Crown of Shadows
Those humans descended from the houses of the Old Kings, known commonly as the Northmen, still live in the lands north of the Sea of Pelluria. Those that remain in the environs of their ruined cities live at the will of their orc masters and survive off what subsistence they can grow, poach, or scrounge. Others huddle in subsistence communities on the vast stretches of hill country and tundra, left to lives of misery only occasionally interrupted by orc patrols and legates seeking provisions and tithes. Those that choose to run as outlaws, bearing illegal weapons and raiding supplies from the dark god’s chosen, must always be on the move lest they are hunted down and slaughtered.
Dornish people are big, even for humans, with broad shoulders and long limbs. They have pale skin and green or blue eyes. Their hair ranges from gold to red and was once worn long and bound with metal rings, each ring commemorating a battle in which the individual had fought. Now most Dorns, even many women, shave their heads as a symbol of shame at their defeat by the forces of Izrador. Dorns once wore painted leather coats, fur boots, and heavy woolen kilts and gowns whose patterns marked their house allegiances. Now they are lucky to have dirty rags in which to wrap their hungry bodies.
The Dornish people once swore fealty to the Old Kings of the Great Houses. The nobles were fiercely loyal to their people, who repaid that devotion by adhering to familial codes of honor in both social interactions and in battle. In the days of old, death was seen as far preferable to dishonoring one’s clan; every action a Dorn undertook, whether repairing his farmstead’s wall or meeting a foe in battle, was to reflect proudly on his king. But with the betrayal of the Night King Jahzir, Gregor Chander, and several other Traitor Princes, most Northmen are now loyal only to their own skins and swear fealty only to their stomachs. The shades of their ancestors, which traditional Dorns honor with altars, prayers, and sacrifices, would weep to see what has become of their once-great people.
In the centuries since the Sarcosans came to Eredane the Dorns have become excellent riders, though they still prefer to fight on foot. Their weapons of choice were longspears and greatswords, though some chose to carry large battleaxes. Today, orc patrols kill armed humans on sight, so the rare Dorns who go armed use whatever weapons are available.
Dorn Racial Traits
• +2 Strength, +2 Dexterity: Dorns are larger, stronger and more agile than most humans.
• Medium: As Medium creatures, Dornish humans have no special bonuses or penalties due to their size.
• Normal Speed: Dorns have a base speed of 30 feet.
• Bonus Combat Feat: Dorns select one extra feat at 1st level. Dorns are versatile and dedicated warriors. The extra feat must be a combat feat.
• Skilled: Dorns gain an additional skill rank at 1st level and one additional skill rank whenever they gain a level. Dorns are hard workers and committed to excellence.
• Weapon Familiarity: Dorns may treat bastard swords and Dornish horse spears as martial weapons, rather than as exotic weapons.
• Favored Region: Northlands.
• Great Fortitude: Dorns gain Great Fortituded as a bonus feat. The Dorns are a hardy people.
• Cold-Honed: Dorns can move through natural snow and ice at their normal speed and gain a +4 racial bonus on Fortitude saves to avoid nonlethal damage from cold environments. Additionally, Dorns suffer only half the normal damage (rounded down) from the nonlethal cold damage caused by these effects.
• Brotherhood: Dorns gain a +1 racial bonus on attack rolls when fighting in groups of five or more Dorns. Dornish pride and valor go hand in hand with brotherhood.
• Strength of arms: Dorns gain a +1 racial bonus on attack rolls when using a melee weapon two-handed.
• Automatic Languages: Norther, Erenlander (1), Trader’s Tongue (1). Bonus Languages: Colonial, High Elven, Orcish.