The Shadows of Caesovinia
The Free Folk
The original inhabitants of the Forest of the Free Folk were an ancient clan of Elven druids that lived in utter secrecy from the outside world. When the first humans passed through they showed a connection and empathy with their environment and so were observed from afar without interference. After some time, the elders of the Elven clan decided to revealed themselves and embrace these humans as brothers, sharing the secrets of their Druidic magic.
After many generations of the Elves and Humans existing in harmony, their populations became indistinguishable. The Druidic magic had a strange effect on this new Elf/human hybrid population and over the years started to develop animalistic traits. Individual clans and families started developing the traits of particular animals, with some able to toughen their skin, or grow extra sharp claws or fangs at will.
Long after this transition had happened, the humans to the west began developing into kingdoms and eventually the great Caesovinian Empire. Deeming themselves more pure and better than their animalistic neighbours, the Caesovinians tried repeatedly to conquer what they considered primitive beast-men, to no avail. After over a hundred years of failed major military campaigns, the Caesovinians gave up trying to conquer and instead built a great wall, content with at least keeping the barbarians out of their great empire.
Proud of their strength, intelligence and tenacity in resisting the great oppressors, the clans officially named their collective the Free Folk. For the entirety of the rest of the Caesovinian Empire’s existence an extremely strict embargo was maintained, not a single Caesovinian stepped foot in the Forest of the Free Folk.
After the Great War and the collapse of Caesovinia, the Triumvirate could no longer afford to maintain the embargo or the wall. Trade sanctions were lifted, if only because they could no longer be enforced. Outsiders were still forbidden within the Forest itself, but the outer settlements became minor trade hubs only really visited by Halfing caravans and the occasional brave merchant.
These days Free Folk occasionally find themselves adventuring out in the wider world, but usually find themselves quite confused by the patriarchal and urbanised societies, which they perceive to be a backwards system.
- Only corner of Caesura West never to be conquered by the Caesophinians.
- Live in small holds of 30-100 people
- Matriarchal management, but defer to the Druids if there are any present
- No currency within holds, but trade between holds and with halflings
- Live in harmony with the forest
There are 6 main clans, with most smaller clans being offshoots of them.