HSK Worldbuilding – Races, Part 3

Posted on

Well here they are, the histories of the various human settlements. Having randomly generated 50 years of history (10 x 5 year increments) I used those results to inform the story. Check out last week’s post for the City Events Table I used.


A few years after the liberation of the human race, and the following exodus into the West, the city that would become known as Cairnholm was founded. As the first human settlement it grew quickly. As people continued to arrive from the elven lands in the East and travel onwards into the West, a wide paved road was built through Cairnholm to facilitate them. This also allowed trade to flourish in the immediate area.

Then the floods came. Season after season saw freak waves assault the coastline. Buildings fell apart as the land crumbled into the sea and many people were lost forever. For four long years the city was on the brink of being abandoned until a grand church was built to honour and appease Halward, the god of storms, and the floods miraculously abated.

The high priestess, Ellenin, led a concerted effort to rebuild the city and Cairnholm quickly regained it’s place as one of the most prosperous human cities. The elves even sent an emissary to take up residence, further acknowledging the city’s importance.

In more recent years a cunning Bishop by the name of Rhea has made history by securing a peace treaty with the warmongering dwarves across Black Reef Bay. Meanwhile, the city guard has been stretched thin between protecting Cairnholm itself and its outlying farms, allowing a thieve’s guild to emerge.


While travelling up the coast, a large group of humans founded the city of Blackwatch in a sheltered harbour. When Cairnholm was ravaged by storms, Blackwatch was left untouched and became the main port for all trade. Over the next decade, trade routes were set up with Kingsport, across the mountains to the West, and Shale, far to the south. But Blackwatch’s new found wealth drew the attention of dwarven raiders who began to probe the city’s defences. Eventually one raid attempted to attack the town directly, but was beaten back by one man, Volgan the Red. He evacuated a section of the waterfront before trapping the raiders between a row of burning buildings and their own burning ships. The fires damaged a large section of the port, but the dwarves were driven off.

With trade to the West bringing in most of their wealth a small town of traders sprang up around the mountain pass. There a faster route would be built, a tunnel through the mountain. The tunnel and the town would soon be named Cinder Gate and through it flowed the materials that Blackwatch needed to build their mighty walls and watchtowers.

Eventually Blackwatch elected their hero, now called Volgan the Grey, to be their Warden. He proved to be as capable a leader as he was a warrior, as he continued to build trade routes with neighbouring cities and lead companies of soldiers into battle against regular dwarven raids.


As the most popular route through the mountains, Cinder Gate’s population swelled as tradespeople and their families set up shop at either end of the tunnel. In the early years, while the tunnel was still being reinforced and expanded a group of travellers were almost trapped in a cave-in. But a local laborer named Brandt managed to hold up a collapsing beam just long enough for them to escape. Sadly Brandt didn’t make it out. When the tunnel was rebuilt and his body wasn’t found Brandt was hailed as a saint by the locals, and it is said that he became one with the mountain.

Saint Brandt is now celebrated with an annual festival, and offerings are made at a temple carved into the mountainside in the hope that it will keep the tunnels and passes safe for another year.


Founded on the fertile Western slopes of the mountains, Shale began life as a collection of widely spread farms, ruled over by a council of elders. But it didn’t take long for one family to gain the upper hand and begin working the community to their advantage. Sahrain, a half-elf, held himself and his family above the other farmers. Using materials traded from Blackwatch to craft arms and armour they seized control of the council through a series of kidnappings.

For decades, Sahrain lorded over his countrymen, styling himself after the elves of the old world who he would occasionally entertain at his palatial manor. Shale grew into a proper city under his direction, but it was one filled with poverty, crime, and that most hated of trades amongst humans, slavery. The people of Shale wouldn’t stand to become slaves once again and slowly but surely, family by family, they all left.

Now Shale is nothing but a ghost town. All trade to and from the area has ceased. But there are still rumours that Sahrain remains, locked away in his manor, cursing those who abandoned him and his perfect little city.

Well, there are four of my eight cities. I’ll cover the rest on Wednesday, some of which managed to splinter off into a separate alliance. Nothing like a good human civil war to generate good history.


Leave a Reply