Table of Contents
History, Politics, and Culture
Around the year 5250 F.R, the barbarian tribes in the vicinity of present day Kale started to unify against the growing threat of goblins and other evil creatures to the east. This was the beginning of a great chiefdom known in latter years as Jundland. In the year 5275, the great Shaman Beornhelm became chief of the Junds. Jundland was located in the area of present day Kale City. Twenty three years after Beornhelm came to power, a great and terrible army of goblins and hobgoblins attacked Jundland from the east. Under the leadership of Beornhelm, the people of Jundland were able to repulse the evil forces, though losses were staggering. Thereafter, for many years Jundland knew peace and grew stronger as more of the surrounding barbarian tribes joined Jundland. Then in 5314 tragedy struck Western Farland in the form of the Red Plague. Jundland was most heavily hit of any place in the land. The might of Jundland was broken and fighting men became scarce in the land that once was known for its ferocity. Then in 5316, the forces from the east came again. This time the goblins and hobgoblins wiped out Jundland and survivors were few. These survivors escaped to the wilderness to the north and over the following centuries the people reverted once again to barbarism.
Kale is the youngest of the kingdoms of Farland. In the years after the fall of Jundland, Kale was inhabited by many barbarian tribes. They were mostly hunters, trappers, and woodsmen. These peoples were totemic and otherwise non-religious. Perhaps the only knowledge they had of organized religion came from their rare contact with the elves to the north. In the absence of organized religion, they turned to hero worship and their traditional holidays venerated strength in the hunt. On the first of the year, which they celebrated every ten moons, young men would venture into the wilderness alone to hunt barehanded. Any man who returned with meat for the tribe would become a man of the tribe during a coming of age ceremony. This was a perilous time for the young men of Kale. Many never returned and superstitions abounded pertaining to the forested wilderness to the west. Tribes had no central leadership and the lifestyle for these barbarians revolved around loosely organized groups of extended families living in independent homesteads.
In the year 6517, a charismatic young barbarian of the clan of the stag to the west near where present day Bares is located, recalling legends of the might of Jundland, thought once again of unifying his people. Young Louis, in order to assure his power, started killing off prominent men of his tribe surreptitiously, and later more openly. As he dispatched those who would oppose his rule, he declared himself leader of the Clan of the Stag. Rallying the remaining members of his tribe behind him he started bringing other tribes in the area under his control. Thus when Lord Kale entered the lands in 6560, Louis of the clan of the stag had already become a powerful leader in his own right. Lord Kale, ever the diplomat, used Louis' power to his benefit, married his daughter, and through flattery and gifts beyond anything Louis had ever seen, secured Louis' loyalty. Thus Louis did much of the work of unifying the peoples of Kale and the timely arrival of Lord Kale saw the birth of the fledgling kingdom. Many of the traditions of the native barbarians have survived to present day. The celebration of the New Year is still celebrated, though men are permitted to go in groups on their hunts and are now typically armed. Organized religion has still failed to completely take hold in Kale, and veneration of young strong men, (and the historical legends that abound about the astounding feats performed by these men) is still practiced.
Due to the individuality of the natives of Kale, cities were slow to form and for nearly a hundred years, Kale City to the south was the only city of note in the fledgling kingdom. As the threat of war always loomed, more and more people turned to city life and the villages of Dael and Bael became great cities in their own right. These two cities were originally small trading outposts established by Lord Kale himself. They were also used for communication with Kelerak and the elves. Thus their names are Davenian in origin, as Lord Kale is from Daven (the names of Daven have a Germanic flavor). Bowing to the ancient barbarian belief of power in rhyme, Kale named the three places that he founded with rhyming Davenian names. Other cities retained their original Kalias names (the language of the barbarians of Kale is similar to ancient French), such as Fort Rienne. As Lord Kale established himself as king of the new Kale, he gradually brought all of the barbarian clans to recognize him as their ruler. This was not exceedingly difficult as they were unorganized for the most part and those that had been organized were organized under Louis' rule. Louis died in the minor war that started as a border dispute with Daven in 6598 F.R. Lord Kale made Louis' four sons captains in his army and later his own son, born from the union between himself and Louis' daughter, was named Louis the second and came to power in 6603 (F.R.). Throughout the following centuries the now King Kale and Louis the first's descendants worked to make Kale a powerful kingdom in its own right. Bael, Dael, and Kale city were established as the main centers of political power and the surrounding lands were divided into three city-states, each with the right to govern its own affairs, although each was ultimately loyal to the king in Kale City. True to the traditional politics of the land, each town or city enjoys its own power and is ruled by a baron who in turn commands knights and lord knights, and the supreme power in the land is recognized as the king in Kale City.
Peace was known in Kale for nearly three centuries under the rule of the descendents of Louis and King Kale's progeny. Then in 6900 an alliance between Daven and Kale was formed, and the Decadion War began with the combined forces attacking Orland. Daven eventually fell to the combined might of Orland, Zeland, and Farland in the year 6983 and Kelerak was forced to cease trade with Kale. Then, in 7010, with help from Kale and Kelerak, Daven was able finally to expel the forces of Orland from its borders. Kale was further attacked in the ongoing wars by the Eastern Alliance in 7168 but was able to maintain a temporary victory, and in 7169, in the Battle of the Bend, Kale expelled the troops from the east. The following year, though, Farland returned in force and the fighting continued until, in 7172, Kale's armies were defeated at the Battle of Fenmire. The heroic and legendary Captain Aurel martyred himself so that his men could successfully retreat, thus preventing a total massacre. He was later immortalized by Guisson the poet in "Aurel's Gift." Kale continued to suffer under the might of Farland's fighting prowess. In 7173, Kalais forces were again defeated at the Battle of Kale. Farland and the Eastern alliance pressed on to besiege the city of Kale. Then in 7175 Kale surrendered and was annexed as a province of Farland.
For a period of time thereafter, the Kings of Kale were petty and subject to Farland in all their decisions, and their will was not their own. King Turpin, wandering in sorrow for his lost freedom in the eves of the Greatwood, chanced to meet there a beautiful elven Lady named Rilia. The two fell in love and Petty King Turpin took Rilia to wife; soon she bore him a daughter who was to change the fortunes of Kale, at least temporarily. During the following years, the spawn of their union, the great leader, Queen Sybille Halfelven of Kale, known as The Diplomat, convinced Farland to withdraw from Kale after intense negotiations. Kale agreed to pay yearly tribute. Sybille herself had a daughter she called Belle, who was espoused to King James of the Green Throne of Kelerak. Therefore the blood of the Elves passed also into the line of Kings of Kelerak. The centuries passed thus, with Kale paying tribute to Farland, and Kale prospered as much as can be expected under such conditions.
Then in the year 7439, the dark days of Kale began anew as the court wizard Jaef became the power behind the throne of King Felmat of Kale. Taxes increased tenfold during the years of Jaef's power, and individual freedom, long held sacred by the denizens of Kale, was abolished. King Felmat publicly declared that commoner's lives were the exclusive property of the crown. In a display of power he ordered Jehan, the Captain of Felmat's guard, who was in Jaef's employ, to take ten random commoners in the assembled crowd and summarily put them to death. Sacrifices were also demanded daily from among the populace and it was rumored that these unfortunates were the victims of vampirism. The populace was astonished and word spread surreptitiously that Jaef was the cause of all such grief.
In the year 7487 hope stirred in Kale. A group of heroes was able to infiltrate the castle and slay the court wizard Jaef. They secured many powerful artifacts from Jaef as wergild for their wounds and loss and fled Kale City, fearing the wrath of Jaef's many and terrible agents. Jaef was not dispatched easily, however, and the heroes were severely wounded in the battle. Jaef's most deadly followers were indeed vampires he had long ago summoned to aid his cause. They had long escaped notice hidden deep under the castle in a secret chamber. Jaef had become a powerful mage over the years and his greatest fear was death. Therefore as he grew in age, he called on evil magics and rituals to grant himself immortality. He had since become a lich, a living undead wizard. He had secreted his phylactery, an amulet that he kept in the secret chamber beneath the castle guarded by his vampires, and there his spirit was set to flee if ever his original body were destroyed; hence Jaef guarded himself doubly against death. He was extremely paranoid, however, and only his two vampire servants, himself, and Jehan, the corrupt guardsmen, knew of the location of this hidden chamber. After his death, he was able to instruct his followers speaking to them from the phylactery amulet. He ordered them to follow the fleeing heroes in order to recover his powerful artifacts and a strong human body. Jaef's spirit would be able to live again within this host. The heroes fled far and fast, though their flight was hindered as they were severely wounded from the battle. Worse, one of their group, a mighty cleric of Bestra, had fallen at Jaef's hand; thus healing was impossible to the group. Rest was also denied them, as they were forced to keep moving harried during the day by Captain Jehan's forces and at night by Jaef's loyal vampires. The chase finally ended near the town of Wotun. After a night of defending themselves from the attacks of the vampires, dawn appeared over the horizon and the heroes were finally able to kill the last of the undead servants of Jaef. Just after dawn, however, Captain Jehan appeared on the scene, and the exhausted heroes fought valiantly, dispatching all of their foes except Jehan himself. The battle cost them dearly, however, and as midday approached, the leader of the group, the great warrior Bruyant alone remained alive to face Captain Jehan. Fatigue and lack of rest coupled with his many near-mortal wounds, finally won out and Bruyant fell after a valiant fight. Captain Jehan did not emerge unscathed, however, nearly dying himself in the battle. Meanwhile the townspeople of Wotun had been watching the battle and though timid, were sufficiently enraged to see the valiant heroes fall that they were moved to attack Captain Jehan even as he searched for the artifacts of Jaef. Given Jehan's much weakened state, the townspeople easily overcame him and the last of Jaef's servants fell. The townspeople, being simple folk, did not recognize the artifacts as such and buried all who fell that day with their belongings in their local cemetery, as was their custom. Thus Jaef's plan failed and his spirit was locked in the amulet in the hidden chamber beneath the castle in Kale City for centuries to come, for none were left alive who knew of the secret location.
Thereafter, Kale became more or less peaceful, until again peril came marching from the east. Because of the dark designs of the Dweller, long brewing, an organized army of goblins and goblin-kin marched on Bael led by the Lord of Pride, Thuldin the fallen. They attacked Bael in the year 7792 but failed to take the city. Later that year the mighty city of Bael finally fell under renewed attacks. Two years later Kale City also fell to the Lord of Pride and the dread years of the Dark Occupation began, as the rest of the continent also fell sway to the evil. In the year 7802 the elves attempted to free Kale but after initial success were driven back into the safety of the Belendale. In the following centuries Kale suffered greatly at The Lord of Pride's hand until in 8161 the Elhan Valanduil, the northman Bartarius, and their friends were able to free Kale, although Valanduil unknowingly found the amulet of Jaef and bore it with him, a deed which would later allow the fell lich to return to the world. The two heroes set up a nobleman by the name of Gaidan tentatively as leader of the newly liberated Kale, ruling from the city of Dael. Thinking the kingdom safe, the heroes Valanduil and Bartarius left Kale to try to help Kelerak. Gaidan's rule was short lived, however, as in 8162 the evil hero-assassin Bolg-gatha and his adventuring party The Eye secretly entered the Kingdom of Kale. In a bold maneuver they invaded the city of Dael and slew its newly named Lord. After a fierce battle they escaped back into hiding. Thankfully, in the once great capital of Kale City to the south, there was another who was hard at work to ensure the freedom of Kale.
One of the most respected of the noble families in Kale City before the evil occupation were the valiant family Dukalle. Claiming descent from the original Lord Kale himself, The Dukalles were always known not only for great wealth but also for profound generosity. While they suffered greatly under the rule of the Lord of Pride and many were slaughtered wantonly by his forces, the family lived on mostly because the family Dukalle had been instrumental in Kale's great port trade. Taking great pride in his kingdom's fame and not wanting to risk that fame, Lord Thuldin allowed the family Dukalle to continue its operations relatively unobstructed. Therefore some of the family survived through the occupation while other noble families were entirely wiped out. Thus when liberation came unexpectedly from the north, the generosity and nobility of the remaining Dukalles helped unify the people of Kale City and give them hope. The current head of the family and central in his family's efforts is the charismatic Milon Dukalle. Milon grew up traveling the trade routes so important to his family's position. From the mighty cities of Dael and Bael in the north to the mines of Bessell and ever southwards to Kale City, Milon traveled alongside valuable shipments of trade goods. This life hardened him as monsters and brigands ran rampant under the time of occupation. From an early age Milon learned that there was a time when a well-placed word would save a man's life and others when a man's life depended on his skill with the sword. Milon's father taught him in the ways of great leaders, and his lessons were often dear bought as the penalty for failure was often death. Milon was a good student, though, and of necessity learned quickly how to use his sword to great advantage and became renowned as a master swordsman. Back home in Kale City, he also quickly learned the importance of using his sharp mind and able tongue to talk himself out of life threatening altercations with the Lord of Pride's forces. The people quickly learned to look to Milon when decisions were needed and he enjoyed widespread support amongst the citizens of Kale City. Thus after Gaidan's death, the kingdom needed a leader and Milon saw his chance. Ever a man of action with a streak of ruthlessness, he stepped forward in Kale's time of need and declared himself the rightful ruler of the kingdom. Early after Gaidan's assassination, several noblemen attempted to step forward, but Milon used his charisma and his skill with a sword to oppose them politically or militarily, and he handily dealt with all comers, claiming for himself the title of King. Since these initial skirmishes his rule has gone unopposed and the kingdom of Kale has started to grow again in might under Milon's firm hand.
In peaceful times, the people of Kale, (Kalais as they call themselves, or Kalish for the outsider) are perhaps less religious than their eastern neighbors. The average peasant strives to be independent and provide for his family from that which the land provides. Hunting and trapping are necessary skills for all Kalais men, and though farming is also a necessity, meat is usually procured from the abundant game in the forests of Kale. Children are brought up listening to tall tales of supernatural men who wrestle wild boars to submission bare-handed and shoot mighty stags dead with a single arrow from a hundred paces. Kale has had a history of strife, however, and the populace is easily turned to prayer when a priest of Bestra or Calbran is about during these times. Thus Kalais commoners are known for a combination of hero worship backed by an inherent faith in the power of Calbran and his lady Bestra.
Horses are very much sought after as the sign of a wealthy man in Kale, though they are rare compared to other kingdoms such as the plains kingdom of Orland. While horses are not as important for transportation in Kale, they are important for the hunt that is so popular among the Kalais. Most commoners of Kale will never be able to afford a horse, however, and thus perhaps even more coveted than horses are hunting hounds. A man without a dog is a rare sight outside of the cities. These faithful companions offer additional protection when alone in the wilderness and are quite helpful when hunting. Wealthier men often hunt together and the baying of hounds can be heard for miles as they pursue their prey.
Wheat is the primary crop grown in Kale and is cultivated mostly along the banks of the Dalewash. To the north barley and buckwheat are hardier and thus usually are grown in favor of wheat. The rich farmlands to the northeast in the region of Bael are used primarily for the cultivation of the grapes native to the area. The preferred animal for plowing the fields is the ox, however donkeys and even mules are more common due to the high expense of an ox. Farming crops are more profitable as an export than for one's family's sustenance. Thus most Kalais stick to traditional foraging and hunting for most of their own food and export their crops to bigger cities for profit, using the money to procure farm animals and tools as well as hunting implements. As subsistence farming is rare in Kale, usually many families will band together to work the fields and will split the profits working together with the transporters' guild to get their product to the cities.
Kale has been beset with many dangers throughout its history. Not only have Daven and Kelerak disputed its borders over the centuries, but the Western Wilderness has long been troublesome as well. Wild beasts and wandering monsters have often left the depths of the western forests to attack the human settlements of Kale. More recently, the kingdom of Kale fell to the Lord of Pride, an emissary of the evil forces who seized control of all civilized lands of Farland roughly 400 years ago. During the Lord of Pride's occupation attacks from the wilderness became yet more frequent as evil within the forest grew stronger and less wary of humans. Before the occupation, every year stalwart men would venture into the wilderness to the west and attempt to stake claims there. For some years the borders of Kale thus were moving steadily west as these men armed with their preferred woodsmen's axes would repel beasts and lesser monsters who would creep out of the depths of the forested wilderness. However, since the occupation, this practice has been stopped and men have turned to desperately defending their families and thus the traditional homesteading tradition of the men of Kale has become less common and Kale has become a land of forts heavily defended from outside attacks.
Kalais also suffer from diseases such as the Coughing Plague and the Red Plague, as well as other epidemics, though they are much more of a threat in large cities. Disease was a much larger problem during the years of occupation since people moved to the cities for protection. Traditionally, and now once again since liberation, people tend to live apart from one another, and homesteading is common. Traditional customs pertaining to illness require those who become sick to leave others and travel into the forest until they have regained health. Traditional knowledge of wild healing herbs is also widespread. Thus for many Kalais, disease is less of a problem as in other parts of the world.
Food is a driving force in the life of a commoner of Kale. Foraging brings food to the table more often than farming. Though rich farmlands abound on the banks of the River Dalewash, these fruits of the land are mostly used to feed the populations of the larger cities. A good part of all the crops grown in this area are shipped down river to Kale City. Thus the average peasant is left to forage for wild flora and fauna and meals are usually a soup or stew, called potage without meat and ragout with meat. Denizens of Kale are luckier than most in Farland as game is abundant and therefore protein is not as scarce as in other parts of the continent. Rural citizens of Kale are especially lucky in this respect. The many forests of Kale provide plenty of meat to a good hunter. Dairy products are especially prized and while the wealthy and ruling class are known to have an affinity for cheeses, it is not rare to find a commoner who has never tasted cheese and many haven't even heard of this delicacy. Milk is considered an incredible treat to most and herdsmen therefore are held in extreme regard.
When Lord Kale founded the kingdom of the same name in the year 6560 F.R, an astounding discovery was made to the great joy of the these founders of the kingdom. Wild grapes were found growing throughout the region. Lord Kale, (finding their taste much to his liking,) showed great foresight and immediately ordered these grapes to be cultivated in the area around Kale. While these grapes were delicious and unlike anything Lord Kale had ever tasted, they were nothing when compared to the variety of grapes growing naturally to the north near the lake west of Bael. Humans had yet to learn the art of winemaking as wild grapes are rare elsewhere in Farland. The Elves to the north had long known of the superior quality of the grapes surrounding the lake to the west of Bael and its surrounding valleys. As Lord Kale and his followers explored north, they were met by the elves and were taught many things including the art of making wine. The Kalais, having a taste for strong drink, were able to discover the making of port and it is port that Kale is now mostly known for as opposed to fine wines. Kale today is known far and wide for its grapes and the resulting grape juice, port, and rather expensive wine from the region of Bael are known as far as the Dwarven kingdom of Wawmar, where it is especially prized. Visiting dignitaries to Kale are treated to meals of bread, wine, and cheese, a combination hard to come by elsewhere in the lands of Farland.
Traditional law prior to the arrival of Lord Kale from Daven was unorganized and varied greatly among the various tribes. Common across the lands however, was the custom of dueling, or la lutte. A man, or woman for that matter, was able to challenge another whom he or she felt had committed a crime, to a duel either to first blood or even to death. Another common way of dealing with crime was the paying of a wergild, traditionally in the form of enough meat to hold a feast for the entire clan. More serious crimes were settled by the payment of a wergild of a horse or in rare cases several horses. What leaders there were often meted out punishment in the form of banishment, and the accused would be forced to go off alone, unarmed, into the forested wilderness to the west, never to return. Lord Kale brought a more modern set of laws patterned much after the laws of Daven, though traditional justice is often still practiced in rural areas even today. The laws as set by Lord Kale and later modified by his descendants and as enforced today by King Milon are as follows:
1. Worship of any evil God, including but not limited to the Dark Walker, whose true name shall not be uttered, is hereby deemed unlawful and punishable by death.
2. All citizens of the mighty kingdom of Kale shall swear fealty and obeisance to the king and his consorts and shall follow all rightful decrees he should wish to enforce.
3. His majesty the king shall moreover have to the right to modify any existing law at any time as he sees fit or implement new just laws at will.
4. In the event of murder, let any man, woman, or child have the right to avenge him or herself. Said revenge must be witnessed by at least two other citizens of Kale. If one wishes to forego this right, the leader of the city-state in which the murder occurred may deal justice.
5. All beasts of burden are only to be sold within designated markets in designated market towns. All sales must be witnessed and finalized by the market captain in such designated markets.
6. Any and all of these laws are applicable to citizens of Kale and only citizens of Kale. Any foreigner in the kingdom of Kale must declare himself to local authorities within three days of entering the kingdom and will pay a one-time immigration tax of 10 silver per party.
7. Any foreigner wishing to become a citizen of Kale may pay a one-time processing fee of 10 silver directly to the king in Kale City and then his or her application will be considered by the king himself.
8. No baneful enchantments are to be cast upon the citizens of Kale under penalty of banishment or death.
These 8 laws are considered sacred and are enforced when necessary, though individual power is considered one's right, and thus men are left to fend for themselves in many cases.
The capital city of the kingdom is Kale City to the south. Bael, to the northeast, is second only to the capital in size and fame. It owes its fame largely to the naturally occurring large and luscious grapes found near Lac Marn and now cultivated in all the surrounding lands around Bael. Most other large towns lie along the banks of the River Dalewash. Far to the north almost to the borders of the Belendale lies Dael, a city made famous for its rich farmlands. Dael has also been the historical trading post with the elves to the north, though it has been many years since this trade has prospered. Bares to the west of Dael is mostly known as an outpost of Dael. It grew immensely in size during the years of the evil conquest as men retreated from their homesteads to the west and took up city life. Nice lies to the south of Dael and is another port city on the Dalewash. As it is connected to Bael by road and Kale City, it is one of the most important ports of Kale, as the wine from the Bael region is brought overland to Nice and then shipped south by ferry to Kale City. There is now a near forgotten road leading westwards from Nice. Some say this road once led to an outpost city within the Western Wilderness, and others say that every fifty years or so elves are seen making their way westward using this ancient road. Most deny that it is even a road, though, these days as it is so badly overgrown. Fort Tres lies to the east of Nice on the edge of the Woods of the Lake, and is a rather large outpost along the road north to Selble and then on to Kelerak and east to Bael. To the east of Nice and Dael and north of Bael, and connected to these cities by road, lies the towns of Nyon and Selble and the outpost of Fort Sont, all trading stops on the road to Kelerak. Further south along the Dalewash, Camorfor acts as a small port town for the outpost town of Rentes. Though life is perilous in this area due to the proximity of the Western Wilderness, many choose to live in the area, for work is plentiful. Rentes, though small, knows fame for its superior carpenters and woodworkers. Camorfor is also known for its shipbuilding. Fort Rienne lies further south along the Dalewash and serves mostly as protection for the cargoes ferried south to Kale City and on to Daven, and those cargoes originating from the south and traveling north. Fort Rienne is also the port city for the mining town of Bessell to the east. Bessell is located in the hills west of the Kale Mountains, and there iron deposits have been found in abundance and even trace amounts of copper and silver.
Considering that Kale is bordered to the west by untamed wilderness, the guild of transporters is very important to the Kalais. Caravans of covered wagons drawn by oxen are the preferred method of travel for anyone traveling long distances. The guild of transporters has headquarters in Bael, Dael, and Kale City. They do a thriving business due to the trade goods that must be transported between these cities. Lesser offices are located in Camorfor and Bessell transporting wood and iron ore. Another similar and important guild is the river-sailor's guild with offices in Kale City, Fort Rienne, Camorfor, Nice, and Dael. The guild of boatwrights is especially powerful in Camorfor. Ferries are the most common ship built in Kale and use the current of the mighty Dalewash to travel south and are pulled back north by oxen or mules. In Fetorville is located the main office of the guild of carpenters and woodworkers. Due to more than a thousand-year history of crafting wood products and the ready availability of wood in the forest to the west, these men have earned great fame as master woodworkers. There is a secondary office in Kale City where they mostly deal in business matters trading and selling their goods. The guild of miners is located in Bessell and nearby Fort Rienne. Smelting is underdeveloped in Kale and most of the ore mined in Bessell is exported to Kelerak and even as far as the distant Dwarven kingdom of Wawmar. The mercenaries' guild has maintained itself for many years, even during the Dark Occupation, as the Lord of Pride provided them with work to supplement his less-than-reliable goblin army. Recently, new work has been found for unscrupulous Kalais mercenaries, as the dark warlord Afej has hired anyone treacherous enough to work for him. These mercenaries have revived the old adage unjustly held among the Kelerites that the men of Kale are liars and betrayers. Lastly, the guild of herdsmen has a small headquarters in Fort Tress but mostly herdsmen are semi-nomadic and do a rather thriving business traveling in groups from village to village selling the much-desired milk from their goats and cows.
When Thuldin the fallen, the Lord of Pride, entered the lands of Kale in 7792 F.R, he concentrated mainly on taking Kale City and assumed full control of that city. He failed to realize the individualist spirit of the Kalais, though, and as long as his under-bosses ensured that port and wine still came south from Bael and ore was still arriving in Kale City from Bessell, he spent little energy traveling the lands, rarely leaving Kale City. Thus, the individual citizen of Kale never stopped thinking of himself as a free man, at least in his innermost heart of hearts. As the yoke of the Lord of Pride became more oppressive, however, the citizens of Kale turned their minds openly towards freedom and as the generations passed, the fighting spirit they inherited from their barbarian ancestors stirred. Thus when the heroes Valanduil of the Belendale and Bartarius Outelion of the northmen came, they were only too happy to help rid their beloved land of the evil that was oppressing them. Always, the Kalais have been a fighting people and as many of them never gave up their barbarian traditions completely, they are easy to anger in times of war. Though the fate of Kelerak to the east is precarious today, and Daven to the south has become a wasteland full of undead, Kale seems to be faring well for the time being. There is no immediate threat to the kingdom, and King Milon enjoys widespread popularity among his peoples. The attacks from the forests to the west have slackened in recent years and there is talk among the peoples of starting once again to slowly move their borders westwards, especially in the area of Fetorville, where wood is always in high demand.
The total area of the Kingdom of Kale is roughly 28,000 square miles. Roughly 28% of this area is arable land, the remaining area is divided among wilderness, rivers, lakes, and the like.
Kale's population is approximately 1,000,000 persons, 99% of which are humans. The remainder are dark folk, mostly goblins, who live as brigands in the wilderness.
- 626,000 residents are isolated or itinerant.
- 289,000 residents live in 2000 small villages and hamlets.
- 40,000 residents live in 10 towns.
- 45,000 residents live in 3 cities (Kale, Bael, and Dael). There are no large cities in Kale.
Kale supports 2,220,000 head of livestock, 1,496,000 of which are fowl and 704,000 of which are herd animals.