Simoom is a coastal city located in South Vanil on the Central Ocean. Simoom is the largest human settlement in South Vanil and is the only place in Vanil to have a marked Thean influence. It is in many ways like Portsport to the north, in that it gains most of its power and wealth through trading with other nations.
Simoom, known then as Tha-Sim-Oom, was founded midway through the Fifth Kingdom by Thean explorers who crossed the Central Ocean to Vanil from their homeland to the east. The Thean slavers found a ripe and easy source of new slaves in the local Vanilli who lived in settlements mostly isolated from each other. Within a few decades, free Vanilli were all but unknown to the south of Kalim’s Isthmus and Simoom grew to dominate the region.
The rapacious Thean slavers wished to expand their influence and so made a grave error: they attempted expanding to the north into areas of Vanil claimed by the newly-founded city of Kalimaar. The Theans were taken by surprise at the ferocity of the Kalimaa and withdrew after only a few months to begin plotting a full-scale invasion intended to raze Kalimaar to the ground. Though the might of Thea was vastly greater than that of Kalimaar, the long distances needed to put troops on the ground slowed the buildup of troops; in the meanwhile, undead and “expendable” troops were sent to the Isthmus to create a fortified bastion that became known as the Western Imperial Strongpoint, intended to stymie any attempts by Kalimaar to press a preemptive attack as the Theans grew their forces.
The war proper lasted only a few months once the Thean military was concentrated. Marching north from the Strongpoint, they besieged Kalimaar and were ultimately defeated when the mage Kalim finished creating the Eyes of Kalim and the city’s defenders were able to use the items’ power to break the siege.
The Thean Slave Uprising and Independence
Following the Thean defeat at Kalimaar, Simoom became fairly isolationist with regards to the rest of Vanil for many years. Midway through the Sixth Kingdom, Simoom, which had until that point adhered strictly to Thean dogma regarding contact with outsiders, deviated a bit by tentatively opening trade relations with Portsport. This allowed bits of Vanilli culture to diffuse into the Simoomish lifestyle and set the stage for what would lead to Simoom’s eventual independence from the Thean Empire.
Earlier, in the Sixth Kingdom, a few choice Vanilli from Kalimaar and Portsport were taught a new sort of magic by riichna mages; these humans became known as leyseers. One of them, a particularly talented and secretive individual named Estrage, traveled to Simoom in the Seventh Kingdom disguised as a merchant and began teaching Simoomish citizens, most of whom were members of the enslaved underclass, the art of the leyseer. Because a leyseer’s magic did not need to be recorded in an easily-destroyed book like that of a wizard, those trained in the art were able to hone their talents in secrecy until the time was right to make a move.
Assisted by Estrage and a few companions, the slaves began a rebellion that resulted in the deaths of most Thean authorities in the city. The few that were able to escape returned to the heart of the Empire, which immediately girded itself for war. However, Simoom forged a hasty alliance with Portsport and thereby gained the assistance of the latter’s impressive naval power; much of the Thean attack force was destroyed before it could even make landfall and the city’s defenders, with Estrage’s continued help, easily repelled the invaders, thereby securing Simoom’s final independence.
Recent History and Current Relations
Upon achieving independence, Simoom quickly established itself as an important trade link between North Vanil and the southern hemisphere of Gymalle, with much of its wealth being generated through trade in exotic rarities. Simoom is also the main link to the demihuman populations in the western part of South Vanil; trade with the riichna city of Thyde takes place almost entirely with Simoom as an intermediary.
Of all the places in Vanil, Simoom is the one with the highest concentration of and respect for leyseers, given their significance to the city’s history. A large academy, named in honor of Estrage, accepts human students from throughout Vanil and is the only human-run academy on the planet to have riichna teachers; this is testament to the good relations between the city and the riichna race.
Frictions remain between Kalimaar and Simoom. No direct trade happens between the cities (Portsport is always used as an intermediary and makes a tidy profit thereby) and Simoom maintains a garrison at the Western Imperial Strongpoint; likewise, Kalimaar keeps a close eye on Uckala.
Figures of Note From and Around Simoom
Settlements of Vanil
Dwarven: | Brokenspire | Diremug Lookout | Grazzet’s Pass | Gruffinshome | Hammerstone Keep | Sejlahusk |
Elven: | Carmi | Tesska Forest | Vas Forest |
Gnomish: | Brokenspire | Crumblesbrook | Northtinker | Southtinker | Snabapple |
Human (Portsport District): | Portsport | Suxold | Gerbod | Goblisooth | Tinder |
Human (Clensaba): | Clensa | Welwyn | Onaway | Ironoak Crossing |
Human (Kalimaar District): | Kalimaar | Carm | Fort Vadid |
Human (Simoom District): | Simoom | Ospen’s Culvert | Cill |
Human (Tumish): | Tuma |
Riichna: | Barchil | Derma Juchad | Thyde | Uckala |