The Emberveil Edit
The land was named the Emberveil for the cloud cover that would often scatter sunlight into dappled patterns and hide in the woods. The founding priestess would erect a tall spire, housing a well of Sunlight and arcane power, far to the north and overlooking the sea. While simply named the Emberveil Spire, it was both a rallying point for those that had followed her and a marker that would lead down to the main port city of Via Cleyra. Villas cling to the rock faces before they fall to sprawl by the shore, supported as much by the water as by land and trees proper. The Cloudseyes, leaders of the migration that settled first in the area, were the de facto rulers by controlling education and a part of the main city's council votes until roughly the last century.
There are few cities, and these boast a migrant population more than a permanent local feature. Emberveil families are likelier to cling to the mountains, merchants living closer to the docks or in the lower rises along with the craftsmen and the few local fishers.
While there is constant traffic, since the disappearance of the Cloudseyes that watched over the Spire and all it held, most apprentice-aged elves have left the Emberveil to seek to learn elsewhere, since the education was mostly centralized past basic levels.
Imports: Metal/metalwork, wood, gems, grain goods, animal products.
Exports: Artistry, woven goods, fish, spice and vegetable goods. People.
Also supported by: tourism (mainly by sea and south mountain crossing).
- Via Cleyra: is the center for any administrative action as well as the crafts and artistry of the area, and has its own ruling body.
The ruling body consists of an Emberveil Cleric, up until recently filled by a Cloudseye and now left empty; a priest of the city proper, the order being charged with taxes to be paid in favor to the city and her people as well as speaking for the locals not associated with any other representative; and a representative from any merchant cartel with a fleet of more than five ships. All held equal power, and would govern over any matters related to trade and public concerns. Via Cleyra is a flourishing city, known more for its flights of fancy and decadence than for its riches: the clergy is far from lax with its taxes, yet there is a constant flow of coin to and from the people that they control with their own hands.
- Emberveil Spire: Main center of worship, and while technically outside of Via Cleyra the distance is short and almost completely melded into the city after works done during Myn’rae’s ‘reign’. The Spire proper includes an Academy for the temple acolytes, along with the extensive and private libraries for their art. The Dawn Promenade is the temple proper, facing out to sea and leading to various, more secluded, temples and halls of piety while the main temple, dedicated to Lady Ilyasviel, takes over the eastern-most curve of the Promenade to grant audience to those of the elite of the main town.
The Dusk Promenade, curling behind the main Academy and Spire buildings, leading off into and up the mountains, is where the magi and most elite artists were trained. Access to the Dusk Promenade was severely restricted, yet those that emerged from within were highly sought for, as beings of exquisite sensitivities. Magic was rare in the Emberveil, and heavily restricted: to be a mage took vows, selection periods and being kept on record, however those apprenticed within the Dusk Promenade were offered lodging and generally assured work in the future. Cloudseyes and Lightsongs tended to have the largest presence as both students and teachers, thus the focus was placed in modified Sun devotionals and older cults to kaldorei spirits and servile ethereal beings.
Lastly, the Spire itself was a secondary Lighthouse, a blessed moonwell granting its sacred light even further than the artificial or magical light the one at Via Cleyra summoned. Cloudseyes dwelled there, the family indistinguishable from the laity, and as such free passage through all but the private rooms is allowed for any faithful of the Sun. However, donations are expected, since the family and their associates would maintain most of the Emberveil Spire’s structures at their expense.
- Zin’rae: a settlement buried high over the mountains of the Emberveil and dominating several passes down to the shore and across to the rest of Quel’thalas. Buried is quite literal, as the buildings carve into the stone face and merely jut out in balconies, in boulevards filled with greenery and dripping banners, stalls facing the downwards slopes.Following any street leads into the mountains and cooler air, with artificial light provided by magic. Many of the Dawn and Dusk’s promenades’ apprentices spend terms, if not their entire working lives, in Zin’rae; this combined with the fact that the main garrison of the Emberveil is located above the underground settlements proper make the border pass the sole point of defense.
While one of the passes to proper Quel’thalas, Zin’rae wasn’t as stricken by the orcs or the Scourge as the rest of the land: its people fled underground, or back to manses and cultivars high and far away. The larger military presence served to maintain the order, and then mobilized south-east to aid with the national relief efforts.
Trade is sparser than in the rest of the Veil, but nonetheless healthy. Most of the boulevards bear fruiting trees, and greenhouses growing goods for consumption lean down back towards the roads that lead to the sea. Zin’rae is also the smallest settlement of note, the lack of farming ground forcing people down to the woods and flatter lands of Via Cleyra and Nyria.
- Via Nyria: rather than a settlement proper, Via Nyria is the name given to the farmer’s market that runs along the main road from the southern reaches of the Emberveil back through the mountain to general Quel’thalas. The goods peddled are fewer and of a more rural nature, mixed in with some devotional objects. While the land is fertile, the nature of it has limited agriculture to a degree: the lack of fields have forced the farmers to work in ordered terraces that rise and sink into woods marked by terrain too uneven to clear out. Grain goods need import, often by land, and in exchange the locals offer vegetables and cotton or linen goods. Most luxury goods are bound for Via Cleyra, including metalwork and silks, but both the clergy and the richer landowners get their share.