level of violence in their activities would be frightening indeed.

See also : The Wolfman War
  : The Barony
  : Map of the Area
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