For many freemen, the fact of citizenship in one city-state or another means simply which yoke one is oppressed under. Curiously, for both nobles and slaves alike, it can mean a great deal.
From the perspective of the Templars, however, comes the most important aspect of citizenship. Justice may be applied very differently to citizens and non-citizens, meaning the difference between a short stay in the dungeons and instant death.
One's citizenship can be changed by accepting the citizenship of another city or village (in which case the original citizenship is always lost). Or, one might lose his citizenship due to criminal activities within a city-state.
Allanak is possibly the richest single civilization in the Known World in total wealth. However, the prosperity is very unevenly distributed across the population. The life of the average Allanaki citizen is one of strife - expensive and degenerate living conditions, coupled with a nearly omnipotent ruler who watches every move his subjects make. The nobility live in opulent splendor, as do the Templar servants of the city-state's king, the Highlord Tektolnes.
For all its richness, the economy of Allanak is typically under-going wild fluxuations and is under much strain. Wrote Tektolnes Senior Templar (and bastard child) Cohran, "His Gloriousness's recent attempt to purify the minds of his people by banning the trade of the spice will certainly have grave ramifications on the well-being of the average man." And so it appears to have been, with merchants murdered in the night and secret dealings in dark alleys, much of the Allanaki economy has moved underground. The result being that many more honest merchants have been driven out of business, and the general prosperity has declined.
Although the Allanak Senate, a group of nobles, meets yearly to formalize policies and laws, the real power in the city is the Highlord Tektolnes. His every whim instantly becomes Allanaki law, and his Templar soldier-priests enforce it with brutal efficiency. The nobles of the city are the Highlord's puppets, their lives spent gathering popular support and serving in a Senate whose decisions are always somehow in perfect accord with His Gloriousness's latest decree.
Known to lie somewhere west of the Tablelands, this camp is the home of the largest pack mantises in the Known World. Due to the nature of the Mantis, nothing specific is known about the camp.
Desert Elf Outpost
The Desert Elf Outpost, owned and operated by the Blackwing Tribe, is located in the northern Tablelands. A multitude of elvish tribes trade and congregate within its walls; traders of other races occasionally make their way there for trading purposes.
The small outpost which resides upon the Shield Wall somewhere about half-way between Allanak and Tuluk is called Luir's Outpost. It is so named for a believed ancient scholar who once lived in the region and constructed most of the buildings from his own architectural designs. For the last hundred and fifty years, Merchant House Kurac has owned the Outpost and has conducted a brisk spice trade from within its walls.
Exploration and investigation of the Outpost by the Kuracis has revealed that Luir was not in fact a scholar but one of the dread servants of the Dragon during his stay in the Known World. Correctly named Luir Dragonsthrall, this man was presumably a Defiler of immense power. Luir was, however, put down by the Highlord Tektolnes of Allanak many long years in the past, though hints of his magick linger still in the Outposts black, horn-topped buildings.
The Outpost is run in a strictly hierarchical fashion by a captain and one lieutenant, who are served by a score of Kuraci regulars and as many mercenaries and outriders as the House can afford at the time. On many occasions, gith raiders have attacked the settlement only to be repelled--demonstrating that the Outpost is one of the few outlying civilizations to be stable enough to support a regular population. However, an unexpected attack by mantis led by a powerful sorcerer once expelled Kurac from the outpost. It was seven years before the Kuraci were able to retake Luirs.
The village of Mal-Krian was rumored to be an encampment of refugees that fled the tyrannical rule of Quintus Tektolnes, late in the 18th age. Lying somewhere to the west of Allanak, within the treacherous Canyons of Waste, the village throve on solitude and its ability to serve its own needs. However, when a series of earthquakes hit the southlands, Mal Krian was totally wiped out, although other cities, such as Allanak, were more lightly touched. It is unknown where the refugees from Mal Krian fled.
The village of PtarKen is a halfling enclave in the northwestern part of the Grey Forest (q.v.). The king of the land is known as Lo Ptar, a halfling shaman of unknown power.
Halfling culture in itself could form volumes, being fabulously diverse and rich with artistic histories. The particular history of PtarKen is largely known to Lo Ptar himself only, but several rough guesses can be made. It is probable that no halflings resided in the Grey Forest during the time of the Dragon. Especially in the latter days of the Dragon's reign, all societies were highly nomadic, for to stay in one place very long could be interpreted as a base of power, which would in turn draw the attention of one of the Dragon's dread servants. Hence, it can be supposed that some descendant of Lo Ptar created the village of PtarKen some two or three hundred years after the Dragon's departure at the earliest. It can also be guessed that there have been no conflicts with the PtarKen tribe from outsiders in the entire history of its existence. Only in the last few hundred years were these halflings known to exist, and explorers reported no instances of walls or other fortifications around the village.
For a halfling residing in this village, life may indeed be very good. The forest provides much, if not all, of what is needed to survive. And the utter lack of greed, avarice, and war must make for a truly idyllic enviornment.
The Red Storm Village lies just north of the Sea of Eternal Dust (q.v.). It is a haven for desert travellers and wayward merchants who pass that far south. A simple town, ruled by a mysterious figure called the Sand Lord, Red Storm Village nonetheless offers some measure of security in the knowledge that criminals rarely have the nerve to stay long, as life is a little too hard for thieves and killers. Nonetheless, Red Storm is a rough and tumble sort of place, and the militia there are quick to deal with anyone disturbing their peace.
Many reclusive folk have made their homes in Red Storm, where it is far enough from Allanak to avoid the long reach of Tektolnes's law, yet near enough to support an easy trade with the city-state.
The city of Steinal was once a rival of Allanak in the southlands, occupying the land east and south of the Salt Flats (q.v.). Its heights of decadence rivaled Allanak's, and its wealth was prodigious. The nobility of the city lived in such opulence as to border on kingship.
However, in the final war between Allanak and Steinal, Tektolnes became enraged over some failure of his armies to accomplish a certain defeat of the Steinalis, and drew up an awful magick. A sandstorm of unheard-of magnitude rose out of the sands and smashed the city of Steinal, burying it into the desert forever.
The tales of the riches of Steinal persist, as travellers claim to have found an entrance to this or that buried estate on the far side of the Salt Flats, but none of these has ever been authenticated.
The city-state of Tuluk once was a very large city which dominated the northlands. In the year 1450, however, a terrifying, and presumably magickal cataclysm devastated the city. Left were only ruins, and a few noble and merchant estates outside the actual city.
In the chaos and devastation, the ruling precentor, Isar, was overthrown by a formerly banished templar, Kul. Electing himself the new precentor, Kul gathered the remnants of the Lirathuan and Jihaen templars, including the former precentor, Isar, and General Garas, who would become Kul's right-hand man in later years. He founded a new government, the Northlands Alliance, which gave a greater authority to the common people, noble houses, and merchant houses of Gol Krathu. The shattered populations of the Northlands began to rebuild. A fierce feud between Emilee Kadius and Vivienne Reynolte fed on the chaos, and in the end forced Precentor Kul to declare martial law and confiscate both Freil's Rest and the formerly Reynolte-run vineyard with its surrounding village. After several Blackwing elves collected on a bounty offered by an Allanaki templar, Madiki, a mercenary sorcerer led an attack on the Blackwing camp, killing dozens of elves, including children.
A little more than a decade later in 1461, a small army of Allanaki soldiers launched a surprise attack on Luir's Outpost After dealing a considerable amount of damage, the army swept northward to the Scaien Gates of Tuluk. Upon arrival, they discovered that the North had a much larger army than estimated, and met with swift defeat. The first victory of either side in the Allanaki-Tuluki conflict that had been launched, the First Battle of Tuluk re-established the northern powers as a force to be reckoned with.
In 1475, Allanak took the desert outpost of Luirs, using that to launch another assault on the Northlands. In a series of bloody battles, Allanaki troops conquered the region of Gol Krathu, leaving only one of the host of red and blue-robed templars dispatched to lead the troops standing - Elaira Fale of the Blue. Credited with the victory, she retreated to Allanak and a waiting red robe. A large portion of the Allanaki forces remained in evidence.
Muk Utep, along with Kul and Isar, holed up in his pyramid and an siege began that would last 41 years. Many of the noble houses were destroyed, a few - including Houses Tenneshi and Winrothol - went into exile. A strong anti-Allanak underground movement, the Ja'ben Rebellion, sprang up and conducted ceaseless efforts against the occupying forces, assisted by the outlaw raider group, the Blackmoon, and in secret by merchant House Kadius, which produced a number of the Rebellion's leaders. Other merchant houses pursued expansion into the Northlands as well, under the eye of the Allanak appointed Governor of the Northlands, a position initially held by Therlias Borsail. After a successful decade-long governorship, the Lord disappeared after taking a small party out to check a suspected bandit hide-out. He was replaced by Lord Shylon Borsail, who was kidnapped within a year of his arrival and killed along with his family by the Rebellion. The position was taken up by Ekaterina Borsail, who held it until 1516. The Noble House Morlaine was created in 1510 by Allanak, making a former Kadian, Ysania Morlaine, its head. Allanak intended to make Morlaine its emissary in the Northlands, but public sentiment ended up subverting the effort, and the house was closed soon afterwards.
In the year 1516, the Sun Legions of Tuluk emerged from the Ivory Pyramid to wage a surprise attack on the Southern forces occupying the Gol Krathu region. Assisted by the Rebellion, various human tribes of unknown origins, and hordes of hideously mutated and deformed creatures, the army breached the Scaien Wall, razing it in places. The Allanaki red-robed templars overseeing the occupation, Sathis Valika and Aquila Nenyuk are slain in a duel with Isar, who is in turn slain by a member of the Allanak forces. Kul led Tuluki forces towards Luirs, liberating it from its own occupation and died in turn there.
In the early days of liberation, Tuluk experienced a post war boom, as resources formerly diverted southward were turned back to the lands that had produced them. The Triumvirate set these resources to bear on rebuilding shattered Tuluk, hiring architects to lay out a city that would grow into its dimensions over the course of the following century.
The new affluence has led to a new city that continues to grow into its sprawling dimensions. In 1501, construction began on a new version of Poets' Circle, once cultural center of the Known World, including a grand theater subsidized by the Noble House of Uaptal. Tribal markets of vast size have set up in the city, drawn by the wealth, and construction is ongoing. The citizens of the north subsist largely on the fruits gathered from the Grey Forest (q.v.), and on the hardwoods which are hewn from its depth. The woods provide the many craftsmen of the north with ample raw materials for the constructions of wagons, weapons, and bows, as well as export to Allanak.
The society of Tuluk is based on strong ritual and symbolism. In all parts of its culture, levels of knowledge are unusually high, yet practical applications of knowledge were few. The citizens of the north have a well known hunger for art of any kind and of any quality. Magickers are shun like evil itself, and usually killed on sight.
The Webmaster / firstname.lastname@example.org
© 2000 Armageddon MUD. All rights reserved.
Last upated 12/29/02 by Sanvean