From the fertile deltas of the Muwa River to the inhospitable waste of the Ashlands, South Berena is home to paradise and badlands alike. Follow the trade routes and you just might find some hidden treasures: a city of shattered glass, the front steps of a lost civilization, or all the salt of an ocean without a drop of water to be found.
From the gargantuan sand dunes to the sprawling savannahs, Acharrio is a region of true ecological beauty. However, between the relentless heat of the sun, the fearsome sandstorms, and the ruthless dry seasons, the climate can also be classified as consistently extreme. For this reason, the humans of the region tend to keep close to the settlements they have carefully tended and domesticated over the centuries, including oasis towns and the occasional community built into the mountains.
As a general rule, the Acharrioni tend to spend all their lives in the same settlement they were born in. Not only is the climate unforgiving to novice travelers, but there is also a strong cultural expectation to provide for your community. The survival of the city states is dependent on the physical and spiritual contributions of all people, and those who stray are often looked at unfavourably.
Lavola is a knowledge- and resource-wealthy region located in the northernmost part of South Berena, just east of Acharrio. Where the deserts of Acharrio leave much of the region uninhabitable to humans, the Muwa river and its many deltas make Lavola incedibly fertile, with geologically diverse savannas and grasslands. Its primary language, Lavolani, is commonly spoken among the sailors who travel between the continents. It is also somewhat mutually intelligible with Acharrioni, which contributes to the strong trade routes between Acharrio and Lavola.
This most notable part of Lavola would be its bustling capital, Padjenne. Home to one of the three large-scale Bereni libraries (the other two residing in ka-Khasta and Ol-Penh), Padjenne is decidedly South Berena’s hub of learning. Aspiring academics from all over the continent will travel to the city to study at its Library’s partner Academy, in hopes of eventually making a contribution to its many works.
At the very southern end of South Berena, the land blisters and erupts into the Ashlands. Bleak, desolate, and utterly inhospitable, the Ashlands are home to the largest cluster of vents and volcanoes on the planet. Everything about this land screams ‘stay away’, from the miles and miles of volcanic fissures to the persistent flurry of ash to the temperatures, which can fluctuate between scalding hot and below freezing within a space of a few feet.
Those few brave explorers who have gone into this nightmare land have found fields of basalt strewn with chunks of volcanic glass the size of boulders, alongside lakes of toxic water boiling in the Ashlands’ many calderas. The largest volcano has never been reached; it is known only as a densely-packed vortex of ash, whose depths can be glimpsed when lightning punctures the shadows.