The Winds of Drif'Tara
Also called The Mage’s Crown, Gren Noval is the largest city in the realm, and the northern-most city of the Common Lands. It provides the south’s only access to and from the Sea Road, via a gate in the Northeast wall, called the Salt Gate. Primary access to the city is granted through it’s primary gate, set in the western wall, called the Roaring Gate.
The enormous city is walled, with six full mage’s keeps for towers. Each tower contains an academy, and is presided over by a elder mage. Each of the six elder mages oversees a portion of the city, and along with the Wizard King make up the Council of Yorv, the ruling body of Gren Noval. The Wizard King resides in a massive wizard’s keep at the center of the city, known as The Great Keep. The Great Keep used to hold an academy, said to be the greatest in the land, but it was disbanded long ago, for reasons not disclosed to the public.
The Wizard King is chosen from within the ranks of the Council. Similarly, the tower keeps select their elder mage from within. Each elder mage (the Wizard King is considered to be an elder mage, and to be first among them) serves until death, though he/she may resign (which is very common) or be ousted by the others. When the council meets together, it meets atop one of the six outer tower keeps. Only the Wizard King is permitted atop the Great Keep.
It is very common for the king to select his successor, which the other elders will honor, by tradition. A successor is never revealed until after the King steps down or dies. As a point of pride, none of the elders actively pursues being chosen while a king reigns, and no king would select, or even tolerate, an elder who disgraced his/herself so. The same is true of the ranks of succession within the tower keeps.
For as long as the Council of Yorv has ruled Gran Noval, it has never been attacked by another nation. Only barbaric hordes of races unable to appreciate the stupidity of besieging seven full mage’s towers have ever attempted. Needless to say, none have been particularly successful.
It is said that the Council of Yorv had a hand in the creation of The Parade, though they will not speak to the matter. It is, however, well known that the Parade assembled not far from Gren Noval.
As one might imagine, magic is prolific in Gren Noval, and spell casters come from far and wide to study at the many academies, of which those in the spell keeps are merely the most prominent, many others, both private and organized through the city, can be found throughout the city.
The nobility of the city sometimes enter and exit through a gate in the Eastern wall, known as The Scepter Gate.
Gren Noval is sometimes referred to as “the city on the hill”. It is built atop a large, flat topped grassy hill. The plateau is big enough such that the city could expand to at least twice it’s current size. The Sea Road does not actually reach the salt gate, a man-made bridge spans the gap, hundreds of feet above the ground.
Gran Noval’s harbor is actually several miles outside of the city limits. Called Hill Harbor, it is still considered to be part of Gran Noval, though it is the size of a small town in its own right. Goods travel between harbor and city via a road, known as The Harbor Road, that connects to the city via its Northwestern gate, called The Morning Gate. The Harbor Road is patrolled by the city watch, and, of course, The Keepers of the Road. Governance of Hill Harbor, including all imports and exports, fall under the jurisdiction of elder wizard Norin of the Northwestern tower keep.