Drow society is based on the gain of status and
the knowledge that only the strong survive in the world of the underdark.
Families of nobility (the ranking class) are
grouped into Houses.
Inner House Rankings
A house consists of, in the order of rank, as
- A ruling Matron Mother.
- The Matrons first daughter.
- Any daughters in birth order that are in
training to become priestesses, or are priestesses.
- Any daughters in birth order not in
- Any priestesses not of the same family.
- The Elderboy, first son of the Matron.
- The Secondboy, the Matrons second son.
The third son born is sacrificed to Lloth at birth, unless one of the first two
sons die before he is born.
- The Patron, the Matrons current
- The House Mage, if none of the sons has taken
- The Weapons Master or Trainer. Also a
position that can be taken by a son.
- Any warriors and mages.
- Any slaves or workers.
Societal house rankings
All houses are grouped by
number. The newest house has the highest number. As houses are eliminated from
the underdark each house below it improves its ranking by one.
Example: House 15 eradicates
House 3. House 15 then becomes House 14, and all others under House 3 move up
one position. The lower the number that a House has, the longer it has
The Matrons of the top eight
houses sit upon a secretive ruling council. Together they plot and scheme
against all and each other, helping each other only if it will further their
The Creation of a House
A strong female priestess with
no hope of gaining status in her own mothers house will sometimes strike
out on her own and form a family.
Thus begins the creation of a
new House. She will struggle and gather to herself a patron, warriors, mages
and slaves. As her family grows, she will fight to maintain her good graces
with Lloth. This includes sacrificing her third son to the Goddess and sending
her female children into Lloths service. The growth and wealth of her
house are a direct reflection of her own standing and power within the society.
The new Matron rules with an
iron hand; in her house she is judge, jury, and the executioner. All members in
the house are expected to further the houses position. Those that do not
follow her wishes are quickly eliminated. She will do everything in her power
to turn that elimination into an action seen favorably by her Goddess.
In time, if she is strong and
cruel enough, her house will grow. The mages will set about creating a house of
beauty for her. Using spells and mage lights as art, they will visually show
the rest of the underdark the power and wealth the house carries. The more
powerful the house, the larger and grander the visual looks of the house
The Nobility lives separately
from the rest of the house. Often an area only accessible by those with the
ability to levitate, or available by the use of rune spells will be created.
This effectively distinguishes and separates the Nobility from the lesser house
Coveting the position of the
houses above her, the Matron will pray, plan, and scheme to further her house.
Covertly she will investigate all opposing houses, looking for weaknesses to
exploit. When a weakness is found, she may spend years gathering resources and
information, covering every base she can think of before finally making her
move. Failure in an attempt to take another houses position means she
herself and everything she has worked for will be eliminated with no trace of
their existence left.
The attack will happen swiftly
with no warning. The first order of such business would be to drop darkness
spells around the area. The rest of the underdark may know who is
making the attack, but it is never spoken. It is considered barbaric if drow
battles drow openly in the city, and with hard proof of such an
attack, the city councils forces will destroy the violators. Although
everyone may know that an attack is occurring and who the attacker is, it is
understood that as long as battle is not visible, it isn't occurring, for there
is no visible proof. Eliminating every member of the nobility relates to
this--only if there are no surviving nobles is there the removal of hard proof
of the attacker's identity.
Quickly, the fighters will
overcome the walls, while the Matron and her priestesses launch a psychic
magical attack upon the Matron and priestesses of the targeted house. All
nobility of the assaulted house is exterminated down to the last child hiding
in a corner. There are no witnesses of the nobility left alive to point fingers
at them. Leaving any behind would result in the annihilation of the attacking
house. Lastly, slaves and rothe are rounded up and brought back, thus adding to
the wealth and power of the House.
When successful, such an attack
will move her House up the ladder one position, thus moving the Matron closer
to her Goddess.