Settlements and Sites of the Four City-States #320
November 17th, 2023
Name: Deep Dive on an Area of Interest: Knights of the Borderlands - Part 5
Location: Northwest corner of County Macad in the City-State of Noldrune
Population (approx.): 1586 (Mapleview Manor and surrounding tenants)
Brief: The western half of the Interior Frontier was heavily wooded hence requiring a different style of defense and defender. Mapleview Manor was established in the depths of the forest, the Lord of the Manor leading a cohort of Knight Bachelors (unlanded and the lowest rung of Nobles in the City-State's ranks of nobility) supported by rangers and archers. The Knights of the Western Wood had years of success keeping the bandits, beasts and Baron’s Bastards contained west of Smuggler's Way until one winter three years ago when some villain or villains caught the Lady of the Manor unawares at her home, burning most of it to the ground, killing her, her family and several worthy warriors. Viscount Ember vowed revenge, sending new Knights led by one of the best House Macad has to offer.
Sir Justyn Rapidgleam, Lord of Mapleview Manor, 32, male Human, is the leader of the cohort of the Knights of the Western Woods. He is tall and barrel-chested, with thick arms and an intimidating face. He has black hair, which he wears long and in a braided ponytail. Justyn has obsidian eyes that he uses to significant effect when he stares down the other knights. A long scar on his left cheek adds to the effect. Justyn wears leggings and a tunic when he is off duty. In his official capacity, he wears a full suit of chainmail. His entire cohort uses long swords and crossbows.
Justyn was born poor and lived by his wits for a few years after his parents died in a carriage accident. He saved the life of a young woman who choked on a soup bone. Later, Lady Camilla Basnum, 55, Human noticed Justyn's skill with the long sword and invited him to work on her estate (Gracewood Chateau) as a private guard. Justyn saved Lady Camilla from death by bringing her medicine made by Justyn's aunt. These things helped Justyn come to the attention of Viscount Ember, become a landed Knight and the proud owner of Mapleview Mansion.
Justyn doesn't have any family but has many friends. His most trusted advisor is Sir Martin Grayshout, 30, male Human Knight Bachelor and his 2nd in command. Martin started on the streets with Justyn, and the two campaigned together for years. Justyn is also courting Ayla Ninthrift, 25, female Human and hopes to propose to her soon.
Geography: Mapleview Manor (location 4 see below) is 27 miles southwest of Stormview Estate (location 3) within the Western Wood which, as the Manor’s name suggests, is mostly maple trees. The Mansion, recently rebuilt since the winter fire of three years ago, sits on a raised area of ground surrounded by wood and stone fortifications (also rebuilt and reinforced). A palisade encloses a small village adjacent to the Manor house. Similar small, protected settlements, farms and hunting lodges can be found throughout the 300 square miles of the Lord of Mapleview’s lands. A single main forest trail leads east from Mapleview Manor to the neighboring Gracewood Chateau.