| The Isle of Green Fields
Leaders: Duchess Regent Leighton Ashlan
Population: 2,000,000, but the acreage is roughly 160,000 square miles. This means that even the largest cities do not have a population of more than fifty thousand. Most families work farms that are within a couple of hours from the nearest village.
Bards are of special importance on Green Fields to spread news through this gossipy culture about the happenings of one family to another. This is also a source of great conflicts and gives bards more true power over the people than is practical for them to possess. To hold the heart of a bard is to hold the heart of the population.
Baronies: Burgundy Terrace, Emerald Hollow, Golden Crescent
Known For: Food, animals, lumber and the products that come from them.
Colors: Burgundy, Green, and Gold
Major Cities: Asheart, Felicity Fields, Sickle Shores, Fields Port, Winding Creek, Mulberry Grove, Foxcroft, Archington, Thunder Port, Silver Forest. All in all, Green Fields has a lot of villages, and several major cities (usually close to noble house seats) with fields, farms and pastures to travel through in order to get to the next one.
Characters of Green Fields: Here
Description: The Isle of Green Fields is considered by all to be the most beautiful of the Isles of the Keeper. Rolling emerald hills and thick canopied forests make up the sprawling island duchy. The land boasts many gifts that the Empire shares in - herds of horses and cattle graze freely through the northern area, while the southern section of the island flows with fields of wheat, barley and oats, as well as crops of corn, soy beans, and wild rice (near the inland lake). The edge of this area also boasts carrots, beans, peas, pumpkins, cucumbers, watermelon, turnips, potatoes and other rooted vegetables. The remainder of the island is heavy with forests, providing lumber for the Empire. The people of this area are hard workers with a vast knowledge in farming as well as animal husbandry. Some tales go so far as to place their ability with horses into the realm of the spiritual.
For specific information in playing a character from Green Fields, please visit the GF's FAQ.
Map of Green Fields:
| Baronies and Lordships
Unless otherwise noted, NPC Barons or Lords are available for application
Barony of Burgundy Terrace
Barony of Emerald Hollow
- Baronial Leadership: Baron Regent Savaric Lusien
Emerald Hollow is the more forested region of Green Fields, and therefore, produces the lumber that is used throughout the empire for construction purposes. It also boasts one of the most efficient shipyards for the low cost to ship materials to the yard. Nestled along the roads of this region are small villages with livestock that can survive easily in the higher elevations such as pigs, sheep and goats. Silk, wool, and the products that come from them are proudly produced in Emerald Hollow. All of the trees in this Barony make for plenty of superstitious legends about faeries, banshees, and ghosts.
Dappled Edge - NPC Lord Yoris Lusien
Keeper's Forest - Lord Justin Jeffery James
Stone's Throw - Lord Martis Greyhayme
Barony of Golden Crescent
- Baronial Leadership: Baron Nicholas and Baroness Iseldis Labrec
Golden Crescent is the more dry area of the Duchy, so the crops produced are wheat, barley, oats, rye, potatoes, corn, etc. The name speaks true for itself for the colors of the lands during Fall Harvest. Golden Crescent also produces most of the ales and whiskeys of the Empire. The one exception to this rule of drier land is in Berry Flats where the more rivers pass through, giving a richness to the soil which is prime for various berries, tomatoes, and even some vineyards. Of all of the Baronies, Golden Crescent has a reputation for parties tipped a little heavily to the extreme.
Golden Harvest - Lady Richelle de Fortet
Brewer's Crossing - NPC Lord Severin Fabira
The main trade of Green Fields tends to deal with the ground, what comes from it, and what can be made from what comes from it. Second to that is livestock, what comes from it, and what can be made from it. There are plenty of businesses that deal in the processing of plant and animal sources into product such as fabrics, soaps, leather, rope, etc as well. There is a shipyard on Green Fields which pays and employs well.
All Isles use the necessities from Green Fields. Mists brings magical enchantments to strengthen crops, weather mages to help keep the climate controlled for year round crop production, magically enchanted storehouses to keep food fresher longer, and enchantments on plows and other farm equipment to keep it stronger. Draught brings healers for both man and beast, potions that help keep bugs at bay, engineering for better equipment and process improvements for textiles and other products. Guardian brings stone from their quarries for the building of the most important structures on the Fields, and metals for use in equipment, barn siding, bits, stirrups, spurs, etc.
| Life on Green Fields
Most homes in Green Fields are made of stone for the more wealthy and brick made of sod, clay and hay for the poorer classes. A massive fire a couple of hundred years ago has made the people of Green Fields excessively cautious in regards to flammable materials. Because of this, the homes are made to be more fire proof. They also have the theory that more money can be made to use the Isle's lumber for sale and trade rather than waste it on homes that would be so easily burned. On really poor farms, corrals are simply made with ropes strung between trees, or the horses are simply tied to a post or wagon.
The majority of the Green Fields population does not have reason to learn to read and even the city culture has adapted to make it less necessary. Financial economy is taught enough for trade and bartering. The most educated from a young age on the Fields are those from business or noble backgrounds. There is a University located in the capital city that teaches higher degrees of learning in subjects such as tavern management and animal husbandry. In almost all cases of university attendance, the first courses a student will take are in remedial reading.
Plenty of jokes are made about Fielders because of their lack of book knowledge, but keep in mind that the time spent away from school yards has allowed a much keener common sense in folks from the emerald isle.
Weddings - Weddings happen with regularity year round, the most occurring in individual baronies or lordships depending on when their particular planting period takes place. It's a long standing belief that if a couple marries during planting season, then the marriage will be a happy one since planting is a time of new beginnings. It's not unheard of for a couple that's turned up with child or just finding the urge to elope to run off to the nearest lordship that's in a sowing period. Wearing white at a wedding is not a tradition on Green Fields. For nobility, they often wear the colors of the ranking Lordship/Barony/Duchy. The average citizen just wears their absolute best. Often a gown is passed down from mother to daughter with each person adding a few beads or bits of embroidery as part of the gift to the bride. Circlets of flowers chained together are extremely popular for young brides and this is thrown to the unmarried women to determine who will marry next. A huge party of almost festival proportions is usually thrown in honor of the newlyweds. It's not a stressful event for the couple since most of the locals just gather together in 'pot luck' style. The only thing the couple is responsible for making /sure/ arrives is the keg of ale. No Green Fields wedding ceremony is complete without the bride (or groom) price being shown to all in attendance. This means if the groom is moving to live with the brides's family, then the bride's father/uncle/brother will parade the cow/chickens/wagon of corn down the aisle for all to see that a price was paid and how much the groom is worth on the farm. The price paid is significant symbolicly and the source of bragging and shame can be wrapped up in what was presented. In the cases of extreme poverty that would prevent a wedding from taking place, neighbors will chip in varieties of items for the bride/groom price to help the receiving family to avoid the stigma of shame at the reception party. The bride/groom price is always paid by the family that is gaining the family member. In the culture where the number of hands on the farm equates to more productivity, then losing a family member to marriage could make for some hardships without some compensation. Even though it's more for show on the noble level, the tradition still holds.
Since the land is so valued as a resource, Green Fields does not wish to waste any of it with burying their dead. The funeral pyre is common with the ashes being gathered and handed out in ale mugs to all that attend the funeral. It's traditional to take the ashes back to ones home and sprinkle the ashes somewhere on the farm or village in hopes that the person's spirit will inhabit the area. From that point on, whenever someone thinks about or talks about the deceased, it's believed that Providence has looked favorably on one of the ashes. It's also an honor to the deceased to have a drink of ale from the mug once the ashes have been emptied and before it's rinsed.
Though there is a couple week mourning period on Green Fields, most try to spend the time celebrating the life that the person lead. Pub crawls for friends and family are extremely common in the weeks after the loss though it often takes the form of going from neighbor to neighbor sampling some of their own home brew. Because there are so many that do not have access to mourning clothes, a simple black cloth or rope either used as a necklace or an armband is recognized as the mourning symbol. There is no specified time requirement for wearing a mourning symbol though most widows or widowers will wear it for at least six months to a year.
Fielder dress is usually very simple and functional often lacking shoes. Women dress like women, and men dress like men. The one exception to this would be women wearing pants for long rides, but even then a riding skirt is more popular.
| Festivals and Traditions
Green Field citizens do not actually need special days to find an excuse to drink heavily and visit with friends, but these are the days that the Isle as a whole observes:
100th Day Celebration - July 10th marks a celebration of hundredth day. This was the day that the 100th family moved to Green Fields and they found it a good reason to start an annual celebratory event. At first it was just people getting together to drink, but then an odd tradition started over time. Now on 100th day, it's the goal of every citizen or noble to either pass out 100 compliments or 100 insults, but the person must be consistent in whatever they choose. An hour before sunset, everyone rushes to the nearest tavern or a designated host family's home and continue the party--which really means they wait for the fights to break out over those insulting. It /never/ fails that there is a fight at any gathering on this day. Extra healers from Draught are brought in for this day alone.
Harvest Week Celebration - Harvest week celebration is really a misnomer, as it often stretches into two weeks or so of utter relief once the fall harvesting is done. This generally involves having fairs, baking competitions, animial competitions, brewing competitions, and anything else that can give an excuse for the locals to go head to head and to drink. The days are filled with these, the nights with drinking and telling stories before bonfires.
A tradition during the harvest week celebration always takes place when Minuet is full. This night, the young men go to the harvested fields and gather the left-over husks into piles to light fires. They then strip down to naked and jump over the fires. It's said that the man who jumps over the most fires on Minuet Harvest will be gifted with luck and fertility for the following year.
Spring Week Celebration
Another key event is the Spring Festival and the Lucitania, named for the Green Fields rider who invented it. This is a horse-race to end all horse races, involving some rather dangerous courses. It is not unheard of for someone to die during the race. The true Lucitania is held at the capital city, but there are similar versions of it all over the dukedom. The winner of the Lucitania is revered throughout the realm and is given a considerable purse by the reigning Duke and/or Duchess.
The end of the race marks the beginning of the week long party in honor of the victor. At the spring festival, there's a traditional dance that's performed, the comealla. The male part involves crossing arms over the chest and some fast footwork, punctuated by high kicks. The female involves tight turns about her partner and similar kicks, all the while avoiding his. The better a couple is, the faster they can do it without tripping or ending up smacking one another in the shin.
Foaling Moon - The full moon around mid-June is a celebration in honor of the tail end of animal foaling. It's really just one huge reason for people to get drunk, full of raging hormones and find haystacks to make out behind. Typically Mid-March sees a spike in human births because of this celebration.
Memorial Day - In the year 327 A. G. a fire started in the wheat fields on the Isle that killed hundreds of people, homes and livestock. That particular year was hard for all of the Isles dependent on GF's and her crops. Every October 3rd is a day of memorial for all that was lost in that year. For that day, no one from Green Fields will eat anything prepared by fire or light fires of any sort.
By most other Isle's standards, Green Fields has some very unusual customs and beliefs. They tend to lean towards placing value in various symbolic idols and strange rituals to gain favor from Providence.
Animal Whisperers - It has been noted among those born on Green Fields that a very small percentage of their population seem to have an inherent animal empathy. They are called 'whisperers', and the most frequently noted are horse whisperers. This does not mean that a whisperer has a complete conversation with an animal, but rather they can gain impressions and lend influence to a creature.
A PC with this talent could discern that Flash the stallion was upset about a barn fire, but could not actually have a conversation with the horse where it told the PC all about the man the horse saw last week. A PC with this talent could impress things on the horse (or dog, or fish, or whatever) like "run faster. It will be okay" but not communicate abstract concepts like "If you run faster, I will buy you that filly you saw last month".
The Horse Shoe - The front door of every home has a horse shoe over it with the direction of horse shoe being an important way of communicating what is occurring in the household. If the arch of the shoe is pointed down, then it means that all is well and Providence has filled the home with the fortune of good health and good crops. If the arch is pointed up, it means that luck is running out. This is most often done as a symbol of mourning, but some have tipped their shoe down for an extremely bad crop year or if something was stolen. The arch pointing to the right or left means that a family member is ill and symbolizes that a visitor should continue on their path less they wish ill to fall on their family as well.
The Bard's Cup - Bards are greatly honored on the Fields, and any landed lord is obligated to host a bard for a night, providing food and drink, if the bard performs for the noble. If the noble is pleased with the bard's performance, the noble gifts the bard with a goblet holding the crest of the lands. Some will just sell the goblet for money (often back to the land-holder), but there is a long-standing tradition for bards seeking to make a name to try to perform a circuit of the isle and gather a goblet from every lord, baron, and the ducal seat itself.
The Field Blessing - It's a common tradition for people from Green Fields to obtain an item that symbolizes work in the field such as a hoe, plow, or reins from a bridle and hang this over the family dining table. To have this over your table is a symbolic request of Providence that the table should never be empty of food.
Animal Tails - Since the backend of an animal is where conception and birth occurs, to hang the tail of a cow, ox, horse, llama, pig or rabbit on the wall is a great tradition of asking Providence to bless the home with many children. The highest believed effectiveness for this small ritual is to hang the tail of a recently deceased animal that was very fertile in its lifetime. It's not uncommon for newlyweds to receive this as a gift.
Loss of Virtue - Where a Green Field's person loses their virginity is really more important than when they lose it. For both men and women, the location of first penetration is asking Providence for a specific blessing. If it occurs in bed, the person is asking for a extra fertility; in a field, a blessing for fertile crops; in a hayloft or stable, a blessing for productive livestock; near water, a blessing on the Emperor's family (since it symbolizes his control of the currents). Small feuds have occurred between families because of where a daughter or son initiated sex.
First Birthdays - Even more celebrated than the birth of a child is the first birthday! It's common for many infants to not survive the first year for a variety of reasons. Most people have confidence that when a baby turns one, they are going to live a long and healthy life. This is reason to celebrate! Huge parties are thrown for both the parents and the infant. It's an anticipated event by the entire family. The right of passage that occurs at these events is that the baby will get his or her first taste of ale! The drink is diluted, but it's common philosophy on the Isle that it's never too early to get your child started in the appreciation of the finer things in life. Some nobles or wealthy merchants choose wine for their baby's first taste of alcohol, but most tend to select the ale option for the sake of tradition.
Ale Baths - Ale baths are a tradition to celebrate major marriage anniversary milestones - 10, 25, and 50 years. A tub is filled with ale purchased by the couple's family and friends with cheaper ale celebrating the earlier anniversaries over later year celebrations. Once the tub is filled, the couple gets liberty to bathe in ale together and the tradition has come that it's a time to ruminate on memories over the past years of marriage. The couple gets several hours alone around the tub of ale to drink after they've bathed before the family and friends are invited to return and partake if they choose. Tradition also dictates that any engaged couples at the party are given first dibs in the drink as a sign of good luck to their own nuptials.
Non-Landed Nobles - Noble children and adults that are not anticipating a landed inheritance are considered non-landed nobles. This usually consists of any child past the first born (or second if the first dies). Among non-landed nobles, there is an opportunity for those that excel to become responsible for specific tasks on the Isles. For example, an older second born noble's son could spend his educational pursuits on learning all about harvesting, and eventually when a position becomes available, a competition is had to determine which of these nobles would be named Lord of the Harvest. The selected Lord would then be given the task of working through harvests within the Duchy. His jobs may include visiting Draught to find out the latest harvesting technologies, purchasing iron and tools from Guardian, having them enchanted by Mists and then bringing this technology back to Green Fields and teaching the farmers how to implement this for greater production. He would go from farm to farm and Lordship to Lordship to oversee specific duties involving the harvest (or send representatives in his stead--often younger Lords that desire to take over his position at some point), and report results of the year to the Lord of the lands.
Where Lords are the managers of making sure they have the Lord of the Harvest/Sowing/etc arrive on time, the Lord of the Harvest will specialize in his one area. Lesser nobles that pursue these interest are esteemed highly among both the noble and the citizen class, and often the citizens feel more comfortable confiding with these nobles than their own Lord. Many reports for Baronies and Duchies come straight from these specialized non-landed Lords. The title is /not/ passed on to heirs.
These are almost always NPC positions that stay on Green Fields as plot devices. It would not make sense to have the Lord of the Brew living on Gateway for more than a brief visit.
- Lord of the Hunt
- Lord of the Harvest
- Lord of the Sowing
- Lord of Husbandry
- Lord of the Cloth
- Lord of the Brew
| Justice of Green Fields
In any society laws will be broken, and this is the case even for hospitable Green Isles. In general, the severity of the crime determines the actions, and the Lord of the land acts as a judge in minor disputes. If the dispute is too great, he can't draw a fair conclusion, or the crime is one such as murder, then the Baron, Duke or even Emperor would handle it. In any case where death would be a likely consequence to the crime, the person is sent to the main Isle to allow the Emperor to hear the evidence and choose the criminal's fate. Each Lord's estate (no matter how small) does have at least one sod cell to hold an arrested criminal, and there are enough guard available in local villages that they can handle the arrest.
If convicted of a crime in Green Fields, a person's right hand palm is tattooed red to symbolize being caught red-handed. (Some people can be so literal!) Mind you, there is no distinction between someone who stole a loaf of bread and someone who tried to make a sheep their love slave for the night, but the sight of the mark instantly breeds distrust to anyone who sees it. A person has to at least be thirteen before they would ever be marked. Anyone younger (and sometimes even those well into their late teens and marked) just ends up red reared when their parents, older siblings, grandparents, uncles, etc find out.
Though the death penalty is rare, severe crimes often carry things like being sentenced to chain gangs working on mending fences, roads and other manual labor type things. Only in /extreme/ cases is the death penalty given, and even then, GF's will ship the accused to the main Isle for the Emperor to give the sentence.
Hunters and Rangers - In the forested areas of Green Fields, hunting is a major past time that most children start when they are young. Falconry and archery are the most common tools of the hunt. Huge hunting parties are organized during days that people are able to take off from their work, and the excess kill is sold to market.
The Lord of the Hunt is one of the most experienced and best hunters on the Isle. Most Lords of the Hunt do not attain that title until their mid to late forties or even early fifties. Under the leadership of the Lord of the Hunt is a group of men that are called Rangers.
Rangers are the best of the best from local hunters, their numbers extremely small in comparison to those that participate in hunting. The population of rangers are all male. These men usually run in their early thirties or older and have proven their skills in hunting, tracking, fishing, skinning/cleaning and even cooking the animals. In addition to proven skill, these people have been hand "selected" and trained by a previous mentor in a more specialized areas of serving and protecting nobility of the Isle and making local arrests. Consequently, the rangers are held in the same esteem of the Duke as the knights are to the Emperor. They are often called on to act as messengers for the most important of missives, bodyguards and even assassins. All rangers /must/ select one male person to mentor so that they can be certain their small group can continue with future membership. A new ranger is not made until one of the older members dies or decides to give up his position. To decide who becomes ranger, a hunting tournament is held. All who have witnessed any part of this tournament knows that it's a very long two week competition that is strenuous and even deadly to those that are not keen observers. In general, rangers will remain on Green Fields Isle since there are no areas on Gateway Isle to actually hunt, and the call of the city pales in comparison to the call of the forest. The exception to this rule is if a member of high Green Fields nobility has requested the service of a ranger as a bodyguard. This is a rare circumstance since the population of knights and guard on the Isle makes for a rather safe environment, and the nobility understands the desire for the ranger to be in the field rather than surrounded by cobblestone and walls.
| Character of Green Fields
In a nutshell, most Green Fields people are rather hickish. They tend to be hospitable and very down to earth. Most people do not look at others as strangers and if a guest visits the land, they are almost always welcomed to the nearest village for some socialization with most offered a place to stay on their visit. Though not always true with nobles, most families are extremely large and extended family lives nearby if not on the same farm. The philosophy of the average Green Field family is that the more people on the farm, the lighter the workload. Children have chores at young ages and this doesn't end until the young person decides to move away to pursue a different path (such as attend the Isle's college, open a shop, or move to the Gateway Isle) or wed. Because each set of hands is so useful on the farm, it's very common that there is a great deal of resistance on the part of the young person's family towards leaving. The exception to this is marriage in which case a bride price is paid by the man's family to make up for the lost family member on the bride's side of the family. If the groom is going to be living with the bride's family, then the compensation is paid to the groom's family.
Men and women are perceived as equal in contribution to the family though clear roles are usually defined as 'women's work' or 'man's work'. Men usually do spend most of the days out to tend the fields and animals or heavy chores longer distances from the family cottage. Women tend to children, prepare meals, and do chores closest to the cottage. Even though the women are left to tend the home more than the fields, they are still considered very strong and solid. During busier seasons such as harvest time or breeding seasons, then /every/ healthy person works on the task regardless of gender. This is where rumor and even snickers have come that Green Field women are so stout, they can squat in a field, have a baby, and then go back to work an hour later.
In general, the work ethic of someone from Green Fields is extremely high and they take a great deal of pride in anything that is produced from the family farm, their village, and even their Barony.
For fun, people from Green Fields spend a great deal of time engaging in social activities with their own family and neighbors. Regular meals are taken in large groups where everyone brings something to share, simple instruments are played for dancing and the passing of song and stories to the younger generations, and among teens and adults more intimate activities occur in haylofts and corn fields. If someone were to spend their time in books or away from people for too long, they are usually persecuted (even if it's only slight teasing) for their isolation. The College of Agriculture and Animal Husbandry is nearly legendary for great parties because of this social attitude.
Outside of nobility, many of the people of Green Fields have not learned to read though simple economy is taught to insure that fair deals are passed on to market. It doesn't make them a 'stupid' population though it does make them a target to a great deal of teasing from other Isles. In general, the citizens of Green Field will laugh at the humor tossed their way more than get angry by it. All humor stops if you dare make fun of a man's mother, wife or daughter though!
As far as traits in the population, most people develop large muscles and lean bodies after years of heavy labor. There is no major coloring as far as hair or eye color. Nobility and wealthy merchants tend to stand out the same way race horses stand out from work horses. They do not have to work the fields, so they tend to be either very petite or overweight compared to your average Fielder.
Fielders that come to Gateway after living on Green Fields tend to try to knit community around them out of habit and almost passionate necessity to connect with others. They aren't afraid of adding to or at least receiving a good bit of gossip about things happening around the village. A lead on good gossip is often followed to find out if it's true or not. Temptation to throw or attend party is rather common. In general, they do not lose their identity even in the city. They just try to make the city as much like 'home' as they can which can also be a source of frustration and conflict when the other locals don't welcome their ways as easily as one might expect.
What is the attitude of the typical Green Fields citizen toward those of each other isle?
Green Fields definitely sees the contributions the other Isles make to their way of life and because of that, they respect the roles that Providence has given the other three Isles.
Guardian: Guardians are viewed as the ones that supply stone for the houses and metals for their farm equipment and tools. They do not always understand the obsession with fighting that Guardians seems to emphasize. To them, it's the metal and stone that is of far greater worth and holds the highest esteem in a Fielder's eyes. Many a hard working Fielder young men are convinced they could 'whoop up' on a Guardian fighter. They are likely mistaken and the attitude serves no greater purpose than fuel for a fight if one visits the other.
Draught: Fielders don't quite 'get' Draughtians, but they certainly do 'get' what Draught brings to the table of their lives. They can't understand what's up with all of the books, but they definitely understand that one of them 'book lovers' knows how to tend to a family member (and sometimes even the family cow) in medical emergencies. They think Draughtian soil is far inferior to their own, but appreciate the spices and herbs that come from the plantations there. They think inventors have some serious screws loose in the space above their shoulders, but love the new inventions and plans for better farm equipment. Interpersonally, they tend to shy away from Draughtian relationships because of a lack of seeing eye to eye, but when it comes to business or process improvement, a Draughtian is a best friend to have.
Mists: Mists, quite frankly, makes life as they know it a better place. Mistians help with the weather if it gets too cold. They can enhance soil to make plumper fruits and even enchant silos to make food preserve longer. Mistians are also viewed as some of the 'damn oddest people ever to suck air'. Fielders have a cautious appreciation of Mistians, but never want to get too close in case they decide to turn them into a frog or give them a third breast. Fielders aren't prone to ask how Mistians do what they do or even why, but they will hide behind a barn to spy with excuses like wanting to see if they are sacrificing chickens or small children to do what they do. In the end, Fielders know Mistians do what they have to do to get their job done and the less questions asked, the better it is for everyone involved. The livestock that comes from Mists just 'ain't right' and isn't really welcome on Fielder soil less those crazy critters mess up their own.
Gateway: Fielders actually feel a bit sorry for people born of Gateway. In a Fielders mind, they are very hodge podge people without true identity or connection. They may go out of their way to 'convert' a Gateway Isle person to become more Fielder. They know that their way is the best way and why not share? Fielders love to share!