The World of Morrowind: Guilds & Factions – House Hlaalu
A look at House Hlaalu, one of the playable Great Houses known for its merchant and political influence.
House Hlaalu is a major political influence in Vvardenfell, and it shows through its dominance mainly in the south west and south east areas of the island. The Hlaalus are situated in Balmora and Vivec, or two of the largest centres on the island. Hlaalu works closely with the Imperial guilds and the Empire in general, which is part of the reason why it plays such a major part, although often in the shadows, in influencing the Empire’s ultimate decisions; this is particularly true when Imperial guilds have to take economic decisions.
This Great House is mainly concerned with business and economics, and often morals and ethic are sacrificed in favour of profit and material gain. They are also concerned with reputation and influence however; this means that they will often work in strengthening links with major political players for instance, particularly with their established or high ranked members.
It is one of the Houses originally founded by Dunmer, the ancient dwellers, and doesn’t welcome outsiders too kindly, although as mentioned they maintain a strong relationship with most of the leading factions. To rise in rank, one must show a certain business sense, and progress is usually slow.
The Great House favours the colour Yellow. The primary attributes are Speed and Agility, and skills are Mercantile, Speechcraft and Security. They also welcome skills like Light Armor, Short Blade as minor fighting skills, should someone get surly in a deal.
The highest rank is Grandmaster, and the current leader of the House is the Duke Vedam Dren, to be found in the Grand Council Chambers in Ebonheart, reached via boats (such as in Hla Oad or Sadrith Mora). Since the Duke is related to a Camonna Tong member, the Hlaalu Great House often use the Camonna Tong as assassins. Ranks from bottom to top are: Hireling, Retainer, Oathman, Lawman, Kinsman, House Cousin, House Brother, House Father, Councilman and finally Grandmaster.
Apart from the Camonna Tong, House Hlaalu also have good relations with the Fighters and Mages Guilds, the Imperial Cult and Legion and the Tribunal Temple. They despise all other great Houses and the Thieves guild.