Do not follow where the path leads…
Go instead where the is no path and leave a trail.
|Proper Name||The Aswanar Wildlands|
|Demographics||Aswani 95%, 5% Other|
|Languages||Aswani 90%, Other 10%|
|National Colors||No formal colors or standards.|
|Year Founded||No formal founding. Discovered in 1872 CY|
|Currency||Trade and barter.|
|Natural Resources||Abundant plant and animal life|
|Manufactured Goods and Major Exports||Dyes, fruit, raw leather and leather goods, bead jewelry, ivory, wood carvings|
|Government Type||Provincial (Tribal)|
|Primary Religion||The Vaesh|
|Approximate Land Area||2,330,000 square kilometers
|Terrain||Jungle and dense rainforest|
The Aswanar Wildlands are collectively a realm of jungles, swamps and thick forests. This region is the homeland of the Aswanar Tribes - a loose coalition of primitive tribes. The aswani are a primitive mammalian humanoid species. They are fur covered, slight of frame and have long tails. Their mammalian snouts have jagged teeth. Large erect tufted ears frame their bestial faces. The long arms and short legs are capable of quadruped or biped movement. They are not strong, but are very fast and dexterous. They are able to run very fast. They have outstanding senses – better than most animals. They can smell or hear a hunter coming a mile away.
The aswani are fairly primitive. They live in tribal communities, very close to nature. They are the dominant race of the jungles and rainforests of eastern Qeshir. Aswani tend to be very superstitious. They fear and dislike magic. They have a sort of natural “detect magic” sense. They can “smell” magic. Aswani jealously guard their territory against evil, imperial intruders. They fight with claws and fangs. They are very low tech. Only the simplest tools and weapons. On occasion, aswani are hired by groups as scouts and trackers.
The geography of the Aswanar Wild Lands is a varied mix of jungle and rainforest with rolling hills and broad leaf forests intermixed. The coastline is tropical with white sandy beaches, rocky beaches in places and palm trees. Some low mountains lie to the west. The Aswanar Wild lands have a number of volcanoes, especially in the mountainous western regions. Several of these volcanoes are quite active.
The eastern fourth of the Wild Lands are known as the Salt Marshes. This part of the swamp has a high salt content with brackish, mineral laden water, sulfurous stench and thick swamp gas. These marshes are putrid and choked with rotting, twisted vegetation. It is a horrible place that the aswani avoid.
A staggering variety of fauna and flora can be found throughout the Wild Lands. It is noted as having several indigenous species of plants and animals which bear potent toxins and venoms. Thousands of species of lizards, snakes, birds, insects and small mammals fill the ecosystem here. The brontagan swamp serpent is the world's largest snake at over 100 feet long and close to a ton. Lions, panthers and other predatory cats prowl the grasslands.
As most scholars consider this to be a thoroughly uncivilized
region, there has been little effort to document it's history. For the most
part, it seems that this region has known only tribal warfare, punctuated by
periods of tribal cooperation, for centuries.
One scholar, a saridian named Ganet Prudora, spent a great deal of time among the Aswani from 2614 to 2624 CY and wrote "The Aswani: A Historical Treatise", the only known book on the subject. By correlating the oral histories of the aswani from many different tribes, Ganet was able to piece together a fairly comprehensive history of the region.
The aswani have numerous origin stories involving a great journey from the west more than a thousand years ago. When they first came to the east, the aswani were "different". Several historians, including Ganet Prudora, speculate that the aswani are an offshoot of the mandalar race. The aswani have dwelled in the jungles of eastern Aggradar since this great migration. The first wave was a single massive tribe called "the elders" by modern aswani.
Some two centuries later, another wave of aswani arrived from the west... most likely another mandalar group. The two tribes came into conflict and a war erupted which caused the aswani to splinter into various groups and resulted in several smaller tribes.
Regardless of debates over specific dates and possible mandalar origins, historians agree that the history of the aswanar wildlands involved slow but steady growth in population and size of the tribes which grew to encompass the entire jungle region. Local tribal matriachs ruled their settlements and launched wars to extend their sway and defend their communities from predatory rivals.
Sometime in the sixth century, Mount Durrodis exploded in a tremendous eruption. The region was choked with grey ash for more than a year. Vast swathes of the jungle died out or became dormant. Many tribes faced famine and a choking lung disease. Scarce food led to bitter tribal warfare.
It is not known when the archmage Tolkarus built his great fortress in Mount Durrodis, but Tolkarus was encountered and entered the oral histories of the aswani sometime between 1000 and 1200 CY.
There are scattered references throughout history to the "wildlings" of eastern Qeshir, but no formal contact was over documented until 2209 CY when a Rukemian imperial war ship, The Farseeker, exploring the northern Qeshir coast was blown off course during a storm and ended up landing on the north shore of the Aswanar Wildlands. The Farseeker sheltered in a harbor for some two months while the crew explored the jungles. The captain took a few aswani captive along with dozens of plant and animal specimens and returned to Rukemia.
Still, to this day, little is known of the aswani and there are no formal diplomatic relations with them.
This region is considered by most to be barbaric and uncivilized. There is no central government, no great walled cities. Only tribal lands and great chieftains. There are no roads here, no tax collectors or any other trappings of a central government.
No formal legal system. Within a tribe, a chieftain decides the law.
Each tribe can muster at least 30% in able bodied men.
In this wild land, there is no formal currency. All transactions are trade and barter. Trades include sea shells, polished stones, bone carvings, weapons, leather armor, food, animals, etc.
It is tradition that hunters and other aswani loners out in the wilderness post signs for their fellow aswani. These markers use a set of symbols that say things like "fresh water 200 yards ahead", "poison snakes in next valley", or simply "danger ahead". It's not a formal or organized system. Just tradition. They do it for each other. Some markers are signed by the hunter that created it. The code consists of about 290 symbols (each represents a single idea or concept) which are combined into various ways.
The aswani have a strong dislike for magic and an uncanny ability to sense magic. Therefore, they have no great wizards, no shamans and no mystics. They have no arcane items, no schools of sorcery and no laws governing magic in their realm.
Salus Feshar, High Chieftain of the Ybara Tribe
Eldest and wisest of the Council of Chieftains who rule the largest of the aswani tribes, the Ybara.
Shalmar the Ancient, Warlock Shaman
An ancient hermit of the a mixed and indeterminate race. He lives alone in the Salt Marshes in the ruins of a stone keep. Rumored to be a powerful worker of magic. Feared and respected by the aswani.
There are no great walled cities or towns in the Aswanar Wild Lands. Most aswanar are at least partially nomadic. No permanent structures exist here although there are some ancient ruins.
Aswanar are mostly hunters, herders and nomads. Villages are small and usually mobile. Permanent settlements are rare.
The Aswanar Wildlands is a vast primeval region of thick forests and wetlands. There are no roads here and travel is extremely difficult throughout. It is almost impossible to get a cart or wagon through the thick foliation and even horses will often have to be led. From the coast to the interior is approximately 600 kilometers, but due to the extremely difficult terrain, explorers will typically make no more than 10 km per day. So it takes roughly 2 months to reach the interior and 4 months to cross from coast to coast.
The trip from Farseeker Bay to the ruins of the Halls of Odenathis is a journey of 415 km and would take roughly 40 to 45 days.
For more information, see the Travel and Distance page.
This website was last updated October 5, 2021. Copyright 1990-2021 David M. Roomes.