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|image = .png
|fullname = Kingdom of Nordskag
|fullname = Kingdom of Nordskag
Northerne (Tunge), Common
|languages = , Common
|population = ,000
Nordskag a a of the [[Regalian Empire]]. the to the , is in [], the a and , in
, a kingdom famed for its history and military, is currently a vassal of the [[Regalian Empire]]. From the rugged terrain to the deepest marshes, Nordskag is a frosty island chain that features great diversity in environment. Home to hardy Northerne [[ Ailor]], the kingdom boasts a well-trained and disciplined army, taking part in many of Regalia’s wars and conflicts. Worship of the [[ Old Gods]] is a prominent part in any Nordskagian’s life, with the Union of Air being heavily supported amongst the militaristic, soldierly people. However, where the kingdom prospers in military, it falls short in domestic economy and infrastructure. The islands of Nordskag face many difficult challenges when it comes to the economy, as agriculture is poor, and many industries are either failing or in a weak state due to the national emphasis on warfare.
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Following the fall of the [[ Elven Empire]] and the consequent [[Void Invasion]], many Ailor slaves saw the opportunity to flee and made their way northwards through Ithania to eventually what would become Nordskag. Many Ailor of Nordskag today claim their ancestry from the migrants who fled to the island chain. When the Cataclysm arose a few years later, these Ailor had already settled down amidst the islands and formed their own communities.
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After the disastrous [[ Cataclysm]], these Ailor, now part of a [[Northerne]] culture, were safe from the civil war that occurred in Daendroc amongst the [[Nelfin]]. In 3 A.C., many men and women remained on the southern isle of Sydligsteg, though eventually vigor for exploration and expansion pushed them further to what would now be Midtenna within five years. Banding together under one of the main ringleaders, the plucky folk built a small village in the bay that would someday be Kongehjem. This certain man, known as Jjol Ragnvald, became the first official king of Nordskag, and united the smaller groups of Ailor underneath him in the year 9 AC. Kongehjem’s great construction came about in 32 AC.
The Ragnvald lineage ruled Nordskag for over a century, with the family’s royal heirs encouraging and even enforcing migration into the northern island of Nordligga, and finishing the mighty city of Kongehjem on Midtenna. It became a tendency for people to avoid the marshlands and instead frequent the woods and mountains, whereas fishing villages and townships sprung up along the coast. These one hundred years are what is known as the Velstandfrist, meaning the prosperous times. However, peace and plenty were not for long, as the kingdom of Nordskag was drawn into a crippling war with the Regalian Empire under King Tomasz Ragnvald in 179 AC. This war was difficult, and cost the lives of many Nordskagian men. The Ragnvald dynasty was overthrown by their own people, who were devastated at the tremendous loss of life and the crippling economic handicaps of the war. Quickly after the family’s deposition, one of Tomasz’s advisors usurped the throne in 184 AC , initiating the brief rule of Schaksson dynasty.
King Olai was the first king to introduce the feudal system in 192 AC, modeled after that of Regalia, creating baronial roles to assist him in governing his lands. Under the rule of Olai Schaksson, the subjugation of Nordskag under Regalia occurred in 235 AC at the hands of Arch-Chancellor Morgann Kade, henceforth ending years of negative and hostile opinions of the Empire. This act was taken with difficulty by many who saw the Empire to be the body which slaughtered their people and diminished their prowess. The new monarch assured his people that Nordskag, despite being financially ruined during the war all those years past, would become more powerful with the aid of their former enemies; being vassalized would lead to a rise in trade, support, and wealth for the country. Some time after his reforms, however, Schaksson died of a debilitating fever in 241 AC. This allowed his cousins, the Krummes, to take the throne. The Krummes rebuilt and completely restructured the military, supported the funding of lumber camps, and gave Nordskag repute during the Chrysant War against the Naylar. Nordskag has seen significant changes under the Krumme’s rule, though has remained poor nonetheless.
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Looking to Nordskag today, the land has suffered recently due to the loss of Nordskag soldiers in the [[Elven War]] of 302 AC, and further losses of many young men who had signed up as part of the [[Ithanian|Ithania]] colonial levies during the proxy wars against the [[Qadir]]. Nonetheless, Nordskag remains loyal and supportive of Regalia and the Emperor, steadily regaining its strength, though still stuck in a situation where internal political squabbling is rife and therefore hinders economic and political progression. [[ King Markus Krumme]] remains ill, though keeps a steady presence in the court.
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Nordskag, meaning Northwards, is an ancient name in the Northerne language of Tunge. It was named this long ago when the Ailor migrated northwards and settled in the frosty lands away from Daendroc, developing the Tunge language over the years . Nordskag itself does have separate names for each island, these being these being Nordligga (the northernmost island), Midtenna (the central island), and Sydligsteg (the southernmost island). The names are rather simplistic and have literal translations: Nordligga means northern, Midtenna means middle, and Sydligsteg means southern.
The capital city of Nordskag is Kongehjem, which means King’s home. This is again literal, as it is where the monarch’s palace resides.
Nordskag is situated to the north of Ithania, and just below [[ Jorrhildr]] . Comprised of three islands, Nordskag is dominated mainly by mountainous terrain. The mountains, capped with snow, hold deposits of copper and coal within them. The mountains tend to smoothen out into valleys and hilly basins with beautiful lakes. Dense pine forests dot these mountainsides and valleys, home to wolves, boars, deer, and other woodland animals. Due to the poor quality of the land, many hamlets and villages can be found bordering these forests instead. Further down from the forests can be found low-lying marshland, full of ice-coated ponds, mucky soil and reeds. The land can become akin to a quagmire, especially in the summer when the permafrost begins to melt and the mud thickens into bogs. Many bird and fish species can be found in these marshes, as well as a variety of hardy fruit-bearing plants. Not all of Nordskag shares the same mire-like conditions, as the southernmost island of the country has more arable, fertile land and is therefore where much of the farming takes place.
land gradually evens out closer to the coast and is accompanied by lighter woodland and coppices, alongside small lakes and pebble-strewn shores. High chalky cliffs are found where the land rises, and the northern coast of Midtenna and Nordligga is peppered with sea stacks where the cliffs have eroded. For residents of Nordskag, larger settlements seem to be more favorable on the coastlines of the islands due to the sturdier land and distance from the wetlands. The capital city, Kongehjem, is just one example of these settlements.
Nordskag is generally quite cold due to its position nearer to the north of Aloria, with arduous, chilly winters, mild spring and moderate summers. Temperatures average from 37.4°F (3°C) to 50°F (10°C), though can drop significantly come the winter months. This doesn’t necessarily apply to parts of the southern island Sydligsteg, as the offshore winds from Ithania blow a cooler breeze. The weather is quite foul, however. Nordskag is unlucky enough to be met with regular rainstorms, which further worsens the quality of the soil due to the excess water seeping through it. Snow flurries aren’t altogether uncommon either, especially higher up in the mountain passes. The spring time is generally seen as a period of relief, as the snow recedes, the rainfall becomes lighter, and the temperatures rise.
:Kongehjem is the capital of Nordskag, an ancient city on the coast of the Midtenna island. It was first constructed in 32 AC in a natural bay, protected from the strong sea wind and making it an excellent port. The buildings here are made of stone with wooden beams, and often packed in tightly. These are all built upon the sloping walls of the bay. Kongehjem is famous throughout the Kingdom for the overpowering stench of fish that wafts up through the streets from the many fish markets that line the waterfront.
:Found higher up from the city of Kongehjem is the Kongeslot palace, a home for the Krumme family and the official court of Nordskag. Kongeslot is a rather imposing castle with fortified battlements and leering gargoyles, hewn from dark granite and fashioned upon a large rock arch upon the cliff face. Although boasting an expansive view over the sea and city below, there have been fears that someday in the future the entire Kongeslot will tumble down into the waves as natural erosion on the rock arch takes its toll.
:Located in one of Nordligga’s can be found the serene lake Stillevand. Stillevand, meaning calm water, is the largest inland source of water that Nordskag has to offer, and runs off into several waterfalls and rivers. It also has an abundance of freshwater fish, including salmon and trout that inhabit the lake’s deep recesses. As a consequence, Stillevand is normally beset with many land feuds from vying barons who wish to make a claim over it and have access to its fishing rights.
has been ruled as a monarchy for centuries, with a feudal system set in place underneath King Olai Schaksson. Nordskag is overseen by a king with many barons underneath him who govern their land, and pay taxes to him. The current king, Markus Krumme, is old and sickly, and therefore does not have such a tight hold over the runnings of his country as he did when he was younger. This has led to squabbling amongst the aristocracy for land and power, with some barons resorting to blackmail, bankruptcy, and brutal force to absorb weaker families and eradicate competition. As a result, the island of Nordligga is affected the worst by feuds and squabbles for land due to it having the worst climate out of all isles in the Nordskag chain. Midtenna, the main island of Nordskag, generally has a less volatile political situation amongst the barons due to Krumme having his seat of power there. Nonetheless, families will make determined efforts to overcome others if they see the opportunity for a chance at power arise.
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===List of Rulers===
===List of Rulers===
Before the Cataclysm - Ailor groups
*Cataclysm to AC - Various groups of Ailor
*0 AC to 9 AC - Various groups of Ailor
*AC to AC - Jjol Ragnvald
9 AC to 40 AC - Jjol Ragnvald
*AC to AC - Harald Ragnvald
40 AC to 79 AC - Harald Ragnvald (Died of dysentery, throne passed onto brother)
*AC to AC - Friedrich Ragnvald
79 AC to 142 AC - Friedrich Ragnvald (Died of old age, rule passed onto son)
*AC to AC - ()
142 AC to 184 AC - Tomasz Ragnvald ( Deposed)
*AC to AC -
184 AC to 241 AC - Olai Schaksson (Died of a fever, rule passed to cousin)
*241 AC to AC - Markus Krumme
*241 AC to
303 AC - Markus Krumme
===Foreign Relations ===
The kingdom is classified as a
substate, or vassal, under the Regalian Empire, and therefore owes allegiance to the Empire . Nordskag essentially works for Regalia , paying a yearly percentage of taxes as tribute, and having many men drafted into the Regalian army and Imperial Fleet from Nordskag’s lands. This is not to say that the two have always had a good relationship, as they were once at war, with Nordskag only being subjugated in 235 AC by Arch-Chancellor Morgann Kade. Trade with Regalia goes on slowly with the main import being grain and food resources from the Angle lands.
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is fairly liberal when it comes to foreign relations, being on good terms with the Ithanian kingdoms, and happy to work alongside other neighbours. Even though they are happy to co-operate with Ithania, those of the D’Ithanie culture regard Nordskagians to be barbarians. This willingness to co-operate with allies of Regalia is mainly due to the poor economic state of Nordskag, as the King and his government hope that better relations will mean more money and more prosperity.
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On the other hand, the Kingdom of Nordskag does have its enemies. For instance, due to the hostilities between the Empire and the Qadir Pasha, Nordskag shares the same negative views of the Qadir and refuses any relations with those of [[ Farah’deen]]. This is also worsened due to the occasional presence of slavers who sail up past the Nordskag chain in order to enslave [[Urs|Ur]] and [[Thylans|Thylan]] from the nearby [[Koari Federation]] and [[Ursula Federacy]] of Jorrhildr.
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Nordskag’s best asset is its army, the army itself forming a portion of the Regalian Armed Forces. Men who wish to pursue a soldier’s life are recruited around the age of sixteen and trained for four years. The training is often quite tasking, with activities such as swimming in chilly ponds to build stamina, sparring early in the morning on the beaches, or taking mid-afternoon runs through the spacious highland woods being just a few of the many vigorous pursuits.
military is thus split into two main divisions. One division is that of the Spydenhed, men famed for their skill with spears and bows as a light force. These men tend to act as the scouts, runners and archers of the army. The other is the Tvangruppe, who feature as Nordskag’s typical infantry with swords and shields. A separate wing of the military is the King’s honor guard, named the Bashturr Akser (the axes of Bashturr). These are soldiers hand- picked by the royal administration to serve and protect the royal family of Nordskag. They are infamous for their use of curved axes to cleave their enemies open, breeding a feared brutality of them. It is customary for one son of a baron to join the military, and they are usually absorbed into the ranks of the Bashturr Akser, having had access to weapon training from youth. Naturally when the Tvangruppe and Spydenhed serve under Regalia in the army, they tend to assimilate with the other troops and lose their names, though their fighting methods remain the same.
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uniform for those of the Nordskag army varies for each division. Spydenhed soldiers tend to be presented with light leather armor and furs, the armor itself highlighted with dark blue cloth. On the other hand, Tvangruppe warriors customarily wear steel armor or chainmail, alongside having rounded shields that are painted dark blue and marked with the stag symbol of Nordskag.
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Lastly come the Bashturr Akser, who wield axes and wear very little in the way of armor. They will wear an assortment of steel armor, though the norm is to go bare chested so to show off one’s tattoos, and to hopefully gain a scar. Although impractical, these soldiers believe that each scar gained in combat against an enemy will gain them favor from the deity Bashturr, and they will proceed to tattoo around the scar after.
Economy and Technology==
The economy of Nordskag is not the best. Although Nordskag runs on the Regal currency, the economy’s problems are due to the issues within the aristocracy where barons and landowners have the tendency to argue and disrupt economic flow, but also as a result of the poor land. Nordskag is fairly expansive, but land suitable for agriculture is rather minor. Marshlands and bogs take up a large proportion of the low-lying land, and the cold climate further impedes this. Nordskag therefore relies on the lumber and fishing industries to gain coin, using the pine from the forests and the fish from the lakes and sea to trade. Ergo, fishermen and lumberjacks are the biggest forms of employment underneath the military.
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Mining also occurs on all of the islands, though Midtenna boasts the most profitable copper and coal mines within the Nordskag chain, and there are a few quarries on Nordligga that mine granite and stone, though these are typically small. Alcohol is also a fairly popular product of Nordskag. Made within breweries found in the marshes of Midtenna, the kingdom sells a special distilled spirit named Sumpbær. This is made from the berries that grow in the mire, and the Sumpbær is an exceptionally strong, sour-tasting concoction that warms the throat and heart.
*Northerne Ailor - 88% [[ category:Ailor Demographics]]
*Regalisch Ailor - 6%
*Ithanian Ailor - 2%
*Ur - 4% [[category:Ur Demographics]]
When looking towards Nordskag’s culture, the Northerne influences are evident. However, many influences from Regalia still remain, more so when it comes to law. The law is strict in Nordskag, following the same rules and as those in the Regalian Archipelago. Be that as it may, jails and prisons are rare, mainly found in the few major towns and the city of Kongehjem. As a result of this, some prisoners are sent off to locations high in the mountain forests where they serve their sentence as woodcutters in guarded lumber camps.
Wealth is a touchy subject for those of Nordskag, as around 80% of the population are the peasantry and either live in destitution or mild poverty, leaving the aristocratic families of baronial status with the money. Family sizes vary. Because of the need for a child to be conscripted into Nordskag’s army at age 15, lower class families will normally bear four or five children so that they have others to continue working for the family. On the other hand, nobles will have smaller-sized families of around two to three children, with the youngest son usually being raised for an army-based position for when he becomes a teenager.
The attire of the lower classes is that of cloth and wool at best, usually dyed in reds, browns and greens, though leather and tanned hides are also fashionable. Being of Northerne descent means that it’s common for people to dress themselves with furs. Wolf and deer pelts are the most desirable due to the warmth they give. Barons, on the other hand, reserve themselves to better clothing, enjoying the opportunity to get better tailored clothes. One of the main things that doesn’t separate the two societal castes is the cultural use of tattooing, with typical dark or blue Northerne tattoo markings and designs. It is customary for people of the islands to grow their hair in different fashions; those of Nordligga enjoy shaving the sides of their heads, Midtenna folk have hair of medium length with braids, and people from Sydligsteg will often grow their hair long and plaited, regardless of gender.
Food-wise, the staple diet is that of fish, bread, and a few varieties of vegetable and tuber which the commonfolk can grow in the soil. Trappers who catch hares will sell these on too, but deer are usually protected on a baron’s land for the sole right of the baron to hunt or eat.
The architecture of Nordskag is also basic. Many builders can’t afford fancy homes, bar those employed by nobility. Therefore, buildings and abodes are fashioned from pine and forest wood, with log cabins being the most common sight. This is not strictly true for the city of Kongehjem or other major towns, which use stone.
home to predominantly Old Gods believers. People of the kingdom, being strongly in favor of military strength, tend to hold the Union of Air as their preferred worship. Bashturr is therefore one of the most attractive deities to those of Nordskag, so much so that the King’s royal guard is named after him, and there are often small sparring rings and arenas to be found where he is honored through duels and fights. King Markus is a fanatical believer in the Old Gods deity, Handrin. He does all he can to try and please Handrin, hoping that his reign will be elongated for a few more years.
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’s influence in Nordskag is minor and held by some of the Regalian Ailor who live there. The government does try to appease Regalia though, having built an Unionist chapel in each town.
Nordskag’s flag features a grey stag standing proudly, set against a backdrop of dark blue. This stag is meant to represent the historical figurehead of
the Ailor settlers, Jjol Ragnvald, who supposedly wore the antlers and pelt of a deer on his person. For those of Nordskag, a stag symbolises regal power and prestige, which is one of the reasons why hunting stags and deer is forbidden for all bar the [[nobility ]]. A more toned-down national image is simply a stag’s head ringed by a circle of dark blue lines .
Nordskag’s flag features a grey stag standing proudly, set against a backdrop of dark blue. This stag is meant to represent the historical figurehead of Jjol Ragnvald, who supposedly wore the antlers and pelt of a on his person. For those of Nordskag, a stag regal power and prestige, which is one of the reasons why hunting stags and deer is forbidden for all bar the nobility. A more toned-down national image is simply a stag’s head ringed by a circle of dark blue lines.
Baronial families take their crests from the trade or commodity that is special to them. An example of this would be the Krebsdyrit family from the east coast of Midtenna - their noble crest features a crab and lobster in combat, which reflects the abundance of crustaceans within their seaside barony.
For believers of folklore and legend, it is told that the Old Gods deity Alu is the reason for the sodden marshes. It is for this reason that the marshes are called the Alumose.
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The Nordskagian language Tunge is similar to real life Danish. Speakers of Tunge tend to have firm, yet pleasant voices.
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Over the past few years, small bands of Ur have been seen migrating from Jorrhildr to Nordligga in Nordskag, settling down in the higher hill regions. Most of the Nordskagians respect the Urs’ choice of seclusion and therefore leave them be, but hunters have been spotted recently making their way into the valleys and returning home with fine ursine pelts.
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Category:Geography]] [[ Category:Nations and States]] [[ Category: Extended Northerne Continents]]
[[:Geography]] [[:Nations and States]] [[:]]
The Kingdom of Nordskag was a nation established from the ashes of a defeated enemy of the Regalian Empire, which grew to become a great Velheim state. Sadly, for some anyway, Regalia came again and conquered their old foe, joining them to their expanding Empire. Today, the Nordskaggers contribute large sums of valuable and experienced troops to the Regalian Military, and though their nobility is as bickering as those in the Regalian Archipelago, the nation remains stable. Nordskaggers are also known for their fine alcohols, the one product that stands out besides their soldiers in a generally basic economy, and their spirits are enjoyed the world over, even if their Velheim society often is not by those who suffered mightily at the hands of that Culture in the past.
The Kingdom of Nordskag takes its name from a simple combination of words. Nord was a term sometimes applied to people of the north by the ancient Ailor and Altalar, while also being another term for the cardinal point of north. Then Skag, a shortened form of Skagger, which was the term used to refer to an individual of the Skagger Horde of the Regalian Archipelago. That population moved en-mass to what is now the North Skags, thus also giving the region its name and also naming the large island that they settled on most, itself called Nordskag. This is somewhat ironic as Nordskag is actually the island farthest south out of three land masses in the North Skags, though when it was named, outsiders were unaware of the other two regions.
Nordskag can trace its origins to the Skagger Horde, who’s last members that left the Regalian Archipelago in 179 AC. The defeated of the Skagger Wars fled the Regalian Empire, seeking new land to settle and survive in. Their scouts found and made contact with those Velheim already in the North Skags, and so at the end of 179 AC, the region experienced a great injection of people. While many went to smaller Hvitskag, promptly overcrowding it and causing conflict, the much larger region of Nordskag and its already sparse population was extensively and effectively settled by the leadership of the Skagger Horde that remained. But these leaders were both young and old, and saw the old ways (that of separate tribes and clans) as weakening to their cause. The Regalians had divided and conquered them, using their rivalries to destroy each other. Thus, they chose to elect a king from among their number to unite their people. The resulting moot lasted one month long and saw twelve duels, six brawls, and one murder. But in the end Jjol “The Joyful” was chosen, and his family, the Ragnvalds, were uplifted to take control of the fledgling nation. A bear of a man, quick to jest and laugh just as quick as he was to throw a punch, Jjol went across Nordskag appointing various men and women to the position of barons and baronesses to help rule over the new nation. This early time is seen as the best in Nordskag’s history, when there was a spirit of cooperation and genuine peace between the many types of Velheim within its borders. However, that slowly began to end after 200 AC.
In that year, Jjol decided that his people needed a good war to unite them even further and so he targeted Hvitskag, still quarrelsome and a tangle of loyalties that he thought would be an easy target. Instead, he was bogged down into a quagmire of conflict, and the Hvitskaggers united into their own monarchy to oppose him. He died in 203 AC back in Nordskag, a life of enjoying drink and women wantonly finally getting the better of him, whereupon he was succeeded by his first son, Harald. Harald was an earnest king, but he saw the conflict in Hvitskag as a grindstone that merely sharpened two identical blades at the same time and ultimately pulled out of the conflict. Many disliked this decision, but his push to encourage colonization across all of the island, as well as engage in foreign trade, seemed to placate people. However, he fell into conflict with the Regalian Empire. Alexander the Giant led a conflict against the Nordskaggers and the war that came afterward was fierce, Harald himself dying not long after it began. Alexander then pressed his advantage, but he wildly underestimated the power of the Nordskaggers, and was ultimately cornered and killed a year later in 216 AC, his death dealt in retaliation for the nation’s fallen ruler.
His brother, Friedrich, continued his brother’s policies, but any plans he had to maybe deviate from them came to a screeching halt when he died of dysentery. This then saw the regency of the Queen’s brother, Olai Schaksson, for the young son of Harald, in what many Velheim consider to be their worst period of ruling history. Olai wasn’t a warrior, yet he did have good generals, and so the war continued for several years. However, it ultimately lulled as while peace was never declared, no new offensives took place for a number of years. For the next decade, Olai ruled decently, however, he was finally ousted from power when Tomasz Ragnvald came of age. There was also a scandal involving Olai and Tomasz’s older sister, the two being secretly married as each other's main spouses despite both already possessing main spouses, thus casting his reign in an even poorer light. Tomasz proved to be just as controversial as his regent. Some might call him a passionate youth, while in the mind of others he was violent and irresponsible, but what is sure is that he didn’t rule for long. By the end of 240 AC, he was dead, killed under vague circumstances but generally understood to be a brawl within the palace walls. To say the barons and baronesses had had enough of the Ragnvald line was an understatement, and thus they passed over them all, and bestowed the crowd to Markus Krumme, the young patriarch of the Krumme cadet line formed by Jjol Ragnvald and one of his Hildrae. Krumme ruled adequately for several years, only to have the Regalian Empire come roaring back onto the scene in 250 AC. Their new offensive was bold and aggressive, and Markus quickly saw a grim future for his people if they kept fighting. Thus, he surrendered two years later, and the Kingdom of Nordskag joined the Regalian Empire.
Many barons and baronesses hated this decision, but over the next 50 years, Markus ruled fairly and bought them off by further decentralizing the Nordskag bureaucracy. All he required was a supply of levies when requested, and an adherence to certain Regalian regulations in terms of trade. His son, Osvald, was sent and educated by the Viridian Order, and the nation prospered as its soldiers fought for the Regalian Empire on many fronts. Within the past several years though, great changes have challenged their society. First was the chaos of the Bone Horror Crisis, which saw thousands of frozen undead rise to menace the North Skags. The population was originally very weak to this threat, but the hostile land worked in their favor and the vast hordes that originally formed were soon split up or sent tumbling into geographical traps. When the Bone Horrors became killable, the Velheim crushed the largest hordes of these profaned undead thanks to help from Regalian forces seeking to aid in the reconquest of their disrupted Empire. Then, in 305, Markus Krumme died. The stress on his aged form from fleeing the Bone Horrors and the rough trek he underwent ultimately became too much for him, and he never recovered in the months following his return to Nordskag’s capital. Thus, Osvald Krumme arrived and proved that while Regalian in education, he was Velheim in spirit and made it clear he was not a puppet. He helped to lead a successful, final conquest of the Hvitskag Horde with Regalia’s help, dismantling their monarchy though he was unable to properly reinforce his possessions due to the stern urgings of the Mirnoye. In the aftermath of this, he led several Velheim states in seceding from the Regalian Empire during the Anglian Mist Crisis, citing the poor treatment of the Velheim within the Regalian Archipelago. This breach was ultimately mended, and Nordskag has rejoined the Empire, once again sending their soldiers off to fight for the Regalian Empire.
Nordskag is a decentralized monarchy that follows Velheim ideas of limited government or statecraft within their society. At the top is a king, who is hereditary, albeit the will of the barons and baronesses disinherited the now-vanished bloodline of Ragnvald. The king has the right to govern the land and deal with foreign nations, and has several special posts within his court he awards to those he deems as useful. Beneath him is a simple feudal structure, with barons and baronesses ruling over baronies in the name of the king. Technically, all owe him their fealty, pay taxes to him based on their region’s production, supplying troops when he requests, and maintain societal order. In the last four decades of Markus’ reign, he loosened his strictness over these requirements, save the troop supplying regulation, and thus allowed the nobility to enrich themselves which calmed their irritation from being ruled by the Regalians. But this has led to squabbling amongst the aristocracy for land and power, with some resorting to blackmail, bankruptcy, and brutal force to absorb weaker families and eradicate competition. This is worse in the north and west of the nation, with the south and east are fairly passive due to the large influx of foreigners in the south, and due to Krumme lands being in the west around the capital city of Kongehaug. Nonetheless, families will make determined efforts to overcome others if they see the opportunity for a chance at power arise in both peaceful regions. Beneath them are the local chiefs, Jovrlov and more of traditional Velheim Culture, who oversee their own small territory in the name of the baron or baroness they serve. They are also typically responsible for tax collection.
List of Rulers
- Pre-Cataclysm to 180 AC - Various groups of Ailor
- 181 AC to 203 AC - Jjol “The Joyful” Ragnvald
- 203 AC to 216 AC - Harald Ragnvald
- 216 AC to 222 AC - Friedrich Ragnvald
- 223 AC to 233 AC - Olai Schaksson (Regency)
- 233 AC to 240 AC - Tomasz Ragnvald
- 241 AC to 305 AC - Markus Krumme
- 305 AC to Present - Osvald Krumme
The laws of the Kingdom of Nordskag are those of Velheim Culture, and its officers are the Jovrlov. The only quirks are primarily Regalian taxation regulations and rules instituted onto the region by the Regalian Empire as the kingdom is their vassal. As for the rank of citizens, Nordskag follows the system as laid out in the Regalian Laws of the Regalian Empire, and even then the full breadth of these Laws is not present within the rugged, largely rural and wild kingdom that still follows many old and local Velheim ways.
The kingdom is classified as a sub-state, or vassal, under the Regalian Empire, and therefore owes allegiance to that nation. The original contract drawn between the Regalian Empire, whose head negotiator was the infamous Morgann Kade, and King Markus Krumme, was this: Regalia would extract a yearly tax as tribute from the nation, while also supplying men to fulfill quotas created by the Regalian Military. In return, their trade was allowed unimpeded with all nations and the Imperial Navy would take on the workload of defending their lands. Despite Regalia’s war with Nordskag, the two are generally on good terms, as most within their lands have a begrudging respect for the powerful nation and are also grateful for being given a chance to earn Soldi in the field of battle when serving with the Empire. The treatment of Velheim is still an issue though, and Nordskag even left the Empire for several months as a protest move, though it should be noted that the move also occurred when Regalia was weak and relations were rapidly patched up.
Generally speaking, Regalia’s enemies are Nordskag’s enemies, though there is a particular bit of animosity between Nordskag and the Ithanian Sovereignty despite both being Ailor and residing within the Regalian Empire. The Ithanians cannot forgive the Velheim for their raiding practices, which while they have greatly reduced, still occur and have not been stopped despite the decades-long length of the issue. As a result, the Ithanians often see the land as a place to exile their most failed nobility and citizens who cannot be killed, though in practice many Ithanians when given the options ultimately choose Nordskag over other exile locations since it is still close to Ithania, the people are largely Ailor, and it is still part of the Regalian Empire. Additionally, what better place is there to avoid being raided than by living with the raiders? Nordskag once had a fierce rivalry with the much smaller Hvitskag but have now conquered that nation, this for the moment, deciding their contest of strength.
Nordskag’s best asset is its army, which forms a portion of the Regalian Military. Men who wish to pursue a soldier’s life are recruited around the age of sixteen and trained for four years. The training is often quite tasking, with activities such as swimming in chilly ponds to build stamina, sparring early in the morning, or taking mid-afternoon runs through the spacious highland woods as just a few of the many vigorous pursuits. After this period, they are considered “graduated” and are sorted into the military, which is divided into two divisions in Nordskag. The first is the Spydenhed, men famed for their skill with spears and bows as a light force. These men tend to act as the scouts, runners, and archers of the army. The other is the Tvangruppe, who feature as Nordskag’s typical infantry with swords and shields. A separate wing of the military is the King’s honor guard, named the Basjtur Akser (the Axes of Basjtur). These are soldiers hand-picked by the royal administration to serve and protect the royal family of Nordskag. They are infamous for their use of curved axes to cleave their enemies open, breeding a feared brutality in their combat style. It is customary for one son of a baron to join the military, and they are usually absorbed into the ranks of the Basjtur Akser, given most have had access to weapon training from youth. Naturally, when the Tvangruppe and Spydenhed serve under Regalia in the army, they tend to assimilate with the other troops and lose their names, though their fighting methods remain the same.
The uniform for those of the Nordskag army varies for each division. Spydenhed soldiers tend to be presented with light leather armor and furs, the armor highlighted with dark blue cloth. On the other hand, Tvangruppe warriors customarily wear Steel armor or chainmail, alongside having rounded shields that are painted dark blue and marked with the stag symbol of Nordskag. Lastly comes the Basjtur Akser, who wield axes and wear very little in the way of armor. They will wear an assortment of Steel armor, though the norm is to go bare-chested so to show off one’s tattoos, and hopefully gain a scar. Although impractical, these soldiers believe that each scar gained in combat against an enemy will gain them favor from the deity Basjtur, and they will proceed to tattoo around the scar after.
The economy of Nordskag is not very robust. The economy’s problems are due to the issues within the aristocracy where barons and landowners have the tendency to argue and disrupt the economic flow, but also as a result of the wild land. Nordskag is fairly expansive, but land suitable for agriculture is only found in the south. Marshlands and bogs take up a large proportion of the low-lying northern regions, and the cold climate found there year-round further impedes this. Nordskag, therefore, relies on the lumber, mining and fishing industries to gain coin, and use the pine from the forests and the fish from the lakes, rivers, and sea to trade. Thus, fishermen and lumberjacks are the second-largest employers in the kingdom with mining just behind them. The one notable product the nation exports is their alcohol, hardy and strong stuff enjoyed by other Velheim and the daring drinkers of the wider Regalian Empire. Sumpbær, made from the berries that grow in the mire and a sour-tasting concoction that warms the throat and heart is notable, as is Dovrinik Viksfjord, a drink made on board a ship and then kept close to the sea or any major source of water for months on end as it ferments.
Kingdom of Nordskag Demographics
The vast majority of Ailor within the Kingdom of Nordskag are Velheim in background, temperament and appearance. Populations of such people existed even before the arrival of the Skagger Horde, and were successfully integrated into the foreign though same-cultured population that arrived. They are a diverse people, as all Velheim are, from forest-dwelling hunter-gatherers to water-bound fisherman, and raiders to mountainous herders. A large number of the Nordskaggers seen outside Nordskag are often soldiers fighting for Regalia was required by their contract of fealty. Some Velheim in Nordskag are also not from the nation itself, but migrants from other areas of Aloria, with a particular boost over the past several years as political issues within the Regalian Archipelago have pushed many Old Gods worshipers and Velheim to seek calmer places to call home. Though the Velheim population overall was hit hard by the destructive Bone Horror Crisis, it is expected to rebound soon.|
|Various Ailor Cultures:|
Alongside the Velheim, Ailor of many other sorts are live within the Kingdom of Nordskag. The two largest minorities are Ithanians and Anglians, with the Ithanians there largely made up of political exiles, Bond Wives/Men to the Velheim population, and traders, while the Anglians are migrants seeking to help in the region’s agriculture, but also fleeing areas of the Regalian Archipelago where the Old Gods faith was less accepted in the past. With the military alliance between Nordskag and Regalia, and especially now that Osvald Krumme is on the throne, Wirtem also make up a sizable minority of the Ailor population, serving to help train and administer areas of the military and also advise the king. The remaining Cultures of Ailor present in the region are a blend of different people, largely from Daen.|
The remaining makeup of the Kingdom of Nordskag is largely of Races tied to the northern regions of the world. Dwarves and Urlan make up substantial minorities, as do Eronidas. The two Gorr Races are in the region largely to hunt the dangerous creatures of Nordskag, but many are also there to help train or be trained within the local military structure. The Dwarves, on the other hand, are largely Aldor, and are found in western enclaves where they live and work in mountain settlements. The remaining collection of Races are almost all Nelfin, mostly Avanthar, who are in the region seeking mates or Altalar who are there largely by the will of Ithanian masters. There are rumors of Isldar, perhaps advanced scouts of Isldarrin hiding in the mountains, or perhaps just political exiles as Isldar society has birthed several splinter groups due to the variety of Dragons now possible to be followed.|
The Kingdom of Nordskag is dominated by the worship of the Old Gods, with particular emphasis placed upon the deities of the Union of Water and the Union of Air, for self-explanatory reasons given their domains. There are also a variety of lesser marsh or swamp gods believed in by the Nordskaggers, such as Mørdam and Billvann, due to the swampy terrain their land possesses. There are some darker cults said to lurk in the mountains though. Unionism is perhaps the least worshipped, with its only enclaves being in the capital city of Kongehaug and in the south, both sites possessing large numbers of foreigners who are more inclined toward that faith.
Nordskag’s flag features a grey stag standing proudly, set against a backdrop of dark blue. This stag is meant to represent the historical figurehead of Jjol Ragnvald, who supposedly wore the antlers and pelt of a stag on his person. For those of Nordskag, a stag symbolizes regal power and prestige, which is one of the reasons why hunting stags and deer is forbidden for all bar the nobility. A more toned-down national image is simply a stag’s head ringed by a circle of dark blue lines.
- Some believe today that Jjol Ragnvald was, in fact, an Urlan, though his body was never exhumed by modern scholars before the Bone Horror Crisis removed his remains. This is believed both by tales that he traveled to Jorrhildr in his younger days, and that he is said to have “worn his horns and hair constantly.” It might have just been a ceremonial dress or his personal sense of style, as the wider public believes, but the rumors persist.
- Lake rights are one of the most common points of argument between the various barons and baronesses of Nordskag, since such bodies are often deep and bountiful with seafood.
- When insulting the Nordskaggers, people commonly call them the Nordskagger Horde. This not only compares them to their former enemy, the Hvitskagger Horde, but also to the Skagger Horde that helped form both nations. At the same time, a lot of the common public calls the Kingdom of Nordskag the Nordskagger Horde without regard for the offense it causes as they are not well educated enough to know the difference between the modern Kingdom and the Skagger Horde.
Jonificus, AlphaInsomnia, MantaRey||
HydraLana on 04/18/2022.|
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