One of two former nations that now comprise Brevoy, the pirate nation of Issia was known and feared all along the length of the Sellen River. Perched on the edge of the Lake of Mists and Veils, Issia had an unforgiving geography that forced its people to be cunning and brutal in order to survive.
Issia makes up the northern half of Brevoy, from the Lake of Mists and Veils in the north down to and including the Gronzi Forest in the south. The rugged hills of this region have little vegetation and poor soil.
For more than a thousand years Issia was ruled by House Surtova, a family of pirates and scoundrels who were unequalled in cunning and power by any of the other pirate clans and maintained an iron grip on its people. Due to the harshness of the land, Issia was never able to support a large military and so the country had to outsmart its enemies.
Issia first came into existence when explorers from Taldor came across a disease-ravaged frontier colony of the ancient Iobarian empire. The area that came to be known as Issia was too barren to allow true agriculture so the inhabitants turned to raiding to support themselves. Issia became renowned as a land of river pirates and other such scoundrels with the center of raiding activity being the boisterous Port Ice.
When Choral the Conqueror came to the region in 4499 AR and laid waste to the nation of Rostland to the south, House Surtova surrendered, deferring to him and the self-proclaimed nobility of House Rovargia. As a result, Issia survived the transition into the new nation of Brevoy far better than Rostland did. Their surrender also allowed House Surtova to ingratiate itself into the new regime more easily, eventually allowing it to gain control of Brevoy after every member of House Rovargia within Brevoy’s borders mysteriously disappeared, leaving behind a power vacuum in the capitol of New Stetven.