Against the Worldwound
Queen Galfrey of Mendev
Mendev is, in theory, governed by Queen Galfrey, Sword of Iomedae. She is a noble and just leader who manages to balance leading Mendev compassionately with the need to ensure the crusades can continue to hold back the fiendish attackers. The problem with Queen Galfrey’s noble leadership is that it does not stretch far enough—not much further than the walls of her fortress capital of Nerosyan.
While today the name of the Crusader Queen is known throughout the Inner Sea region, it’s easy to forget that Galfrey did not start her rule of Mendev as a paladin of Iomedae, but rather of Aroden. In 4601 ar, when her father, the last Prince of Mendev, perished under mysterious circumstances on a diplomatic mission to central Sarkoris, Galfrey was crowned Princess of Mendev.
When the Worldwound opened a mere 5 years later and forever changed Mendev, Galfrey was still an untested aristocrat who was forced to deal with the death of her god while she simultaneously had to rally her nation against the Abyssal threat to the west. She rose to the challenge, however, and her leadership was instrumental over the next several years not only in protecting Mendev from demonic invasions but also in holding the border against the Worldwound.
When the church of Iomedae finally recovered from its own turmoil and organized the First Crusade, it joined forces with Mendev to push back the demon armies. During these battles, Galfrey time and time again distinguished herself with a keen grasp of tactics and skill at leadership. But this inspiration went both ways—in the church of Iomedae, Galfrey found something to replace her lost faith. By the time the First Crusade ended with the apparent defeat of the demon armies, Galfrey had converted and become a worshiper of Iomedae, and had completely retrained herself as one of the Inheritor’s most devout paladins.
When the second wave of demons erupted, Galfrey’s leadership was put to the test as never before. When it became apparent that this second wave of demons was much larger and better organized, she called for a retreat from Sarkoris. That decision scandalized many at the time but in the end proved to be the right one, as by retreating, the crusaders were able to erect the wardstones and contain the threat rather than lose everything in a pointless suicide assault against an unstoppable force of chaos and evil.
As the years and crusades wore on, the church of Iomedae grew ever more dependent on Galfrey’s leadership and skill. Already the church has paid twice for doses of the sun orchid elixir to help maintain Galfrey’s youth rather than risk the disruption of a new, untested ruler of Mendev. Galfrey understands this, but deep inside she yearns for an end to the war, for over the past century she has seen more horror and devastation than she knew was possible to experience.