The Concord of Ashes
The Tihuta Pass
The Tihuta Pass is one of the gentler highways from the Russian steppe, through the Carpathians, into the Transylvanian plateau. This has made it one of the primary avenues of migration and invasion of the region throughout the centuries, and has led to a strong admixture of cultures and ethnicities in the area.
The dominant culture is that of the Vlachs, which is characterised by traditional villages in the far north and south of the pass, and by fortified and suspicious villages in the middle. These settlements tend to pay all due homage to the strongest overlord of the moment (both Cainite and kine) and they tend to live very much on the edge of paranoia. A number of extremely aggressive and independent Pecheneg villages dot the middle of the pass, refugees of the increasingly poorly matched conflicts with the Rus to the north. The Magyar lords to the south of the pass, in alliance with Saxon Burgrave of Bistritz, also periodically patrol the pass as a show of strength against any and all aggressors against their hard won lands.
The current boyar of the southern end of the pass is an Vlach boar known as Veceslav Basarab, who rules a number of allied Vlach and Pecheneg villages from a castle being built in the more narrow and strategic southern end. Some of these villages are fortified, or are at least of unusually sturdy construction. They include: Cosara (south), Barsanesti (south), Voda (south), Oncesti (sturdy north), Albacu (sturdy north), Letzav (belligerent western, fortified palisade), Naizuy (selfish eastern side fortified, palisade). One further village, known as Moltuc a Monpalcu, is located along an obscure trail in the far western heights of the pass, and seems to be nominally independent of Boyar Basarab’s rule even though it falls within his purview.
The northern end of the pass seems to be composed of allied communes that seem to be ruled rom the village of Pleth.
To be Continued…