The Pirate Lords
Capital: Liberty Bay
Ruler: Gunther Talarmundi
Primary Race: Any
Primary Language: Imperial Common
Regional Bonus: A Pirate's Life for Me - Everyone that doesn't work on a pirate ship or in their construction and upkeep is still tied intimately to the sea, giving you a +2 racial bonus to Swim and Use Rope.
Regional Feat:Iron Tide
Far in the northwest is a chain of small islands, seemingly isolated from the rest of the world. Protected by fierce sea creatures and removed from the trade routes of the world, it is here that the Pirate Lords concentrate their strength. Shipyards produce some of the only vessel capable of rivaling halfling trimarans while the markets overflow with every good and service imaginable, including trade in rare artifacts and reagents that attract an inordinate number of magic users willing to walk the far side of the law. There is unlimited freedom here and the potential for a life of luxury if one is strong and ruthless, but the weak are crushed underfoot without pity and the noble cannot long keep their lives and their morality both.
From this place of strength, pirates set out on great 'tours,' trips around the world through every major shipping lane to gather as much wealth as possible. From the imposing Tower of Broken Chains in the bay of Liberty Port--a poorly-understood relic from the days of the Orodravian--the enigmatic Gunther Talarmundi plots to rule the world's waves. Some go so far as to whisper--well away from any prying ears that might get word back to Gunther--that he has even found a way to contact the nigh-mythical Court Aquatic of the Sahuagin, bringing them into an alliance and preparing for a war that will scour the seas of every vessel that does not sail beneath the fist and crossed tridents of the Pirate Lords.
No one really knows when pirates began using the Fangs of Joo'a to launch their raids of the rest of Faengleis, with ships and even small fleets being recorded for over a thousand years. The first pirate flotilla--a vast body of ships over 100-strong--was launched in AG 517 and ravaged the coast of Xain before it was finally driven off. Since then, six more flotillas have been sent out and though casualties have been high on both sides, only two were actually stopped. In AG 1126, the Seventh Flotilla was crushed by a united fleet from theCircle States, with an estimated 400 ships lost between both sides. Despite the seriousness of that drubbing, many sailors fear that the time is nearing for an Eighth Flotilla.
There is no real 'government' to the Pirate Lords, being more a matter of who is strong enough to get everyone to do what they want. While individuals may trade in certain foreign ports, as a whole the pirates' only need for foreigners is as a source of income.