After the Great Migration that brought the races from over the Dead Peaks, Humans, Elves, and Halflings couldn’t be any happier. The smiling faces and generally happy demeanor does well to hide the looming problem of the land; monsters of every variety roam the land, sea, and skies.
Every day could be your last. There are no guaranties that the town walls will hold or the protections glyphs will be able to hold back the next roaming band of monsters. The creatures of the land constantly compete for territory, hunt for food, or simply kill in simple bloodlust. Over time the monsters seemed to increase in numbers causing trade, communication and travel to a halt. It wasn’t until a Baron named Brandon Desoto created the first trade caravan that civilization thrived.
The trade caravans are the bread and butter of Artonia. They drive the economy with trade, reinstalled communication with a postal system, and helped moral by with entertainers that that traveled with them. But the most important thing that the trade caravans have is the Hunters. Brave mercenaries from every race risk their lives for glory, honor, money, and the safety of others.
These hunters not only protect the caravans while they travel but they also perform in the hunts. When a caravan reaches a town, they make camp staying for days or even weeks. During this time of trade and entertainment the hunters do their most important role, monster hunting. The hunters find out what troubles the town is having and travels out in the wilderness with their cadre to slay the monsters plaguing the town. Once the monsters have been taken care of, with proof of the deeds, the hunters return to town to be paid or rewarded for their kills. The only rest the hunters get is during the winter season.
During the time of the winter season most of the monsters take shelter from the bitter cold allowing the caravans to settle down and rest for a solitary month. But as soon as the ice melts and the biting cold air leaves the hunters participate and event called the Great Hunt. Before mating season begins for most of the monsters the hunters go out at once, at every city and town, and slay as many as they can. During the one month period each town creates a reward for the cadre with the largest and most kills, keeping track with scoreboards. Each town has its own rules for the Great Hunt. Different town use different point systems to meet their needs. The city of Alexandria is renowned to have the most difficult point system. For example, they have point reductions for returning to town for supplies and healing.
All and all the life in Artonia is difficult but to the people it is a gift. Sacred and blessed is how the land is described. Each new morning is looked at with cheer and optimism.