House Zaramon belongs to Duke Bendolar Zaramon, who is a wretched and merciless politician. He hoards his wealth and taxes his people to near starvation and sometimes harasses them with extreme threats. Villages have been known to burn if they do not turn over a certain amount of capital. House Zaramon rules over the southwest portion of Astoria. The capitol city is called Varne, where the House is seated. Duke Bendolar’s forces guard the borders of every village or city fiercely. He does not let anyone enter or leave his realm without knowing about it and consenting to it.
The Duke maintains a tight-knit network of spies and assassins to protect him and secure his land. Although Lord Palladine has sent diplomats in the hope of obtaining land treaties, the despot refuses to open his doors to all neighbors. Visitors from neighboring lands are turned away at the sharp end of a sword; a threat not to be taken lightly. Duke Bendolar has a strong hatred of all elves. Any elves caught within his land are immediately hunted down and eradicated or evicted. Children born of both elf and human parents are found immediately and cast out to the wilderness to be fed to the wolves.
Rogues, assassins, brigands, and other cutthroats are commonly found dwelling among the places occupied by House Zaramon. People must watch their backs, and even among the nobles there is a great “cat and mouse” game that transpires. Spies lurk among the higher folk and one must use caution in the use of words and gestures. Suspicion runs rampant, and a loose tongue caught in the act can lead to a knife in the back or a poisoned meal. Those who pander openly to causes other than the Duke’s personal gain also find themselves groveling before him, hoping not to become food for the alley rats, or worse.