On the northwest coast of the Lankaeran sea, Malkara is actually two towns, one beside the other. Malkara above is a thriving centre of commerce and trade, while Malkara below is a site of underwater industry. It’s the primary source of stone and stonework in the region. Both the Rhiast and the Celestial Cathedral of Satu Mare are built of Malkaran stone, as well as the fighting circle of Volos. The halflings quarry the stone and bring it to the surface, where the aboveground races can trade for it.
Malkara is ruled by Prince of House Adran. He in turn is advised by a council of nobles and merchants. The merchant class is very strong, and has been known to buy titles or offices, though the practice is technically illegal. In Satu Mare, they have a saying “In the Market of Silks, anything is for sale. In Malkara, everything is for sale.” The other Houses of Malkara grapple with each other to control various trading domains, their territories now stretching north to the edge of the Demon Kingdom.
The alliance between the trading post of Malkara and the Shoal Halflings began when the aquatic Kuo-Toa began raiding halfling settlements, below the sea. Humans and other races began trading weapons for fine stone, a practice which continues to this day. Malkara once had no army, but now maintains the largest standing army outside of the Ksatta Sang Empire, and stands as the military arm of the Western Alliance, along with Isard and Volos.
Locations of Note
- The walls. Almost sixty feet high and tens of feet thick, they have withstood more sieges than anyone cares to count. Each section of the three layers of walls is named after some battle or another, and they bear the scars of repeated assaults.
- The Hunter’s Hall also stands in Malkara, near the city centre. Home of the first Taer’Sulei, the rangers of the frontier, it stands now as a monument to the order. Malkara has always supported the Taer’Sulei, even as the order waned, though lately it seems reluctant to continue.
- The harbour is not as industrious as the Shipwright’s harbour in Isard, but in the evening, the lights of the halfling city shine through the water, making the sea look like the night sky. Onlookers understand immediately why at night, the Bay of Stone is referred to as the Bay of Stars.