The Arluenian Throne
Loyal, Faithful, Honorable all these words and more can be used to describe the esteemed Gallowmere family. Before the Sereveian empire arrived in Arluen the Gallowmere’s of Gulltown were the only foothold the Faith had in Iyaarlaan. Sir Eustace Gallowmere established Gulltown in 102 A.C after being tasked by the Church to convert the people of the Berserker Lands. Sir Eustace with the backing of the church smashed Barsag Skullhunter and converted many of the more peaceful inhabitants. Sir Eustace and his sons defended Gulltown from foreign invasion as the city began to grow and grow. In 355 Nordric the Bricklayer paved the muddy Gulltown streets and built powerful stone walls around the city as well as beginning the construction of three Gallowmere Keeps (one for each of his sons) and funding the construction of another dozen keeps for new vassels so that he might have more control over the territory. Nordric had the unfornuntate duty of dealing with the aftermath of the Betrayal of the Black Rose and personally tore down the remains of the keep and salted the ground beneath it so the clans would not occupy it. Ever since then it has been known as the Willted lands.
In 437 the Gallowmere’s greatest enemy came in to the forefront, the Legendary Gorgon. An Incredibly powerful Angwheghlein possibly the strongest Scion of Azrai to ever be born the Gorgon cut a large swath of territory in the Berserker Lands and claimed it as his own the Lands known as the Shadow Crown, and as he greedily began taking more and more land the Clans flocked to his banner. Nordric II grew worried about the Gorgon’s activities and sent word to the Faith sending for 20,000 soldiers to be sent to aid him against the beast. Nordric II gathered his banners before word was sent back to him and struck North to defeat the Gorgon. Nordric II won several startling victories against the fractured clansmen including the Burning of Skirllsdale, Battle at Noth Peak, and the Siege of Durran’s Deep, before meeting the Gorgon in pitched combat at the Battle of Trenfort. The Gorgon slew and usurped Nordric in single combat but failed to claim their ancestral blade "_Truefaith"_ as his prize. Upon the arrival of the Church’s forces the Gorgon was driven back but not defeated and dwelled in the Shadow Crown only to emerge 100 years later and lay siege to Gulltown in 521 were upon he slew brave Larra Gallowmere the Warmaid who met such and unspeakable end.At the behest of the church House Gallowmere sent 10,000 men under Lile Crondalia to join the Coalition of King’s against the Sereveian invasion of the mainland. The Gallowmere came to late though and bowed before the Sereveian backed Wyvern King., and later aided the Sereveians in subduing the Gorgon and Clansmen and Jethro the Wise was named the first Duke of Westreach. Under the relative peace of the Sereveian Empire House Gallowmere prospered and for the next 200 years grew larger and larger and Gulltown became the 2nd largest Arluenian city after Jericho. In 725 when the Sereveian Empire collapsed after the 2nd Malorian Incursion the Gallowmere’s argued at the Great Council against succession and offered to house the displaced Sereveian Empress. During the Nirvanian Annexation the Westreach soldiers were lead by Matthus Gallowmere and Crispen Tagrent both who distinughied themselves in combat. Crispen the Cruel made mince meat of Nirvan supply trains and avoided prolonged engagements with Nigel Rothbreed the Fireborn. Matthus Gallowmere on the other hand captured Queen Laysha and Princess Orella whom married Matthus II after growing infatuated with him during her imprisonment. While the Nirvan Annexation was taking place the Berserker Tribes and the Gorgon rebelled slew Bishop William the Tall and ushered in the “Wild Years” a century long conflict between the Tribesman and Westreach which lead to the Burning of Gulltown in 953 along with many other smaller skirmishes. When Arluen marched for war beside Maloria for 5th Malorian Incursion in 1011 Melissa Gallowmere decided that the threat the Gorgon posed against Westreach was not worth the glory the family could win in the war and her levies were instead directed toward keeping the peace in Westreach and aiding the mainland against foreign invaders. She was rewarded for her efforts by being captured and tortured by the Gorgon in the Shadow Crown were she bore his bastard the horrific Maelys the Monstorous. House Gallowmere survived from Melissa’s younger brother Strendar Gallowmere who had ridden with the King to war against his sister’s wishes. Strendar managed to sire a son before dying in single combat against his young nephew Maelys prompting his young wife Alesha Livingwood to take their young son from Iyaarlaan and raise him in the more peaceful Jericho. In 1139 Strendar II wanted to crown Kaidan Ravenstorm instead of following the King’s wishes to crown his young queen Joceyln Starhewen. However when the Griffen Queen passed he backed her son Unthar Starhewen for ascension, and have loyally backed the Starhewen dynasty ever since.
The Gallowmere’s were crucial to the Gorgon King’s plan to end the Wild Years and helped him drive backed the Berserker Clans, and were present when the King finally ended the Tyranny of the Gorgon. It is said that Tristen Gallowmere cried upon the news of the Gorgon’s death because he was not the one to end it. Tristan himself died besieging Maelys the Monstrous’s Fortress, and none of his descendants have managed to finish off the last of Gorgon’s Bloodline as Melissa Gallowmere’s bastard still dwells in the Shadow Crown to this day. In 1322 Jacques Gallowmere slew the Dragon Cresindius after launching a bold midnight charge with his knights into it’s cavernous lair. Jacques died in 1329 leaving his son Marcus Gallowmere III as the head of the household. Marcus ,now in his early fiffties has proven himself to be a able ruler if a poor general and leaves the command of his armies to his brother Faithless Urswyk. During the Night of of Wild Magic Marcus barricaded himself and his family in the Church of St.Eustace and emerged seemingly uneffected. His youngest son Jeremiah was returning from a night of revelry when the Green Flame descended and his once brown hair was turned a bright blue. Jeremiah has since been traveling around Westreach under the pretense of tourism but many believe that he has been exiled by his zealous father.
House Gallowmere’s Faith and Loyalty have served the family well in it the past but now as danger descends on Arluen will it prove to be their doom?
Duke Marcus Gallowmere the Godly: As pious of a man that Arluen has ever seen before, occasionally Marcus’s claims to recieve visions from the Creator himself and now in his old age spends more nights in the company of priests than with his own Lady Wife.
Duchess Yalla Gallowmere: Formerly of House Tagrent Yalla has been married to Marcus for over 34 years but few forget that she once desired Marcus’s brother Faithless Urswyk.
Sir Marcus Gallowmere IV: The eldest son of Marcus Gallowmere Marcus went to tradinoal route of the eldest son and trained to become a paladin. Marcus isn’t the most skilled with the blade and has won few honors in tournements but Marcus is still young and many hope his skills will apporve with age.
Bishop Clemly of Sistermourne: The second son of Marcus Gallowmere III who has followed the traditional route of younger Gallowmere sons and has joined the Clergy and has risen quickly through the hierarchy of the church to attain the rank of a bishop. Many think that Clemly’s quick rise is due to his family name, but none can dispute the good work he has done in Sistermourne.
Sir Jeremiah the Blue: The youngest son of Marcus Gallowmere III Jeremiah has been recently knighted by his Uncle Urswyk the Faithless, and is currently travelling around Westreach and Gorgonhold some say to avoid his father who is fearful of the magic that turned his sons hair blue. Young Jeremiah however is in good spirits about the color change to his hair and has used it to court some fine noble woman. Many doubted Young Jeremiah’s chance at a good marriage before the transformation but now Jeremiah the blue has his pick of many fine matches.
Sir Urswyk the Faithless: The Younger Brother of Marcus Gallowmere, Urswyk is a completely untraditional Gallowmere and is an oddity around the family, because Urswyk does not believe in the power of the Creator and actively denies his existence and the divinity of any god. Ursywk may have always held these beliefs but he has only recently began to speak about them openly much to the anger of his older brother Marcus who has tried to force him into the church many a time. Despite Urswyk’s beleifs Marcus had come to rely on him as a military commander as Urswyk is one of the most capable Tacticians and Knights alive today. Shortly after the Night of Wild Magic the two brothers had a bit of a falling out and Urswyk has abandoned his brother and has sworn himself to the Prince Radcliff Starhewen the Halfdead and fights beside him in Gorgonhold.
House Gallowmere once held an impressive 5 Tighmaevril Blades there old familial one and four that were gifted to them by the church for various valorous acts, but many were stolen from them by the Gorgon and now only Truefaith is left to them and it is wielded by Marcus IV. Their Household Knights are all armed and armored with +1 magical weaponry and all the family members themselves hold +4 weaponry.
St Eustace’s Cathedral: Built in 11 A.V this part castle part cathedral is truly a masterwork of not only defence but also rival’s St. Augustene’s Cathedral in Jericho in it’s beauty.
Nordric’s Holdfast: Built by the Bricklayer in 356 originally ment to become a second keep for the Order of the Black Rose it was quickly repurposed into a normal keep following the Order’s demise.
Josiah’s Fist: Built in 839 it Josiah’s Fist is certainly the newest of the Gallowmere castles and was built to protect against the Gorgon, currently it is being used by the Church and House Gallowmere as a Headquarters to launch attacks against Maelys the Monstorous.
Scions of Brenna
House Gallowmere our the most powerful bloodline of Brenna the Goddess of Fortune and Commerce, and thought they embody little of her ideals they gain their courage and loyalty from her and their ability normally manifests in the form of acute senses and high charisma.
The Gallowmere’s have the impressive forces of Westreach behind them drawing most of their forces from Gulltown and the Church along with the Feudal forces of their Vassal houses. The combined miltary forces of Westreach will number between 20,000 and 50,000 depending of mobilization, impressive for a smaller Duchy.