The noble Houses of Sandair were founded generations ago and rule the cities and towns. They take taxes from their people, and in return they provide housing, shelter, work, trade, and protection. The Houses generate income for themselves and their people through specialised trade, such as mining or farming. They owe their oaths and taxes to the king, and by adhering to the Code of Honor, they protect and serve their people.
Houses consist of multiple noble families who share a blood bond. Most Houses are large with generations of history and ancestors which they can feel through their bond. It’s common for Houses to trade with each other, and to also arrange marriages and even sorran bonds to help each other flourish.
Each House has their own sigil and colour which they wear as a sahn, a sash across their shoulder. This is to differentiate them as a Houseman from those without noble blood.
Though Houses are large families, each House elects a Head who makes decisions on behalf of the House and who sits on the king’s council. The council meet multiple times a year at Bloodstone Keep to vote on issues which affect Sandair’s future.
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The Solander Houses are some of the largest and richest, and are more military minded than the rest. Most of Sandair’s army is made from Soland men and they take great pride in their fighting arts and strength. Whilst many operate as warriors, commanders and sellswords, some of these Houses also engage in mining and agricultural trade. These Houses are:
The Bright Solara are the royal family of Sandair and the first House. Their ancestry links back to the first Sandarian king – King Solus. They are the only House who don’t end in “bond” and they don’t accept new members into their House, not even queens. Only children born of the Solaran line can take the blood bond.
The largest House in Sandair, the Sarabonds are most loyal to the king and have held the post of Sword of Solus for generations. Their city, Saraani, is the largest port in all Sandair, though House Sarabond is known for its large army that serves at the king’s command.
House Fellbond is the second largest House and have grown in size, wealth, and power to rival the Sarabonds. Their city, Fellbani, is situated in the mountains. Most steel and weaponry comes from Fellbani forges.
Once known for its silver mines, House Xanbond built their fortune on jewellery but now act as guards along the Cold Path, a task which once belonged to the long-gone House Rhaesbond. Their city, Xanzir, is the closest to the Hartnord border and they regularly deal with Hartnord raiders.
One of the oldest Soland Houses, Nasbond are well known for their horses. Their city Nasiri is situated on the Soland plains and makes full use of the land for breeding and training horses. All good horses come from House Nasbond.
The youngest of the Solander Houses, House Darabond are eager to prove themselves and are aiming for House Sarabond’s position. They are proud of their military strength but have earned a mercenary reputation. Their city, Darasus, is known for its wall made from the swords of their enemies.
Gaisland Houses focus on trade and agriculture, providing the majority of farm-based crops to the rest of Sandair. They are more laid back compared to their Soland counterparts and indulge within the arts. Most cultural trade such as jewellery, literature etc comes from Gaisland. The Gaislanders also value teaching and are the best at training Green Hands. They’re also closest to their Neu Bosan allies, who provide a lot of trade from the Isles. These Houses are:
The oldest of the Gaisland Houses, Grebond resides in the heart of the Emerald Forest and have always held the post of Guardian of Gai as a result. They have a close relationship with the Neu Bosan and focus on agriculture. Their city, Grenai, is the oldest city in Gaisland.
Located south of the Neu Inlet, House Enaibond is considered to be a paradise with its lush gardens and prosperous vineyards. Art, culture, and fine wine are all exported from Enaibond. Its city, Enais, is known for its beautiful white marbled architecture.
One of the more quieter Houses, House Orabond interests itself in scholarly pursuits and has the largest Temple to Gai in Sandair. They are skilled weavers and their rugs are exported across Sandair. Its city, Oramar, is a peaceful sanctuary.
The youngest of the Gaisland Houses, and the only Neu Bosan House. House Myrbond is owned by a Neu Bosan family and they serve as ambassadors between Sandair and Neu Bosa. Its city, Myryn, deals in trade between the nations and has a large Bosan population.
The Dusland Houses exist within the southern desert and are more ancient and hardier than both Gaisland and Soland. They are made up of ex-tribesmen and have been tasked over the years to deal with threats from tribes and raiders. More raiders exist within the Duslands than anywhere else. Due to their proximity to the mountains, mining is usually their biggest source of trade. These Houses are:
Situated on the Giant’s Tail river, the largest river in the Duslands, House Khalbond are considered to be one of the poorer Houses due to flaunting their wealth. They mostly trade in fish. Their city, Khalbad, is often a stopping point for travellers coming to the Duslands.
The oldest of the Dusland Houses, House Baibond is located in the heart of the Red Wastes and is well known for its large red fortress. House Baibond traditionally held the post of Protector of the Path, but this was passed on. Their city, Baiasra, is known for producing traditional clay pots baked in the desert.
The newest of the Houses, and the smallest, House Arlbond was established only twenty years ago. Not much is known about their city, Arlent, which was once an ex-raider fortress. They are self-sufficient and don’t trade with the other Houses.