Located in the southwestern portion of the Black Mountains, Wyrm's Roost is an ancient holding long protected by the elves of Calentor. It was only a dozen years ago that the prince of Sylvana (name of the forest elf kingdom before The Healing took place) returned to his home with a dragon at his side. His father sent an escort and soon the new prince, now a dragon lord, reclaimed the ancient mountain hold.
This ancient stronghold of dragons and their allied humanoids was once called the Lost Aerie, but it is lost no more. Other young dragons have come to Wyrm's Roost to claim their humanoid and bond with them. They dragons and their humanoid riders follow the dragon Andraphylaxia and her chosen forest elf, Drystan. She is referred to as the First Dragon and claims authority over the dragons of Wyrm's Roost, while Drystan is titled as a First Lord among the dragon lords.
Together with allies, Andi and Drystan were able to win the favor of the huge male green dragon that resides in this part of the Black Mountains and reigns over the green dragons of the Calentor. Green dragons had become rare anywhere in the world but the Calentor since all the territory is claimed by elder females and the young cannot displace or compete with them. Greens that leave the Calentor are forced to compete with powerful creatures elsewhere and usually perish. Therefore, Wyrm's Roost offered a way for young dragons to survive long enough to find homes of their own elsewhere in the world. Understanding this, the Dragon King Peridomalax (King of the Green Dragons can take a forest elf-like form that is 10' tall and horned) reinstated ancient dragon law to declare Wyrm's Roost a sanctuary where none of his elder females could claim dominion.
It is important to note that the term "dragon lord" does not denote dominion over a dragon. At best the relationship with a dragon, being bonded to one, is an equal partnership. More often, it's the typically fiercely independent-minded dragon that claims the upper hand.
The First Dragon, Andraphylaxia is a green dragon, a forest dragon who imprinted and bonded with Drystan. Young but unexpectedly powerful, she has chosen not to accept a mate. This is because female dragons will only mate with a male she recognizes as being the stronger. Should she choose to do so, then she would lose her status as First Dragon — and her dragon lord lose his status as well.
Dragonlords of Wyrm's Roost
This includes five phrases, a bulleted list that is written in the first person. It doesn’t state what the culture believes or or value, but rather indicates what a culture does or does not do. "We always do…" or "We never do…" are fine.
- We always each act in the best interests of the dragon to which we are bonded.
- We are always open to mercenary work since it will enlarge our dragon's hoard.
- We answer to the First Dragon Lord and the First Dragon. Not. You.
- We offer hospitality to those who seek to serve our dragons.
- Our service to our dragon comes first, the First Dragon Lord and Wyrm's Roost second, and all else comes after.
The following aspects represent people revered in this culture and who represent the ideals of the culture. These are roles that can be attained within the culture. They, or variations of them, can be used to help define an NPC aspects.
- Forest Elf Dragon Rider, Intrepid Avonian Explorer, Scholar of Ancient Ways, Chosen Servant of [Dragon name]
The following one-word descriptive adjectives or nouns can be used to describe what things this culture values. Use them to help fill out aspects for NPCs and to help provide a deeper sense of who the people of this culture are.
A dragon lord is…
Little direct information is known of the ancient history of Wyrm's Roost, as it was abandoned before the Divine War that shattered the world more than five centuries ago. However, the legacy that left The Ancient Halls of Wyrm's Roost to the new dragon lords that would inherit it hints at an old partnership between at least young dragons and humanoid races. The halls themselves are built to a giant scale that easily accommodates dragons, but includes smaller doors more easily manipulated by their companions.
Of course the Disappearance of the Dragons Lords of the distant past has created great challenges for this new organization. Special rites and traditions of the past have had to be pieced together or invented whole cloth. At times they must struggle with their draconic companions because dragons themselves can be difficult to understand and are ultimately often disinterested in the comfort or security of their humanoid companion. A dragon's interest in their companion might range from complete disinterest until the dragon is hungry or desiring grooming to intense interest (usually common only in those dragons who can and will take a humanoid form).
The first function of the new residents of Wyrm's Roost was to form as a mercenary company under Drystan's leadership. He gathered his most experienced and talented dragon lords and through Andi, their associated dragons and hammered out an agreement with the Avonian Empire, which was then in the midst of a bloody civil war. The power of less than two dozen young dragons and their riders helped tip the balance of the war as they confronted the rebels' black dragon allies and burned to ash the black's undead legions. At victory, Avonia awarded the dragons of Wyrm's Roost a vast treasure in gold, silver, and items made of the precious metal. This achievement allowed Wyrm's Roost to finally become fully Self-Sufficient.
The success of Wyrm's Roost is not without Growing Pains. Drystan's dragon, Andraphylaxia must fight from time to time when she is challenged or relinquish her status as First Dragon. Loss of her status would in turn cause Drystan to lose his as well. Few greens have challenged her, except for some young males who were more interested in mating with her than taking control of the dragon flight, but some young red dragons have found their way to Wyrm's Roost as well. The reds tend toward impatience and violence and will occasionally decide they ought to be in control. For his part, First Lord Drystan does all he can to ensure Andi is well forewarned and prepared for any conflict.
Direct interference with the refuge of Wyrm's Roost on the part of elder dragons is deflected by the Attention of a Powerful Female Green and her brood on the order of Peridomalax. This helps ward away other dragons that have ideas of plundering what these young dragons might have managed to amass for themselves.
Perhaps the most important skill a dragon lord can have is Ride (renamed Drive skill). Without it, there is a real danger of falling from their dragon to a sudden and grisly demise. Empathy becomes the next important skill of a dragon lord because being able to understand and anticipate the needs of their dragon if a frequent survival skill. Finally, being able to participate in Drystan's mercenary contracts is important since that is the primary way to amass treasure. Shoot is the skill most important for this.
With the skills are stunts. Each skill has a rebel and a paragon stunt. Rebels reject the cultural norm while paragons represent this aspect of the culture.
When you ride your dragon, you each have actions you can take, but typically only one of you take actions related to movement. Dragons usually use Physique to fly, but if your Ride skill is higher, you can use that to guide your dragon where to go instead. This leaves the dragon free to do things like fight or breathe fire. When the dragon takes control of movement, then it will be left to you to spot dangers, or attack with magic, bow or crossbow.
- (Paragon) Hell Bent for Leather. By convincing your dragon you are capable of staying with them, you can achieve almost unbelievably speed. When you participate in a contest where speed is the primary factor, even a tie is considered a success. This applies to your use of the Ride skill and only when you are guiding the dragon's movement.
- (Rebel) Ram It! Some dragon lords are paired with dragons that are not quite sane or simply not that bright. You are able to convince your dragon to ram another target and when you do so, you and your dragon can ignore the first two shifts of damage done. Damage is typically done to all parties involved in the ramming action.
- (Paragon) Dragon's Companion. You have a knack for sensing when your dragon wants to be alone, when it is hungry or irritable, and when it is time to prove just how beautiful she or he is through a good grooming. This is helpful since dragons sometimes do not deign to simply tell you, and might rather eat you than put up with something that irritates them. Gain a +2 bonus for overcome rolls using Empathy to discover what your dragon needs.
- (Rebel) Negotiator. You gain a +2 bonus on create an advantage rolls to assess what the true motivation of your target might be. This only works if you can keep them talking long enough to discover it.
- (Paragon) Steady Aim. When you use Shoot to create an aspect related to lining up your shot, you gain a +3 bonus when you invoke it.
- (Rebel) Crippling Shot. When you successfully attack using Shoot and inflict stress, you can inflict a consequence by spending a Fate point.
This culture was created with guidance from the excellent article, "Culture from the Outside In", from the Fate Codex: Vol. 1, Issue 2.