As the legends go, Ilvanna, along with the rest of the world, was created by the Thirteen Gods over tens of thousands of years ago. Each God had their own part of the world, and some shared their territory. They created their children after their own image—elongated ears, athletic and lithe builds, tal land strong, and they in turn began to procreate. For a while, the Gods walked among them, sharing their magic, until the world could no longer contain them and they had to leave it behind, taking their magic with them.
As time wore on and memories of the Gods became myth and myths became legends, nobody alive could remember this time of peace and abundance. Instead, they’d become greedy, lusting more after wealth and power than they cared about the well-being of their world.
Ilvanna, known far and wide for its riches in ores and minerals as well as its blood-rituals and sacrifices, had always been a sought after country, but nobody dared defy its Ruler. Not until the uprising some 4000 years ago when the King’s first cousin murdered him in his sleep, claiming the throne for herself, and abolishing the blood-rituals and sacrifices. His followers were either exiled or sentenced to death. Where they went, nobody knows.
Since then, Ilvanna has seen a Matriarchy under the rule of the an Ilvan line and has seen war after war as neighbouring countries believed it to be weakened. Not one has ever succeeded in winning more than a few yards of land before the Ilvannian army swooped down and decimated their numbers. Despite being a rather small country, Ilvanna is well-defended, its secrets only known to its ruling family.
The descendant to the throne of Ilvanna is always female. Should the current Tari not provide an heiress, either a sister, a cousin or a niece will be the next in line based on who is the eldest.
Although Ilvanna is a Matriarchy, the Tari makes her decisions together with a council of men and women all of whom bear a noble lineage. Due to the longevity of Ilvannians, these positions only open up when a council member dies, or when a new Tari ascends the throne. She may either choose to rule with the same council as her predecessor, or choose new members. The only position she cannot choose is the Head of the Council. This title is passed from mother to daughter as well.
The Army is the only body of state which can be commanded by either a male or a female depending on who is the best candidate for this position. Royal sons are often offered the title of Zheràn, or general in the common tongue, but only if they are deserving of it. A royal son may choose to accept or decline, but aside from their lineage, it’s the only title they can hold.
THE ILVANNIAN GLOSSARY
XERAMAER AN ILVAN, Mother of Azra, Arayda, and Shaleira
She was the last Tari to uphold strict laws and firm rules over her daughters’ marriages. She wasn’t much loved by her people, but she was respected.
SHALEIRA AN ILVAN, Eldest sister of three, twin to Azra, and first in line for the throne
Shaleira was the life of the party and well respected among her peers and her people. Before she was killed, she was Ohzheràn to the Ilvannian army, a title she would have acceded when she became Tari.
AZRA AN ILVAN, Second sister of three, and twin to Shaleira
She’s always harboured a grudge against her sister, acting on jealousy and hatred until such an age that these emotions turned to violence. Shunned and feared by her peers and people, her deepest desire has always been to be accepted.
ARAYDA AN ILVAN, youngest sister of three.
Arayda has always been the quiet, smart, and bookish one. Growing up, she was considered one of the smartest strategists of her time, a skill that has stood her in good stead as Tari of Ilvanna.
GAERVIN AN ILVAN, Husband to Arayda, father to Evanyan and Haerlyon
He’s always been the quiet, dependable type. He did what he did out of duty and love for his family. Don’t be fooled though, he was quite the swordsman in his days. Deceased.
CERINDIL IMRADIEN, father to Talnovar and Varayna.
Former Ohzheràn to Tari Araydan, Cerindil is the most loyal of men to be found. While strict in his ways, he is fair and will see justice done before evil can prevail.
NARAYSHA AN ILVAN, daughter of Evanyan and Nathaïr
Heir to the throne after Shalitha.
SHALITHA AN ILVAN, first daughter and heir to the throne of Ilvanna.
Shalitha rather seeks her freedom than follow court rules. Skilled in sword-fighting and hand-to-hand combat, she’s a striking figure on the training field. Although incredibly stubborn, she’s also intensily loyal, fiercely protecting those she loves.
HAERLYON AN ILVAN, as second son, Haerlyon has no real function in the palace.
Being the ‘court jester’, a role he plays only too well, he knows everything of everyone, and he’s not afraid to use it to his benefit. Despite his daring and carefree attitude, there’s a deeper layer not many get to see. Current Ohzheràn to the Ilvannian army.
EVANYAN AN ILVAN, first son and eldest of three.
Evanyan has always been one for rules no matter how preposterous. Like his father, he is a man of duty and deeply loyal, putting the wellfare and needs of others before his own.
NATHAÏR AROLVYEN AN ILVAN, daughter to Yllinar, sister to Eamryel.
Nathaïr has been raised with a firm hand and even firmer principles. Arrogant and cocky, she believes to be better than everyone else.
EAMRYEL AROLVYEN, son to Yllinar.
Eamryel’s been raised with a firm hanto follow in his father’s footsteps. Never fitting in, he has lashed out against everything and everyone, indulging in everything he could get his hands on to numb the pain. On a mission to make right his past transgressions, his allegiance has shifted.
YLLINAR AROLVYEN, father to Eamryel, Nathaïr, and Caleena.
Yllinar used to be on Arayda’s council. Disloyal, dishonest, and hungry for power, he has only ever served his own agenda in pursuit of more wealth.
VARAYNA IMRADIEN, daughter to Cerindil, sister to Talnovar.
Varayna died at a very young age. Talnovar carries an immense feeling of guilt over this.
JAEHYR IMRADIEN, brother to Cerindil, lover to Shaleira.
Jaehyr has been assumed dead for a long time. Rather than being dead, however, he has spent all this time as a prisoner at the Kyrinthan court.
TALNOVAR IMRADIEN, son to Cerindil, brother to Varayna.
Talnovar is Anahràn to Shalitha. Burying the demons of his past, he works hard to be the best version of himself, to be the best protector the Tarien has ever had.
SAMEHYA NEHMREAN, daughter to Kalyani, sister to Xaresh.
Samehya has a fighting spirit fit to rival the Tarien’s. She always gets what she wants, no matter how far she has to go for it or what she has to do wit hit.
KALYANI NEHMREAN, mother to Xaresh and Samehya.
Kalyani is a kind, hard-working woman who sees and tells the truth for what it is.
XARESH NEHMREAN, arathrien to Tarien Shalitha.
Xaresh is a big man with a kind soul who’s willing to help anyone. Calm and patient, he’s often the one to talk sense into the young Tarien.
CAERLEYAN VIRS, arathrien to Tarien Shalitha.
Caerleyan is the oldest member of the group of guards and well-versed in any fighting style. An injury from the past sees him mostly on guard duty in the palace.
QUERAN PAHLEANAN, arathrien to Tarien Shalitha.
Queran is the youngest of the group of guards, but no less lethal. Give him a bow and arrow, and he’ll pick the enemy off one by one from a great distance.
ELARA SEHLYN, arathrien to Tarien Shalitha.
Elara is the only female bodyguard. Adopted by the army from a young age, she knows how to fight as well as any of her male counterparts. Happy and cheerful, Elara brings laughter everywhere she goes.
RURIN TRIQUELLAN, Anahràn of Tari Arayda’s Arathri.
Rurin is the quiet, honest, dependable kind. Loyal to a fault, he’ll do anything to keep her safe.
SOREN AN DENA, newly appointed healer at the palace.
Soren is a quick-witted, no-nonsense person who doesn’t care for titles and pleasantries. A patient’s a patient no matter where they come from.
IONE AN HANYA, Hanyarah’s only resident araîtiste.
Ione is a quiet individual who takes pride in her work and isn’t afraid to stray from the beaten path if it’s for something she believes in.
MEHREAN AN HANYA, friend and confidante to the Tarien, advisor tot he Tari.
Mehrean is known for her sharp wit and lack of filter and is not afraid to speak her mind. Smart and cunning, she assists many a decision the Tari or Tarien has to make.
ANHANYAH LAELLE, leader of Hanyarah.
Laelle does everything in her power to keep the sisterhood safe and will not shy away from the shadow side if that is what it takes.
CALEENA AROLVYEN, bastard daughter to Yllinar, sister to Eamryel and Nathaïr.
Caleena has never been treated any better than a servant. Despite her stature in life, she’s kind and helpful.
HALUETH, a prisoner on a ship.
Halueth has a ready smile and a cheerful disposition.
CEHYAN NE HIRAEN
Born a commoner having tasted of a noble’s life, Cehyan is an opportunist whose loyalty lies with those who pay her enough.