The Empirical Corvis Mercenaries
Ruler: Former Prime Minister Lord Deyar Glabryn IX
Llael possesses natural resources that for centuries enabled it to stay competitive with its larger neighbors, notably a high content of coal and, in the northern mountains and particularly around Rynyr, great quantities of the minerals required for making blasting powder. With nobility owning the lands,Llael’s upper classes increased their wealth from coal and powder profits while the nation’s poor did all the work. Indeed, the disparity between the classes appeared more clearly in Llael than anywhere else in the kingdoms, yet thousands of workers from all over western Immoren used to arrive daily to work the mines.
Llael’s primary geographical advantage turned out to be its greatest weakness: sharing its borders with four kingdoms with few natural barriers to inhibit trade—or the movement of armies. This served to line the pockets of certain entrepreneurial nobles and merchants who exploited the shipping along the Black River flowing from Rhul to the Gulf of Cygnar. Llael’s merchants were centrally located to serve as middlemen for a variety of lucrative mercantile organizations, while its gentle valleys and lush farmlands offered few barriers to slow the advance of the soldiers who marched to seize them starting at the end of 604 AR. By the end of 605 AR Llael had become an occupied nation.
In truth, Llael was a failed state well before the Khadorans marched on their shared border. The last strong Llaelese king died of old age almost ten years before the onset of this war,
and his death plunged Llael’s nobles into a frenzy of self consuming plots and politics. This included the assassination of all the former king’s heirs as well as a number of duels
and assassinations further thinning the ranks of the nobility. Prime Minister Deyar Glabryn took power and proved to be a corrupt and self-interested leader more intent on
lining his pockets than governing his nation.
The nobles allowed Llael’s small army to languish, relying increasingly on foreign aid and unreliable sell-swords instead. The nation’s renowned pistoleers became duelists and assassins for hire rather than protecting the borders. The Llaelese people suffered the consequences of this neglect. Llaelese Resistance loosely controls the eastern half of LLael and still remains determined to regain the nation’s freedom, but to many Llaelese their cause seems desperate and futile.