Medium Falwood Low
- The Gates
- The Commons
Elves Gerontocracy Elvish Hidden, Magic Food, Elven silk, Elven crafts N/A
Fal'Addas is the greatest Elven city within the world of Arethil. It is one of the most ancient and oldest settlements, the first of the trees having been sung into existence long before even the Elders can remember.
The city has stood for well over an age, perhaps even several, and only a scant few Elves currently alive even know the true history of their home. That being said, Fal'Addas is far from stuck within the past. Though the Elves of course are an old race, they understand and accept the passage of time, knowing that they cannot stagnate. Much of Fal'Addas has been changed over the millennia.
Most of Fal'Addas is what can be considered 'modern' in Elf standards. Though the population itself is nearly entirely made up of Elves, there are inns and common houses for other species. There are streets through the thick wood and everything seems to have a place.
Unlike many other cities in Artehil, Fal'Addas was diligently and carefully planned. Everything within the city has its place, everything is where it's supposed to be, and nothing is left out. The beautiful architecture of the city seems to be woven into the forest around it, and one can't help but feel at home wherever they are inside of the cities breadth.
There is something exceptionally wonderful about Fal'Addas, and none have been able to describe it.
DemographicAs one might expect Fal’Addas is populated mainly by Elves. The city is thought to be one of the, if not the first, Elvish settlement in Arethil. For as long as anyone can remember Fal’Addas has served as a cultural, economic, and military Bastion for the Elves.
For most scholars Fal’Addas is intrinsically linked with all races of elves. It is theorized that the whole elvish race originated within the Falwood somewhere and that Fal’Addas was the first of their homes. As such it is entirely possible that every elvish species can trace their ancestry back to Fal’Addas at some point within their genealogy. Whether or not this is actually true is impossible to say of course, but for many Elves it is indisputable. Of course some disagree, but this is mainly due to the many schisms and civil wars that the elves endured through the millenia.
Despite this storied elvish history, Fal’Addas is not a xenophobic place. Though a proud and sometimes smug species, The Elders of Fal’Addas long ago learned the lessons of civility and open trade.
Unlike some other Elvish cities within the world Fal’Addas remains open to any and all outsiders. Humans, Dwarves, even orcs are more than allowed within the grove. Merchants and traders are welcomed, visiting dignitaries are celebrated, and even commoners are shown the way with a patient hand. The elves of Fal’Addas see themselves as guides and educators, teaching younger and less wise sentient beings about Falwood and its importance to Arethil. Though elves heavily outnumber all other species, it isn't rare to see others wandering around.
Of course, compared to other cities Fal’Addas has a fairly small population with the elves only numbering a few thousand.
DesignationFal’Addas is considered to be the very center of Elvish culture and spiritualism. It is here within this city where many believe the elvish race truly began. Those who did not split off during one of the schisms, those who still call themselves simply ‘elves’ consider Fal’Addas to be their ultimate home.
The City is not a great world economy, it is not a great fortress, and it certainly isn’t a ruin of the past. Instead Fal’Addas serves as a place of peace and contemplation. It is here that the elders of the elven race survive, it is here that the collective knowledge of one of the oldest races resides. Within the walls of the great trees one can find secrets and mysteries that many races long ago forgot. Every building, every walk way, every tree within Fal’Addas contains a small sliver of history, a small story that it is able to tell if only someone would stand long enough to listen to it.
This is the reason Fal’Addas is so important to the Elves and many of the worlds scholars.
There is something I intrinsically important about this city. The history and knowledge contained within Fal’Addas makes it incredibly important. On top of this the cities identity as the Elves true home mark it as a cultural icon that cannot be undervalued. Many of the elves consider Fal’Addas to be their home, even if they have never once visited its reaches. Unlike Humans or Orcs, Elves believe they know where they came from, they believe that Fal’Addas is the very center of their society.
For this reason the Elves believe their city should be protected, but also shared.
ArchitectureThe Architecture of Fal’Addas is not constructed nor built, instead the buildings themselves were sung and grown into place over the course of centuries.
Long ago the elves developed a magic that allowed them to quite literally ‘sing’ the trees into a desired shape, this was how most of Fal’Addas came Into being and how it is expanded today. This method of construction, if it can be called that, has given the city a rather unique appearance. Instead of standing out and apart from the forest around it Fal’Addas itself blends I to the grove. Many of the buildings are connected to massive roots or huge tree trunks and most of the walkways within the city are in fact branches from the trees themselves. Everything within the city is connected, all linking to the single largest tree within Falwood; Fal'Addareth.
The way that Fal’Addas is built is a reflection of the Elven belief system. Everything is connected and roots back to nature. The city itself has no impact on the forest around it, and hundreds of trees grow around and throughout the city itself. The elves have blended their society seamlessly into their environment, and when one walks through the city it is as though they are walking through the forest itself.
Birds, mammals, and even some of the more peaceful reptiles of Falwood can often be seen wandering or settling somewhere within Fal’wood. The entire city scream of peace.
Uniquely, despite the outward appearance of sung wood, the inside of the buildings within Fal’Addas are as regal as the greatest halls of Alliria. Within the great tree of Fal'Addareth the halls are stunningly luxurious, the sung wood grander than any that Humans or Dwarves could ever hope to produce. The magics of the elves run strongly through these buildings, and when walking inside even the most common Inn it is difficult not to be overwhelmed by the wondrous craftsmanship that can be found in almost every single corner.
Points of InterestThe Gates – Though not a walled city, Fal’Addas is ringed by hundreds, if not thousands of massive trees. This makes it nearly impossible to enter the city without first knowing the proper path. Most Elves know half a dozen different ways into the settlement, but outsiders rarely even know one.
For those coming to visit Fal’Addas there is a convenient road through Falwood which leads directly to the main entrance. The Gates of Fal’Addas have no doors, instead it is an open space between two gigantic wooden statues. These sculptures are a supposed depiction of the founders of Fal’Addas, the first tree singers. It is said that any who mean the city harm will be unable to set foot through the gate, a fact that has been proven to be true again and again.
Powerful magics ward the entryway into Fal’Addas, a measure that was put into place centuries ago and is renewed nearly every year. The Elves ensure at all times that their city remains safe and protected, and the Gates are one of the best ways for them to do this.
The Commons – Though Fal’Addas is mainly populated by Elves the residents have long since come to understand that their city was not originally designed for other species. Ever the pragmatists, the elders decided that they would dedicate an area of Fal’Addas specifically for those of another species that would come to visit.
This section of the city was sung into being nearly a thousand years ago, but is quite easily the newest part of the settlement. Buildings within the Commons resemble those of other species far more. Instead of being inside a tree or a part of the roots they appear to be houses grown out of the ground itself. The insides are warmly lit and decorated with well crafted furniture. Every part of the Commons is neat and orderly, set exactly in the right way with nothing where it's not supposed to be.
For most who come and visit Fal’Addas the Commons become a home away from home. Many compliment their hosts on just how comfortable the Commons are, and how much care the Elves have taken to ensure that their guests feel at home.
Fal'Addareth – At the very center of the city lies Fal'Addareth, a large, branching tree that dominates both the horizon and the cityscape of Fal’Addas. It can be seen from anywhere in the settlement, and it is thought that every building, every part of the city is linked back to the roots of the great tree itself. For the Elves and Fal'Addas, the tree is the center of it all. For millennia it has served as the nexus of the Elven government, knowledge, and as a formidable fortress.
The legends around Fal'Addareth tell that the first Elf was born between the roots of the great tree, brought into existence by the will of nature itself. This of course may not be true, but it is the origin of the great importance of the tree to the Elven people. Even without this story one can tell at a glance why the tree is so sacred. Fal'Addareth stands several dozen stories tall, its bark is as thick as the largest stone, and between its branches nestle Elven homes, meeting halls, and memorials that have been there for more than an age. The significance of the tree cannot be understated, both to the elves and to Fal’Addas itself. Within the halls of the great tree one can find mysteries that even the Elves themselves have forgotten about.
More than once during the great wars of Arethil the city and Fal'Addareth have been threatened. Each time however the Elves managed to hold fast in the great tree, using it as a powerful stronghold and bastion to fight off the invading forces.
For most Elves Fal'Addareth is a landmark of their species. It is something to be treasured and looked after. When it is spoken of in conversation it is always with a sense of great pride and joy. Most Elves would willingly lay down their lives for Fal'Addareth.
Fal'Tiereth – The only stone structure in all of Fal’Addas is Fal'Tiereth. A huge stone obelisk that stands directly before the main gate of the city itself.
Standing at nearly ten stories tall the obelisk towers over anyone that walks besides it. Hewn from a single grand stone, Fal'Tiereth is inscribed with thousands upon thousands of names, each that of an elf that has died in defending their species. These names decorate all sides of the obelisk, carefully carved with golden letters that seem to emit a soft glow when exposed to the right light. The names reach nearly halfway up the side of the obelisk, a mark to how many have sacrificed themselves through the ages.
Only those who die in the service of their people may be inscribed upon Fal'Tiereth, and it is an extreme honor to be placed upon the obelisk. Those who distinguish themselves in particular have their names carved in black, the writing standing out among the gold.
BackgroundFal’Addas is thought by many to be one of the oldest cities in Arethil still occupied by its it's original inhabitants. Though no one is quite sure when or how it was originally founded, the elves themselves believe that they have been within Falwood since the first tree grew its leaves.
Though it's impossible to say if this is true or not, there is no question that the Elves and Fal’Addas itself have been around for a very long time. There are hundreds upon hundreds of historical accounts from dozens of different species, each one detailing the involvement of the elves by name or describing something similar to them. From these it is easy to guess the Elves have been around for a long time, and since Fal’Addas has always been their home it stands to reason that the city has been around almost as long as they have.
Due to this, Fal’Addas is easily one of the oldest cities in the world. The great tree itself is one of the most ancient buildings, and as one might have guessed there is almost an unspeakable amount of history within.
Ancient scrolls, worn history books, and indeed the trees themselves have stories to tell. There are bits and pieces of history that other species have long forgotten, and even the elves struggle to remember. Fal’Addas holds many answers for those who know where to look, and it has long since been a destination for adventurers and scholars throughout the world. The Elves welcome these men and women, eager to show the grandeur of their city and help the younger species understand the history of their world.
Or course over the years Fal’Addas has been involved in more than one war. Sometimes it was at the behest of the elders, sometimes in defense of Falwood, and others for a perceived slight. Though they have not always won, the city and Fal'Addareth have always remained standing by the end. The history of Fal’Addad is impossible to recount within its entirety, and even the oldest elf would only have experienced a fraction of what this city has endured over the Millenia.
Lore"I heard stories before, about the great tree, the way the elves had blended themselves into the the forest but...but the truth of it was that none of them did it justice. I always thought it was a bit silly, always thought that they were lying or something.
Then we got to Falwood.
At first it was like any other forest. Trees, roots, you know the usual stuff, but then after an hour the trees got large and the canopy above began to block out the sun. Within a days ride the trunks were thicker than a man was tall, the leaves of every tree were bigger than my own head. Everything just got larger, like it was some kind of joke.
It just kept going, and eventually I lost track of just how big everything was. It all blended together into a wall of green. We continued on like that for days, always on the same road, always making sure never to walk into the forest itself. The Merchant's said it was safe that way, that it was easy to get lost and once you did even the Elves couldn't find you.
I don't know about that but...I wouldn't want to test it.
I kept close to Marcus for most of the trip, mostly because he'd made the journey before. I kept asking him about the city the whole way, pestering him really about what the Elves were like and what Fal'Addas would bring us. He just smiled, shaking his head and telling me to wait. That it would be worth it.
He was right."
— Ryan Albrecht, apprentice blacksmith on his journey to Fal'Addas
Fal'Addas is one of the few Elven cities in the world that not only accepts outsiders, but actively welcomes them. For this reason the Settlement has a good reputation among most other species, and those who frequently travel there sing it's praises to anyone who will sit down and listen.
Of course, among Scholars and Students Fal'Addas is seen as one of the great repositories of knowledge that exists in the world. Within the Great tree it is said there is an answer to every mystery, and one simply has to dig hard enough to find it.
Though the city is not as large as Alliria, there are hundreds of people of all species who attempt to make the grueling journey through Falwood to visit Fal'Addas every year. All are welcome, as long as they hold no malice.