Table of Contents
- Everyday Life
- Rybalkan Establishments
- Rybalkan Wilderness Territory
- Additional Reading
Loyalty: Klavek Kingdom
Export: Iron, Fish, Wood
Import: Tools, Clothing, Specialty Goods
Assets: 3,500 gp
Authority figure: Mayor Igor Leonid, NG male human ftr6
Authority: Rybalka Village Guard
Important Characters: Juriendor, Yuri Statel, Quorron, Fin Starling, Landore Bugg, Wvolf
A fishing village adjacent to a healthy iron mine, Rybalka had a different name just a few decades ago and was controlled by the Vikmordere. In the past, Vikmordere raiders used the strategic location of the fishing village as a launching point for attacks against the Klavek Kingdom. An abundant iron mine nearby provided all the ore the Vikmordere raiders needed for their tools, weapons, and armor.
The Klavekian Monarchy moved troops into the Vikmordere Valley and launched an arduous assault against the Vikmordere in hopes of securing this strategic location and obtaining the lucrative iron mine. After many failed attempts and the deaths of hundreds of Klavekian ground troops, the Klavek Kingdom was finally able to oust the Vikmordere raiders from Rybalka. In order to hold the location, additional troops were brought in to clear the mountainside forests of the rest of the Vikmordere warriors. This resulted in horrible casualties for the Klavekians, losing 10 soldiers for every 1 Vikmordere raider found and killed. Many of the Vikmordere avoided persecution by hiding in abandoned ruins and mountain caves where it is thought they still exist to this day.
The Klavek Kingdom placed a permanent contingent of guardsmen at Rybalka to protect the populace and the vital iron mine.
Without access to the ore in the mine, the Vikmordere’s military strength and foothold on the region has been greatly reduced.
Many Rybalkan Vikmordere villagers who were not affiliated with the raiders were allowed to stay and live freely in the village if they continued to provide services to the Klavek Kingdom settlers. These services include blacksmithing, fishing, mining, and ship construction as well as various menial tasks requested from time to time. Racism in Rybalka is still quite prevalent, especially amongst the Klavekian settlers, and a few interracial families that were harassed and persecuted by the Klavekians moved into the dangerous and unforgiving wilderness just to escape the ignorance and hatred of the average Klavekian settler.
Rybalka has established a very lucrative trade with the other towns and cities in the Klavek homeland. The rare mountain fish caught in the Serpent Lake are highly coveted in the metropolitan areas of the Klavek Kingdom.
Two logging camps exist on the Rybalkan Peninsula. The most prominent of these is a small logging camp which exists in the forested hills west of Rybalka. The camp contains two outbuildings, a smithy, and logging equipment. A water flume redirects water from a stream in the hills into the camp to turn a mill-blade and operate saws. Trees are harvested and transported out of the hills and into the great glacial lake. The logs are then loaded on a barge to float down Serpent Lake to the Serpent Tail River and into the waiting hands of the Klavek riverside settlements below.
The heavily fortified Rybalkan Mine is northeast of Rybalka. The iron mine imports/exports directly with the Klavekian Monarchy and does not fall under Rybalkan jurisdiction despite its close proximity. The mined ore is shipped via replica Vikmordere vessels through the Serpent Lake and Serpent’s Tail River into the Klavek Homeland. The large amounts of ore being pulled from the mine has prompted the Klavek Kingdom to invest additional funding and expansion plans to Rybalka as well as an increase in ground troops to patrol the nearby countryside.
The temperature varies considerably depending on the season; summer can be as warm as 65F (18C) and winter can be as cold as 8F (-13C). There is generally snow on the ground from early fall until mid spring, although depending on weather patterns this can change.
Cold winds tend to rush down out of the mountains in winter and push through the valley and down Serpent Lake into the lowland plains below. In winter much of the lake freezes over completely making travel by boat difficult if not impossible.
In spring when the snow begins to melt many animals with new offspring venture down to the shores of the Serpent Lake. The surrounding forested hillsides go into full bloom. Spring and summer both display the beauty of the land and the true reason why the locals stay and live in such a harsh environment most of the year.
The end of summer is a time of feasting and celebration.
A Rybalkan day begins as the sun finally reaches high enough in the sky to cast its light over the jagged peaks of the Eastern Mountains. The suns rays hit the crystallized snow cover creating myriad colors; lights begin to dance upon the partially frozen Serpent Lake. The folk living in the small village begin to stir and go about their daily duties; fishermen push their skiffs over the jagged chunks of ice and into the water, Rybalkan Soldiers gear up for wilderness patrols, and the blacksmith stokes the fire at the smithy.
The majority of townsfolk in Rybalka are lumberjacks, miners, or fishermen. The only other trades in Rybalka obtain their roots in the three major professions thus woodworking, blacksmithing, and cooking are the secondary trades.
Most of the structures in Rybalka are cabins and constructed of wood harvested from the nearby mountain forest. A few permanent structures like the Rybalka Temple are built from stone.
The entrance to a man’s cabin usually has a large set of antlers hanging directly over the door as a sign of virility. Upon marrying, the wife will traditionally hang small bundles of aromatic herbs from the antlers, along with semi-precious stones placed in specific places upon them using tree sap; these herbs are refreshed by the wife weekly.
When a married couple gives birth to their first child, they take down the antlers and hang a circular wooden disc carved by a native Vikmordere villager over their front door. The Vikmordere villager blesses the disc and the home to ward away evil spirits and calls upon nature to protect the family. Although new arrivals scoff at this practice (calling it superstitious nonsense) they soon find out the hard way that no protection from the wild land brings evil to your doorstep. Before long even the most hardened in their stance invite a native to show them how to protect their home and family from the evils spawned from the nearby Dark Wood
The governmental hub of the small village, this intimidating structure contains the guard barracks, mayor’s quarters, the council court, among others important facilities.
Landore Bugg has a large house that is jam packed full of random useless junk. He has a couple rooms that he cleared out for travelers to rent which helps pay for him to acquire more junk. Staying here is not very private and Landore occasionally barges in uninvited to pick up tools for various jobs around town. Bugg doubles as a maintenance man for the mayor and the local government.
Yuri Statel is the local Sage and is an expert in all things magical and alchemical. He uses his home as the local library which has become filled to the brim with all manner of texts from all over the Klavek Homeland.
The Rybalka Lodge had always been the finest establishment in town. A meeting place for visitors and dignitaries and place where one could always find a warm meal and a clean bed. That all ended around a year ago when the lodge mysteriously caught fire and burnt to the ground.
A temple constructed to honor the God of War.
Hidden away in a cluster of stone sheds lies the famed Ryabalkan Distillery.
The Thirsty Serpent is the most popular drinking establishment in town. Fin Starling, the owner is a semi-retired adventurer who has been thrown into the role of tavern owner.
Rybalkan Wilderness Territory
The Vikmordere are the original inhabitants of the Vikmordere Valley (a.k.a. Eastern Mountain Region). They are a race of nomadic barbarians who utilize Serpent Lake, Serpent Tail River, and the sea to conduct their bloody raids on Klavekian villages in the lowlands.
The Vikmordere are a mash-up of the stereotypical Viking warrior and Tribal Native American.
A massive glacial lake that meanders through a valley surrounded on all sides by the Vikmordere Valley.
Feared and respected by even the most powerful Vikmordere warriors, the Dark Wood is a shadowy and foreboding place. The hunter’s cabin owned by Cual Beartooth is a bastion of refuge in the otherwise inhospitable forest.
Cual Beartooth owns this bastion of solace deep within the dangerous confines of Dark Wood.
Dwarf Realm, Entrance (dweorg)
The Jagged Crags are a low lying broken mountain range on the Rybalkan Peninsula. Most of the wilderness located within the Jagged Crags has not been explored by the Rybalkans.
A heavily fortified iron mine northeast of Rybalka. The mine imports/exports directly with the Klavekian Monarchy and does not fall under Rybalkan jurisdiction despite its close proximity.
Rybalkan Logging Camp
A small logging camp in the forested hills west of Rybalka. The camp contains two outbuildings, a smithy, and logging equipment. A water flume redirects water from a stream in the hills into the camp to turn a mill-blade and operate saws. (Featured: Adventure #4)
Ruins/Crypt of Sun Lord Ka’Teek
This site of ruins rests along the northern shores of Serpent Lake and was named after the great Sun Lord Ka’Teek. (Featured: Adventure #1)
Vikmordere Burial Mound
An ancient tomb converted into a burial mound by the Snoqua tribe. It is currently abandoned and home to numerous undead and monsters. (Featured: Adventure #3)