Ghost of Kalidria
The City of Alabaster and Marble
The great falls are well over 1,000 yards deep and cut in the walls of the cliff that surrounds the falls is the White City of Feldus, home of a noble line of High Elves. The descendants of Ethulia have stood as caretakers of the falls and of the surrounding forest for well over 1,000 years.
The city of Feldus is named after the first of the royal house of Feduria, Feldus Ethulia. It was the undertaking of Vyden Varfarrion and his family to work with a group of Dwarven Artisans to build a city in the walls of the white stone cliff walls of the Great Falls Forest. The Dwarves looked at the elves with some contempt at first, as their races had been at war with one another for a great number of years.
“I offer this job as the first step of peace between our races. As we choose to live in the side of stone, we choose to respect and honor those that have lived in the stone before us. We shall pay you in more than gold, we shall pay you in peace. We choose to live with one foot in the earth to offer this hand of peace. Elven Steel will be another gift for your Grand Priest of the Forge, as I will personally teach the most sacred of workings with our most precious metal. I offer you this and extend my hand to call you brother.” ~ Vyden Varfarrion c. 1,322 before calm
And so it was written and so it was done. The Dwarves of Durg came in droves to build the Elves a city while Vyden himself was welcomed into the Great Forge in the heart of Durg where he taught Guldrin Silver Beard, the Grand Priest how to work with Elven Steel. Upon completion of the work, Guldrin forged a sword for the families Feldus to be passed down from generation to generation a constant reminder of the union between the Elves and Dwarves.
Feldus serves as the capital of the Elven Nation, and is ruled by a council of great chieftains and lords. The most powerful of which hail from the three great families;
House Nillenus of the Greenleaves, founded by Ettania Nillenus, and they serve Addia the Goddess of the Green. A gentle people, House Nillenus delights in all things that grow in nature from the earth. They are famed caretakers and healers whose people are known to travel in the wilds helping strangers and friends alike. Many children of the Greenleaves are sought for their knowledge of herbs and medicines, which are a chief export from the elven nation and brings great prestige to their people. As such, the Children of the Greenleaves have founded a strong line of Druids and Clerics in the Forest. This family is the lowest in number due to the ritualistic nature of their conception of children. Their symbol is an elm tree growing from a rock. Their house colors are Brown and White.
The most numerous House in Feldus is House Gerrildeth of the Horn and Bow, founded by Devan Gerrildeth They are hale warriors who pride themselves in their archery and woodcraft, clever trackers and rangers at home in city or forest in equal measure. Many sons of the Horn and Bow roam the wilds at the edge of the Forest’s borders, keeping vigilant watch over their home, in the Watchful Calm of Kalidria. Their symbol is a leaf of a hickory tree with a hunting arrow over it. Their colors are Green and Gold.
Finally there is House Varfarrion; the Eagle who bears the Sword, whose wings herald the Thunderfall. House Varfarrion is renowned far and wide for their soldiers and craftsmen. Artists hail from that line in every field, from masonry to music with great acclaim. But the true pride of House Varfarrion is their spellcraft. Peerless amongst those who know of such things, House Varfarrion and by extension Feldus, is led by Lord Vyden; an elf of great strength and wisdom. Their sigil is an Eagle who bears a Sword and a Thunderbolt, their favored colors are shades of Blue and Silver.
The Towers of Feldus rise high amidst the trees of the forest, tall pines and birch interspersed with evergreens. Songbirds of every denomination find haven in the marbled minarets of the Great Houses with silken banners and flags streaming from their heights. The songs of the birds are blended with the gentle ringing of gold and silver bells in the first rays morning sun. Slender stone bridges stretch from peak to peak, lined with Mother-of-Pearl and Alabaster. Reliefs of elven ancestors line the stoned paths and steps of the city and monuments to the Five Bringers of the Calm can be found in the Main Square at Feldus’s center.
In the Lowest Tier of the City are many workshops and fountains. The Grand Arboretum can be found a short walk and the Great River Fendalos begins its long journey from those clear pools. In the Arboretum a nursery for Birds and Beasts can be found tended by the people of House Nillenus, and the trees there never shed their leaves. Boats carved with prows of birds and deer, and cunning rafts can be found in the river moving goods up and down the river, steadily propelled by simple spells.
In the Middle Tier of the city, the Great Market was built, with many flowing arches and hung with silver lanterns, burning with steady light. The roads into the forest lead straight to the Market Bazaar, and many clever lifts and pulleys transport goods to and from the warehouses on the forest floor, and in the hollowed caves behind the waterfalls. It is common enough to see a caravan of dwarven traders drive their way to the Market to exchange the latest fashions and jewelry from Durg, as well as choice brews and liqours. Taverns and hostels prepare hot food and warm beds in the evenings for weary travelers near the Main Square. A particularly popular meadery is located there by the name of the “Blossom and the Honeybee” known for their perennial brews from fine ingredients.
There are few bordellos within Feldus, largely due to the aforementioned gravitas of child conception among the elves, but the few that operate in the outer bounds of the city have had many many years to hone their craft in lovemaking and bedplay. Many who have worked in the brothels find it more rewarding to seek their fortunes in the free cities, as talented as they are.
Upon the Highest Tier of the city of Feldus lie the many galleries and gardens of the elves, nursed by the gentle mists rising up from the waterfalls. Here, a few cafes and bakeries can be found filling the air with sweet fragrances of flowers and spice. Many lounges and libraries climb up in storied structures above the high courts filled with elven scholars observing the passing stars with their clever telescopes and celestial calendars. The high streets stretch quietly illuminated in the evenings by slender lamps of beaten silver in the shapes of young saplings blossoming with light. At the center grove of the Third Tier rests the EarthBloom; a single massive pillar of emerald, discovered and fashioned by the artisans of Durg into a tree. Billions of facets have been carved into the tree to resemble bark, roots and branches. The High Priest of the Forge then blessed the creation with the favor of Beldon, so that the crystal flowered and grew as a truly living tree. For this reason above all, the elves of the Great Falls Forest treasure their dwarven comrades and support them always.
In the galleries of the Great Houses many tile murals and frescoes adorn the walls, grand tapestries hang solemnly, and soft music can be heard in the evenings echoing through the pillared halls, the sounds of many lutes, woodwinds and drums marking the ever changing seasons. Many travelers have marveled to hear the minstrelsy of the elves upon those bridges and stairs, but perhaps on some quiet night a lonely elf might play a strange dirge in the style of the Dwarves of Durg, out of longing and affection for their friends who dwell so far away.
Upon the peaks of the waterfall, one building extends out above the city, held aloft by sturdy bridges and arches, the Great Temple of Feldus. With a tile dome, and many arched windows adorned with stained glass, the Temple hosts the relics and altars of the Elven Gods, and incense wafts gently from their halls on holy days.
The Council House is one of the key sites in Feldus. It is positioned on a strip of land that the Great Falls dive down behind. This is the greatest structure that lies before the falls with pillars of Alabaster and large marble statues of the three founders of Feldus rise beneath its arches. With the roar of the falls crashing behind this image, the council house has no roof simply an arc of pillars and marble statues with Alabaster stones along the top to seal it.
The council room itself steps down three steps to the center of the arc where the council of nobles sit with their back to the falls as well. A natural lichen grows in the floor of the room that provides a soft place for all to sit. Inside there are three more statues, this time to the three Gods that are honored here.
Holy days are observed in honor and accordance to these Gods. Each of the noble houses are said to be blessed by one of the three Deities that Feldus honors here. Addia was said to bestow her blessing on the members of the house of Ethulia; Fordwyn to Ettania; Halifaust to Varfarrion.