Sands of Alscyra
The Alscyran Desert
For hundreds of years (at least) the Alscyran Desert was just plain Alscyra. It was the sacred homeland of many dragons of all colors, with their own draconic allegiances and regions of influence. To the humanoids of the desert, allegiance to one or more dragons was the only way to survive. With time, certain people became the chosen representatives of their tribe to the dragon they served. These men and women became Desert Lords, and became almost as revered as the dragons they served.
Things have changed in the last few centuries, however, with the Empire expanding and taking all but the most arid desert region to the east. They also wiped out the vast majority of the region’s dragons, and those that survived did not remain in Alscyra long.
The desert has no overarching political system. Some petty despots lead bandit gangs, calling themselves “Desert Lords,” though the title has lost all of its previous significance.
The one name that remains significant throughout the desert is Amharet, the fabled priestess of Io. Alscyrans claim she has set up a massive refugee camp, hidden from the Empire’s scouts. Officially the Empire claims she is a myth, but unofficially concern rises about the possibility of an Alscyran uprising. The war is not technically over, but the Alscyrans haven’t put up a fight in so long that the Empire has grown somewhat complacent.
Most prominently humans and dragonborn, but half-orcs, halflings, and shifters are all common among the desert tribes as well.
In the wake of the Meridian take-over, dragon worship is no longer so popular. Many of the more violent gangs worship evil gods. The priestess Amharet is often revered as a savior-figure, even though worship of her deity has fallen out of practice.