Monday, 13 February 2012

Cortacus - the Wild Land

Cortacus is a large island off the north-west coast of Toutus. As far as islands go, it is big, measuring 600 miles or so from east to west, and 150 miles from north to south, and it sits on the west side of the Walrus Freehold, north of the Vareshiss Islands
Unlike quite a few regions where I have gone into detail and mapped the relevant area, I shall leave Cortacus unmapped, at least for the time being. The thinking behind this is that even before the Summoning, Cortacus was mostly wilderness. The parts that have been mapped - the eastern end with Najask, Fjordport and the Orgrist Hills, and the southern edge abutting the Varreshiss Islands - are mapped because they are relatively close to civilised areas and towns where human cartographers and explorers may gather. 
The central and western part are almost unknown to humans. They know that it exists, and the Toutatians have sailed round the coast so they know its dimensions, but its interior is almost total mystery. 


Nonetheless, there are rumours and third-hand accounts of what could be found in central Cortacus - some of these should be taken with a pinch of salt:

  • A civilization of stone giants who have excavated and hollowed out entire mountains into giant-sized strongholds
  • Tribes of fire giants and frost giants who war with each other and use human barbarians and ogres as proxies
  • A red dragon ruler who dominates human barbarians, forcing them to mine for gems and gold on pain of being eaten
  • An entire citadel of chaos cultists who have been established from way before the Summoning, who have allies and emissaries all over Toutus including the Red Hand and the Traitor Legion
  • A race of winged centaurs calling themselves Pegataurs 
  • The ruins of the Turrokoth Despotship of hobgoblins, mentioned in the book "The Histories of the Ancients", containing the Despot's lost treasure gathered from decades of raiding human cultures
  • A tribe of amazon women who keep their menfolk in chains and ruthlessly cull sick or crippled men. 
  • A rookery of large rocs, dominated by the biggest giant roc ever seen
  • A tower of untarnished white metal reaching a mile up into the sky, where an incredibly powerful wizard has mastered the secrets of immortality but prefers academic research to conquest or physical wealth
  • An underground cavern network (perhaps connected to the Underworld?) where reptilian humanoids domesticate and herd dinosaurs and giant lizards. 
  • The remains of a failed Toutatian colony on the western end. The ruins of the town are haunted by various undead creatures as well as the evil spirits that brought about the colony's demise

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