The Kingdom of Hybet
Hybetans saw the fire in the sky, and felt the earth tremble, and saw the rivers leap their banks. They saw the deaths of thousands in war, and to famine, and to plague. They had angered the gods. All the gods - for they had turned from their old ways when the Dragons had come from the north and conquered them. A prophet named Kunli arose, and led the people on a righteous crusade. An army of peasants - with the aid of the divine - destroyed an army of bandits who had come to reave the land. The people of Hybet embraced again their old faiths, and the priests made miracles, producing food and pure water, healing the sick, and proving beyond a doubt that the gods would protect and favor Hybet so long as their laws were followed. Arcane magic had drawn the god's ire, and so all wizards and sorcerers were put to death. Anyone found to be tainted with the dark arts will be put to death, even today. Warlords and covetous men had turned the Empire against the gods, so only priests would rule, showing the people the will of the gods. A divine council was formed, the Wise Men of Hybet, secluded in their mountain fortress-temple of Duringalee. The People of the Mountains, called Dwarves by some, came up from their tunnels and joined the Hybetians, trading with them, worshiping with them, and making great temples with them. Some bands of the Mountain People traveled out of Hybet, settling in faraway hills. The People of the Mountains are a faithful people, always suspicious of magics, and so they agree with much of the Hybetan way.
In 181, the Priest-Kings of Hybet were overthrown by a band of Kingdom adventurers. The Kingdoms stepped in to restore order, and Barloz found itself in control of most of Hybet. Queen Saerilaith appointed Armon Ortiz, younger brother of Felix Ortiz, to govern Hybet. Governor Ortiz has overseen the tumultuous months of change with considerable personal risk. The country has benefited greatly from the increase in trade, with much needed hard currency being traded for the surplus of religious iconography and art the Hybetans have parted with. In addition, the Hybetan forms of hand-fighting are now being taught, on a small scale, in Bardoon and Perdaith. All is not well in Hybet, however. There are trouble with dark and subversive religious cults, including multiple assassination attempts on the Governer and the murder of Kingdom agents and officials. Barlozian troops and guard forces, as well as wizards, have been brought into the province to try and put down these murderous cults.
The Imperial City
The last remnant of the failed Empire, the Golden Dragon Province is little more than farmland and the Imperial City. The city sits across the most important fork of the Je-wan River, and once a thousand ships plied trade east and west and north and south, and once caravans of goods came from all across the Empire. Now it is a shadow. The Emperor still sits on the golden throne, but there is no Empire. None of the ministers will tell his Imperial Majesty this. The warriors of the Empire still exist here, though they are few in number and desperately hold the boundaries of the province against encroaching barbarism. Many monasteries came here, after the land was sundered, and many are here still, defending the Emperor and seeking transcendence.