Established in 380YE, the Northern trade network is a series of routes favoured by merchants that pass through the trade hub of Torfast in the Imperial orc territory of Skarsind. The network was established (or perhaps more properly, re-established) in response to an opportunity offered by the influx of Imperial Orcs into Skarsind, the so-called crossroads of the north. The network consists (currently) of five individual ministries, one in each nation. They are:

Each of the ministries allows the citizen responsible for overseeing their operations to purchase certain trade goods at bargain prices.

The Network

The first four ministries were established over the course of 380YE. In each case, they involved the establishment of offices in one of the four territories in a region known for its trade. The establishment also involved ensuring the roads between the towns were protected, and encouraging merchants to make use of them. In each case, the trading offices in the Glen of Shadows, in Duzekani, and in Hanuri serve as subsidiary trade hubs - key locations through which merchants from the western, eastern, and southern Empire pass on their way to the mountainus territory of Skarsind.

The central trading office in Torfast is perhaps the most lucrative of the four - providing resources from the navarr, League, and Varushkan territories and exporting Dragonbone, Orichalcum, and Green Iron. The Wayhouse at Treji exports Dragonbone, Ambergelt, and medicinal herbs; the mercantile offices in Delev export the bounty of the Varushkan forests; and the League offices in Temeschwar city provide Green Iron, Weltsilver, and Beggar's Lye to the network.

In return, the merchants of each city are able to acquire raw materials and herbs produced in the other three territories, although with significantly less versatility than the Imperial Orc bonesetter enjoys.

The Thule

In Summer 381YE, in response to an opportunity offered by the Thule orcs of Otkodov, a new partner joined the Northern Trade Network bringing valuable crystal mana to the markets of the northern Empire. This crystal mana, of course, remains available only while the Empire remains at peace with the Thule. Orc merchants from the Thule territory of Urdur are not precisely a common sight in Skarsind, Hercynia, Temeschwar, and Karov,but they are present. They are much more likely to be encountered in Skarsind - the Thule traders seem to prefer to deal with their fellow orcs with only the most adventurous traveling further afield to trade direclty with human citizens of the Empire.

Following the construction of the Temeschwar-Otkodov Mana Exchange far more traders from Otkodov are making the trip to Temeschwar to sell their wares instead. This saw a decline in the amount of mana being traded at the other trading houses.


Shortly before the Summer Solstice 383YE, the trade network was further expanded by the addition of Kalpaheim Tradehall in the Wintermark city of Kalpaheim.

Threats to the Network

The network relies on merchants being able to move freely along the roads between Torfast and the other three towns. If one of the three routes were compromised, it is likely this would have a negative effect on the goods provided to each of the other merchant offices. It is likely that, in pursuit of their responsibility to encourage trade between the nations, the Bonesetter, Overseer, Broker, Trademaster, and Tradeholder would want to cooperate to efficiently end any threats to the network even if their route were not directly impacted.

Following the Autumn Equinox 384YE, the activities of dreadful heralds in the forests of Metri threatened to sever Temeschwar from the network, leading to instability along the trade routes. Fortunately a combination of virtuous action and the intervention of the Rod and Shield Conclave order brought the disruption to an abrupt end by driving the supernatural malefactors out of the forests, smoothing the passage of trade once more.