Location: Nocturnal Sea
Ecology: Full Ecology
Ruler: Baron Evensong
Population: 11,000 (75% human, 8%
Halflings, 5% half-elves, 4% elves, 3%
dwarves, 3% gnomes, 2% other)
Main settlements: Aferdale (pop. 850),
Armeikos (3,000), Claveria (400),
Religion: The Thousand Gods
Language: Sithican, Darkonese, Elven,
Government: Confederation of baronies
Money: Typically Darkonian or Nova Vassan
Liffe is a land of windswept plains, hills and moors surrounded by the cold Nocturnal Sea.
Granite boulders and short, gnarly oaks dot the countryside. The trees grow slanted due to the pounding winds. The western and northern shores are rocky surrounded by shallows and hidden shoals, similar to much of the Nocturnal islands’ coastlines. Flotsam collects along these shores (Liffe seems to attract the cast offs of other lands) and there are frequently scavengers picking off the ruins of shipwrecks. The eastern and southern shores are weatherworn from the
storms spawned from the sea’s eastern edge resulting in many sharp cliffs along the coast.
Strong sea currents from the southeast churn much of the surrounding waters. Whirlpools form frequently around the island and are violent enough to sink smaller boats. These turbulent currents, or races, make fishing a dangerous profession and shipping problematic, save through the fairly placid Sound of Liffe. Locals frequently use the expression “sound sailing” to describe a hard task going smoothly. Liffe is hilly with large rocky outcroppings of red sandstone interrupting the yellowgreen grass. The soil is a sandy loam which is quite fertile and would easily lend itself to farming if there were less cloud cover. The exposed stone of the cliffs and hills is an eye-catching variety of shades and hues. It’s telling when the rocks are more vibrant than the landscape. The island is split almost in half by the Hordum River which flows from the island’s stony hills; it has cut sharp embankments into the hills making overland travel difficult. Springs and continual rains feed the river which quickly grows in size to the
aggressive waterway that flows into the bay sharing its name. River traffic is sparse given
the speed of the river and number of rapids. There are few remaining forests on Liffe.
The largest is in the north, sheltered from the wind by the central hills. The woods have no
official name and are simply called the Moondale Wood or the Northern Wood. Despite the island’s lack of timber few lumberjacks cut into the forest. It has a dark reputation as the home of werewolves, fey and other creatures. The local children live in dread of the wood and are told a number of unsuitable stories that take place in the forest. Rare youths with an adventurous
streak often make it a point to venture into the wood. There is only a single highway in Liffe. It curves along the eastern coast before arcing south connecting the two halves of the
island. After the road reaches Risibilos it branches into a series of dirt trails meandering north through the hills. The road is rocky and seldom maintained save for the heavily frequented section connecting Armeikos and Claveria. Many less frequented stretches are filled with weeds and muddy holes that can wrench the wheel of a wagon.
The northerly latitude of Liffe varies the length of the day: longer in the summer and
as little as five hours in midwinter. However, the seasons have a much less radical effect
on the climate. Continual sea breezes keep the temperature constant. There’s a saying on Liffe: “It doesn’t always rain: sometimes it snows!” Heaviest in spring and into early summer, there’s a
brief dry spell in late summer and early fall, although light showers are still common. In
the winter this changes to freezing-rain, sleet, hail and snow. The sky is a perpetual slate-grey, even when not raining. On the few nights it is clear -inland of course – sky-gazers can experience a grand sight: Liffe has spectacular aurora borealis, a phenomenon both mundane and magical.
Despite its small size Liffe is bustling with small villages and hamlets tucked away in
dales and glens. Homes are typically built out of peat and stone with some of the newer
and richer buildings erected out of brick. Architecture varies dramatically between
villages, which are often designed in different or even contradictory styles.