Tacitus, Caithness

For many years the holding known now as Tacitus was a collection of small, independent woodland communities. The area is not very suitable for farming due to the harsh weather conditions and rocky terrain, so these loose tribal groups relied on hunting an indigenous hooved creature similar to Caribou on Earth, called Nogai, to survive. To this day, the beast remains a vital part of their lives and diet and holds a very high place of respect in their belief system and customs.

Tacitus is primarily known for skilled Hunters and Woodsman. Although they are considered a backwoods and primitive people by most other humans in Caithness, their skill in riding, archery, tracking and guerrilla warfare have earned them respect throughout the nation.

Only 30 years ago, a young Knight named Sir Elohar, united the area into a cohesive military force. His new army provided critical aid to King Morill (father of the current King) against the last Orcish invasion. Tacitus was the front line in the final battle and the Hunters of Tacitus were instrumental in holding back the final assault.

Sir Elohar was granted lording status after the battle, and two decades later, King Conall VI made Elohar a baron. As a result, Elohar is fiercly loyal to the young King and he would demonstrate that in the upcoming conflict.

Tacitus was the first province to lend their forces in support of the King and against the rebellion started by Lord Deneral of Mershall, 11 years ago. Tacitus Hunter’s were instrumental in pacifying the initial attack on the capital, Carrick. The holding of Mershall, left defenseless from their attack, was invaded and forcibly incorporated into a temporary holding of the captial, Carrick. The majority of Mershall resents King Conall and there have been many instances of unrest and rebellion in the last 11 years.

Tacitus is known throughout Caithness as the first and most loyal supporter of the now 35 year old King Conall.. The people of Mershall have not forgotten this and neither have the rest of the lords in the rebellion. It has not been uncommon to have subversive and open terrorism on the people of Tacitus, and it’s surrounding trade routes, from those loyal to the rebellion.

Geography and Trade:

Tacitus is in a unique position of all the holdings in Caithness. Baron Elohar of Tacitus and Lord Berd of Fordham, the two most northern provinces, have always been loyal to the late King Morill and his son and successor Conall. This has been the case throughout the entirety of the current civil war.

The location of Tacitus gives it a strong defensive position. The main keep and the surrounding village are nestled between the Bronze Mountains in the west, woodlands in the east, the R Conn river in the north and the Great Desert border on the south. Any invading force will most likely come from the Mountains or the Desert and would be identified early on. To this day no Orc or hostile Human force has breached the walls of the Keep.

There isn’t as much suitable farmland in Tacitus as other areas of Caithness and it’s population is perhaps the fewest in all the nation. Despite this, it has become one of the most profitable and important holdings to King Conall due to the recent trade and diplomacy established with the Dwarven King of Ginnrel, Fedor Ironthews.

Dwarven smiths are commonly known as the best in Yrth and the City of Ginnrel has a particularly well respected reputation for this. The first ambassadors of King Morill established contact with the city almost immediately after the end of the Orc invasion. Primarily for trade, but also to enlist their friendship and assistance in the conflict with the rebellion.

Through lots of hard work on the part of the Human diplomats, treaties were signed and King Fedor looked past the blood in the past between Dwarf and Human and agreed to begin trade between the nations. After 23 years of good faith and peace, King Fedor is close to lending military support to King Callon against the rebellion. This is a major strategy of the Human King and he is prepared to invest whatever it takes to hold Tacitus in order to help further facilitate this alliance.

The leadership of Baron Elohar has united the proud and skillful hunters of this region behind King Callon and have thus far proven to be a valuable asset to the King’s hope to stay in power. Under Elohar, farms have been developed in-between Tacitus and the Bronze mountains and he has vastly increased the size of the town surrounding the keep.

People and Culture:

The original inhabitants of Tacitus have seen their lives change drastically in the past 30 years.

Due to economic opportunities and foreign influence, there are many alternatives to living off of the land and the skills of the Hunters have been largely militarized over years of conflict with the Orcs. Immigration has also increased significantly since the Orc war ended and trade with the Dwarves brought supporting industries and hopeful entrepreneurial pilgrims from throughout Caithness.

There are currently roughly 5000 (and growing) merchants, herders, farmers, priests and peasants living in Tacitus and it’s surrounding farmlands. They are under the protection of 50 or so hunters, some local militia and 11 Knights of the Stone, including the Baron Elohar. Upon request from Elohar, King Callon has commissioned a large amount of gold to hire mercenaries to reinforce the holding. The first round of which are currently inbound.

Humans have historically been the predominant race in Tacitus. The Forest to the East is home to a small and declining Elven population that is rarely seen or heard from. There are stories of past conflicts between the original Humans and the Elven tribes in this region but the Humans were largely victorious and the remaining Elves have not been heard or seen in quite some time.

Half-Elves, Half-Orcs and Halflings are not unheard of in Tacitus, but rare. All non-humans will face uphill social challenges in Tacitus.