Luncheons and Dragons
Evereska (sometimes known as LastHome) is an eladrin stronghold in North Faerûn that was founded in -8600 DR. It is a valley encircled with twelve hills collectively known as the Shaeradim, which was sculpted into a large terraced garden, and inhabited by moon and sun elves. The houses were worked into the landscape and it was possible to float large items in the city. Blueleaf trees covered the valley and were sculpted by magic. Weather conditions and diseases were regulated by a magical mythal. Some eladrin spent their time in deep caverns to create new spells.
Evereska is ruled by the Hill Elders, presided upon by the High Elder Duirsar.
Because the hills around Evereska contain little in the way of ores, they are imported into the city, in exchange for paintings, sculptures, crafted wooden items and wine.
- The warriors defending the city were equipped with enchanted armor that allowed them to fly. A standard Evereskan patrol is usually 14 chain mail clad archers on foot accompanied by two mages and a Blade Singer.
- The Swords of Evereska are a knightly order of paladins, fighters and wizards.
The Tomb Guards have sworn a solemn oath to track grave robbers and to never rest until the defilers have been slain.
- The Vale Guard are archers and medium infantry, and form the heaviest foot soldiers in the Evereskan army. They are swordsmen first and archers second.
- Lord Duirsar controls a mist golem called Walker in the Mists (equal in powers to an iron golem, save that its body is “hard air,” like a wall of force, not iron, and cannot rust), that he can use to defend his land.
- Each watchtower around Evereska is staffed at all times with a guard lieutenant, who commands potent magical items and an enchantment that allows instant communication with other captains or the Lord of Evereska at will as long as they remain within the vale. The full complement of a watchtower is 40 eladrin warriors and 20 eagles.
- The Wing of Plumed Kingfishers is an aerial military order that includes a large division of chain-clad Teu’Tel’Quessir mounted on giant eagles and a smaller division mounted on asperii.
Evereska itself is situated on a large stone pedestal that rises around a thousand feet from the grassland below. This is encircled by the Vine Vale which is primarily agricultural land for vineyards and orchards. Outside of the vale are the Shaeradim: twelve hills that completely encircle Evereska so that it is not visible from the valley below. The valley inside of these hills and west of Evereska is the West Cwm.
The Blazevale is a broad, sand-scoured valley that separates the Sharaedim from the Greycloak Hills to the north. The Sharaedim Vale is a verdant alpine valley about 18 miles (29km) long by 4 miles (6.4km) wide. It is encircled by twelve virtually impassible mountains, save for the narrow cleft to the west leading to the Halfway Inn and two well hidden footpaths leading out to the northeast and southeast. The eladrin sculpted the entire valley into a terraced garden. The Upper Vale is covered with large, old trees, mostly spear spruce. The Copper Canyon is a high-walled ravine leading into the shadows of the High Shaeradim. It is a dead end for invading armies as the canyon winds its way to high cliff walls in the shadows of the highest mountain peaks. The Vine Vale is a vast staircase of lush vineyards and black soiled winter fields, descending toward Evereska’s walls in a series of smokethorn tree and spiny soapleaf covered terraces. The West Cwm is a large high valley in the Shaeradim, the hills surrounding Evereska. In the south there is a large deep lake of very cold water, and to the east lies the Vine Vale, through the Sunset Gate. It was the site of the Battle of the Cwm between the daemonfey army and the defending eladrin of Evereska and Evermeet.
The Hidden Path is a cavernous path guarded by a hundred eladrin archers watching from hidden galleries high above at its entrance, the Secret Gate. The path rounds a curve then arches over a smoky-bottomed abyss on a marble bridge. On the far side of the bridge is a cramped vestibule sealed by a thin sheet of muscovite mica. A moon elf in the silver-gilded plate mail of a Vale Guard holds this position at all times.
The Sunset Gate is a gate separating the West Cwm and the Vine Vale on the outskirts of Evereska. There is a stone guardhouse nearby that used to serve as a watch post for a dozen Evereskan soliders.
The Meadow Wall and Gilded Gate are down the Vine Vale terraces via a series of gentle switchbacks. There is a path from the Secret Gate that connects to a narrow lane that skirts the edge of the walled pasturelands that surround Evereska. As parties approach the boundary, they must speak a word of passing. A large gilded gate will swing open, admitting the visitors into a rolling meadow dotted with boulders and bigcone firs. Like many of Evereska’s defenses, the gate’s purpose is not obvious. While it was not magical, it marks the perimeter of the city’s most priceless treasure and best-kept secret, the mythal.
Mountains and hills
East Peak is the highest mountain in the Sharaedim. It is the site of a tall granite watch tower and signal fire and is also the home of the Desert Border Garrison that patrols the outer edges of the Anauroch.
The Three Sisters are the three major peaks upon which the city of Evereska is built. Their walls have been carved and polished into 1000ft (305m) cliffs atop which the city rests. Cloudcrown Hill is the place where the palaces of Lord Duirsar and the great nobles sit scattered amongst the trees that continue to the base of this high peak. Moondark Hill is located on the eastern fringes of the city at the base of one of the largest peaks of the Shaeradim. Eastpeak’s shadow cloaks the low knoll in darkness for much of the night when the moon is full, giving rise to the hill’s name. The Great Archer’s faithful gather to worship their god when the full moon rises above the top of Eastpeak and its light washes over the hilltop like a wave of silver.
Goldmorn Knoll is located well into the interior of Evereska. It is not as high as the Three Sisters nor as large, but it is home to a sizable grove of rare sycamore treants that left Cormyr during the Time of Troubles and sought refuge in Evereska.
The Rocs Nest is a high, rocky outcrop and natural citadel that has housed eladrin garrisons for nearly a thousand years since the Crown Wars. The Tower of Dreams is a slender crystal spire wreathed in mist and clouds in the mountains. It overlooks the Shining Falls, a waterfall that plummets down a sheer cliff rising at least 1,400 feet (427m).
Numerous watchtowers and small citadels have been constructed in the mountains around the vale; these form the bases for the patrols of moon elves on giant eagles that guard the skies. These patrols are typically five to eight eladrin, usually fighters, mages, or swordmages. Each watchtower is staffed at all times with a guard lieutenant; this is usually a swordmage who commands potent magical items and an enchantment that allows instant communication with other captains or the Lord of Evereska (see below) at will as long as they remain within the vale. Citadels hold two or three lieutenants as well as a Feywarden (priest of Corellon Larethian. The full complement of a watchtower is forty elven warriors and twenty eagles. A citadel holds a hundred eladrin and sixty eagles, as well as occasional visitors from Evereska proper, Sha-Quessir, and Harpers.
Throughout the areas around Evereska are small villages or isolated towers; the former are the home of a few scattered bands of sylvan elves, the latter are mage towers. While both groups value their isolation, they are fiercely protective of the vale and loyal to Erlan Duirsar and will fight in the Vale’s defense as need be.
The Halfway Inn is located in the nearby mountains and was constructed for the very purpose of trading with the other races. The Unicorn and Crescent is an inn that welcomes Harpers, the Heralds, and the Chosen of Mystra on the rare occasions when such visitors are in the city.
The Evereskan Colleges are a training academies of the highest standards. The training they provide is one of the reasons that Evereska is so well defended. Harpers are the only N’Tel’Quess who can normally get training at arms or magic in Evereska, although the occasional half-eladrin, if of sufficiently exalted parentage on the elven side, might be taught. Fountainheart of Shimmering Gold is Hanali’s temple built on the Bellcrest, the highest of the Three Sisters. This is the place where the mythal was cast. Cloudtop Tower is the second highest spire within the city built from white marble and made to resemble a stand of blueleaf trees. It is home to the High Magi of the Cloudtop Circle, advisers to the Council of Hill Elders and commanders of the Spell Guard. Cloud Crown Palace is the finest example of Evereska’s naturist architecture. The palace resembles a stand of bluetops packed so closely together that the huge boles have grown into each other. The Tower Higher than East Peak is a 1500ft (457m) watch tower often shrouded in cloud that gives the best view of the city and the surrounding vale.
The Hall of the High Hunt is a temple built into the steep western slope of Moondark Hill, a great open air pavilion encircled by a tightly packed colonnade of ancient shadowtops. Star Meadow Hall is a tall white marble tower in the midst of the Star Meadow, and is home of the Nihmedu family. Bellcrest Spire is a white marble tower resembling a giant shadowtop tree, home to the high mages of the Bellcrest Spire Magi Circle. Moon-Dark Towers is home of the Moon-dark High Magi Circle, a circle of giant shadowtop and blueleaf trees connected by skyways east of Solonor’s temple, atop Moondark Hill.
Springs, lakes and ponds
Singing Spring is a naturally beautiful spring filled with healing waters. The waters of the pool are highly valued for their legendary healing qualities. Any who bathes in the water will be healed of ailments, wounds, and even have lost limbs regenerated.
Surrounded by a granite bank, Dawnsglory Pond is a volcanic spring filled with warm mineral rich waters, where eladrin avail themselves of the morning light to bathe and play in the steaming waters.
The Vyshaan Barrows are west of East Peak and date back to the time of the Vyshann Empire. They comprise the barrows and burial crypts of the hated Vyshaan elves. Tomb Guards regularly patrol this region said to be plagued by baelnorns, banshees and other elven spirits that refuse to travel to Arvandor. Star Meadow is a meadow at the base of Bellcrest Hill. It is a favorite meadow for stargazing.
The Groaning Cave is a natural amphitheatre fronted by a white marble veranda and colonnade, situated atop a small hill surrounded on its lower slopes by a forest of blueleaf trees. Passages at the back of the cave lead to hidden chambers beneath the Three Sisters and eventually out of the vale. These paths are known to only a very few and the secret of their existence is kept upon pain of utter annihilation by the city’s High Magi.
The Hanging Gardens of Aerdrie Faenya are a series of floating beds of vine lotuses, cloud roses, sky blooms and night jasmine that fill the air with sweet fragrances whilst musty-smelling roots dangle beneath in the mucky water of a kneedeep nourishment pond. Surrounding the overhead gardens is a thick hedge of duskblossom.
In Hammer, 1372 DR, Evereska was attacked by freed phaerimms from Anauroch, damaging the mythal and causing further destruction. The Evereskans were able to repel the attack using magic, and a few phaerimm and eladrin who lost their wits in the battle still wander the Evereskan valley. Almost all of the Tomb Guard were destroyed, along with many of the Vale Guard and more than half of the Swords of Evereska.
The damage to the mythal has caused it to cloak Evereska in mist or fine rain and create unpredictable magical effects, and the gardens are not tended so they have become overgrown. A lot of the bridges in the valley are now broken. The phaerimm and eladrin still occasionally clash. Houses are guarded by helmed horrors and shield guardians.
The survivors of the battle with the phaerimm were all younger eladrin, and they now protect their existence violently if they encounter a threat. They regard looters as deserving of death. Some eladrin now travel from other parts of Faerûn to join the remaining Evereskan eladrin, and some remove the remaining treasures of Evereska, moving them to safer locations.
- –8600 DR: Evereska founded in secret by surviving clans of the former Shamel Othreier, Miyeritar, Orishaar, and Eiellûr as an elven safehaven in the woods east of Aryvandaar.
- –7600 DR: Sharrven is founded in the southern reaches of the High Forest, due to overcrowding in Evereska and elitism of Siluvanedenn eladrin.
- 244 DR Year of the Elfsands: Evereska’s existence is uncovered by N’Tel’Quess for the first time, though the secret is kept for centuries by the human tribes of the Greycloak Hills.
- 464 DR Year of the True Names: While wandering across Anauroch, Arun’s Son saves a trio of Evereskan eladrin from a phaerimm ambush nearly at the cost of his life. Retrieved from death by Mystra, he becomes her Chosen, as “he whom magic, duty, and honor defines”. As the Nameless Chosen, he becomes the first human ever to stay among Evereska’s glades.
- 1335 DR The Year of the Snow Winds: The Evereska Charter claims the Greycloak Hills for the eladrin.
- 1371 DR Year of the Unstrung Harp: The Sharn Wall is breached. The phaerimms and their thralls begin the siege of Evereska.
- 1372 DR Year of the Wild Magic: The Shadovar return to Faerûn. They create the shadowshell and lay it over the phaerimms surrounding Evereska and battle them. Several months later, with the assistance of human allies, the shadowshell falls, Evereska’s mythal is reestablished, and the phaerimms are driven out of the city.
- Irilivar Celevessin
Notable Evereskan organizations
- Fellowship of the Forgotten Flower: This elven knightly order is a loosely structured organization dedicated to the recovery of lost elven relics from long-abandoned elven realms.
- Knaves of the Missing Page: This fellowship of elven spell-thieves is based in Evereska , but is active throughout Faerûn. Their numbers are comprised mostly of rogue-arcanists who follow Erevan. Knaves specialize in the recovery of elven magical artifacts, spell scrolls, and spell-tomes that have been acquired by other races, particularly humans.
- Cloudtop Magi Circle
- High mages of the Bellcrest Spire
- The Kaliesh’erai: Based in the elven city of Evereska, the Kaliesh’erai is a loose association of eladrin who have a measure of psionic ability. Because many of them have been honing their mental powers for centuries, the Hall of the Kaliesh’erai is one of the greatest stores of psionic knowledge in all of Faerûn, and it is almost certainly the greatest center of such lore beyond the reach of the mind flayers. Many members of the Kaliesh’erai spend their time in serene contemplation of their gifts, but a faction within the group has become fascinated with psionic items. As a result, the members of the Kaliesh’erai are so keen to acquire more such items that they’ll happily buy, sell, or trade them with any visitors to Evereska. A sub-basement in the hall of the Kaliesh’erai contains many laboratories and vaults that hold psionic items ranging from simple power stones to great psicrowns and crystal capacitors. Some say it also holds prison cells where the Kaliesh’erai keep monsters with psionic powers for study.
- The Knights of the Seven Sacred Mysteries: Are well known for their service in defense of elven homelands from N’Tel’Quess invaders as well as their ongoing efforts to retrieve tomes of long-lost elvish lore and items of elven artistry from the ruins of fallen realms. The order is composed of eladrin and a few half-eladrin, most of whom are of moon elven or gold elven ancestry, and it includes many crusaders, as well as a handful of clerics, fighters, and rangers, in its ranks. The order’s entrance requirements are kept secret from nonmembers, but it is generally known that there are seven tiers in the order’s hierarchy and that it can take a century or more of faithful service to Sehanine before the next mystery is revealed. Knights of the First Mystery are the lowest ranking members of the order, while Knights of the Seventh Mystery are some of the most powerful agents of Sehanine in the Realms. No half-eladrin has ever risen higher than the rank of Knight of the Fourth Mystery, but it is not known if that fact indicates the difficulty of ascending the order’s rarefied ranks and the small representation of half eladrin in the order or if it is a manifestation of a bias against those who have some degree of N’Tel’Quess ancestry.