"These Russians – too many princes. Now in Great Bulgar, we are sensible folk. Terribly sensible. We have only one prince, our Khan, you see? He gives us our law – all the same law – good Muslim law too. And he leads us in battle, and he sets the taxes lightly, oh yes. Now isn't that sensible? These Russians – too many princes."
Welcome to Russia and the lands of the Novgorod Tribunal. These principalities sprawl over an enormous expanse of Mythic Europe, encompassing Novgorod itself, Suzdalia, Smolensk, Polotsk, Volinia, Kiev, Chernigov, Ryazan, Pereyaslavl, Galicia, and Pinsk-Turov, as well as the Kingdom of Poland. Forest, swamp, steppe, and tundra – the Novgorod Tribunal encompasses all of these, and holds the magi who live in it under its authority. And yet for such a vast breadth of land, few magi dwell in this tribunal. Far more numerous are the Volkhvy – the religious leaders of the slavs, who wield their own mighty power.
The Dragon and the Bear includes a complete history of Russia and Poland through the thirteenth century. It offers full rules for Volkhv characters, including the entirely new system of magic used by these pagan elders. It delves into slavic deities – the Old Ones – and investigates slavic Faerie. It details the Hermetic landscape, fully describing four Hermetic covenants and supplying a wealth of ideas for a covenant of player characters. Finally, it examines the Mongol invasions of the thirteenth century, and suggests how they may affect your saga . . . even if it's not set in the Novgorod tribunal!
Written by Simeon Shoul