sonder autumn 1710



Tir Na Nog   Foggy, Tir Na Nog is often curtained by mist. Nestled within the Spéir Mountains, there is a pocket of trees and snow-covered stones. Moss blankets the paths and strange runes are engraved in the mountainsides. This is the land of the Fae—or so legend holds. It is rumored that few who visit the mountain ever return. Instead, they are baited by the Fae to spend eternity within the other realm... Within the mountains, one can find 7 slabs of stone immaculately forming a circle. Magical energy seems to thrum within the air and the winds whistle through the trees. They are the Standing Stones and only Highlanders may find them.

Perth   A defensible and sturdy coniferous forest surrounded by pines and Douglas firs. Those that live there are wild and rugged. Multiple clans have laid claim to the forest and its crumbling castles. So many bloodlines have joined and separated over the years that no rightful owner is known. As such, small skirmishes are common. During festivals, however, all those that are natives to Perth rejoice as though nothing had ever divided them.

Inverness   Twin cities cut through by a wide river that flows down from the northern mountains and into the far east. The dark and sapphire-blue waters are known throughout the land and most of life revolves around fishing and sunbathing. Feuding families and star-crossed lovers have stood on either side of the lazy River Ness, shouting at one another or professing their undying love. No matter the emotion, passions run strong here and there is never a dull moment. Inverness is the most "civilized" of the Highland cities and sees the most visitation from outsiders.

Aberdeen   A seaside vista with the most breathtaking views, Aberdeen is a beautiful sight to behold. The weather is temperate, the breeze is cool, and the storms are frightening. For all of its stunning glory, it is a difficult place to live. Most who make a point to keep a toehold here are accomplished fishermen or gatherers unafraid to drift far afield in search of food.

Fae Forest   Thickly wooded and full of brambles, rose bushes, twisted wisterias, pines and cedars. It is a motley wood that is beautiful... but treacherous. Many a pup has gotten lost within the Fae Forest only to never return again. Here is where the nymphs dwell and sing songs that lure woodsmen to their deaths. Few live here for it is a disorienting labyrinth that shocks the senses of even the most astute travelers.

Maiden's Braid   A waterfall fed by the central mountains of Earrach. Small creeks spread out from falls and race over the sloping lands, feeding the lowlands and bringing about a rainbow of life. The braid itself is a wonderous place to find new creatures and plants for the wetlands are fertile and the sun shines there even in the coldest of months. Not well-settled due to spring and summer flooding, most Lowlanders venture elsewhere to set down roots. Nonetheless, there is the Wyrwood, a collection of mangrove trees that grow alongside the rivers on the eastern side of the mountain. These are a well-kept secret among Lowlanders and only they may venture there.

Ayr   Seemingly carved into the mountains, Ayr has a bird's eye view of Rionnach. Traversable by precarious trails, many a king's man has fallen here. Bones are not uncommon to find, mostly due to the ancient burial rituals from the Scottish kings of old. Of course, a wayward traveler has joined those hallowed halls here and there. Home to the Aerie, most all of Rionnach's corvids are trained here. Birds are immensely common and young wolves try to barter for a magpie or crow of their own.

Mirror Lake   Lake within the mountains known for its perfectly reflective surface in the winter and fall. In spring and summer, the lake becomes completely transparent and you can see all the way down to the bottom. It is nestled within the other half of the Earrach Mountains and, surprisingly, is none too difficult to reach. It's only a couple day's journey through wide, sloping trails that wind up to the shining waters. There is little to no game here, however, so no cities ever sprung up.

Melrose   A meadow of many flowers. In the heart of the realm and studded with oaks and stray wisterias, Melrose is the home to most all Lowlanders. It is plentiful even during the colder months and, most of all, it's quiet. Scholars from all of Rionnach come to study and practice medicine. Here is the base of the College of Eòlas. It calls to students and professors alike to come and master their craft amidst the beauties of nature... Their campus is located within the Arboretum, a densely wooded grove of maples just on the edge of the Redwood.

Edinburgh   Rolling hills and flat plains, Edinburgh boasts a handful of hardworking folk that live off of the land. Often paid hunters and gatherers for the bustling cities down south, these Lowlanders have had to make many compromises to their way of life. The first to come under occupation by the Mainlanders during the Unification era, most citizens have somewhat assimilated and lost their wild roots. Nonetheless, they keep the High Tradition and make mention of the Fae (though they put little stock in their actual existence. They're more like fairytales now).

Red Wood   A forest eternally bathed in autumnal colors, the redwood is red no matter the season. There are rumors that the first seed had been planted a century ago when a clansman of the Mckellan had buried his young daughter there. She had died of a horrible cough that she had caught from a stray Englishman they'd met. Legend has it that the girl's fiery fur stained each seed until the wood was as red as she had been. There are stories that there is a sister forest out there in the world but none have ever found it.

Yorkshire   An oak forest with large trunks, leaves as big as a wolf's face, and enough roots to twist an ankle. It is a fortress of a forest and many Mainlanders live and make homes there. Hunting is difficult with so many obstacles but those that dwell here are hardy and capable stock. Fox hunting is a common festivity among the denizens but one must keep in mind that not just anyone can take part. Closed off and wary, the wolves here are unwilling to make friends with strangers... Go deep enough inside and you just might find some guards carefully keeping watch over the Imperial Barracks. From just outside, you can hear the din of soldiers training.

Glass Beach   Named for the series of tide pools along the western shores, the Glass Beach reflects all those who wish to visit. It is a place for meditation and reflection. Each pool gives you a look at yourself from a different perspective: from the left or right if one is being literal. But, allow the imagination to wander and you can picture how your parents, your children, and your people view you. You can see the flaws and the sides that you've never noticed before... and you can find surprising comfort in all the ways that you are whole despite these many distortions.

Sussex   Another seaside spot but one with black sand, more aggressive weather, and precarious cliffs down to the ocean's embrace. Those that live in Sussex get a taste for the salty air and a wealth of amusement when foreigners try to drink the ocean water. It's the hardest living in all of the Mainlands but those that live here are often humorous and joyous folk. They enjoy the stories that travelers bring from distant lands are known to be quite nosy gossips. The only wolves they avoid are those that frequent the Drunken Seagull. The Drunken Seagull is a tavern located within the caves within (and underneath) the cliffside. Only thieves and other sordid folk are allowed to set foot in there... unless a fool feels tempting fate of course.

Rionna & Castle Stuart   An oak and maple metropolis that is heavily populated with wolves of all kinds and creeds. Many a family has settled here and all kinds of interesting new professions have sprung up. Most go for hunting and patrolling trades but a handful have started peddling books, flowers, feathers, fortunes, blessings, and all manner of knick-knack paddywack. At the center of it all is Castle Stuart. Of all the rundown castles studding Rionnach, this one is the most robust. It has several turrets, some crumbling towers, and stone pathways that lead through rooms and balconies and offices. Here the royal family resides. Surrounding the castle is Rionna, the major town in Rionnach. Within it live nobles and merchants of all kinds, as well as some of the nation's poorest wolves. In the town center is Ealanor Square where leftover cobblestones and ancient fountains make for a lovely festival grounds. Only Mainlanders know that you must scale the old western staircases, all set into the hills, in order to reach it.