A Watchful Eye
The South of Creation draws its character from the Elemental Pole of Fire. Only high mountaintops there experience prolonged cold, and its furthest regions are volcanic wastelands too hot for mortal life. The pole’s influence also expresses itself in the heat of spices and the fire of well-cut gems, both of which the South has in abundance. The South
is Creation’s treasure-chest, and it knows the fires of greed and ambition that have forged empires and burned them down again. It is a land of magnificent cities amid fertile fields and
haunted ruins in barren deserts. This direction of Creation offers many opportunities for adventure, with staggering rewards for the bold—and staggering loss for the foolish.
The South of Creation fills the space between the Inland Sea and the Elemental Pole of Fire. Two great mountainranges run along the direction’s edges: the Summer Mountains
running to the Southeast, and the Fire Mountains, or Firepeaks, to the Southwest. People often consider the strip of land between the Firepeaks and the Great Western Ocean
to be part of the South as well, though other folk might argue the point. Some people also include the great Southeastern savannas as part of the South.
Near the coast, the South’s mild winters bring gentle rains. Farms rich in wheat and orghum, dates and olives cover the land. Inland, however, the land rises in arid hills where fertile pockets grow rare. Beyond them lies the Great Southern Desert. Barren mountains and scattered oases dot this vast expanse like islands in an ocean of shifting sand. Few people live in this vast, harsh realm, but some of the oases sustain little towns with mud-brick walls, while fierce nomads drive their flocks in a constant search for a bit of desert scrub or dried grass. Bold merchants sail the sand-seas in ships with ski-like runners. A good sand-captain can carry cargo from one side of the Great Southern Desert to another as quickly as a seacaptain could on the waves. Therefore, some caravans trek toward ports away from the sea.
Seven great powers dominate the South—eight if you count the Realm, or nine if you include the Guild. The Realm, the Guild and many other folk from distant parts of Creation come to the South in search of metals and spices, incense and gems. They also seek firedust, the natural incendiary and explosive that blows in from the edge of the Wyld.