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The Lost Lands

Discussion in 'Imperium OffTopicum' started by Decamper, Feb 9, 2017.

  1. Decamper

    Decamper ..!

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2014
    Messages:
    1,157


    Year 20.

    The Apocalypse brought with not only the end of the world, but the end of religion. Not in a literal sense, of course, the surviving religious institutions of the world were strengthened, if anything, by the sudden destruction of the Old World. But with the death of a world, something is taken out of the creation of the world. The gods of the religions of the world did not warn their followers. If there were prophecies, they did nothing to help their prophets or their people. Many said that their gods lead them to the Lost Lands, and so showed their love and benevolence to their chosen people.

    But everyone now held in their hearts some knowledge, some feeling, that the universe had changed. The scriptures no longer spoke of the future, but of the past. Myths, prophecies, revelations and commandments, they were all for a time that had past. Religions speak of a time to come, of a crescendo that the universe is building to. Who expected it would actually come?

    The walls of destruction had closed in on them, but the end of the world did not spit bile and hatred at them. It did not destroy their enemies, or smite the unfaithful. Angels did not swoop down from the heavens to fight back the march of oblivion, nor did demons rise up from ashes to cut down the last of the wicked. The end of the world, and the surviving of the last pin prick of life, came without even a whisper. Arguments raged over which god called forth the Apocalypse and which god protected the Lost Lands.

    Millions made their pilgrimages to the now-nearby ends of the world. They came for a sign, and most took back with them stories of understanding, of trembling under the weight of the gods’ wrath, or an uplifting of their spirit in the wake of the gods mercy. But in all their heart of hearts, there is a fear and a question of what is on the other side of the Apocalypse.

    It is not a fear of what is watching back at them.

    It is a fear of what is not looking back at them.


    Trade flowing into and out of the Fallen Bay grew throughout the decade as the Empire and Kingdom upriver, and the Horde along the coast, continued their own growth, and foreign merchants from the east came to trade and explore. The disparate peoples of the Bay had their own issues, and indeed many of these issues came to a head in the oddly non-fatal Weekend Massacre Riot of the year 16, during which one of the five council merchant houses was forcefully unincorporated after it was accused of exploiting Qunash workers, as well as scamming Zhang migrants from the upriver monarchies. Conveniently and conspicuously, this has leveled the remaining four great merchant houses equally between Zhang and Qunash controlled. The Merchant Council of the Bay profited from the internal struggles in the Zhang monarchies and the Suilimoon Horde, with dissenting nobles fleeing to the Fallen Bay, bringing their riches with them.

    The Zhang people may be separated by their polities, but those polities show striking similarities in their ambitions and struggles. The hints of an arms race kicked off by the Heavenly Kingdom of Mun early in the split of the Zhang migration picked up speed in the last decade. The Qiang Emperor was more than anything focused on unshackling and solidifying the Empire’s military. Despite fears that the army-commanding Dukes would turn on their state without tight regulations and restrictions, the purposefully obtuse bureaucracy that had been limiting the Dukes’ autonomy was mercilessly reformed, stripped away of any unneeded offices, while the funds once dedicated to the bureaucracy was combined with new taxes on estate holders to substantially increase state-pay for soldiers. The soldiers themselves have been given new training regimes, instilling greater discipline, with Yang Wunli himself providing intensive martial arts lessons to select, elite troops. The overall effect of the reforms has been positive, and an example of the Dukes’ expanded tactical flexibility came quickly, while the potential danger of the empowered Dukes was also highlighted. Less than a year after the reforms became law, a handful of wealthy estate-owners rebelled due to the tax, and while most of the Dukes quickly reacted to suppress the estates’ mercenaries, one of the Dukes happened to be related to an estate-owner, and turned on the Empire in favour of his family. The rebellion was ultimately crushed with minimal damage and loss of life to loyal citizens, but the Duke escaped with most of his army, as well as a significant number of estate nobles and their capital.

    The reverberations of the estates’ rebellion were felt for the rest of the decade, with the remaining estate owners cautiously distancing themselves from their dissenting compatriots. Many even pitched in out of their pocket to assist an imperial project to greatly expand irrigation along the river. Under the astute supervision of Grand Chancellor Jiang Wei and his protégé, Secretary Shang Yi, the project not only substantially improved the productivity of the Empire’s farmlands, but has also been met with positive reactions from the commoners, who are most pleased with lowered food prices. The estate owners’ that cooperated with the project also received warmed relations with their commoners, while those that continued to distance themselves from the Emperor have earned even more ire from the state and the commoners.

    During and after the estate rebellion, a handful of provincial officials in the northern frontiers have been accused and tried of collusion with the rebels and, even worse, with Mun agents. Mun officials of course denied any involvement in the rebellion, but the connections between Qiang estates and the Mun estate-generals is easy to imagine. The Heavenly Kingdom of Mun itself was not without issues during the last decade though, with the King and his court having troubles wrangling the control of their own estate-generals, leaving many wondering if any collusion between Mun and Qiang estates was outside of the control of the King. This was made most obvious when attempts to increase taxation of Mun nobles were met with swift rejection, and a significant number of court officials were forced to flee the country from estate hired assassins. Despite this set back, King Guinyia did manage to pull his favours in with a number of estate-generals to create a standing river fleet, which has already begun escorting merchant ships and barges through the Qiang held intersection downriver.

    Away from the Zhang monarchies and their internal power struggles, the Great Clan Ruler Suilimoon had his own struggle to ensure the future of his united Horde. While few would question the ability of Suilimoon, the question of succession has plagued the Horde since before it migrated to the Lost Lands. With Suilimoon’s advancing age, rumblings of division and competition for the title of Great Clan Ruler only spread, and he knew that it was entirely possible for the clans to simply reject or kill an heir that he arbitrarily appointed, which could mean an end to Horde itself. His own blood-stained, kin-slaying path to his current position left bitter memories, and he knew his own children would likely share this family tradition if he didn’t work something out before his years caught up with his ambition.

    With the assistance and wisdom of the Priestess Mother, Suilimoon began reviewing the potential of each of his own (many (such is the life of a Great Ruler)) descendants. A code of laws drawn up by the Priestess Mother was also introduced to the nobles of the Horde’s clans, setting out a voting process for succession. While only those with his bloodline can be voted for, Suilimoon’s attempts to gain the support of the nobles paid off. Thanks to his own magnetism, and the near unanimous respect for the Priestess Mother, most of the nobles warmly accepted the changed, and already there are great public debates of which Suilimoon descendent would best suit their namesake’s position. While the potential for power blocs forming around particular heirs still exists, the clans are more united than they have been since they entered the Lost Lands, and Suilimoon is confident he still has the time and support to organise his lineage and his people before his time to leave this world comes.

    While issues of succession may have been softened, the clans found other things to grumble about. The Horde was one of the most powerful fighting forces in the Lost Lands, and most certainly the most powerful in the neighbourhood, and so many of the clans’ warriors were chaffing under decades of inactivity. Sure, they would occasionally raid and pillage some unaffiliated villages and homesteads, or trounce some unsuspecting Apocalypse refugees, but the Horde hadn’t undertaken any significant warfare, and many of the warriors complained of growing old without getting in a good fight. Indeed, more focus was put on the seas then on the army, with Suilimoon ordering the construction of a fresh navy. The lack of naval experience, as well as a lack of proper bureaucracy to go about creating an entirely new military division, did not help this venture, but the sheer stubbornness of Krasczul resulted in a small fleet of vaguely seaworthy vessels being built. While the Qunash are not notable for their seafaring, the sailors of the new fleet were chosen in accordance with their mutations, resulting in a surprisingly effective marine detachment. The focus on the fleet also brought along a movement of people and goods to the coastline, and a number of new settlements devoted to harvesting goods and food from the sea have sprung up, not only boosting the Horde’s economy, but also increasing contact with foreign traders. The Qunash are not particularly well known outside of their corner of the world, but if Suilimoon’s dreams ring true, that will change.

    Falling falling.
    The mountains crumbling down.
    Falling falling.
    The children tumbling down.
    Falling falling.
    The oceans crashing down.
    Falling falling.
    The gods lying down.



    The decade for the Bundvolk settlements was defined a wave of purges in the great city-state of Karam, which sent shockwaves across the whole race. The Karam authorities targeted the Falangist movement, a ‘cult’ of sorts which rejects that the gods and goddesses are the remains of the dead origin God, instead believing that when God died his divine spark was split among the sentient races. These dangerous and subversive heathens undermined the very basis for the High Chief’s rule of the city, and so the High Priest of Quern and High Chief Arturus declared a pogrom on the Falangists. Any known Falangists were round up and slaughtered, and those aiding and abetting them were imprisoned. Under Thorne’s determined eye, seemingly every last Falangist was driven from his city within only two years.

    The pogrom gave some much needed experience to the City Guard, who were also equipped with a wide variety of new equipment. Thanks to Kandros Fir’s efforts, a large amount of copper and iron had been traded for from the northern hills, and sent straight to the city’s smithies. The new arms and armour served the Guard well when a small but fierce band of militant Falangists attempted, and failed, to raid the city palace.

    The Karam-aligned towns and villages also followed suit, ever wanting to please their economic overlord. The Falangists fled from Karam-aligned territory, with most heading east to the Gajam Confederacy. While Gajam derived its legitimacy from one of the descendent goddesses, the democratic aspects of the Falangist movement resonated with the confederates more than their Karamese neighbours. The refugee Falangists quickly attempted to integrate into the confederate society, and soon found a niche waiting to be filled; the military. Like Karam, Gajam had no standing army, with the only security forces being comprised of police or town guards. With the prospect of Karam-aligned settlements striking across the border at fleeing Falangists, Grand Chieftain Baklam allowed the creation of a border guard, made up largely of Falangist refugees.

    The pogrom didn’t only have an effect on Karam’s eastern border; to the south, Warlord Jashes took advantage of the chaos. When riots broke out in a number of Karam-aligned settlements in the south, Lokka ‘peacekeepers’ were quick to swoop in and restore order, rounding up and eliminating the supposed Falangist rioters. Without any proper defensive force, and with Karam having no legal or functional command over the settlements, the towns fell under Lokka occupation without any real resistance. Violence also broke out in Lokka-aligned towns, with the Warlord claiming that Falangist sympathisers were taking advantage of his troops’ merciful and lenient occupation to conduct terrorist attacks. The fear and hatred of Falangists spread rapidly through the Lokka-aligned south, and many previous dissenters came to value the ‘protection’ offered by the Lokkan troops.

    With a strengthened City Guard, and an armoury full of fresh new weaponry, some of Karam’s satellite towns are hoping to receive some assurance from the great city state regarding the rising military strength of Lokka and Gajam. While the city of Karam is extremely stable and wealthy, the prospect of securing and integrating all the satellite towns under its influence is still a daunting task. The widening of the city’s harbour may provide a great assistance in this task, as a proper river fleet could make the trade-rich towns along the river the backbone of a true Karam-centred country.


    Gerarsa stood with his in a wide stance facing to sinking sun across the sea, his hands gripping the flaking wood railing. He hoped he looked like the contemplative, world-weary scholar he was trying so hard to be, but currently his mind was preoccupied by boredom, seasickness, and splinters jabbing into his palms. He was a man of slight stature, and not particularly physically capable in most senses of the word. His mother called him 'sensitive.' His father called him less sensitive words.

    But he was still a Liim, and he had the same urges as the rest of his people. Unfortunately, his youthful attempts at adventure rarely strayed further than the next town over, lest he get a particularly painful blister. But where he couldn't escape to physically, he could go across the world in words. While the other children were trekking across and the Kingdom, experiences wonders and horrors, Gerarsa would read of the majesties and tragedies of the Old World. When he wasn't delving into the past, he was creating his own future, writing of how he envisioned the Lost Lands in generations.

    When the High King announced the attachments of Chroniclers to all navy vessels, Gerarsa saw a chance to not only use his skills with the written word for the Kingdom, but also an opportunity to finally see the outside world. With a burst of Liim energy and lack of foresight, he enlisted, was granted the title of Chronicler, and was aboard a ship in the span of a weekend.

    His ship, the Struggling Eel, was tasked with patrolling the eastern coastline, but Gerarsa was well aware of how the Kingdom Navy's captains took frequent 'leaves.' He counted on it, he would finally have his own adventure.

    For three months, the Struggling Eel had patrolled the coast. Somehow, against all odds, Gerarsa had landed himself on the one ship with a captain as boring as himself. The gentleness of the sea let him hear the series of foot-and-peg falls behind him. With a sigh, Gerarsa turned around, taking a long careful blink to avoid any added motion sickness, and faced the captain. A great barrel-chested man, with one stone-tipped peg leg, and a long gnarled black beard threaded with seashells and crusted with salt. How this man was the most disciplined in the whole Kingdom Navy, only the cursed gods knew.

    'Captain.' Gerarsa said the name as a greeting, but with barely held sarcasm. What kind of captain followed orders.

    The living caricature made no indication of picking up on his Chronicler's contempt, replying only, 'Evening to ya Master Chronicler! Ready to chronicle?' He laughed. Gerarsa did not.

    For the next twenty minutes the captain dictated the day's (lack of) events to Gerarsa. The Chronicler's ledger had two months of the same trivial repetitions. Sailed seven leagues, corrected heading two point five degrees starboard, sailed ten leagues, corrected heading one degree port, etc etc etc. Gerarsa scribbled as the captain droned on, but what he wrote was something else entirely.

    Exactly one month ago, Gerarsa made a decision. If the captain refused to take the Struggling Eel and her crew on an adventure, than Gerarsa would do so himself, the only way he knew how. And so, to whoever would check and file the ledger once it was returned at the end of the Eel's rotation, the history ship would have taken a sudden and drastic turn for the extraordinary. While the captain believed they were a quarter league off track and doing his damnedest to correct course, the ship was actually off fighting Swelgan raiders. When the captain boasted over maintaining a heading with only a single degree of error for over two days, the Eel had really been rescuing a Zhang princess shipwrecked on a monster-infested island.

    While writing the day's particularly interesting exploits (it involved mermaids), Gerarsa became aware he was writing despite the captain having fallen silent. He stopped mid-sentence and looked up, then followed the captain's gaze starboard. The old sailor muttered, 'that's not supposed to be there.'

    The crew stood silently at their posts in confusion, staring at a very large and visible island. They had passed this spot dozens of times, and there had never been an island. In fact, Gerarsa was very sure there had not been an island there exactly eleven minutes ago when he was looking at the setting sun. He felt his pulse jump.

    'Captain? Are we going to...' the words choked off. Explore? Adventure? Quest!?

    The captain's hand disappeared in his beard, a sea salt raining down as he scratched nervously. 'There ain't supposed to be no island there. Damned irregular...'

    Gerarsa' eyes bugged out. Damned old fool was going to miss an adventure even if it slapped him in the face. 'Captain, we are on patrol, are we not? Is not investigating irregularities the entire purpose of a patrol?' Please.

    'I'm sure a report would suffice, it is off course...'

    Gerarsa almost strangled the captain, but he managed to wrestle his clawing hands to his sides. He took in a hissing breath, and said, 'It's within a two degree margin of error, assuming we altered our path two days ago. In fact,' he made a show of paging throw his ledger, 'last week I spoke with the navigator, and he mentioned we were actually slightly off course. We should, in fact, be sailing through that island.' The captain's eyes widened in anger. 'Assuming the navigator is correct, of course.' Gerarsa added quickly.

    The captain spun on his peg, eyeing the distracted navigator. Gerarsa wondered if the old bear was going to throw the poor guy overboard, but after a moment he just bellowed for a change of course. Towards the island. His heartbeat pounded in his ears, and his fingers creaked as he grabbed the railing. The sky was darkening, and he could only vaguely make out the silhouette of the island. Adventure. His adventure was here! After all he had read, after all he had written, he would finally live and breathe adventure! Tomorrow would finally be his day, after a life of dreaming, he would step into something new and unknown!

    When the sun rose the next day, the captain was delighted to see the island had conveniently disappeared, and he happily ordered for a change of course. Gerarsa contemplated jumping overboard, but decided that it would be too cold. He took out his quill, dabbed some ink, and began scratching on the parchment.

    I stepped ashore...


    Some feared the fragile union of the Hollowthings of the Night Wastes would collapse, scattering the wretched creatures across the northern deserts. Others hoped for such an event, as the prospect of a large force of Hollowthings is not exactly comforting to whoever gets on their bad side. To the Beast-King’s relief, his efforts to hold together his people succeeded for another decade. A great gathering took place in the Eye, lasted for a full week, and nearly drained the Beast-King’s coffers, but with the event he hoped to bring some sense of unity and happiness to his people. He called it the Night of Day. Despite the Hollowthings’ solitary nature, they did come together, and with a very generous supply of ‘medicinal’ corpse-ashes, they shared a celebration for finding some semblance of peace, unity, and civilisation. While the festival may have been considered tame by most races’ standards, it was an extravagant and wild week for the Hollowthings.

    It may have simply been the drugs, but for the years following the Night of Day the celebratory spirit continued on, though in the subdued and melancholic manner that the Hollowthings are accustom too. Indeed, in the few cities where the more sociable people gather, smaller and less extravagant celebrations were held, in what came to be a monthly tradition on every full moon, called the Moon’s Day. The Beast-King is well aware that his people are still barely holding together, but this commonality is something he can grab onto.

    While the first half of the decade was decidedly peaceful and enjoyable by Hollowthing standards, the latter half took a turn for the violent. A sizeable colony of nomads moved south with a compliment of troops led by General Red Iron. They brought with them goods, in particular ash-drugs, to trade with any Gorre they came in contact with. Hopes for peaceful relations rapidly turned sour when they reached the borders of the Gorre Clans.

    Unbeknownst to the Beast-King and General Red Iron, a power struggle had broken out amongst the Gorre. A number of clans were hungry for a proper war, and took the Great Gor’s lack of action as a sign of weakness. A chaotic civil war broke out between the clans, with sides and alliances changing seemingly overnight, if they ever existed at all. By the time the Hollowthing migration reached the Gorre Clans, the Great Gor had managed to bring some semblance of order to the southern clans, but those clans that still rebelled against him, each other, and cooperation in general had been forced to the west.

    The anarchic Gorre Clans raided the nomads and colonisers repeatedly and furiously, desperate to take much needed food and goods. While the first skirmishes were chaotic and costly, with the disorganised fighting styles of the Gorre and Hollowthings rendering tactical control nearly impossible, Red Iron managed to hold off the raids until support could arrive from the Eye. Raids and skirmishes continued occasionally along the border regions, and General Red Iron has been pushing the Beast-King to authorise a full campaign against the Gorre. The conflict has shown the effectiveness of the Hollowthings’ fighting skill, and the skirmishes have been an effective testing ground for honing shadow magic.

    The Gorre Civil War initially created even more chaos along the Gorre-Kingdom border. Rebelling Gorre clans quickly and in large numbers raided the Liim mountain settlements and forts for arms to use in their war. A number of settlements were burned to ash, and forts completely over run, but as the civil war dragged on, the Kingdom was able to successfully rally its armies and push the Gorre raiders out of the mountains.

    The initial attacks by the Gorre provided a fine starting point for the High King to begin a large campaign to further integrate the confederated Liim peoples. The tribes and city-states were forced into cooperating with each other against the raiders, and the High King leveraged this need for communication. In the name of economic and military necessity, he commissioned the building and widening of roads across the Kingdom, as well as the establishment of a complex messenger dove network. Liim messengers had a tendency to deliver messages at whatever time and location best suited them, and sending military marching orders to a baker three months late tends not to help martial effectiveness. Along with improved communication and travel infrastructure, the construction of a large foundry in Talitainn was used to train smiths to be sent across the Kingdom. This new smithing guild was rapidly put to use in improving and standardizing the equipment of the troops reinforcing the mountain forts.

    The heavy economic strain of the High King’s ambitions were largely ignored by the Liim, as most saw the necessity of such moves in a time of war. As things settled, a number of grumbling voices once again spoke out against government overreach, but most have been content with the improved infrastructure and military capabilities. Some of those communities in the west are even calling for a retaliatory strike into Gorre territory, though the leaders in the less-effected east are adamantly against wasting money and lives in needless expansion.
     
    Angst, NinjaCow64 and christos200 like this.
  2. Decamper

    Decamper ..!

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2014
    Messages:
    1,157

    My children, I ask you, what are we chained by? What holds us back? What boxes us in, keeps us apart, and defines what we cannot do?

    Is it our race? Our god? Our gender? Our environment? Our family? Our country? Our skills? Our weaknesses?

    In a sense, my children, yes, it is all of those things, and no doubt more. But it is all one. It is who we are. No, that is not true. It is who we say we are.

    We are held back by our identity. We decide who we are, what we are, what we are capable of. Within each of our own minds, we have an image of ourselves. We see what we believe to be true, and we trim the rest. Toss out possibilities, one by one, until we have a perfect image of you. And so, you follow this image. You can’t exceed it, and if you fall short of it, it’s your failing, not the image’s failing.

    We decide what we can and cannot do, over this image. Not only that, we use this image to interact with others. And so all of us are not talking, are not touching, are not loving and not hating, each other. No, we are setting up these ideas of what we are, and letting them talk for us. And we kill each other over it.

    We decide who we are by deciding what we are not. I am not you, and we are not them, and so I am me, and we are us. I can do this, you can do that. We are like go here, they go there.

    But why? You say you cannot do something. Why? Because it is beyond your ability. Why? Because it is not what you are good at. Why? Because it is not how you think. Why? Because it is not who you are! WHY!?

    Who are we? Ryoto, Lyrian, Tagata, Puca? Desertwalker, Liin, Gorre, Hollowthing? Bundvolk, Zhang, Qunash, Bokonoton?

    We say we are people. We say we are separate. We say we are only one among millions.

    My children, I say we are one. I say, we should think as one.

    Think as a god should.


    Largely separate from other countries, the Federation of the Borderland Peoples was content with a simple and peaceful decade. While other nations undertook great projects to reform their government or prop up their militaries, the Borderlanders decided to enjoy life. One of the few issues that did arise was the matter of Remnants, magic-infused individuals that somehow had survived through the Apocalypse for over a decade and were only now reaching the Lost Lands. Some were frightened of them, and they no doubt had good reason to be, as stories of enraged Remnants destroying entire villages with rippling waves of corrosive magery were ripe across the Lost Lands. But as with any other refugee, the Remnants were welcomed into the Borderland whenever they came, and local communities did their best to accommodate and assist the damaged creatures.

    A similar strategy was attempted by the New Gyldige Lyrians to the south. Fears of the Remnants ran high in the border settlements, but Prince Strauch was not keen to turn the wary travellers away. Instead, he ordered for incoming Remnants to be handled and processed as refugees. Offices of the new ‘Department of Apocalypse Immigration and Border Security’ were established in border settlements, and soon agents were assisting Remnants in filing the correct documents to be accepted into the Principality. This has been generally successful, and a growing population of Remnants is coming to call New Gyldige home. That being said, incomers were often frustrated with the excessive bureaucracy needed to simply enter the country, and in one highly publicized case, a particularly sensitive Remnant broke down, twisting the office and the village with searing magic, killing hundreds.

    Efforts were also made to assist the Remnants in controlling their infused magical abilities, with Magi-Priest Halldora Bleich heading the rehabilitation efforts. This coincided with an increase in military spending on training and equipment, and a number of Remnants found joining into the ranks of combat mages a useful way to discipline themselves while also integrating into their new country.

    While the main reason for the military expansion was the prospect of conflict with the New Lyrian Empire, actual relations between the two countries was very positive. Continuous diplomatic and cultural missions between the two peoples have created strong economic, cultural, and political links between them. As emissaries and merchants moved between the Empire and the Principality, settlers from both countries established ports in the unclaimed central territory. Soon these trade ports formed political and physical links with the growing unaffiliated homesteads and villages in the area, creating an odd polity made up of citizens from both the Empire and the Principality, while not technically existing in the borders of either. This new territory is technically considered a province of both countries, and individual communities within it may answer to different governments, but the communities of this New Province answer to each other, more than Prince Strauch or Emperor Vogt. While the climate is amicable and positive, the underlying tension of where the New Province’s loyalty would fall if things go badly is in the back of everyone’s minds.

    The Principality was the centre point of much diplomatic activity even outside of its exchanges with its northern Lyrian neighbours. To the south, a large shift in the political climate was largely due to Lyrian emigrants. In the island chain that stretches across the mouth of the Lost Lands’ sea, a fairly large population of Lyrians had migrated to live alongside the Tagata islanders. The Tagata considered themselves to all be among the Pitikara, but beyond that common identity, they did not have any real common government. The Lyrians in the Pitikara islands still communicated and cooperated with one another and, as is their way, created the ‘Lyrian-Tagata Foreign Exchange Agency’ among themselves. As the Lyrians integrated more and more into the Pitikara culture, the Tagata also began to make use of the Lyrian bureaucracy, allowing for cooperation between different islands and tribes that hadn’t been common before. With the mainland Pitikara being left out from this, the islander Tagata slowly changed to the point where they were clearly a part of something new and different. Near the end of the decade, a meeting of the islander tribes resulted in the declaration of a Seven Island Confederacy. This has caught the eye of not only the southern Tagata islanders, but also the New Gyldige islands that routinely see Tagata and Lyrians travelling between the mainland and the southern islands.

    In addition to the Tagata, New Gyldige also found itself taking in an influx of Pucan emissaries, and later traders and travellers. An original diplomatic and research mission led by Lutindor scientist Heagal von Hisenberg was accepted in the year eleven, and in less than a year nearly two thousand Pucans were already in New Gyldige to travel, research, trade, or simply have a good time. While the brazen, hedonistic, and thoroughly disorganised could be no more different from the fastidious Lyrians, the strengthened trade ties have been very profitable for both parties.

    In Lutindor itself, Queen Roux II undertook great efforts to strengthen her rule. The Lutindor clans are difficult to deal at the best of times, and she had had enough of struggling to focus their efforts. A great feast in the capital was used to gather all the ‘nobles’ of the Lutindor clans together, where the Queen could then organise a new system of power. She handed out new titles to all the princes and princesses that shared her vision of a strengthened Lutindor, and kept notes of who was less than enthusiastic with her ambitions. A new class of communication agents, the classeurs, aided the Queen in her power-shuffling game, and were dispatched as a means of ensuring communication and cooperation between the clans. The feast laid the base for Roux’s desires, and she made sure to strengthen that base through the years that followed. While the Lutindor clans are still flippant and disrespectful, they are noticeably more organised, and are more often than not willing to listen to the Queen’s orders, if not follow them.

    The strengthened political unity helped the Queen in her push to improve the country’s economy, but the lack of Pucan work effort still hampered progress and funds had a habit of disappearing into taverns and brothels more often than reaching their target destinations. Still, construction efforts were made to improve infrastructure in mines and mushroom farms, as well as strengthen roads to harbour towns to ease the flow of goods to and from the inland mining towns.


    While most creatures have been as adversely affected by the Apocalypse as us sentients, some have found a unique niche in between the relative stability of the Lost Lands, and the tumultuous chaos of the World’s End. While most regular creatures are unable to survive in rapidly changing conditions along the Apocalypse’s border, the creatures that have remained are already showing signs of significant change and possibly mutation, far beyond what is expected of simple adaption to a new environment. Most natural philosophers assume that this is an example of the powerful magic that must be infused in the Apocalypse, and which is imparted on living creatures that are exposed for long amounts of time, such as with those individuals of various sentient races that have come to be call ‘Remnants.’

    The waters between the spread of storm-swept islands that make up the barrier between the eastern ocean and the Lost Lands’ central sea are the most vibrant and interesting example of a new biome. Most aquatic regular flora and fauna have been swept away in the frequent storms and temperature changes, but a whole new host of life has sprung up to fill in the niche in a manner not seen in the above-ground borderlands.

    The most numerous species, and what that make up the main protein diet for the Tagata and Lyrian islanders, is a small fish called Craja by the Lyrians, or Khaj by the Tagata. While relatively unremarkable in appearance beyond having particularly reflective scales (speculated to deflect some of the corrosive Apocalyptic magic in the waters), they are unique in that their annual mating grounds are in the eastern ocean, within the Apocalypse itself. While there are obviously no reports of what they do beyond the Beyond, there are almost always double the number when they return, and always at full size. This makes judging their age incredibly difficult, if indeed they even do age. Even stranger is that they apparently do not require food, as those kept in captivity showed no ill-effects from lack of feeding. Despite this, they still eat regularly, and are attracted by conventional lures. They do require frequent changing of water though, as being left in regular-sized tub of unchanged water for only a little over thirty hours kills them.

    There are some worries regarding side effects from consuming Craja, as both Lyrian and Tagata islanders have displayed a noticeably shorter life span than the mainlanders of their races, but it is difficult to tell if this due to Craja, something else in their diet, or the harsh conditions of the islands and proximity to the Apocalypse. On the other hand, as with most individuals that spend prolonged periods of time in close proximity to the Apocalypse, the islanders display more acute magical sensibilities.

    Whether Craja, and other creatures and plants that live on the Edge of the World, have a real effect on those that consume them or not, there is no shortage of people in the inner Lost Lands that either particularly seek out Border foods for supposed magical-endowing properties, or avoid them for fear of arcane diseases.


    While the Lutin Pucans made headway in strengthening ties with the outside world, the Swelgan Pucans did their best to enrage their neighbours. The heavy trade between Lutindor and New Gyldige made a ripe target for pirates, and the stolen booty greatly expanded the capabilities of the raiders. With new ships and weapons, the Swelgans have established themselves as the most capable naval force in the Lost Lands. The Lyrian and Tagata islanders in particular feel the pressure from the raiders, with trade, travel, and their life blood, fishing, becoming increasingly risky.

    The Ryoto Grand Gathering was well aware of the Swelgan menace to the north, and they prepared themselves. Two small clans were sent north as colonisers, taking up residence along the northern river. With them, a new standing guard was sent, and a series of border forts were constructed along the northern frontier. Additionally, a handful of new ships formed the beginning of a coast guard, set to patrol the bay for Swelgan raiders.

    The Ryoto clans were not easy to persuade. The Leader and the Master had to argue for months with the clans to get the funding and bodies needed for the expansion. By the time they had managed to get enough support, they had called in every last favour, and now owed substantially more. While the northern frontier may be protected, the Grand Gathering government is in a precarious position, as many of the larger clans are waiting to see if they will get any return from their investment. If they don’t, there’s a chance they may begin to be more sympathetic to the Ralka.

    Jona and a team of rangers were also sent on an extensive diplomatic expedition, travelling overland to the Pitikara, then across the islands to New Gyldige and the New Lyrian Empire, and finally across the sea westwards to Lutindor. Despite all odds, she pulled off the expedition perfectly, and over the course of a year she travelled across the countries eastern Lost Lands. Using young lagons as gifts, she established diplomatic contacts, ready to be of use in future negotiations.


    Vehta shivered, despite being within the dome of climate-magic. Whatever Za had been doing in the hut for the past week, it was coming to a head. Or at least Vehta hoped it was. The air shimmered and crackled with the power of the scar-runes he was carving, and frost grew in crackling webs on the rocks and shrubs around the guards before being whisked away by seemingly random gusts of scalding hot air. Vehta would have run long ago, Za’s orders be damned, if Njonyu hadn’t been with him. Scar-Smith had sent all the guards away, except for the two of them. He had told them to wait by the by the brook, beneath the Grey Tree.

    And so they had waited. When the brook began to boil, they moved aside, and stayed. When it froze over, they stayed. When snow began to fall, they covered themselves, and they stayed. When an unbearably hot mist rose from the earth, they shed their clothes, and they stayed. Now, as hot and cold competed to freeze or broil them, they still stayed. He and Njonyu were the youngest, and he refused to look weak in front of her, both because of youthful chauvinism, and because of refusing to look weak in front of a friend and peer. He suspected she felt the latter as well, and hoped she felt something similar to the first.

    At first they had worried over the sounds coming from the hut, and debated if they should defy Za’s orders and either check the hut, or run for the others. Eventually, they had simply stopped acknowledging the endless screams and howls coming. Sometimes they were the slave’s, sometimes they were Za’s, and often they were both. The pair huddled together underneath the tree, trying to block out the torturous moans of their master and his subject with idle chatter or song. They would play games, or spar. He wondered if he could suggest something else to pass the time, but he doubted the situation would allow it. It would certainly take their minds off of everything.

    They were sharing a blanket, pressed up against the tree to get away from the alternating freezing and sweltering winds when a the duet of master and slave’s screams reached a crescendo, and were punctuated by a heart-stopping crack. Vehta couldn’t be sure if he had heard the sound, or felt it. It was if his bones had tried to leap from his skin. He shared a look with Njonyu, waited a beat or two in silence, then the pair sprinted towards the hut, Vehta with his club and Njonyu with her staff. They both wished for something less blunt and more pointy, but Za had been clear; non-lethal only.

    They stopped at the entrance to the hut. It was silent. Vehta realised he was comfortable. Not with the situation, but for the first time in a week, the air did not hurt his skin. Njonyu knocked on the door once, and called out for Za. There was no response, but they could hear rasped breathing through the door. Njonyu stood across from him, her hand on the door. Her jaw set, she looked at him with fierce eyes. He nodded.

    They burst into the room, weapons brandished. Vehta saw a skeletal figure on the floor, a twisted, broken, and gaunt old man. It took Vehta’s mind a few breaths to recognise the face, but once he did he cried out, raising his club at the other figure in the room. The slave was still bound and chained, but he kneeled on the ground motionless, head dropped down, hands on his knees, palms turned up. Before he could bring the club down on the slave’s head, Njonyu ducked under him and grabbed his arm. She shook her head.

    The pair looked down at the slave, and took a step back. Scars wrapped around every empty speck of skin. His head was shaved so his scalp could be carved, his finger and toe nails removed. Vehta was too squeamish to check any further down his body. He knelt, peering at the slave’s face, and sucked in a sharp gasp of air. Eyes, tongue, everything was scarred. He couldn’t even tell if the man still breathed, but there was some barely perceptible movement. For a moment he thought he could see the slave’s heartbeat, but he realised with horror that it was the scars that were moving. They pulsed and writhed, as if trying to break free of the wretched creature’s flesh.

    Njonyu made a small sound in the back of her throat, and Vehta followed her gaze down to the corpse of Za.

    His skin was smooth.


    The Endless Interregnum of Bokonot was shaken by the death of Za Scar-Rune, who passed in the summer, thirteen years after the world ended. In life Za was already a story more than a man, but in death, he ushered in a new age for not only the Bokonoton people, but for the entirety of what remained in this world.

    In the struggle to create an environment permanently suitable for the Bokonoton, Scar-Rune attempted to extend the life of mage-slaves who in turn prolonged the life of the climate controlling slaves. He succeeded beyond his wildest dreams, and for that, he died. For years he experimented, creating more intricate and powerful scar-runes with every slave he carved. In the end, he managed to impart the most powerful magic force seen in history into the flesh of a slave, and in the process drained every last fiber of strength from his own body. Za was found dead, his own flesh smooth and unmarked, but emaciated to the point of being unrecognisable, while every single scrap of flesh on the slave was covered in living, wriggling scars. The slave seemed to live, and indeed could very prove to be immortal as magic no longer seems to affect the slave's vitality, but what that life is can only be contemplated in nightmares. The slave does not speak, does not breath. Only the scars seem to live.

    The immortality of these new scar-runes has effectively invalidated the need for both climate and life-extending slaves, as the climate mages can be directly scarred into being immortal. But it comes with a price, as master griots are required to carve the scars, and in every case they are killed by the end of the operation. By the year twenty, a dozen of these creatures have been created, but there are many Bokonoton, griots or otherwise, who believe the toll is too great and unnatural.

    Word of this great leap forward in conquering death quickly spread across the Lost Lands, drawing the attention of all manner of unsavoury types. Raids of Swelgan Pucans, as well as the occasional Liim rogue captain, have become common despite the distance to the eastern coasts, but the lack of Bokonoton settlements along the coast forced the Swelgans to abandon their ships and fight in Bokonoton terms. These skirmishes have generally been easily repelled, and have also provided ample opportunities for Dohmboti Warp-Stone to test and perfect his new weapon. Using oil extracted from a widely growing but bitter tree fruit, Dohmboti found that when properly treated and heated, the oil would violently combust and burn for extended periods of time. Using a simple canister, nozzle and pump, as well as a small use of magic to rapidly heat the exiting oil, he created an effective flame spraying engine, much to the horror of the Swelgen raiders.

    The combat with the Swelgen Pucans completed the annual war games, giving the warriors valuable experience. In particular, the Oussi tribe closest to the coast, having taken the brunt of the Swelgen raids, dominated the games, and therefore the Interregnum itself to an extent, for the last half decade thanks to their battle-hardened warriors.


    You are where you must be. I am who I must be.
     
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  3. Decamper

    Decamper ..!

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2014
    Messages:
    1,157
    Maps
    Spoiler Detailed :
    Spoiler Basic :


    Stats

    Notes:
    -First Legend died. RIP Za. When a legend or a Leader dies, they open a slot to be filled, either in your orders or before the update in thread if you want others to be able to reference your new characters. An empty Legend slot will be shown with a nice fat 'OPEN' indicator in the stats.

    - I gave all leaders ages, mostly just a generic 50. If you want to change the age of your leader this turn, feel free, just remember that they've been ruling for for 20 years already.

    **

    Sorry for the delay. Moving takes a bit of time, and no internet makes things no easier. Should be able to get the next one done it somewhat more timely manner.

    Let's set orders due for April 10th. A week and a half gives plenty of time, I think. Deadlines are not super strict for this game, but you risk having only part of your orders processed if you submit late. Likewise, early orders could mean a much faster update period.

    New players are always welcome! If you wish to join, you may:
    1) Take over an NPC. This will allow you to control a more established country from the get go. You may also begin playing as soon as you take control, meaning you can do diplo, write rp/stories, and submit orders before the next deadline.
    2) Create a new country and/or race. This will start you out weaker, and you will have to wait until after the next update to begin playing as your country will be introduced in the update, but you will also have greater creative control over your country/race. You may also choose to create a new country, but use an existing race, though you must follow the world building set in place by the race's creator. When creating a new country and race, follow the guidelines in the first post.
     
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2017
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  4. Gurra09

    Gurra09 Guru of Hekkia

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2008
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    1,274
    Thalbin, son of Djahan, was a well-known man in Borderland after serving 20 years as Speaker of the Council of Many. In his home town, an oasis farm settlement near Liikr, the local council had decided to rename it Thalbinshaym in his honor, and in many outlying settlements he was seen as a symbol of stable leadership in their otherwise unstable existence in the middle of nowhere. But in Liikr, local councils were calling for the Speaker to step down as he had more than served his term and heavy debate ensued in the Council of the Many. Councillors from prominent capital neighborhoods wanted a term limit, arguing that if the Council just elects the same member as Speaker every year it would give one settlement precedence over the others. On the other side were those Councillors in favor of the status quo who emphasized that the merely ceremonial role of the Speaker didn't have an impact on the Council of the Many's limited government responsibilites as they all shared the executive leadership in practice. Amidst all this, a third faction formed who believed more centralization was necessary and argued for a strenghtening of the Speaker's powers and an overall stronger Council of the Many in relation to the local councils. These ideas were supported only by a very small minority of representatives but the Thalbinists, as they were informally called, had a decisive role when they sided with the pro-status quo Councillors in voting down a proposal to impose a term limit for the Speaker. Hence Thalbin was elected to a twenty-first term as Speaker, but the Council of the Many was more divided than ever.
     
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2017
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  5. NinjaCow64

    NinjaCow64 The Continuation of the Dream Supporter

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2010
    Messages:
    7,834
    (OOC: To Aliedhoo and the Seven Island Confederacy)

    To: Queen Roux II of the Lutindor and the Amourrícean Clans,

    Ambassador Orri Husch, Designated Representative of the Lyrian-Tagata Foreign Exchange Agency and the Islander Tribal Council, Seven Islander Ambassador to the Principality New Gyldige[1]

    We are concerned about the Craja (also known as the Khaj) species. We have heard unconfirmed rumours about their deadly nature, that their consumption may be contributing to shortened lifespans for sentient creatures. Due to these rumours we have been forced to put temporary trade restrictions on the Seven Island Confederacy for fish products, we cannot have our citizens eating unsafe foods. Not only that, but I am sure that your people would like to know if their diet is dangerous for them. To amend this precarious situation that we now find ourselves in, we propose a join research initiative between our three countries to determine if these fish are as dangerous as is claimed. We have invited Lutindor into this proposal as Prince Heagal von Hisenberg, Prince of Semmi[2] and Royal Scientist of the Lutin Court; is one of the finest minds in the field of biology and his research in our country has given us unique insights to the wildlife in the region. His contributions to the project would be invaluable. Of course, any discoveries would be shared between our three nations. I hope that the three of us can agree that this is a potential health crisis in the making and that it would be a good idea to try and solve it before it gets out of hand. If we cooperate we can brave the dangers of this brave new world together.

    Yours Sincerely,

    Prince Ebbe the First of House Strauch, Prince of New Gyldige, Admiral of the Tiflugt Fleet, Regent of the Divine Lyrian Empire, Margrave of Treffen, Tiflugt Councillor, Chosen of Sorrend and Sovereign of the Lyrian People.


    ****************​

    [1] – For the purposes of effective communication between the Seven Island Confederacy and the Principality of New Gyldige, the Lyrian-Tagata Foreign Exchange Agency and the Seven Islander Council have designated the Lyrian Ambassador Orri Hurch as the point of contact between the Principality and the Confederacy. Ambassador Hurch relays messages communicated to him to relevant parties on the Islander Tribal Council.

    [2] – Heagal von Hisenberg is a self-proclaimed Prince, he actually has no lands associated with his title nor does it have a formal designation. Yet in the Lyrian system of honouring titles requires all titles to be associated with something. You cannot simply be a Prince, you must be a Prince of Something. To solve this problem, the Lyrian invented another word/legal term to describe people who have titles such as von Hisenberg's. Semmi translates literally into "nowhere", however the phrase "Prince of Nowhere" could be seen as an insult in English when in the original Lyrian it is not. The phrase "Prince of Semmi" is actually seen as very respectful in Lyrian language and culture, it would be far ruder to pretend that von Hisenberg did not claim to be a Prince.
     
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2017
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  6. Ailedhoo

    Ailedhoo wonderer

    Joined:
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    Prince Ebbe the First of House Strauch, Prince of New Gyldige, Admiral of the Tiflugt Fleet, Regent of the Divine Lyrian Empire, Margrave of Treffen, Tiflugt Councillor, Chosen of Sorrend and Sovereign of the Lyrian People.

    Whether these Poissonmorts are the cause of your problems or a red herring to the effects of the Doom is of a big question indeed. Either way these fish, whatever their effects, may post a intrigue to we, at least for what properties our fishers can gain from them whether it might benefit either our industry or even our royal rouges. If they are a bad food source we will need to know before we put the little fishies on the little dishies.

    I will send forth the Royal Scientist of the Amourrícean Court, Heagal von Hisenberg, to help you investigating these fish. Mark this as the start of a official research linkage between our two realms. Heagal von Hisenberg will be set off to greet you; we will of course expect plenty of access to your researchers and to be able to bring fellow Pucan scientists for Heagal, as well as access to ensure leisure to ensure our many needs are met.

    Praise the waves that will make us united!

    Yours freely

    Queen Roux II of the Lutindor and the Amourrícean Clans,
     
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  7. Decamper

    Decamper ..!

    Joined:
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    1,157
    From the Tribal Council of the Seven Island Confederacy

    To the Prince of New Gyldige

    As long as the goods of our people are turned away from your lands, whatever or whoever you send to us will be treated with same lack of respect.

    The Khaj have fed us well for over two decades, and without them these islands would be lifeless rocks. We do not need you or anyone else to tell us what we should or shouldn't eat.

    *

    OOC: a second letter was attached by a Lyrian bureaucrat confirming the legitimacy of the communication, as well as apologising profusely for the lack of proper titles.
     
  8. Ailedhoo

    Ailedhoo wonderer

    Joined:
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    To the Tribal Council of the Seven Island Confederacy
    From Queen Roux II of the Lutindor and the Amourrícean Clans,

    Lutindor has heeded from New Gyldidge your response.

    These Poissonmorts or Khajs are of intrigue to Heagal von Hisenberg, our Royal Scientist. As majesty of Amouricea I would like to make a amendment; we would like to turn this scientific venture into not just checking the properties of the fish for safety but also measure for potential benefits they provide too. You see we Lutins do enjoy our fishing and would like to test these Poissonmorts to see if they would be suitable for Pucan consumption. If suitable we may be open to trade... and that could only be a benefit to both our peoples, as we have our our variety of fish and our mushrooms as potential goods you may want to get your teeth into. Additional the needs of the Lutin research party (from research equipments to wines to pleasure...) could boost the local crafts of the Seven Islands.

    If the fish is found to be harmful we Lutins are prepared to help you not just in trading you our food-stock but you help you set mushroom farms as they can grow in many environments, including and especially underground.

    Consider well; Lutindor has benefit pleasures and we would most like to please you...
     
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  9. NinjaCow64

    NinjaCow64 The Continuation of the Dream Supporter

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2010
    Messages:
    7,834
    To: Ambassador Orri Husch, Designated Representative of the Lyrian-Tagata Foreign Exchange Agency and the Islander Tribal Council, Seven Islander Ambassador to the Principality New Gyldige[1]

    We would like to apologise to the Tribal Council of the Seven Island Confederacy for our accidental show of disrespect. We did not understand the deep cultural connection you have to the Craja/Khaj species. We want nothing but good relations with our neighbours.

    Due to an improperly filed agriculture report, I misunderstood the nature of the Craja/Khaj species. We will not ban the trade of Craja/Khaj, however we sill wish to perform our scientific inquiry. You are still invited, but we will not be offended if you decline. We will not need to enter your territory and you are free to ignore the findings of the report if you wish. If Sorrend is with us then hopefully there we will confirm the safety of the fish and we can put this business behind us.

    Yours Sincerely,

    Prince Ebbe the First of House Strauch, Prince of New Gyldige, Admiral of the Tiflugt Fleet, Regent of the Divine Lyrian Empire, Margrave of Treffen, Tiflugt Councillor, Chosen of Sorrend and Sovereign of the Lyrian People.

    ****************
    To: Queen Roux II of the Lutindor and the Amourrícean Clans,

    Would you and Prince Heagal von Hisenberg, Prince of Semmi and Royal Scientist of the Lutin Court; still be interested in our scientific endeavour, even though it will now take place in New Gyldigan territory?

    Yours Sincerely,

    Prince Ebbe the First of House Strauch, Prince of New Gyldige, Admiral of the Tiflugt Fleet, Regent of the Divine Lyrian Empire, Margrave of Treffen, Tiflugt Councillor, Chosen of Sorrend and Sovereign of the Lyrian People.
     
  10. Calgori

    Calgori Rapture's Best & Brightest

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2015
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    161
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Carthago Nova, Spain
    I'd like to join as the Heavenly Kingdom of Mun, if it's still an NPC
     
  11. Decamper

    Decamper ..!

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2014
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    1,157
    Mun is yours, welcome aboard Calgori. Feel free to start doing diplo or writing stories/RP whenever. Orders are do on the 10th :)
     
  12. Zappericus

    Zappericus Euro scumbag

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2015
    Messages:
    479
    Location:
    Norway
    Brother against Brother
    "Make no mistake, adolescence is a war. No one gets out unscathed."

    Part: I

    Great pillars of smoke rose into the eternal sky as the fires began consuming the town. Amid the ensuing chaos roared the agonizing wailings of men, women and children cut short only by the clashes of metal and frantic curses of grizzled soldiers. The town of Fedmire's pass which had stood tall, untouched and prosperous on the kingdom's western borders since their initial arrival, had now fallen victim to the unfathomable savagery of the Gorre since the civil war split their kin.

    "For king, and country! Death to giants!" chanted a contingent of reinforcing king's guards over and over as they marched through the blackened crisp that had once stood as a vibrant market for the settlement. Setting up positions around a central fountain, they began securing the fleeing peasants flocking in to avoid the slaughter.

    However, whilst tending to the wounded the king's men were alarmed by screams radiating from one of the still-standing houses across the main street. Captain Abigaile raised her hand with a flinch, motioning for his sergeant and the closest to him to move forward and investigate. She had never seen an actual Gorre before, as she had been assigned primarily to the core cities and central heartland of the Kingdom. But she she had heard the stories. The horrors of which their kind were capable of unleashing upon the innocent and fair folk of her land.

    The sergeant and his men pressed themselves against the sides of the door, exhaling quickly before leaning in to push it open and run in with his sword drawn. From their position Abigaile watched him run into the darkness. Aside from the roaring fires was an eerie and momentary silence. The captain froze, watching, waiting.

    She sighed in relief however, as the sergeant and the rest of the men exited the building. In his arms he held a young boy in tattered clothing. But as they stepped onto the street the soldiers' calm was cut short. The house blew outward in an arc, sending chunks of stone and wood in every direction. Abigaile could do naught but watch as the sergeant was crushed underneath the sudden storm of debris.

    Out of the dust rose massive figures. Muscle, teeth and blood wielding weapons the size of cattle. From the center of their ranks came what captain Abigaile could only assume were their leader. This beast- this Gor, stood several heads above the others and was clad in several interlinked breastplates like a chainmail. In its left hand it held a steel door which acted as a shield. In his other hand he clenched a ballistae bolt which top had been crudely enhanced with sharp Nails, razored wire and spikes to form a grotesque club. Fresh blood and pulped flesh still clinged to it.

    Around it's neck were several chain necklaces containing a sea of polished crow and Gorre skulls, including her kin. On it's shoulderplate made up from horse armour were several hollowthing masks nailed to it as well.

    The savage halted after exiting the ruined building, sticking its club firmly into the ground and pounding its chest before pointing out to Abigaile. She felt her heart skip a beat, before instinctively adjusting her stance and gripping the handle of her sword harder than she ever had.


    To be continued.
     
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  13. tobiisagoodboy

    tobiisagoodboy Prince

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2015
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    416
    Location:
    Germany, in the forest
    Ryoto: The end of an era

    Her joints pained and she hated it, more than anything. It had been 3 years since she'd been on her last patrol, but she was getting old and couldn't keep up with the younger Rangers. Drawing a bow and fencing was still ok, but she simply couldn't run as much as she used to anymore.
    But there was still something she wanted to do, before she got too old to do it, Hikon had helped her with this.
    Before her were gathered almost all Rangers of the Ryoto clans, until now they had been spread over dozens of small clans. Now 600 Rangers were before her and she started.
    "Today, my friends, we begin a new era for the Ryoto. Since the Apocolypse we, the Rangers, guarded our people from everything the world threw at us and since we settled here, we guarded our families and clans. But from today on, we will no longer be shattered, today we are all part of the United Ranger Corps, the guardians of our people. For our families, for the Ryoto, for the corps !" hundreds of voices replied her last words, becoming a loud roar filling the landscape around them.
    They had buildt a large, fortified camp, which would now become the home of all Ryoto Rangers. Hikon had mobiliced what he could to support them, while also bolstering the border guard a little bit. In return, for forming this corps, the small clans had gained several autonomy rights and support to expand their villages.
    Jona had now finished and she walked towards the young man, who stood only a few feet away from her.
    "Nice speech mom, nice and short." Kento was her youngest son, 20 years old and was the only child of her who had become a Ranger. They bumped the foreheads, the traditional greeting between close family members, and then Jona replied.
    "I need to get them in this. To protect our families, we need this. For the next few years I'll train and help building this corps, but soon this will become your job." Kento only laughed a little bit about this and joked "Or not, maybe I'll just stay a simple Ranger and nepotism isn't that good either.".
    "Dissappoint me in this son and I'll course your balls for the rest of your life."

    Hikon on the other hand wasn't as happy as Jona and her fellow Ranger. Everyday another representative from a clan came to him, asking for compensation. Building the border guard, the forts and the ships had cost him ever favor her ever had and expanding them and forming the Ranger corp had been bought with benefits for the smaller clans.
    "It will bring us in conflict with them, but it's the only solution" Hikon mumbeled as he formulated the last parts of his plan. Not only would this compensate the large clans, it would also prevent any future problems with overpopulation and even gave good reason for increasing the size of the border guard. It would be a dramastic change to tradition and would lead to tensions with the Ralka, but it needed to be done.


    Information:

    Jona Bradlonos gonna retire by the end of this turn. She will be replace by her youngest son and fellow range Kento Bradlono.By the end of the enxt turn he's gonna be 30 years old.
     
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  14. christos200

    christos200 Never tell me the odds

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    Male
    Location:
    EU, Greece, Athens

    - Qiang Aqueducts

    The Grand Chancellor Jiang Wei has announced the construction of aqueducts and paved public roads. This Empire-wide project will take many years to be completed but will promote trade and economic as well as population growth. It will also be a testimony to the architectural genius of the Great Qiang Empire and of its power. Shang Yi, Secretary of Public Projects, will be responsible for the management of the project and his previous experience with grand scale projects (like the irrigation project) will prove valuable. Workers have already been levied while the most renown architects of the Empire have been put in charge.

    This is also an age where poetry flourishes. The Emperor has declared a contest of poetry and has offered gold and honorific titles to those who manage to impress him with their poetic skills. Already hundreds of poets from all around the Empire have gathered to the Palace and try to impress the Emperor with their poetical and oratory skills. This promotion of culture by the Emperor has led to a cultural flourishing.

    How to properly address the Emperor
    - Qiang Wuji
    I have written this essay to inform foreigners of elements of Qiang Court Culture. When the Emperor walks into his gilded throne room, all courtiers bow before him while an Eunuch proclaims: "Here comes the shining star! Here comes the rising sun! Here comes the Heavenly Emperor! Here comes the Lord of the World!". Once the Emperor sits on his golden and decorated with numbers gems throne, all courtiers kowtow thrice while shouting: "Long Live the Emperor! Long Live the Emperor! Long Live the Emperor!". Only when the Emperor signals them, are they allowed to stand up. When someone wants to address the Emperor, he must bow before him, kiss his feet and hand and only then can he be allowed to talk. The proper way to refer to the Emperor is: "Your Heavenly and Glorious Imperial Majesty".
     
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  15. Gurra09

    Gurra09 Guru of Hekkia

    Joined:
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    I'm gonna drop because I already missed doing orders last turn and I can't find any inspiration for doing anything this turn. Sorry.
     
  16. christos200

    christos200 Never tell me the odds

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    EU, Greece, Athens

    - Qiang public baths

    The construction of aqueducts bringing fresh water in Qiang cities has led to the growth of a new habit among the Zhang people of the Empire; spending many hours in public baths. Public baths have been constructed in major cities of the Empire and the Zhang have been very receptive to them, visiting them almost every day and spending many hours in them. Traditional Zhang pleasures, like poetry contests and wine, have been moved into baths where Zhang recite poems while bathing and drinking wine. Of course, such pleasures are unknown to the vast majority of the Zhang people who reside in villages or smaller towns but in the major cities even poor people go to public baths at least once a week. The rich landlords and imperial officials have constructed private baths as well, which are even more luxurious than the public ones. This luxury is seen as a testimony to the growing affluence of the Empire and the hardships of the migration seem to belong to distant past now.


    - Qiang horses

    Another project that has helped communications across the Empire is the construction of relay stations all over the Empire, where horses and supplies await messengers, who can continue non stop their journey. Although the project is still halfway, in the regions where the relay stations have been set up communications have improved and imperial edicts arrive far faster. This is expected to unify more the Empire and limit the autonomy of Governors in distant regions of the Empire.
     
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  17. Decamper

    Decamper ..!

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2014
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    A heads up about the update: because of work and anniversary stuff, I won't be getting much work done on it this week/weekend. I'd put a hesitant expected upload date around next weekend. Plenty of time for the 4 remaining players to get their orders in (or signal they are dropping)
     
  18. Angst

    Angst Rambling and inconsistent

    Joined:
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    OOC

    NOW I'm writing orders. Hope I'm making it before it gets done...

    EDIT: And finally done. "I'll do it tomorrow," now said 13 days in a row, now finally done. So sorry I was so slow.
     
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2017
  19. jackelgull

    jackelgull An aberration of nature

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2013
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    Location:
    Within the realm of impossibility
    Timeline of Falangism:

    BA: Falangists have existed since the days of the Empire. However, during imperial times, it was mainly a cult of small nobles, usually young and university trained, who were trying to be "cool and openminded". Most of the common folk had never heard of Falangism. This changed during the Civil War, when a noble tired of the war and the massive cost it forced on his lands and his coffer, declared himself independent. But he went further than that. He was a falangist, one who believed in human potential, and free of the empire, he was also free to experiment. He began by offering free education to all the common folk, and elevated the brighest ones to be his ministers. He also set up elected self government on the city and town level. Thanks to his efforts, Falangism as an ideology began spreading among his lands. However, this situation did not last long. The eventual winner of the civil war crushed the noble's armies and things returned to the status quo. However, this region still harbored falangist sympathies and beliefs, and when the apocalypse happened, many from this region made it to the lost lands.
    0 AA: The world had turned upside down and spun sideways, and people were more willing to embrace a religion that did the same. Most bundvolk remained attached to their old gods preferring stability in a time of change, but some felt the old gods had abandoned them or weren't enough, that bundvolks could only survive due to bundvolk ingenuity.
    5 AA: Falangism grows quietly, this time among the lower classes, who feel cheated that the world changed and yet they were stuck at the bottom. Into the rapidly growing falangism scene was a odd man named Palanquin. A gifted orator he helped the popularity of the falangism, and provided a guiding cohesive vision of what falangism is what it truly meant in secular terms for the gods to be dead.
    6 AA: Telaquacl was the perfect target for Falangism to grow like wildfire. It was a city state where most of the population were slaves taken in raids from the more democratic Gajam. One day, while the army out on another raid, Palanquin organized a slave rebellion. The nobility of the city was overthrown and eaten (though this is probably falangist propaganda used unironically by the rest of the bundvolk as anti falangist propaganda. In falangism, it is believed to consume the flesh of someone was to consume their divine spark, thus increasing one's own strength) and Palanquin finally had a chance to enact his vision. However, the army of Telaquacl came back from their raiding and the famed wolve riders of Telaquacl put down the rebellion before it could grow any further. Still this development sent a chill down the bundvolk nobles and rulers throughout all territories.
    7 AA: In the Karam marketplace, a crowd listens to a falangist spreading the word about his beliefs. The gathering turns into a riot, and Karam declares Falangism a dangerous evil belief deserving of being wiped out of the world. What follows is an intense inquisition. Lokka decided to take advantage of the chaos to take Karamese territory under the guise of "protecting it from Falangism".
    10 AA: The present. Falangism is still a threat, but the Karamese have been stockpiling an arsenal and are now equipping an army. With no expertise and no battle hardened commanders outside of what they can convince their sister city states to allow them, this army will not be able to face fully the Lokka war machine, but sixty thousand can convince bordertowns from defecting to Lokka for protection or out of fear.
     
  20. Decamper

    Decamper ..!

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    Sorry, this one's dead. My bad.

    Love all the stuff you guys wrote. Had lots of fun reading all of it. Got a bit of the update done, all the basic bits besides the eastern nations. Here's the link if anyone wants to take a look
     
    Angst and christos200 like this.

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