The House of Hamar is the largest trading family in the middle reaches of Arember. They operate out of every major city. The following is a list of the cities they operate from, and who is in control in those cities.
The house of Hamar is well known for hiring adventurers to protect caravans, and to deliver goods when there is a small package in question. They are a formidible force, and often use whatever force is neccessary to have goods that are stolen returned and those responsible punished, even when the cost is greater than what was lost. Thus, many thieves stray from caravans that display the House of hamar banner, even though it is assured that there is probably something valuable in the wagons.
The House of Hamar is located throughout the kingdom, in it's main cities. Each city has a "house" where business is done, usualy a home/warehouse. each house is part of the House of Hamar, and led by an individual of the Hamar family. Renrick Hamar, located in Portraven (and leader of the Hamar House of Portraven), is the oldest male of the House of Hamar, and is the judge of any disputes of the various houses, and has proven to be a very good leader and wise businessman.
Those who make the house a siginficant profit over several years become the leader of thier house, as chosen by the Hamar of Portraven. Those who do the same but are not family are given special titles such as "duke" or "vizer" and are always favorites of the house rulers. They are often given homes and riches, depending on thier amount of success to the house.
The house of Hamar is powerful in the fact that it is the safest way to deliver goods. It has a large force of hired men, although thier loyalty would not be as great as the Army of Arember in war time. Still, there have been many battles with the dark Queen that ended in her defeat when facing the forces of the House of Hamar (although there have also been many defeats, as well).
Family members are taught in the finest schools in the kingdom. Young members of the family are trained in business, history, language, culture, and art.
The house of Hamar tries it's best to remain on friendly terms with everyone. After all, everyone is a potential customer. Of course, the dark Queen and her armies are not considered customers, but potential thieves. The kingdom has outlawed trading with the forces of the dark Queen, and the House of Hamar was the first to agree to those laws.
However, there are other shady elements that the house of hamar has been known to deal with. Thieves guilds are in most cities (possibly all of them), and the House has been accused of purchasing goods from these guilds, although the occurance is rare. The House of Hamar denies the charges.
The goal of the House of hamar is to make profit and to increase the wealth and power of the Houses. It also aids the king in time of need, increasing it's political strength.
Educated citizens of the various cities can become hired by the Houses if they are seen as good traders, and even earn the staus of Vizer or Duke. However, only blooline members of the houses are allowed to rule the Houses.
The leaders of the House of Hamar wear expensive clothing, and show proudly the riches and power of the House of Hamar. All of the various leaders wear a special ring that shows that they are part of the House, each having the same red gem in it's center to symbolize the blood that binds them. Dukes and Vizers dress the same, but thier ring has no stone.
The house of hamar has been around since anyone can remember, it's beginning lost in history. It is commonly beleived that they began earning great wealth during the Great War as weapons suppliers to the Army of Arember.
Velesa of the House of Hamar is the current head of the Hamar House in Trader's heaven. She is very opposed to the dark Queen and is proud to use the power of her family to fight the forces of evil, although it is usualy in an indirect manner. She is a young and quite beautiful woman, with dark flowing hair. Her wisdom and kindness are well known.
Update: The house of Hamar in Trader's Heaven was destroyed when the Dark Queen's army attacked the south. Velesa and her husbans died in the attack.
Head: Talman Hamar (big, friendly).