History of the Islanders
The Islanders have lived on the island Vilkas since as far back as anyone can remember. They were fully self-sufficient, the island providing them with land for farming, snow capped mountains for fresh water, and plenty of wild game to hunt. The people of the island treated it with respect and took only what they needed, providing a long lasting, healty relationship between the island and it's people. Even as the population grew and the people expanded to the far reaches of the island, they have never been wanting for land for crops or for game.
The Islanders have long worshipped the God of the Island, the mystical Wolf God Privus. While in early times, some wondered if such a creature could indeed be a God, there's no doubt that those few who have seen the God have had their lives majorly altered in some way. Despite that, most people believe in the Wolf God and worship him accordingly. His home was rumored to be the mountain in the center of the island, and as such it was considered a special area.
Despite the islands complete isolation from others, there are people of all different races that live there. It's simply the way things have always been. No one is treated any differently, as everyone is simply an Islander. There is no other type of person. They all speak the same language and live exactly the same, including worshipping the same Wolf God.
As time passed and the island population grew, there was a slow shift in how things worked. Before they had all been within short walk of each other, but now they were spread out a day or two's ride to get from one place to another. The man who'd led them previously was proclaimed King and ruled over all, while seven families were given a Greater Noble status and cared for what became seven divided sections of the island. There was no unrest during this transition, and everyone was pleased with the outcome.
With the expansion of locations, trade roads were created. With trade roads came those who were tired of the norm and decided to become bandits instead, stealing from those on the trade roads, or even poaching livestock from local farms. And so, with the growing bandit population, the King created the King's Guard. They were to be the peacekeeper's of the island, trained in martial arts to combat the bandits and patrol the lands. Weapons didn't exist besides farm equipment. There wasn't a need for them. So hand-to-hand combat ruled the island.
That all changed one fateful day over 200 years ago, when the first ever ships appeared on the horizon. The Islanders had boats for fishing, but they'd never seen anything like the ships that now appeared before them. This was the first time in the history of the island that people from outside had come in. They'd always assumed there were others in other places, but had never had a need or want to find out. But now, it had come to them.
It didn't take long before the invaders came onto the island and started taking. They took lands, farms, villages, anything and everything they wanted. There was little the Islanders do to stop them. They came with weapons of steel, and users of elemental magick. Two things that the Islanders had no proper defense for, as they'd never needed such weapons, and had nothing but Shaman's who could use a small amount of elemental magick. But it was nothing compared to the invaders. Their buildings were also mostly wood and brick, and burned quite easily under the invaders torches.
Despite the King's protest and request to meet with someone, there was no sign of peace even being possible. Not while the invaders continued to run roughshod over the Islanders. It all finally came to a head when the invaders had taken over a portion of the Eastern side of the island and were moving into the Capital itself. The King brought everyone into the castle that could fit, that being the only place on the whole island made of stone, but even he knew it wouldn't be enough in the end. The invaders had made no demands, they simply killed and took what they wanted. It would be a massacre. As the King's Guard died under the invader's attack, everyone knew it was over. Until it wasn't.
Time froze. All fighting ceased as every single person on and around the island heard a howl that echoed from the mountaintop in the center of the island. It didn't matter where they were, everyone heard it. Not only that, they saw the Wolf God itself. Their vision was taken from them and they had a view of the Wolf God howling his song, long, loud, and pure.
As vision was returned to the individuals, the invaders quickly realized something had changed. Some of the people they'd been fighting were no longer human. They were no longer all fighting on two legs. Some had shifted to four, becoming large wolves themselves. Others did remain on two legs, but their hands and faces now had claws and fangs. More importantly, the ones that were changed that they hadn't killed were back on their feet, their wounds healing right in front of the invaders. It was still a massacre, but the tables had turned on who would be killing who.
The invaders were quickly overwhelmed, as not only could they not permanently injure these new creatures with their weapons, but their elemental magick was also not as effective against them. Invaders turned and fled, and the new Wolf Blessed chased, pushing them back until they were swimming or rowing to their ships. The Wolf Blessed started to follow, but the ships pulled up their large metal anchors and fled, disappearing back into the horizon from which they'd come.
After just two days, the fighting was over. The Islander's were victorious thanks to their God and the people whom he'd Blessed.
After the invaders were pushed off of their island, the Islanders celebrated for days, praising the Wolf Blessed. After those days passed, all the devastation begin to settle in, as well as the lives lost. Rebuilding began. While smaller villages again built with lumber and brick, the Capital rebuilt in stone, for the first time really digging into their island, specifically around the south-eastern base of the mountain.
The Wolf Blessed were discovering themselves and coming to figure out exactly what they were, for they were no longer human. Indeed, there was a feral part to them now that hadn't been there before. After the first few weeks many were quicker to anger than normal. The adjustment for them was slow, for now that they had fought off the invaders, they weren't particularly needed, yet they couldn't stop being what they'd become. What was more, any new children they had also became Wolf Blessed, meaning that they wouldn't simply die off after the current generation.
After the original generation that had seen the invaders died off, and younger generations came into power, they begin to fear and resent the Wolf Blessed. As this resentment became felt, some of the Wolf Blessed left the cities and villages and moved into the forests of the island to be alone with their own kind. Others remained in the village and did their best to fit in.
By the second generation after the war, much more was known about the Wolf Blessed. In order to curb their newfound anger they had to transform into their four-legged wolf at least once a week and let their feral side run free. It was also discovered that, while they healed quickly, they had weaknesses. Silver and Wolfsbane.
After a time, the forest dwelling Wolf Blessed began picking off livestock from farmers, as the short distance they'd gone into the forest was hunted out by both themselves and humans. While they never harmed any person, that didn't stop the already resentful humans from taking matters into their own hands.
The Great Hunt
The current King released a new decree. In order to curb the excessive killing of their forest game and the stealing of livestock, the Wolf Blessed were deemed to be wild creatures and ordered to be hunted and executed. Each confirmed kill would net the person that did so a large sum of money, as well as the thanks of the the Kingdom at large. Thus was born the Wolf Blessed Hunter.
Hunter's quickly made a living by hunting the Wolf Blessed, who despite having a more feral side, remembered the reason they came to be was to protect the people. Very few Wolf Blessed fought back at first and simply accepted their fate. But as time went on, younger generations did begin fighting back. The Hunter's adapted their knowledge of the weaknesses to their advantage. By being prepared, they could still come out on top despite the Wolf Blessed's gifts. It was only decades before no more Wolf Blessed were found, at least not easily.
The forest dwelling Wolf Blessed had moved deeper into the forests and split into smaller packs with one pack that kept tabs on them and remained a leader. The city dwelling Wolf Blessed learned to blend in, not drawing attention to themselves. Their weekly shifts took place late at night when no one would notice. Easy for villager's, but harder for actual people in the city. Hunters still exist, though in smaller numbers, and occasionally they'll catch a Wolf Blessed, but it's no longer lucrative full time. Instead they have other jobs and Hunt as needed.
Fast forward a millenia and a half. The King's Guard is now armed as the invaders had been those 200 years ago, but their numbers have diminished as there hasn't been a need for an actual army. The Wolf Blessed continue to live in secret. Hunters continue to hunt when the need is there. For 200 years things were again normal.
Ships have appeared again on the horizon, looking similar to the story of their ancestors, but unlike before the Visitors have come to talk peace. Or so they say.
- Roughly rectangular shaped
- Roughly 50 miles from the northern tip to the southern tip
- Roughly 30 miles from east to west in the center, and about 25 miles at the north and south ends.
- Seven nations make up the Kingdom
- Sostin - Capital Nation
- Large mountain in the center of the island, tree covered
- The rest is about 70% forest and 30% open land
- Mild climate, cool to warm year round except the mountain top gets snow in the winter seasons
- No other excessive cold or heat