Some background – world building type stuff.
ALTUS INFO DUMP
[This is condensed from several sources, there are very little hard “facts” about the Mysterious Continent -- but these seem to be the most likely.]
The land mass of Altus wasn’t discovered until well after the Vardeman Accords in Year 54. The races of Aufero had mastered sea travel, and were eager to explore as much of the globe as possible. They found Altus to be almost impenetrable to sea access – massive rocky slopes, with shear sides, sharp as razors. The few expeditions that managed to penetrate the interior suffered tremendous losses, and brought back strange tales of volcanoes that spoke, rivers that sang, and roads that climbed into the clouds.
Few believed these tales — but the difficulty of travelling to the distant land mass – added to the lack of resources discovered lead to the exploration of Altus being abandoned.
[“There wasn’t any gold! “ Bragg chuckled. “ If one half-mad sailor had tumbled back with a fistful of gems, or some silver bangles -- you can bet the world would have found a way to shinny up those cliff sides”.]
Airship travel was first developed circa 1006, and after the Flenelle Renaissance of 1019 hundreds of vessels of different designs and propulsion type filled the skies of Aufero. Despite the political turbulence of the past few centuries, a few brave explorers turned their sights to the Mysterious Continent.
And never returned.
It wasn’t until 1029 that a successful expedition returned. Led by Jaiden Moore [b.1010].
[“Seafoam was a mom and pop tugboat operation in those days. They had three scows that worked the harbor of Bard’s Gate, and a couple of ratty old hotels. Rent by the hour, if you know what I mean.” Tom, of House Brighella winked. “ Young Jaiden scraped up enough coin to get a an old airship up into the air, and across the sea -- he was the talk of all Aufero when he came back unscathed. Toasted in every port and kingdom across the globe -- he used the connections he made to slowly build trade agreements, and shipping covenants. Not to mention the rumors of the lost technology he discovered. I haven’t found any records of him showing off any discoveries, but it is a fact that Seafoam engineering soon outstripped almost any other airship firm -- becoming the industry standard in a manner of years. Time passed, and soon Seafoam became the de facto governing body of the skies -- and any ships that wander too close to Altus are turned aside by Seafoam cruisers and battleships. For their own ‘safety’, of course.”]
Seafoam’s fascination with magical relics, and any sort of Precursor technology has long led to many people theorizing that Altus is the lost Arkanic homeland.
[“Kythera.” Cai said weakly, his frail form covered with a blue blanket. “The Precursor’s greatest city - their home. The man who finds Kythera is heir to all of their knowledge, all their secrets.”
“I found a metal plate on the back of a strange mechanism in Carroway, it was covered with Arkanic script and a crude map of the globe. It took me a few months to decipher it -- but imagine my surprise -- it was an order form! For replacement parts, from the central depot in Kythera! The map showed a few symbols on the Altus landmap, but the largest was marked with the sigil for Kythera.”]