An Empty Throne
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Fables, Folks Stories, Legends, Myths, and Fairytales.
This is a collection of people. gods, races , and places common to various myths, stories and fables in no particular order or linkage. All of these definitions reference things which were once true but are so removed from the current moment that their relevance is lost. Or simply not believed to have ever been true but were once. Some aren’t true and never were. Some are feared to still be true.
Overguild – is a semi-shadowy council of merchant-princes who have funded most of the successful expansions into the “unclaimed” countryside of various nations over the last three centuries. They are moneylenders who own at least a small portion of ‘risk-taking’ business across many nations. They have funded the political aspirations of educated common men and denied noble houses to reclaim faltering serfdoms. Their overall agendas are not always clear but they were among the primary motivators for a unified empire rather than nine squabbling kingdoms. Although sufficiently ruthless to not fear the wrath of the Aristocracy; the Overguild’s agenda does not often directly oppose their rule. The Overguild own several mercenary companies but the doesn’t presume to contend with the Blackened Ring for dominance in that theatre of power. One of the Overguild more overt agendas appears to be the application of funds and influence to ensure the stabilization the central empire, without regard to individual nationality or race, A second interest appears to be the reclamation of knowledge – they’ve sunk significant money into four of the five national universities. Imperial Cathay’s
Grey-shield – A grey shield is a catch-all term for any mercenary that has not ‘struck colors’ declaring his allegiance with a guild or nation. Someone who is a single independent entity responsible only to and for himself. This individual may or may not be of dubious honor as he has no patron who will vouch for his veracity – other than what ever his own local reputation may be accounted.
Arcanists – Are the fearful regard of the common people of any sort of Arcane use. – Please keep in mind that the ‘common people’ don’t have any real knowledge of what is or is not actually Arcane Magic. This means they turn their ignorant condemnation to the most suspicious of obvious supernatural evidence. Active casting. The general stereotype and imagery of an Arcanist typically includes any ritualized version of spell use, candles, incantations, craven symbols, material sacrifice, malign stares, etc. It is well known that adepts of the Dark Arts derive their might from craven symbols of power, held within grimoires… so you may want to keep your spell/prayer/formula books under your watchful eye.
The Nine Keys – This is the collective name for the largest participants and original members of the Covenant of Kings. The include – Imperial Cathay (The Scarlet Empire), Athos, Theturos, Valsgärde, Volovik, Novus Ordum, Catalonia, Kalishi, and the Church Triumphant. Technically the Church is not an independent nation but it certainly have sufficient political sway to have declared itself an discrete entity within the Covenant.
Aspis Consortium – A multinational organization, believed to have originate in Novus Ordum, with a number of legitimate business interests usually entertainment (gambling and vice) widely suspected to be a front for organized crime. Specifically the concerted organization of criminal elements which always seem to exist in local areas. The Aspis consortium is unique in that each local Aspis controlled cell will grant authorized respect to ‘visiting’ journeymen from other locations presuming they present themselves to the local guild master upon entering the new location. Non consortium criminal organizations may perceive any non guild thief to be ‘poaching’ and respond aggressively to breaches of territoriality. Their major rivals include ‘La Alianza de Sangre’, of Catalonia, who primarily deal in the drug trade and the Asir Brödraskapet, of Volovik, who specialize in the slave trade.
The Covenant of Kings. – Also known as the Blood Covenant. – This is THE legal treaty binding the 8 nations and the Church Triumphant into a single Human/Dwarven kingdom called the ‘Central Empire’. Non-Human (besides Dwarves) who exist within these nations are considered “Foreign Nationals” and tend to be more respected than many human peasants. Or at least, there are specific protocols within the Blood Covenant regarding these races and their allowed privileges – every Prime Key will have a embassy where any non-human can seek aid for any issue. These laws are assured by Human/Dwarven relations.
Conversely even the lowest caste of human/dwarven scum is still considered a citizen of the central empire and as such has inherent and unquestionable rights.
Common vs Alien Races There are many humanoid species in Arkos, but Arkos is more than just the Central Empire and tales of walking talking plants are not uncommon in tap rooms. The naive traveller should be wary of these sorts of far fetched tales. Within the traditional borders for the central empire the concept of inclusion of the common races becomes a distinction. The so called common races include, Iron Dwarves, Elves, Humans, Yutani (halflings), iKKos (half-elves), and Ogrun (half-orcs).
Note: Elves are still considered fairly rare in actuality but are spoken of often enough making such a sighting less than exotic.
Those races considered exotic are those races which are often spoken of but rarely seen. Such beings make common appearances in barroom stories, folk tales, childhood myths, and urban legends. While alien races are those species which have been brought to shore by soldiers and sailors and widely feared by the rest of the populace. Truly alien race’s are often used as the shadow shrouded villains in stories told to scare children and the naive – but they tend not to be scoffed at by knowing adults either.
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