When Oltor went to the freezing north, he had a vision. A land of pious people. Shared belief in a plan much greater… much humbler than the ambition of man. He herded his followers from all walks of life and settled in the valley of the gods.
History of Yulan
0 AW - The Great Exodus.
200 AW - Demonic cults penetrate society and start recruiting to their cause. Civil war. The people rise and overthrow corrupt leaders.
533 AW - War with Kruxland.
540 AW - After clash with the Krukal empire, taxes are raised to go to defences.
545 AW - Taxes are heavy. Discovered Council of Light is hoarding wealth. They have been corrupted by greed. People revolt and council hang.
990 AW - A Drow House escapes from the underdark. Given a chance to live on the land if they curb their slaving ways.
1050 AW - Cult of Fraz -Urb’llu pillage the land.
Yulan and it's Lands
The land, the Valleys of the Gods, has little farming and but one city. Most of its wealth comes from mining and crafting. Yulan and the valley are run by the Council of Light, arch priests from major gods and churches. They hope to make the land peaceful and holy. They also hope to find the perfect balance of peace, love and harmony from the religion of their separate gods. Each religion has a church in Yulan, but there are many shrines along the Echelons of Spirit. This is the pilgrim trail travellers and locals take to commune with the gods. Trade is very common on the road and many business relationships are forged on the pilgrimage. There is no standing military in Yulan, but a subscription from monasteries ensure monks protect the lands with their lives. They guard the pilgrim passage and make sure there is no trouble. Paladins are common here on the paths; ever vigilant of the presence of demons.
To be Yulanese
God Before Man
Most Yulanese see the gods as their true leaders. And the god’s priests as their messengers. So highly are the priests respected, many children are named after them. Most working folk hold religion dear to their hearts. They have shrines in their home, commune daily with neighbours and pray before every meal. Religious festivals are abundant throughout the year. They believe themselves to be, or on the way to be, in unison with the gods which granted them this challenging yet beautiful life. Religion is so important that many feel the need to become preachers, and spread out to all corners of the world, reciting the words of their gods. There is a consequence to such dogmatic thinking. Some Yulanese can become offended easily and may even become violent should one offend the tenants of their faith. Though most Yulanese simply see the rest of the world with eyes of pity. These people have lost their connection to their spirit, to their souls. Many live desolate lives without grace, absolution or truth. Addicted to the vices of lust, greed and gluttony. So of course, they utter words of ignorance. Yulanese venture out to the world, not always with an open mind but always with an open heart.
A cacophony of different voices can be heard on the streets of the capital. Though the country strives for peace and unity … this isn’t always the case. Many religions vie for more followers and preachers adorn many a corner, competing to attract more followers for their gods. Semblance sits before its great lake, home to the Council of Light. An enormous dome laden with churches of every faith. Except those of evil premise. Those faiths are not tolerated, and practitioners are shunned. Though they linger still, in the shadows…
The homes of Bethel Burghal are humble and the markets smell of tanned leather, sweet vegetables and incense. But if one was to climb a tree… and gaze out at the capital… they would see a jumbled hodgepodge of soaring chapels and ringing belfries. If ever there was a city of the gods; this is it.
Echelons of Spirit
The Yulanese are expected to take on an arduous pilgrimage multiple times in their lifetime. This pilgrimage runs from the south of the Valley of the Gods, high up in the rocky peaks, all the way down to the Bethel Burghal on the flats. There are many routes and pathways on this pilgrimage; some more straightforward then others. Many are hazardous journeys. Huge snowdrifts can come from nowhere and sweep you off the cliffside. Or wild predators may pick off your troop one poor soul at a time. The Echelons are wild, untamed, savage. But not necessarily unguarded. Not only will one meet fellow travellers on their pious journeys, but they will meet clerics and paladins on the way, wishing to escort the holy on their journey. Moreover, the monasteries scattered about Yulan must supply monks to guard dangerous parts of the pilgrimage. A price the monasteries happily pay so long as they retain their solitude.
Though the Echelons of Spirit may bear risk, it is little risk compared to the sanctity of the soul. Many wonders can be found on this magical journey. Hidden shrines nestled in the rocks, serene monasteries gorged with silence, wise men with wiser stories still… So why do the people pilgrim? To show their love. To show their loyalty. To show they have not lost their way, like their cousins afar. But mostly to experience truth. That this life is full of anguish and wonder. And it is worth it all, in the name of the gods.