Ardeal is a county in the Soivoda region in central Ustalav, indeed it is one of only three Ustalavic counties that share no borders with a foreign country. Traditionally considered the heart of the nation, it contains the former capital city of Ustalav, Ardis, which sits on the eastern banks of the Vhatsuntide River.
Ardeal’s historical significance is bolstered by the fact that it was the birthplace of Soividia Ustav, founder of Ustalav. Once the heart of Ustalavic culture—home to artists, authors, poets, craftsmen, aristocrats and the social elite of all Ustalav—this changed when the capital moved to Caliphas. From that point, the county lost its status as the cultural center of the nation and went into decline.
Today Ardeal is home to fading memories of happier times and often an arrogance that no longer has any basis, as the county continues to decline from its days of splendour and power. The once-prosperous manors that line the banks of the Vhatsuntide are now in ruins, and the verdant farmlands have fallen to nature’s harsh influence. Indeed, only in the realms of fiction, such as that by the famous Ailson Kindler, is the oft-remembered glory of Ardeal kept alive.
Ardeal is ruled by a noble as decaying and passed her prime as the county itself: the vicious Countess Solismina Venacdahlia.