Other Names: Bassilith Island, Isle of Dragons, Dracos
At a Glance
Bassilith Island is the stronghold of the dragon (aka ddraig) and Gwerin (a Sídhe race), although it can barely be considered an island. The tiny strips of water that separate it from Catria are very narrow and shallow. At low tide, a horse can be ridden from one point of land to the next. However, the Wyr zealously guard the passes between Catria and their lands, thus protecting Bassilith as well.
Slave Nation or Free Nation?
Bassilith is one of the free-states. Slavery is completely outlawed and escaped slaves are given sanctuary within its borders. Slave ships are forbidden to dock in its territorial waters except in cases of extreme distress, i.e. the ship is in danger of sinking with a loss of all persons on board.
Size & Location
Very large island, almost a subcontinent. It lays just off the west coast of Catria.
Geography & Geology
Temperate Oceanic: Bassilith’s climate is marked by cool summers and cool but not cold winters. This is, of course, relative to latitude. The tallest of Bassilith’s mountains have significant snowfalls and glaciation. The days tend to experience periods of rain and sun. Generally, it rains mornings and evenings with sunshine during the middle part of the day. Storms are frequent and can be severe.
Bassilith and its smaller barrier islands have a mountainous and rugged terrain. In most areas, the mountains run in jagged cliffs down to the ocean’s edge. Where there are beaches, they tend to be rocky or basaltic black sand. There are numerous fertile valleys in the mountains where the majority of Bassilith’s residents live. The Burning Sea, a massive bay that was formed by the explosion and collapse of a massive volcano, is located on the western side of the island. The volcano at the sea’s center is once again rising from the surface. The Burning Sea is significantly warmer than the ocean due to the geothermal activity beneath it.
Note: The Burning Sea is a Kraken spawning ground. Females lay their eggs in the tunnels and caverns that riddle the edge of the volcanic island at the sea’s center. The eggs hatch in mid-summer, providing a feast for the resident dragons.
The island is extremely volcanically active and prone to seismic activity. The Gwerin and dragons mix their building materials with ash from the surrounding volcanoes which adds to their stability during seismic events.
Siege Perilous: The largest and oldest dragon siege on Aereth. This includes its associated citadel as they are built in and around the siege itself.
Annwyn Court: Annwyn Court is the Gwerin’s capital. Courts are the cities of the Gwerin. They are usually built in forests high in the mountains.
Caer Draenár: Northern peninsula located between Catria and Bassilith. It is the home to the Wyr.
Port Duskhallow: This is a large fishing village and port located in Duskhallow Bay on the south side of the island.
Other: There are some farming and livestock hamlets scattered around the island as well. These are almost communal concerns.
Bassilith is a fairly wealthy nation. The Gwerin support themselves with agriculture, livestock, hunting, and fishing. Excess goes to support the siege, Annwyn Court, and the Morrighan. Traditionally, Bassilith accepts a small amount of goods from the territories that Siege Perilous is tasked with protecting.
Due to the incredible amount of volcanic activity on Bassilith, it is a rich source of flamestone and obsidian. Both are traded and sold.
Highly stable with few threats or issues.
Danger to Outsiders
Non-threatening visitors are welcome. Bassilith is a dragon stronghold. Few people will mess with that many dragons.
Form of Government
Each siege is ruled by a Empress who is chosen by combat. She rules as long as she can defeat challengers.
The Gwerin are ruled by an elected matriarch known as the Danu. Her male counterpart, appointed by a Council of Elders, is known as the Dagda. He may or may not reside at the same Court as the Danu. They are not necessarily consorts. Currently, there is not a Dagda.
The dragonriders answer to their commanding officer, the Lord-Paladin, not to the Danu or dragon Empress.
Freedom and Oppression
Normally, both the dragon Empress and the Danu rule with a light hand. There are very harsh penalties for murder and for dragonslaying. Penalties for the illicit use of magic are based on the amount of harm done.
Primary: Dragon, Gwerin, Wyr
Secondary: Mixed; the Morrighan are represented by many races. There are also representatives from various governments, factions, and organizations.
Bassilith is ably defended by the Morrighan, the Wyr, and the Dragonguard (primarily mounted infantry). There are also wards (spells of protection) around the island.
Geo-Thermal: Most homes, aeries, the citadel, and Annwyn Court are heated and cooled using earthship technology. Hot water and hot mineral baths are provided courtesy of the area’s volcanic activity. Hot springs are found both above ground and underground on Bassilith.
Lighting: Most areas are lit by moonglobes. There are also various bioluminescent life forms that provide low-levels of light (such as the glow worms in the caves).
Weaponry: The Morrighan and some of the Dragonguard and Wyr are armed with the automatic gas-powered crossbows known as Stingers. Beyond that, other standard weapons include swords of various styles, spears, bows, crossbows, and other bladed weapons.