The Price of Power
Amn: Amn is a nation under the golden thumb of a few obscenely rich and corrupt merchant houses. With the wealth these oligarchs command, Amnian fleets dominate Faerûn’s southern coasts. Amn’s rulers have declared arcane magic to be illegal, except in the hands of spellcasters licensed by the High Houses. All others are denied the opportunity to level the magical playing field. Rebellion simmers constantly among numerous disaffected and disenfranchised, many of whom are halflings.
Amn’s rivalry with Waterdeep is particularly fierce, although it’s more competition between certain merchant houses than national fervor. The monstrous realm of Muranndin to the south is a constant headache to Amnian trade.
Tethyr regards Amn’s voraciousness with no small concern, despite declaring its friendship with the nation. Such a “friend” is not likely to be of much help when trouble strikes, unless well paid for the effort.
Amn is heavily settled, especially along its great rivers and around Lakes Esmel and Weng. Inns and taverns cater to traffic along the Trade Way, lining the road for the length of its passage through the country.
Athkatla: Anything goes in Athkatla. What is considered illegal, immoral, or despicable in other places passes without comment in this so-called city of sin if the price is right. Lewdness, slavery, and even less savory acts such as murder occur here, as in any large city. But in Athkatla, the law permits almost anything. The only illegality is speaking or acting against a merchant house. In all other cases, the response to an offense is a fee, whose size depends on the degree of inconvenience to the other party. Once the fee is paid (often in advance), the act is not considered criminal — only not paying is seen as unlawful behavior. Gold flows freely in Athkatla. As one of the busiest ports in all Faerûn, almost any good or service can be had here. Ships from places near and far dock in the city, transporting exotic vegetables, slaves, jewelry, strange relics, pirate booty, and more. Athkatla’s marketplace might even overshadow Waterdeep’s. Above the bay is Goldspires, a temple to Waukeen nearly as large as a small town.
Popular shops include Tiny Deaths (poisons), the Museum of Inquisition (torture equipment), Madroon’s Curios (a little of this, a little of that), Lowmarket (slaves), Faded Ages (memory tailoring), Odd Candy (sweets . . . ?), and I Change (body modification).
Crimmor: Crimmor is the “Caravan Capital of Amn”. All trade that travels north goes through here. It is common knowledge that the shadow thieves operate openly here because this is the only city where they don’t practice their trade. There are numerous Inns, Taverns, and Fest Halls.
Eshpurta: (pop. 24,252, as of 1372 DR) Amn’s main military city, located in the eastern part of the kingdom, south of the Troll Mountains.
Esmeltaran: A halfling dominated city in eastern Amn, near Lake Esmel.
Keczulla: (pop. 47,733)A gem-mining town that previously contained many gold and iron mines.
Purskul: (pop. 27,210)A granary city that is also an important caravan stop.
Port Nyaranazaru: (pop. 12,000) A highly profitable Amnian port in Chult, Port Nyranazaru is well-defended, protected by three gates and a high wall.
Snowdown: (pop. 20,000)One of the Moonshae Isles, Snowdown is controlled by Amn through the Lady Erliza Daressin.
Spellhold: This settlement was once an asylum located on the island of Brynnlaw, off the western coast of Amn, under the command of the Cowled Wizards of Athkatla, used to house the ‘deviants’ they have found in Amn, practicing magic without an official license. However, it was abandoned during the Hundred Years of Chaos and now is a taboo location for travelers.
Since its unification under Thayze Selemchant Amn was ruled by the Council of Six, who resided in Athkatla. Their main duties were to maintain trade within and outside of Amn, controlling nearly every aspect regarding the economy of the nation. Separate from their economic concerns, the council also coordinated the militaristic defense of the nation, a task in which each individual member had a particular role.These positions were anonymously held.
Since the Spellplague however, things have changed. The number of seats on the Council was reduced from six to five. Amn remains an oligarchy but has since abandoned all pretenses of being anything else and the positions on the Council are now openly held by the rulers of five noble houses: Alibakkar, Dannihyr, Nashivaar, Ophal, and Selemchant.
Selemchant: From Athkatla, sponsors of the Cowled Wizards. The head of the House is one of the Council of 5 bearing the title Meisarch.
Dannihyr: From Eshpurta, rumored to have underworld dealings. The head of the House is one of the Council of 5 bearing the title Tessarch.
Alibakkar: From Athkatla, One of the ruling houses of Amn. The head of the House is one of the Council of 5 bearing the title Namarch.
Ophal: From Crimmor, One of the ruling houses of Amn. The head of the House is one of the Council of 5 bearing the title Iltarch.
Nashivaar: From Esmeltaran, allies and supporters of the Church of Cyric. One of the ruling houses of Amn. The head of the House is one of the Council of 5 bearing the title Pommarch.
Factions (These are only a few of the many that vie for power and position)
The Shadow Thieves: This widespread syndicate has largely succeeded in driving all other Amnian thieves’ guilds out of business.
The Midnight Edict: New and rival organization to The Shadow Thieves. Rumored to have influence in the Harbor District of Athkatla, the west side of the Market District, and various other areas of the more affluent districts in northern Athkatla.
The Cowled Wizards: This cabal of the only “legal” arcanists in Amn is under the control of House Selemchant. The Cowled Wizards serve as the Meisarch’s spies, troubleshooters, and assassins. Most are little more than mercenaries.
The Emarald Cabal: This secret society of unlawful spellcasters opposes the whole crooked Amnian system. The cabal occasionally arranges “unfortunate events” for merchant lords who become excessively destructive.
Church of Cyric: Cyric’s faith is powerful in Amn, since it espouses as virtues ambition, self-reliance, and the principle of “buyer beware.” The church is not seen as particularly murderous or antisocial by most Amnians. Those initiated into the deeper circles of the faith know otherwise. Merchants who don’t want to suffer mysterious monster attacks against their caravans and ships pay off the Black Sun. Many wish to arrange such things for their rivals and willingly participate in every sort of degradation and initiation demanded by the Prince of Lies. The Cyricists are working to elevate the Pommarch to the position of council leader.
The Silk Eye: Casino on the southern border of the Harbor/Market district, this gambling hall is owned by the Halfling Rolen.
The Silver Throne: One of the premier brothels in all of Athkatla, The Silver Throne was famed for having a high priced companion name Trea who held a very exclusive clientele.
The Lusty Dagger Tavern: A popular tavern on the south side of the Marketplace that specializes in exotic tastes and wild parties.
The Bridge: This massive bridge connects the northern and southern parts of Athkatla. This bridge sees heavy traffic as this is the only way to get to other half of the city by foot.
Museum of Inquisition: The Museum of Inquisition is a palace of pure debauchery. Once owned by the late Baron Zora, it has now fallen into possession of an unknown air. The Museum once held special events with various forms of performance arts including live sacrifices and orgies, amongst others.
The Sleepy Fox Inn: Rumored hangout for member’s of the Emerald Cabal.
The Golden Dragonne Theatre: Grande performances and concerts are held in this large theatre in the Wave District. Only the most affluent and influential get invited to these exclusive performances.
Cloud Peaks: A mountain range at the northern edge of Amn, infested with dangerous monsters but home also to precious gems.
Mount Speartop: The highest point in Amn, three miles above sea level.
Small Teeth: A mountain range containing many evil humanoids.
Snowflake Mountains: A range of mountains in West Faerûn.
Troll Mountains: A range of low mountains, so named for the rather intelligent trolls that inhabit their peaks. Also notable for their large deposits of gems.
Shilmista: Shilmista Forest, also known as the Forest of Shadows, is a forest near the Snowflake Mountains. Its land compasses the kingdom of the wild elf[ Elbereth.The ancient boughs are rumored to be imbued with magic, and if called, will aid in battle. This was proved by Cadderly Bonaduce, who summoned them with the help of the tome named Dellanil Quil’quien to fight an army of orcs led by Ragnor and Dorigen of Castle Trinity.
Snakewood forest: The Snakewood is a forest located in eastern Amn. It was given the name Snakewood because of the great number of black and green snakes that live here. The Stone of Clans’ Parting is located on the eastern edge of the woods. Magar’s Hill is also located on the eastern edge of the woods. The Snakewood was once part of the great forest of Shantel Othreier. Other then snakes the forest is known to be the home of giant spiders, beholders and many types of lycanthropes. The ambitious green dragon Ringreemeralxoth lairs in the northern hills southwest of Brigand’s Gorge and west of the Gulf of Storms. The clerics of Eldath live in the central woods, in Duskwood Dell.