The Dwarves were rumored to arrive in Amaldan before the Elves, keeping their presence hidden in the mountains. While no evidence has since been found to support this, many Dwarves consider their presence in Amaldan to be tied to every key event to ever happen, even if they don't have proof. Their greatest city is known simply as the Marble Tower, and is home to over 150,000 people.Deities
The Dwarven pantheon is smaller than the elves or humans, but their gods are, for lack of a better term, down to earth. Dwarves are not ones for flowery rhetoric, preferring gods who will actually work to accomplish something.
The dwarven pantheon includes:
The dwarves prefer seclusion inside their mountain homes, so much so that many humans are surprised the first time they see a dwarf, despite seeing items made by dwarves daily. Despite having a smaller population than humans, dwarven communities are responsible for almost half the non-magical goods seen in Amaldan, from simple rings to intricate metal screens gracing grand cathedrals. This penchant for hard work makes them view humans as being slightly lazy, but many dwarves find elves to be simply unfit for even the slowest forge, and aren't afraid to say it. Their brash attitudes, coupled with their own long memories and tendency for drinking, leads to many arguments with elves.
Most dwarves get along with humans, seeing them as comrades in arms. While it's much rarer than elves, some dwarves have married humans, despite being unable to mate with them. No one is entirely sure why this is. Adoption of humans became fairly standard during the Elven Wars, though many humans have slowly moved back to living with human communities, though the practice continues to this day.Notable FiguresBattlemaster Girita Warfinder
Eldest daughter of the Warfinder Clan, Girita is one of the three most powerful dwarves on the Master Council, the group that reports directly to the human King. Her stance on the human civil war is one of concern, having personally known King Harold and fought alongside him numerous times. Because of this close association, she has chosen to remain neutral, despite requests for aid from both Philip and Matthew. She maintains troops ready to intervene should the war spill into dwarven territory, but otherwise is letting events play out. Until the war ends and she can count on solid support from the humans, she is unlikely to commit troops to the siege at Mirnan.Forgemaster Hrihk Steelcutter
The eldest on the Master Council, Hrihk remains fairly content to let events shape themselves, stepping in only when he feels that the results of not doing so will produce problems. His wise council makes his decision to support Philip in the human civil war a dangerous one, as many dwarves believe that it is destined then that Philip must be the victor. Hrihk has urged caution, however, due to the ever fickle hand of fate that tends to punish those whose actions are too quick. He has convinced many to adopt a wait and see policy, to let the humans deal with the issue themselves, before stepping in.Cavernmaster Lrerr Redcarver
The youngest on the Master Council, Lrerr sees the human civil war as an issue that must be dealt with. His reverence for the Forgemaster means he no longer pushes to move the armies to fight, but he also understands that eventually, action must and will be taken. This has caused him to begin working in earnest to expand the vast underground cavern systems, seeking out new ores and increasing fortifications that have lapsed or become obsolete since the Elven Wars so many centuries ago. While many applaud his actions in preparing, many of the outlying settlements have begun to treat visiting human troops with hostility, regardless of their chosen faction.The Elves
The elves are the elder race among the three major races of Amaldan, and often considered to be the progenitors of the other races, at least amongst themselves. Little is known about their origins, except that the region of Amaldan has remained settled by the Elves since before the Dwarves and Humans arrived. The oldest Elven settlement, Eldamidri, is also the center of Elven culture, and is home to over 50,000 elves.Deities
The Elves focus on art and justice, leading most to have a pantheon of Gods that include many that made their way into the Human pantheon, though some have fallen out of favor amongst the Dwarves.
The Elven Pantheon includes:
Many Elves pride themselves on a sense of honor and justice, using their long lives to reap vengeance upon those who have caused ill or harm. They are often found throughout Amaldan serving in the role of Sheriffs, especially in small towns where the King's law can be sparse. Most Elves prefer the use of bows, though they have come to respect the sword and quarterstaff over the years due to light-footed humans and armored dwarves.
Most Elves tend to treat dwarves and humans with a patronizing air, though are often humbled before them when mention is made of the atrocities of the Elven Wars, a period of bloody conquest by the Elves that nearly ended the two other races. Only a combined human/dwarven army had brought the elves to their knees, wiping out three out of every four elves in the process. While no elf remains alive from these times, their long lives have made remembering the dark times easier, and the elves have sworn to never forget their past. It is for this reason that elves no longer dominate the population of the other races, despite their longer history.Notable FiguresGrand Duchess Celebriän Lissësúl
A shrewd politician and schemer, Celebrian rose to her rank as Grand Duchess more than 300 years ago, and shows no signs of wanting to give it up. While controversial in her xenophobic attitudes towards both humans and elves, she is popular amongst the elven population that seeks to rekindle the pride of elves everywhere without returning to their warlike ways. Her stance towards the civil war is that it is a human affair best left to humans, though she has recently opened the borders to refugees seeking to escape the bloodshed in exchange for their work as lower-class laborers.Arch Bishop Elrond Carnesîr
As a lowly priest, Elrond spent many of his days enjoying too much wine and not enough time tending to his duties. His penchant for arriving to sermons drunk earned him the moniker "The Holiest Drunk", and while his wine-drinking hasn't subsided, his ability to handle his alcohol has only gotten better with practice. This ability to remain in control despite drinking more than people five times his size has made him a dangerous figure in the intelligence community, where he gathers information from taverns and from confessionals, and funnels this information to his own sources. No one knows entirely who he supports in the human civil war, but it is rumored that within the elven community, if information is to be had, Elrond is the person to see.Lady Tári Fëfalas
Lady Tari is a mysterious woman who lives in seclusion deep inside the Night Forest, mostly keeping to herself, and with good reason. Lady Tari's true age is unknown, but rumors persist that she was alive during the Elven Wars, despite them happening over a thousand years ago. Being one of the few Blood Elves to remain alive, Lady Tari's magical abilities are an unknown quantity, and it is rumored that any she catches, regardless of race, dies a slow and painful death while Lady Tari studies them like rats. Despite numerous expeditions to sway her or kill her, none have seen her in over three hundred years, and the last person to do so was only able to escape by running as fast as he could for five days straight, collapsing in exhaustion and describing her to a nearby village before his body gave out.