Dwarves and Fortresses
The Civilized Races
There are no orcs.
In Mithia, the dead are quite concerned with being properly put to rest. Or so it’s said. What’s beyond dispute is that failing to bury or burn the bodies of the fallen will only lead to trouble. Their shades have a tendency to rise up, translucent shadows that hunger only for the death of the race to which they once belonged. Gravelings are not particularly strong, and fade away after taking a single life. Their true danger lies in numbers; ruthless armies have been known to stand guard over the site of a victory, burying their own dead and waiting for thousands of gravelings to rise and pursue their routing foes. In Mithia, wars between the races are usually decided swiftly.
Dwarves seldom die apart from their kind, perhaps because they fear dying alone and leaving a kinsman to suffer from an attack by their wraith. Brave dwarves have been known to set themselves alight as they lie dying in order to prevent such a thing.
Creatures that appear to be dwarves from the waist up and enormous spiders from the waist down. These Burrowers are said to have enormous underground nests that span the width of surface kingdoms. They seldom emerge from the depths of the earth, but when they do they are invariably hostile to dwarvenkind.
Man-sized ants with upright torsos and claws that are more than capable of using tools. They live in great hives underground, and some of the larger and more intelligent ones can burrow. Dwarves have encountered them while digging underground on more than one occasion, and not all of these confrontations have led to bloodshed. The dwarves of Ironband, one of the nine great fortresses, have engaged in fruitful and peaceful trade with a Formian nest for nearly a century. Some other nests have been more hostile, however, and have either destroyed or been destroyed by dwarven settlers. They seldom venture onto the surface.