Curse of the 50% Clearance Discount Throne
Eodred Arbasti II
At the top of the political power dynamic sits the city’s monarch, most recently King Eodred II, son of Queen Domina the Great. King Eodred enjoyed expanded monarchial power wrested from the nobles and ministers by his powerful and popular mother. He controlled Korvosa more fully than any previous monarch, but he still only barely retained power.
King Eodred’s declarations from atop the Crimson Throne became law almost by default, although the arbiters retained the ability to counter any foolish whim of his that violated the city’s charter (and its 247 amendments) or Chelaxian law.
Born Arkapallus Arabasti, King Eodred II adopted the name of Korvosa’s first king when he took the throne, in the hope of achieving the same level of popularity and success as his adopted namesake. He enjoys lavishly spending the city’s gold, spoiling himself with the finest foods and clothes from across the world. On occasion, he even spends gold on the city itself, and under his watch Korvosa built four small orphanages (bringing the city’s total up to five) and the Pantheon of Many.
Despite the foul rumors surrounding him, King Eodred II retains a modicum of love from his people thanks to his good works in the city. Most of his subjects consider him a benign and mostly harmless monarch, more interested in wallowing in his own riches than affecting the city in any meaningful way.
A statue of King Eodred II already stands in the center of Eodred Circle, in Midland. As he grows older and the fear of being forgotten grips his heart, Eodred has diverted more of the city’s gold toward public works and monumental structures and more of his personal time toward trying to produce an heir.
Today, Korvosa’s reigning King Eodred Arabasti II is feared by all the right people. His rule is steady, even if his insatiate appetites drain the city’s coffers. His ability to navigate the rocks and shoals of Chelish diplomacy earned the city favorable trade agreements with the Old Empire, but rumors persisted of the king’s womanizing habits and his spendthrift ways. Despite his fondness for a soft touch, he has to date produced no heir to the throne, the latest in a line of rulers affected by the Curse of the Crimson Throne. Edicts proclaim Eodred II the Saffron King, likening his reign to one of abundance, in which honey and spice flood the markets. The city’s downtrodden have another name for Eodred, though—the Stirge King, a man whose squandering ways are slowly bleeding his city dry.
Whispers of Eodred II’s taste for scandalously young companionship have dogged the king throughout his rule, and thus when he finally wed, it was no surprise that his bride was a beauty barely a third of his age. Most of Korvosa’s nobles worry of the dangers of placing a trophy wife within hands’ reach of the Crimson Throne, but Ileosa’s interest in the city seemed secondary to the life of luxury—and with the more-than-competent Seneschal Neolandus Kalepopolis guarding Castle Korvosa’s interests, these noble families feel they have little to worry about.
Queen Ileosa has managed a minor miracle in the past 4 years—she’s single-handedly shifted the dislike and disapproval away from King Eodred to herself with her open distaste for Korvosa (a city she’s been heard to call “a backwater colonial village” more than once).
The last several weeks, the King has become more secluded in Castle Korvosa and his wife has taken more of the ruling responsibilities in the public eye. Despite the staff’s best efforts, rumors are starting to surface that the King may not be well, and that the Curse of the Crimson Throne is finally taking its toll. If the King were to die, it would surely plunge the city onto the Edge of Anarchy.