The Merciful Mind
Residing on the populous islands of Gar and Ejat, part of The Thundering Atoll in The Sea of Mist, House Arness is a noble house that has recently rebelled against the Bellatine Dominion. The exact cause of the uprising is somewhat difficult to determine, but the strict marginalization of those who do not give their entire lives for the Dominion’s benefit is an oft repeated reason. The house holds a significant navy, though still dwarfed by the Bellatine Dominion. The leaders of House Arness are scrambling to find allies to stand with them against the inevitable counter from the Dominion. The Banner of the House is a Ship, broken by a Golden Sword.
The current leader of House Arness is the aging patriarch Harnel Arness. Rumors that he has been poisoned by the Bellatine Dominion run rampant, mostly based around the fact that the aging Half-Elf was capable of leading the charge against the Dominion’s forces not a year before. There are some that even say Harnel Arness is already dead, and that his numerous children rule in his name. The line of succession is murky, with the many wives and mistresses of Harnel Arness further complicating things. At present, the House stands firm against the Bellatine Dominion, but are eagerly seeking alliances with the nations on the East side of The Sea of Mist.
The Culture of the Isles of Gar and Ejat are built around the idea of personal achievement. Perhaps as a rebuttal of the community and greater good doctrine of the Bellatine Dominion, the people dwelling on the lands of House Arness exemplify self-interest as the ultimate virtue. As such, self made nobles, innovators, and well off merchants are held as the paragons of society.
Here is where House Arness potentially possesses the strength to prevent their brutal extinction. The House Arness has enough wealth, through lucrative trade deals, unique exports of exotic fruits and spices, and an almost religious love of gold. If there is someone in the upper echelons of House Arness’ hierarchy without significant wealth, it’s because they just spent it all on eliminating whoever stood in their way.
The majority of the military of House Arness is made up of defectors or captives from the uprising with the Bellatine Dominion. Their immense wealth has allowed them to hire a number of mercenaries to shore up their ranks and provide localized security. As befits an island nation, they have an impressive military, though most of it is hastily repainted Bellatine Warships, seized during the rebellion. The primary mercenary company they have contracted with is the formidable Company of A Thousand Spears. However, even this legendary outfit is limited in number.
On the isles of Gar and Ejat, the worship of the Nine is at best tolerated, though most typically it is looked down upon. “Why pray to a god? They have enough. Improve your own situation instead!” Is the common wisdom. Worship of Oghma is the most common followed by the upper tiers of Arnessan society, with the mantra “Knowledge is Power” being a common theme, though none would openly admit to delving for forbidden truths.