The Kameri entered this area at the end of the final wave of migration into the Empire del'Nord. Their horde annihilated the last Imperial army, captured Ancient Moss Fortress and killed the last claimant to the White Throne. Since settling in the area, they have held their land against all opposition, repeatedly defeating Ghiamem, Zen'da and Assiran raiders. Theirs is a beautiful land. It is Kameran, the home of men.
The tribes of the Kameran are the Alesi (32,000) and the Kameri (28,000). The total population is 60,000. They can mobilize 12,000 warriors for war, including a 400 man, pan-tribal, warrior society.
NOTE - The warrior society is called the Ancient Moss Society. Its members are war chiefs and famous warriors. The society is dedicated to protecting the people and seeing that all is well. In effect, the members of this society are the "Knights of Kameran."
The Kameran teems with wildlife. Its hills and mountains contain usable deposits of metal and minerals. These tribesmen are noted as fine weaponsmiths and hunters.
The Kameran worship Ashur and Vahagn. The female societies worship older gods who are no longer worshipped by the men of the tribe. After conquering the area, the men adopted the worship of Vahagn and Ashur. These gods are not native to their culture.
NOTE - Some of the gods of the women are Domiel, Morrigan, Rhiannon, and Utgard Geror. A small cult among them worship "the White Hecate" using ancient formulae that are more than four thousand years old.
Men of Kameran are jovial, inquisitive and mercurial. In normal times they are quite humorous and exceptionally curious. When angered, threatened or at war they are stoic warriors who are violent and unrelenting in punishing their enemy. Intellectually, they relish fine craftsmanship and have a marked fondness for women, challenging problems and marathon celebrations. Men of the Kameran revel in a good time and seek challenges that test both mind and body. In their souls, they are all adventurers.
Women of the Kameran are less emotional than the men. They are reserved, intelligent and cunning. The women of Kameran control day-to-day life because of the high value that is placed on them and the power of their mystical societies. Marriages in the Kameran tend to be arranged matches, with the mother and the future wife agreeing to terms before the future wife ever meets the groom. Most are based on both love and fear. The men of the Kameran are raised to fear the supernatural and shun the ways of magic. They are very superstitious.
The mystical societies subtly manipulate the important events of day-to-day life. Theoretically, all power in a clan rests with its war chief and, through him, the Ancient Moss Society. In fact, unless the chief is strong and/or brave, he heeds the will of the women. They are the rulers, historians and judges of the Kameran.
Minor crimes are resolved with duels and personal feuds. It is up to each person or family to seek his own justice. For major crimes the local mystical society determines, secretly, what punishment is due. If they choose to punish a felon, they lay a curse on him without warning. Female criminals are punished by being ostracized from their society. No woman wishes such a punishment for any reason. (It leaves her a laughing stock who is totally without status in her culture.)
NOTE - All women are members of the local mystic society. Only a few members in each society are actually trained in the use of magic, i.e., the society's inner secrets. The majority are lay members who operate as informants and advisers for the women who have the power.
The Alesi have friendly relations with the Eponi'scha. Some men, especially among the Kameri, are friendly toward the Omavor, the Assiran and Valheim.
The Ghiamem are a fierce enemy. Their raids seldom succeed because of the power of the women, the ferocity of the men and the excellence of Kameri sword metal.
NOTE - Kameri metal is noted for its durability and its ability to hold a sharp edge. It is a superb alloy whose secret is only known to Kameri smiths and a few of the Alesi. All metal weapons made by a Kameri smith have a FV one higher than a normal weapon of the same type.†
Special Note - Ancient Moss Fortress
This fortress was designed to be defended by 4,000 men. Its outer walls are 30 feet tall. They are covered by slick, green moss. Inside the outer wall, the fortress has large, stone barracks buildings and an Inner Keep. The Inner Keep is over 50 feet tall and has three basement levels. During a siege, the fortress can comfortably hold 6,000 people, including its 4,000 defenders.
NOTE - The Inner Keep is used by the women and the Ancient Moss Society. The warrior society uses the levels above ground. The upper basement level is used for storage. The mystical society uses the middle basement level for training members in the inner secrets, i.e., magic. No man is allowed on this level (under punishment of death). While at the fortress the women stay with their husbands, if they are present, or in the barracks buildings.
The lowest basement level is reached on narrow, circular stairways. The stairways are warded by potent magics-cast to kill anything that attempts to move up the stairs. This level is rumored to be a place of terror. It is taboo to the people of Kameran (including the women). Legend says that the stairways lead to a great castle in another world where the greatest treasures imaginable are stored. The truth of this is unknown. No one who has journeyed down these stairs has ever returned.
The Mystic Lodges
The female lodges of Kameran are ancient, organized and steeped in tradition. By the reckoning of the women they date from the formation of the first clan. Their knowledge is the gift of gods to womankind, it is not for the likes of men.
As stated previously, all women of the Kameran belong to the mystic lodge of their clan. Each enters their lodge when they enter puberty as one of their rites of passage into womanhood. The initiation into the society takes one month. During this time, they are taught the ways of women and tested to discover their talents and abilities. Those who prove exceptional are taken to Ancient Moss Fortress for training in the higher mysteries. The others stay with the clan and continue their lives much as they were before.
Currently, the female lodges have about 20,000 members (figuring a female population of 32,000 and estimating that about 1/3 are too young). About 1% of these members are trained priestesses. The remainder are lay members. Within the known hierarchy of the lodges, the priestesses rule.
Secretly, they belong to an inner lodge made up of all of the priestesses of the land (some 200 women). The goddess of the secret lodge is "the White Catheta."
NOTE - Before Hecate was defiled into the service of Chaos she was an Elder nature Goddess with great magical powers. The women of Kameran, through their ancient rituals, worship her in this form.
Heavy Swords and Heavy Axes
The most common equipment is scalemail, metal helmet, banded shield and bastard sword. Great Swords are commonly restricted to chiefs and warriors who have earned the right to wield them. Young warriors commonly uses axes. For everyday wear the Kameran favor leather and, when they can get it, woven cloth. Their elite are armored in chainmail.
†Or use +1 WSB and +2 FV as an alternative.