War of the Burning Sky
On the far side of the mountains that mark Ragesia’s eastern border spreads the Shining Land of Shahalesti, ruled by Lord Shaaladel, a middle-aged elf who rose from being a military commander to the nation’s ruler during the ascension of the Ragesian Empire. Shahalesti was in danger of being conquered like Ragesia’s other neighbours, and Shaaladel’s aggressive displays of force — including the conquest and destruction of two nearby elvish lands that were hostile to him — are credited as major reasons why Ragesia has so far not looked east for conquest.
During Ragesia’s annexation of its neighbours, Lord Shaaladel lent military aid, and he and his trusted aides participated personally in several battles at Coaltongue’s side. A canny, wise, and charismatic commander, Shaaladel is respected even by the Ragesian army, and many expected him to succeed as Emperor after Coaltongue’s death. Rumors say that the elvish lord was quite displeased that the old half-orc was refusing to die of old age.
Shahalesti is not an entirely elvish nation. The majority of its population is human, but they live as commoners with little real power. The aristocracy is almost exclusively elvish, as well as the higher ranks among the military. Despite a grudging alliance with Ragesia, however, orcs and half-orcs are despised and persecuted, unable to hold any public positions, often horribly exploited as nearly slave labor. A few outposts of wealthy orcs with ties to Ragesia have tried to start their own communities; this is a steady source of strife.
The capital of Shahalesti, Calanis, is built over a crescent rift carved by a waterfall. The city is forbidden to non-elves except by invitation from one of the royal family which, as of now, consists only of Shaaladel and his daughter Shalosha.
Common Races: Elf, human, half-elf; Uncommon Races: Halfling, orc.