Valwyria is the capital city of the province of Anor, as well as Valwyr itself. It is also the largest city in Valwyr, with a population of 50,000, and spanning most of Valwyr Island. Valwyria was founded by the elves thousands of years ago, long before the beginning of recorded history.
The mayor is Tess Strongbone, a half-elf. [Mayors of cities generally aren’t in the aristocracy.]
The demographics are an even mixture of elf and human, with a minor amount of dwarf, and lesser amounts of half-elf, gnome, halfling, and half-orc.
[please enjoy my crappy paint drawing]
Valwyr Island is unique in that it sticks upwards of five hundred feet out of Lake Summerwind, with white chalky cliffs (not unlike the cliffs of Dover) on all sides. The island is split roughly down the middle by the Cliffside, which is exactly what it says it is. The Cliffside Tunnel (which I forgot to draw) is an enormous tunnel bore through the cliff which is the main road connecting the High Ward to the Low Ward (or the Market, more specifically).
Valwyr Castle sits on Kaleton Hill, which is essentially a tall plateau. The Mayor’s Keep resides on Miskel Hill, while the Monastery sits on Valtir Hill. The three hills are named after the ancient elves who supposedly built Valwyr Castle with their own hands (and some magic, of course). These buildings are also the largest buildings on the island, and Valwyr Castle is the second largest building in Valwyr (the first being the Stone Citadel on Darkforest Island). While the castle in the picture is not exactly to scale, it is safe to assume that it is freaking huge.
The High Ward is where the snooty rich aristocrats live. They have their own life there, with their own taverns, marketplace, and other accoutrements, though the politics and aristocratic culture there can make the entire experience rather droll, which is why plenty of “higher ups” come down to the Low Ward to really party. The High Ward is also very open, sprawling and extravagant, with lots of room for fancy people to play fancy games like croquet, something that continues to anger the low class workers of the Low Ward.
The Low Ward is where the commoners of Valwyria live, typically people who work for the aristocrats in the High Ward. Unlike the High Ward, it is stuffy, loud, and smelly. With no building codes, houses are built everywhere, most on top of each other, creating strange labyrinths of apartments that only long time dwellers can navigate. The entire ward is surrounded by an old stone wall with three gates. In the middle of the ward is the Market, a loud, bustling orgy of commerce.
The High Ward is policed by the King’s Guard, while the low ward is policed by the Watch, a militia of sorts headed by Ser Willam Munt, who reports directly to Mayor Strongbone. There are several criminal guilds constantly at odds with the King’s Guard and the watch, but they are all tolerated to some extent for their role in regulating and organizing the criminal element within the city.
Beyond the wall are the Farmlands, which are tracts of land bought by aristocrats, but farmed by peasants. Plots are bought by the acre, and Valwyrian law requires there be at least ten workers with proper working conditions (shelter, bed, food, water) per acre bought. Still, the farmhands often work grueling hours, and what accounts for “shelter” and “food” is up to debate.
It should also be noted that there isn’t as much of a cliffside on the Low Ward. In fact, a good portion of the east shore of the lake is flush with the water.