Vassal of Darkwater
Words: "The Surface Deceives."
Sigil: A scarlet merman wielding a yellow Trident on a deep blue field.
Nickname: Reefs, Tridents
In the aftermath of the brutal carnage of a sea battle amidst the reefs, the barony was carved out and gifted to a newly ennobled retainer of then Count Darkwater. Already an old soldier at the time his barony was formed, he had a passel of children already with which to populate his fleet, and the new Redreef noble-shipmasters swarmed over the isles of the barony,
Developing a reputation for bluff heartiness and an incisive stubbornness, the Redreefs were fierce and loyal men who spent more time on the sea than off it, with a fierce tradition of thralls and prizes taken on the water rather than for paltry monetary debts. Over the decades, they married well from elsewhere in the Isles, and grew their reputation for being warlike and feisty.
When the last baron's daughter Ember Redreef showed herself a true leader by dint of blood and sweat, she and her sister and their loyal retainers began a force for progressivism, allied with other strong young voices in the Darkwater and beyond. But always, House Redreef has been true to those fierce roots.
|Countess of Redreef Shores
|Lady of Redreef Shores / Mistress of War
|Lord of Redreef Shores / Sword of Redreef
|Voice of Redreef Shores / Gem of House Redreef
|Lord of Redreef Shores
|Lady of Redreef Shores / Minister of Charters
|Voice of Redreef Shores / Minister of Public Order
|Lord of Redreef Shores
|Majordomo of the Redreef Estate / Minister of the Treasury
|Minister of Dance
|Countess of Darkwater Watch
|Princess of House Thrax / Patron of the Countess
|Lady of House Kennex
|Scholar of Vellichor / Redreef Cousin
|Lady of House Blackshore
|Once a Redreef...
|Lady of House Crovane
|Citizen of Redreef Shores
|Lady of Redreef Shores / Comital Artist of Redreef Shores
|Lady of Redreef Shores
|Lady of Redreef Shores
|Lady of Redreef Shores / Minister of Population
|Knight of Redreef Shores / General of the Fury of Redreef
|Baron of Whitefrost
|Mistress of War
|Minister of Public Order
|Minister of the Treasury
|Minister of Population
|Minister of Charters
Description: One of the domains closer to the Darkwater, House Redreef derives its name from the Battle of the Crimson Reef, where tens of thousands of Abandoned perished on the reefs surrounding the small barony under the direction of an Abandoned Sealord that was attempting to raid the isles during the chaos of the Crownbreaker Wars. Hundreds of ships were lost, and the once little-valued collection of small isles became a small barony as a strategic waterbreak against Abandoned raiders.
More recent years have been both productive and tumultuous. A bitter civil war between members of the Redreef noble family ended with Baroness Ember in charge. Under her leadership, and with the aid of like-minded supporters in the family, Redreef became one of the most outspokenly progressive domains within the Mourning Isles. In 1012 AR, all thrall debts were purchased after a significant fundraising effort, and thralldom was outlawed within the barony. This, along the ruling Baroness's willingness (some would say eagerness) to pick fights, made Redreef a political enemy of Isles traditionalists, many of whom were outraged when Redreef Shores was elevated to a county by the Assembly of Peers at the end of 1015 AR.
Landmarks: In 1007 AR, the Hedge Maze of the First Choice was built as part of the Pilgrimage Path. A meditative place, it is said one cannot get lost in it, as it only has one path in and out. Even before the abolition of thralldom, Redreef Shores contained a disproportionate amount of faithful preaching the good word of Skald, and at the beginning of each year there is a fortnight-long Festival of Choices, which honors the Skald-given ability to choose. Most people, especially tourists, spend the Festival choosing to drink to excess.
Part of the Seacoast Watch of the Mourning Isles, a defensive line of sea forts built in 1013 AR.
The waters around Redreef Shores have been noted for containing a greater concentration of dolphins than one usually finds in the area.
Exports: Molasses (dark treacle), rum, lumber, wheat, red dye and fish. Founding member of the Empyrean Trade Route.
Vassals: House Blackreef is an offshoot of House Redreef. Nearly 300 years ago, a marriage between Redreef and Blackshore nobles led to a power struggle over succession within House Redreef, and the losing side left to become the Abandoned tribe called House Blackreef. After centuries of violent animosity, Redreef brought Blackreef to heel, crushing them until they had no sane option but to relent and rejoin their kin, being made to give up their lives as shav raiders and become... farmers. House Blackreef's domain is a hilly cove called Blackreef Beach, at the center of which is the Ebonhold, a small castle. They are currently ruled by Baroness Melora Blackreef, a brooding 19-year-old who, as a young girl, saw both of her parents die during a Redreef siege of a Blackreef shav encampment.
House Skinner is a mirror of the story of Redreef itself. For generations going back hundreds of years, the Skinners have sailed in Redreef's navy, and just as a Darkwater Count awarded a loyal sailor the newly-created Redreef Shores, so too is this cadet barony the reward for another loyal sea captain. Redreef historians have found extremely convenient records that point to the new Baron Skinner having Blackreef ancestry, which in turn distantly connects him to Redreef by blood, but some quarters do make note of just HOW conveniently timed this discovery was. The Skinners are great friends to have, and terrible enemies. Family lore states that their name goes back some seven or eight hundred years, when the first family patriarch was given the last name 'Skinner' by a Thrax ship captain because he was the best in the fleet at flaying prisoners to be put on the crosses. Accordingly, the Skinners' barony is the small, X-shaped (if you squint and tilt your head) Cross Harbor, where local industry centers around shipbuilding. They are currently ruled by Baron Stone Skinner, who is a widower in his early 40s, and who wears a graying beard to cover scars on his face and mouth, earned fighting Eurusi mages at Pieros.
House Hollowheart is a cadet barony created out of a distant branch of the Redreef family tree (their Baroness is Ember and Marina's fifth cousin, once removed). While never a particular power player in Redreef family politics, the future Hollowhearts were loyal to Ember and Marina during the Redreef civil war, and quietly laundered silver to feed their army. As a family line, the Hollowhearts are renowned for their skill with economics and accountancy. The connotations of their self-chosen house name are a point of familial pride, just like their ruthlessness with budgets and ledgers. They are not a family that cares about being liked. They are a family that cares about making money. Their domain is Hollowheart Isle, a small, forested island less than half a day from Redreef Shores by sail, situated perfectly to act as a waystation for various trade routes between the Lyceum and the northern Isles. They are currently ruled by Baroness Artesia Hollowheart, a 25-year-old economic prodigy with a talent for finding profit opportunities under the noses of others.