Boldavia is dark, fog-shrouded landscape ruled by feudal vampire lords, who carefully breed their peasants, called ‘kine’, as though they were cattle. The noble families worship their vampiric elders, carrying on millennia-old feuds, hoping to impress their ruling vampire lords enough to prove worthy of the gift of vampirism. The ruling vampire Prince, Morphail Gorevitch-Woslanzy, rules his subjects with an iron fist. He is constantly challenged by his brood of lesser vampires, but is never over-thrown. Morphail’s reign is constantly challenged by an underground of vampire-hunters, who wish a free ‘republic’ and by outbreaks of different strains of vampirism, that creates ‘savage’ vampires that cannot be dominated by any of the vampires of Morphail’s lineage. However, none of these have proved a serious threat for the ruling Prince. Morphail occaisionally recieves military support from other, allied principalities, based on the sound reasoning that if Morphail’s reign collapsed, then his carefully-built tower of cards would collapse, sending vampires throughout all of Glantri in a blood-maddened frenzy.
Mikhail, Morphail’s brother, was given the ‘gift’ of vampirism, but managed to kill himself out of loathing for his undead state. Morphail raised Mikhail as a spectre, which now haunts the Tower of Igorov in undead agony.
Boris, Morphail’s younger brother, serves as Morphail’s main diplomat. He throws degenerate, nocturnal parties in Igorov and in Glantri City, attacting allies amongst Glantri’s nobility.
The Boldavian peasants are little more than slaves, working the salt mines and growing potatoes, and cutting preserved ice from the mountains.
House Igorov. House Igorov is a complex house of cards that dances to the tune of the vampire Prince Morphail. If Morphail is eliminated from power, his dominance over his vampiric brood will be broken, and Boldavia will become a terrible region of uncontrolled vampirism. House Igorov rules as tyrants; most of their peasants are little more than slaves or blood-stock for vampires and other blood-feeding undead. Igorov has many enemies and no clear traditional allies. They are the particular enemies of House Sylaire, who despise necromancy and vampirism, and Klantyre, as Morphail wishes to enslave all undead, not just vampires.
Prince (Morphail) → Baron (Boyar) → Count (Mazil) → Lord (Răzeş)
Nobility in Boldavia is associated with a land ownership. Appointed by the Prince. Not hereditary. ‘Kine’ are serfs and are viewed as less than animals. Only the nobility are considered ‘people’ and spent their time scheming to receive the dark gift of vampirism. They are carefully ‘bred’ and ‘managed’ by the ruling Boyars to ensure that bloodlines are strong:
*Boyar – Rules a defined district, including land and serfs. Usually vampires. There’s a lot of scheming and turnover in their ranks.
*Count – Rules part of a barony. Usually powerful necromancers, sorcerers or lesser vampires. Raised from the lords/ladies of lesser nobility.
*Lord – Courtier. Mortal that has impressed a count or boyar to be ‘raised’ to the first level of civilisation. Owns land and the estate. Obsessed with breeding and marriage.