This island, seemingly having appeared into existence from nothingness, is now a newfoundland that much of Rhyst has set their sights on. From the earliest account of missing individuals or rogue vessels bound for what was then an empty swathe of ocean we can derive that it has perhaps been no more than ten years since cartographers have had to rewrite their maps. Not much information has been circulating regarding the Isle as few of the early expeditioners had made it home. It is common knowledge, however, that Isegrád and Arlandria believe it to be the center of some enigmatic, mystical phenomenon. Of the few visitors of whom had the fortune to succeed in returning, they, too, confirm that it is a microcosm of magic.
Those who returned not only spoke of the fantastical environment effusing with energy, but of how it was one of the harshest frontiers they had the misfortune of exploring. The abundance of magical fauna and flora alike--- of which commoners would be lucky to have encountered in singular lifetimes-- flecked the thick, unwelcoming terrain of the Isle. Creatures, capable of weaving intricate magicks to ward off invaders, met with many early explorers-- often with lethal efficacy-- and if they were lucky (or strong) enough to survive such encounters, the greed and knives of your comrades were not far from each other's necks. Wealth beyond measure could have been found as rare, valuable resources that were scarce everywhere else in the world could be found literally growing off of every other tree. Yet, what lingered in the backs of many-a-scholar's mind was the singular question: "Why?"
After ten short years of sentient history on this island, it is littered with ruins of past attempts to colonize-- perhaps an apt reminder of how the old world fares against this new, mystical environment for those to come. Now come, however, the major expeditions from Rhyst's great nations; they have made stable footholds on the Isle, yet any further towards its centre would be met with pure, unadulterated wilderness. A few camps and makeshift homes could be found, often occupied by the lucky or venerable few that had survived past expeditions. Though by now, whether law and order would have been maintained in such territories is an ever present uncertainty.
Recently, the island was named Sarea. For all intents and purposes, this island didn't seem to exist on most maps a mere few years ago. Other than that, reports say it's fairly ordinary: terrestrial, with snowy mountains to the north and a temperate southside. Deeper investigation fails to bring back results as lone visitors seem to get lost there, but... those who have returned provided information that indicates it's more magical than other locations by far, and more lush as well. Life seems to thrive atop this place, for whatever reason.
Both Arlandria and Isegrád have spearheaded the exploration of this apparently fresh island. While it wasn't even close to being public knowledge before, there are all sorts of propaganda missives about it now, claiming that this is the "newfoundland" and that it holds the secrets to all magic. Whether it's an attempt to get willing souls to go try and save the world or whether the island actually does hold the secrets to all magic and they're looking for a leg-up on the competition can't be determined easily. What can be determined easily, though, is that it's serious either way.
The other hotspots were given an outpost, then a fort. This island has been given more attention from both major factions than any other event in recorded history, with each sending a monumental percentage of their Empyrean and their Hedera- their chosen elites- to ensure it proceeds as planned. Every operation before has ended in failure, with small groups getting lost there and even larger ones falling to mysterious ne'er-do-wells at the shoreline. Now, they're sending veritable legions instead, and naught but the end of the world could hope to halt this adventure.
Formally founded as The Empress' Divine Providence, the first explorers of the Isegrádian expedition chose the frozen shores of northern Sarea as their settlement. It wasn't long after their arrival that buildings of stone and wood were quickly erected and a bustling society in the image of the mainland Empire was born.
Providence was located in the northernmost shores of Sarea, past a cavernous opening in the mountain range. The bitter cold and unforgiving terrain made for uneasy living were the hardy Isegrádians and Draconians not molded in such conditions to begin with. The port settlement thrived through fishing and trade, and was ruled by the Harbingers.
Fort Urosil; A military enclave of the socialist council-republic, the Realm of Arlandria. The second settlement established on Sarea by one of the major powers of Rhyst at the turn of the millennia, laying claim to the deep forests of the southern central coast. Many have grown to know Fort Urosil as a place deeply tied with the energies of the Faewild. Though some of that reputation can be owed to its guardian entity and namesake, the great tree Urosil, much of it has been earned by the Seers that govern it. Since 1006, many of their Seers have been known to be Touched by the Faewild. There have been Seers aspected to that of Truth, Fairy, and even Shimmer. Despite that source of major controversy, the settlement has been a leader in the war against the Extraplanar. Fort Urosil has managed to make itself a divisive entity; if one whose service on the field is unquestionable.
Established by a group of Ashwalkers and their entourage in the early 1000s, Lett-Mora has grown in recent years to become a large village with an unusual cultural makeup. The population is primarily composed of Ashwalkers and followers of Amada, the Spirit of Light, whose church in Sarea was re-established by the Empyrean Drahcir Aurelius some time in the mid 1010s. The focus of these two cultures tends towards the worship of the spirits and the care of pilgrims, with the settlement's main focus being growth and self-reliance. The one thing that unites all of its people is a desire not to be ruled by large empires, and not to be cowed by dark forces.
The burgeoning camp of Boundary sits within the center of Sarea. The original founders of Boundary were of mixed backgrounds, including Highshield, the Shattering Stars, and the Battle Brothers, all coming together to build up a new location outside of the more established cities of Providence and Fort Urosil. Boundary was built in the plains, with the blessing of the local Spirit Steppus. It's founders are accredited with the creation of the modern belief of the Spirit of Man Philosophy.
A native Sarean faction, founded by one many within Deliverance revere as a holy figure, Lady Xi. She has been known by many names; the Aspect of Undeath, the Spirit of Preservation, but her impact on the world remains regardless. In her wake she leaves Deliverance, an frigid village combining utilitarian architecture, advanced magitech, and rustic homesteads. There, the living mingle freely with the walking dead, whom refer to themselves as the Risen. At the peak of their frozen isle rises the Pillar of Soteria, a massive artifice of stone and steel, towering above nearby mountains, beaming light into the sky. To some, it is a nexus of Undeath and a blight upon the plane; to others, it is a pillar to hold up the sky itself, maintaining the Planar Boundaries of Rhyst.