- Motto (Common): “The shield of the many.”
- Lady Annelise Klar is a proud and regal human woman in her mid to late thirties. Though there are technically more senior members of the family, the true leader of House Klar must be a capable warrior, and so it falls to her. She is a tall, slender, dark-skinned woman who prefers a simple white gown cut for combat. She wears her long, dark hair in a warrior’s topknot. Annelise usually goes barefoot, but sometimes wears simple and practical shoes. She is never without her pearl-handled sword. She tends to come off as haughty, businesslike, and cold, but the truth is that she is not a social creature and feels ill at ease outside of a military setting.
- Politically, House Klar is more often seen as a tool than a noble house by the other four families. They are often referred to as the “dogs of war,” with emphasis on the dogs. While none would go so far as to deny House Klar their noble birthright, very few consider them a serious contender for the Seat of Toraun.
- Long the protectors and defenders of Sivar, House Klar has fallen into decay in these largely peaceful times.
- Klar is poor. It can barely afford to pay for its own standing army, and must hire adventurers, mercenaries, criminals, and other scum of the earth to handle domestic affairs. The pay is scant, and the less-than-scrupulous hired help tend to run wild with the temporary power.
- House Klar is very concerned with Dureg’s massing host on the other side of the eastern mountains. Almost all of their forces, including the family’s own Shining Knights, are deployed to defend the land against a possible incursion.
- Most of Klar’s forces are massed at the Gate, a massive fortification that blocks the main mountain pass that leads to the Sivar Peninsula. However, the Gate has fallen into disuse and disrepair, and is not nearly the intimidating power it was a few centuries ago.
- The Klar estates make up the keep of Fort Cythull (an Old Common word meaning “city on the hill”), a small fortress town located in the foothills of the eastern mountain range.
- House Klar was once given powers of taxation and conscription by the Seat of Toraun to aid in the defense of the country. In modern times, with the Seat empty, the taxes have dried up and the conscripts no longer answer the call.
- Klar’s forces are well-disciplined and follow a warrior’s code. The Shining Knights are especially strict adherents to this code.
Views on things:
”We are the twilight and the dawn. We must do dark things to preserve the light.” -Knight-Captain Aurelius Klar, on House Klar
“While they simper and fawn about the doddering old fool, we are left to do the majority of the work with a fraction of the resources! If they would but look up from their gilded Karss table, they would realize there are far more important games to be played.”
-Squire Phineas Klar, on the Regent and political atmosphere of the time
“I dunno. If he’s got such a huge army, why’s he just sittin’ on the other side of the Spires? Cause of us? If Dureg’s got half of what they say he’s got, we’re dead inside a week and Sivar’s all dwarf-land in under a month. That is, unless you get off your ass and help me! Now HEAVE!”
-Sergeant Arn Jolam, stationed at the Gate, on Dureg Kurzar
“They’re all snakes. Every hiss makes my sword hand itch.”
-Knight-Commander Lady Annelise Klar, on House Auran
“Heretics and witch-lovers, the lot of ‘em! Magic drives men mad — everyone knows that. Iron and fire, they’re honest…but magic will sneak up on you and turn you inside out.”
-Dell Woltin, peasant, on House Fyro
“Equality for all? No, no, that’s a silly proposition. If my men were my equal, there would be chaos on the battlefield, and we would all be butchered. Now, if you know your role within the larger scope of things and stick to it, then you and your comrades will create something unstoppable.”
-Captain Illio Melenthalia, on House Rolien
“Wait, they sit around all day, loan money to each other, make even MORE money on the interest, and won’t even send a farthing our way to protect their bloated, worthless asses? Why are we throwing ourselves in front of Dureg for these people?”
-Private Kells Lansin, on House Sinia