The Lost Continent
As you approach the city of New Garen your breath catches. The city walls are massive and seem to be as smooth as glass. These magically crafted walls are protected by a moat at least two hundred yards wide. Massive iron drawbridges, carved in arcane sigils with signs of strength and durability, allow access to the city proper. As you walk down the huge bridge, traffic is bustling, New Garen is truly a city that rarely sleeps. Troops, merchants, businessmen, sailors, farmers, politicians, craftsmen, and commoners are constantly moving to and fro. Rising above the huge walls are five massive towers. Four are located at each point of the compass but the largest is in the center of the city. Called the Garic Spire, it is crafted of steel and stone, reinforced by magic, and protected by both divine and arcane blessings. It reaches nearly 1200 feet high and is a not-so-subtle reminder of Garic Federation power to those visiting from other nations.
The city of New Garen was founded in 850 W. by a conglomeration of merchants, former nobles, master craftsmen, and mages. The city was created as a trade hub for the Bariv River and its population grew by leaps and bounds. In 876 W. the first representatives from The Isle of Manse arrived to consult with the New Garen Council. They offered their services to help expand and build the city. The Council embarked on the most ambition building plan since the fall of the V’araad. The city would be able to house millions of individuals and be nearly impervious to attack.
Ten of the Andrel An-Durith, the archmages of The Isle of Manse, arrived and worked with hundreds of other wizards, clerics, and magical practitioners to rend earth and stone to build the massive edifice that is New Garen. The new city was so huge that the population living there was overwhelmed by the space available to them, but not for long. As the relationship with the Isle of Manse solidified, trade skyrocketed. New Garen became a haven for Elves, who saw this as an opportunity to find a new home that kept some of the ancient traditions of the V’aarad alive.
By 995 W. the city is probably the second-most populated city in Urda (rumors that the Lumen Capitol is huge beyond measure is unverified, but likely true). The streets are filled with various races and peoples and nearly every language and dialect that one could think of is spoken. Every kind of business can be found from brothels to massive manufactories that churn out goods to centers of high finance where wealth that would cause most Areen nobles to go green with envy are traded on a daily basis. The massive spires, situated around the massive central tower, serve as both guides, each is constructed from a different color of stone (Red, Blue, Green, and White), and as centers for businesses and organizations.
The Garic Spire, reaching far into the sky, is like nothing else on Urda. The buttresses and walls are expertly crafted and strong as bedrock. This huge structure is the center of power in New Garen. Here the City Council holds its meetings, the Hall of Justice holds court, and many of the wealthiest companies are headquartered. There are also penthouses for the rich.
It should be noted that New Garen, partly because of its huge size, is the only city in the Federation with what could be called a standing army. While thousands of mercenaries are in the city, The Garic Defense Force and Garic Intelligence Service are located in the Spire. These organizations have ties with every Mercenary company of note, every martial and combat college of mention, and nearly every house of magic. If the Federation were to come under attack, they can quite literally mobilize the entire combat power of the Federation from the Garic Spire.
Of note in the city are the embassies in the Diplomats Quarter, located close to the Spire. Here representatives of Wistron, Skarl, Areen, and The Isle of Manse reside. Recently, the Talarian Empire was granted diplomatic status and have sent their first ambassador and diplomatic delegation to New Garen.
Naturally in a city the size of New Garen, intrigue plays a part as the agents of various groups, governments, and business interests jockey for position but most of the population is more concerned with their own lives to do more than comment on it occasionally.
The religious scene is varied but the church of Pelor has a solid following among many of the peoples and races of every class. The church of Saint Cuthbert is closely associated with the Hall of Justice and the Witnesses. There is a small but growing number of magic users that also worship or at least pay service to Wee Jas. Strangely, none of these arcane users hail from the Isle of Manse. A number of the Elves have done their best to remain true to what remains of the religions of the V’aarad, but many have adopted a faith in Pelor rather than hold to scraps of holy books and scrolls that are often incomplete or written in poetry so archaic most cannot grasp it.
Battle Schools dot the city and help to feed both the numerous mercenary companies and the GDF. Wistron heavily recruits in the city for volunteers and warriors. Their pleas have grown a bit desperate of late and some of the fabulously wealthy in New Garen have sponsored entire regiments of troops to help defend Wistron in their war with Lumen. This is made possible by the Great Portal in the city. This portal allows the movement of goods, services, information, and manpower between Wistron and New Garen and has kept Wistron fighting and holding their own against a far larger enemy.
Key city of the Garic Federation, New Garen is possibly the most culturally and economically diverse place in all of Urda. The Great Portal to Wistron is located here as well as the primary market for all the magical items and services sold down the Bariv River from the Isle of Manse.
New Garen is also the home of a notorious Undercity, a honey-combed network of sewers, tunnels, and passageways.