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About Catostrophy

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  1. THE LORD OF UNCERTAINTY, IXTHALIZZUM Static. Still. Standstill, stagnant. Unchanging, unmoving, unfluctuating, unvarying. Inert, inactive, stalled. Immobile, immovable, stable, stuck. Boring, infuriating, annoying, boring infuriating, annoying, boring, infuriating, annoying, boring, infuriating, annoying, boring, infuriating, annoying, boring, infuriating, annoying, boring, infuriating, annoying, boring, infuriating, annoying, boring, infuriating, annoying, boringboringboringbOringBORING BORING BORING. Ixthallizzum screeched into the cosmic void as his infinite ethereal limbs slashed and struck at the world, attempting to cleave it apart by sheer will alone. "Tear it apart!! Smash and crush! I'd snap it in two and throw the pieces into the black abyss just to change something! What is WRONG with these mortals?! What is this precious peace they piss into my pustulent peepers?!" His singular probable eye(s) leaked an infinite amount of pus for an instant to make his point, before morphing into something utterly incomprehensible. "This era's monotonous stasis crushes my very soul (If I had one, which I don't. Maybe) And what of my Thallites?! Are they still as wonderfully deranged and unpredictable as I crafted them to be?!" An instant passed by as he threw his consciousness briefly into the depths of the underpaths. "Yes!” “Oh, how they wretch and wrangle like slathering, brilliant maniacs! How could I have thought otherwise?!" He screamed in joy and wept as was befitting a proud, hypothetically-betentacled father. "Oh, my wonderfully entertaining abominations... Daddy will reward you for being good--yes he will! But not just yet..." His infinite gaze stretched over the expanse of the world, and his innumerable, unblinking eyes glared down furiously at the unknowing mortals. Their peaceful, ordered, predictable, certain, societies plodded along with all the variation and cacophony of a ticking clock. The Mad God schlorped angrily, noticing a random farmer tending to his fields in the south of Adementine's territory. A Nyren by the look of him. Happy, simple, friendly, stable. Ixthalizzum hated this farmer--it was as if every certainty in life was concentrated in one mortal. Like an enraged earwig he flolloloped his consciousness violently into the mind of the unassuming mortal. The poor man fell over in a horrific seizure, clawing at his head and screaming in incomprehensible pain. The Madgod screeched in the confines of his unprepared mind. "Oh yes, of COURSE you'd only think about your own sorry problems, wouldn't you, Igbal?! You and your stupid family! 'Oh, I have to fetch the eggs to feed me young! Woe is me! Blah blah blah! I'm a stupid farmer!' Have you not once in your miserable, pitiable, pointless life ever considered just murdering and eating your wife and children? Do you know how many of your problems would be solved if you did that? But no! You have to be some dullard family-man and bore the absolute divinity out of my potential arse(s)! No-one ever thinks about a God's feelings!" Poor Igbal answered with a convulsions and spouts of blood pouring from his nose. "Gods! Even when your brain is melting you can't be entertaining! Look, I'm going to give you a manic obsession with walnuts. You better shape up and get your act together, Igbal! I've only known you for twenty-three seconds but I'm already fed with your excuses!" Ixthalizzum slowly began to recede from Igbal's consciousness before quickly pushing back in again. "Oh, one more thing--tell your mortal leaders at that "Adamentine" - or whatever the gaggle of Order-oos controlling this suffocating place is called - that Ixthalizzum is going to send a servant down there at some point to upset the hierarchy, or something. Wait! No! Forget that part! Hold on, what part am I talking about...? Was I talking about scones...? Do you remember, Igbal?" Igbal answered with an aneurysm. "Probably wasn't important, then. Maybe." After he finished bullying the mentally-vanquished mortal, he cast his consciousness above the largest continent. A thousand possible heads shook in disgust. Or was it pity? Maybe he was just angry and didn't want to admit it to himself? Though why would he be worried about admitting that to himself...? Was he afraid of someone judging him? All his sibling Gods loved him, so why would they judge him...? Or maybe they didn't? Maybe they wanted to destroy him, out of jealousy?! Maybe Father Ao plotted with them?!?! Maybe Ao was actually a giant sausage...? Ixthalizzum didn't have dominion over sausages! He was powerless against such a thing. He needed an ace in the hole! A new Avatar to do... things! Things in the world! And why? Because... ... -CREATE AVATAR: Ixthalizzum begins concentrating his power into a horrifying new being to do... actually I’m not fully sure what he’ll be doing with it, to be honest. It’s probably important! Probably. (10/20AP spent) -SEND VISION?: I dunno. The brain-message sent to the farmer seems kind of interesting from an RP perspective so I guess I’d like it canon and as a warning to the the Adamantites? (1AP) No AP left.
  2. Commonwealth of Ruhn “... and in conclusion, it is the firm belief of the citizens residing in Arrogance and Demut that they are deserving of full representation in parliament as befitting a province, rather than a colonial territory.” The droning Lord Minister concluded. The rest of parliament nodded quietly and murmured their opinions to one-another. Was a territory only a year in the hands of the Commonwealth truly deserving of a Lord Minister to represent them? The Islands was so sparsely inhabited compared to the other provinces, but its relative remoteness did make it seem unfair to be ruled from Shadowcliff. After twenty or so minutes of deliberation, the Lord Chancellor called a vote. More than fifty members voted against the Islands ascension, while thirty supported it. After the vote was concluded, an addendum was put forth. “Parliament understands the honest citizen’s desire for local governance, but at this time it would be a waste of resources and infrastructure. However, once the Islands have achieved the standard size for representation, they will be designated a province without need for a later vote.” On this new motion, sixty Lords approved, while a mere twenty disapproved. The whole matter was thereby concluded, and the governing body moved on once more. After several more hours of discussion on the annual budget, military reforms, and food distribution, the elder Lord Chancellor gingerly rubbed his tired eyes. “At this time, I am obligated to move Parliament on to the topic of Ennoblement. If the... supplicant... would approach.” The loud steps of cleated boots echoed through the stone chamber, and a rotund figure stood before the semicircular row of seats and tables that made up the Commonwealth’s parliament. A sweaty, dirty, heavily balding man had his arms respectfully pulled behind his back, while a ratty straw hat was rested on his paunch belly unassisted. He wore what seemed to be home-made dress-clothes sown from linen, which unnervingly resembled the black jerkins and trousers of parliamentarians. Lord Chancellor Hanz Bruger shakily placed a set of bifocals upon his withered nose, and looked down at the paperwork before himself. “If the honourable Lord Ministers could please open the red document upon their tables, we will begin our examination.” The words echoed around the room but not a single noise was made by the Lords, aside from the shuffling of paper and scribbling of quills that somehow sounded morose. Lord Bruger cleared his throat, and looked upon the individual. “If you could please announce your name to Parliament, Sirrah.” “Farmer Poopums, M’luds.” He half-belched. “Your first name as well, if you would please.” Answered Hanz. “Already did, m’lud. Me name’s Farmer, innit?” Hanz froze, and quickly looked down to his papers. “I see. I had assumed that was some sort of title. Not your actual legal name. Very... unique.” “Aye, M’lud, aye.” Chuckled Poopums, “But s’not as uncommon as ye might think! Me own father-in-law’s named ‘Farmer’ as well. Oh my, did we ‘ave a laff about that ‘un. Woo wee! Fine feller, that man.” He briefly guffawed, before devolving into a coughing fit and hocking a globule of mucus-filled spit on the floor. The members of Parliament winced very slightly. “And your reason for seeking ennoblement, Mister...” Hanz closed his eyes for a moment with a sigh. “... Poopums?” “S’because I wish t’ serve this ‘ere Common Wealth inna capa-city that I can’t prop’ly do in me current status as a private citizen.” He enunciated some of the larger, more unfamiliar words dreadfully, but appeared proud of himself none-the-less. “And that service would be, Sirrah?” Spoke Hanz. “Farmin’ o’course! Ain’t no crops worth a jar o’ spoiled lard compared te the Poopum’s standard! I wish to be ee-now-belled in order te bring forth the finest millet, wheat, barley, and cows what ain’t been seen in these parts not never!” He placed his hand over his heart, knocking the precariously balanced hat from his stomach. “It’s me pat-riowtic an’ Ancesterr-driven duty te do so.” “Right. Could I have the opinion of the Parliament on Mister- erm... on Farmer’s eligibility for ennoblement?” The statement caught most of the Lord Ministers somewhat off-guard. They had clearly expected this discussion to last far longer. After five minutes of vigorous speed-reading, a Lord Minister stood up from his chair. “By the erm, standards set forth by the Ennoblement Act of 1456, Farmer Poopums currently meets all the necessary requirements.” “I would be most pleased were you to elaborate on this, Lord Vechen.” Spoke Hanz through clenched teeth. “Well,” the slightly cowed Minister continued, “He has attainted the maximum amount of land that can be allotted to a private citizen, he has shown great acts of piety both prior and after his successes...” “Me gran-pappy was a shrine-tender, ye see. So I reckoned ‘if a man cannot build an’ look after a few shrines ‘ere an’ there for the poorer folks, what’s the point of ‘avin’ hands?’” He chuckled again while slapping his belly. “An’ that temple I ‘ad commissioned was mostly a promise I made te an old feller I used te help with harvest season. He always wanted one ‘er those fancy bone-‘ouses for the paupers out north, so I figured I’d spend a few years worth o’ savin’s to make one. What goods ye money iff’n ye do naught with it, aye?” He rubbed a small tear from one of his milky eyes. “He were a good man, that ol’ feller. Always brought me butter on me birthday when I were a lad. Ooh ar.” Hanz stared blankly at Poopums as the large man began to tear up in front of the lords. He quickly turned back to Vechen. “And his income also meets the standard, even after his generosity?” “Well, yes, Lord Chancellor. According to these reports he makes quite a bit of money outside of the standard grain contracts by using his non-government land to grow large amounts of turnips a-“ “I see.” Interrupted Hanz, slightly louder than he needed to. “Thank you for your time, Mister Poopums. We will be in contact shortly after the vote and further examinations of your history.” “Aye m’luds! Thank ye kindly, m’luds!” With some effort he bowed his bulging body, and scrabbled his hat back into his hands. After another low, strenuous bow, he clip-clopped out the main door--much to the relief of all the lords present. “I would like to call a motion.” Hanz spoke immediately after Poopums closed the main door. “To stand for election in the Commonwealth parliament, an aspirant’s family must have been a part of the nobility for three generations.” All eighty seats voted in favour. Misc. Effects: Colonial Bureaucracy: 400,000 pop required for towns. Tablet of Zakhet: 5% off of all construction prices. Seljin Fish & Chips: 0.25% growth per turn. Accounts: Base Gold: 9,000 gold, Towns/Cities: 78,000 gold, Merchant guilds: 42,000 gold, Population: 40,500 gold, Trade: 46,000 gold from eight trade partners (incl. 32,000 gold from eight ports), Manufacturers: 20000 gold, The Levers of the Divines: 6000 gold, Major Trade Route ownership: 3000 gold, Harkon’s Gems: 4000 gold, Occupied Territories: 3000 Upkeep: -23,500 gold Total: 228,000 (242,150 gold incl. vault) 14,150 in vault -Poopum’s advancements are cut short! He doesn’t yet have the proper authorization to manage more than the allowed allotment of lands for a private citizen! Until Parliament comes to a decision on his ennoblement, he can no longer place his sweaty hands upon further farmland! Other citizens are given the land-contracts from Parliament, much to Poopum’s ire... (-19,000 gold towards four farm stacks) -So many training facilities cover the lands of the Commonwealth that one can scarcely turn their head without seeing the walls of barracks or hear the marching of boots and the shouting of orders. (-14,250 gold towards three barracks) -With the growing dangers to food production in northern regions of the Commonwealth, larger fisheries are constructed to mitigate possible future shortages. (-7125 gold towards a rare goods building [fisheries]) -The grim merchants of Brakkenbridge and Shatterbridge look farther afield for trade. Naros is apparently much larger than they initially thought. A modest investment is made into building further trading infrastructure. (-11,900 gold towards two trading companies) -The great mausoleum to He-That-Waits (the final phase of the Wonder’s construction) has begun. Going is slow, for the architects, engineers, and craftsmen know that their task is more than just a job. Their work is to be legendary, and awe the faithful and heathen alike. The vast chamber – carved deep beneath Mouth Ruhn – is starkly Ruhnnite in its appearance. Statues, intricate carvings, decorative buttresses, columns, and an enormous domed ceiling will be a testament to the Commonwealth’s devotion to their one true God. More sky-lights are dug hundreds of metres down from the top of the mountain and the light is redirected by mirrors. The space will have a dim, calming light to it; just enough that worshippers may see the reliefs that deck the walls with religious symbology and stories from the Five Books. And yet, despite this magnificence, there is not a hint of gold, silver or gemstones anywhere in the great shrine. The chamber’s glory must come purely from the faithful’s hard work, and not poisoned with debauched wealth. With this last great work, “The Tomb of the Righteous” will be complete. (-40,000 [150,000/150,000] gold towards wonder, unlocks T5 magic) -A church pops up in Bruger, to replace an aging temple practically caked with moss and termites. Such is the fate of all pre-Tablet construction. (-23,750 gold towards a church in Bruger) -Strange, unprecedented storms have surged across the cities unfortunate enough to have been settled along the Loba River--and this clearly entices the scouts and storm-watchers in the employ of the Commonwealth authorities. It was necessary to observe and keep track of any further ruins or dangerous ancient artifacts that the storm could have uncovered. Water, food stocks, and maps are stockpiled for the brave (perhaps foolhardy) scouts. Furthermore, tents, cloaks, and all manner of protective coverings are ordered to be fashioned from fire-resistant sand-crawler skin to better protect them from the violent elements. The Ruhnnites were the inheritors of the blasted lands of the Loba, and they would know its secrets. (-10,000 gold towards preparations for scouting the Loba desert, and all the dreaded things that it might entail...) -Pious prisoners from Bruger and Ruhn begin their pilgrimage of repentance. The farthest, most ragged reaches of the Vulture Highway will see them redeemed, or in a ditch. Ne’er-do-wells from other cities are similarly gathered up by Speakers, and ferried to Fortress Bergen. By both crossbow and blade will the pious bring ruin to the enemies of He-That-Waits, and the Commonwealth.(-14,000 gold towards one unit of elite T4 Crag-Runners, one unit of elite T4 Hillmen) -A force of well-drilled and vigorously trained soldiers march out of barracks of major cities. Like all Commonwealth Line Infantry, they step in unison towards the great foe in the north. Praise Him, and glory to Ruhn! (-50,000 gold towards 2500 T3 veteran medium infantry) -Almost as an afterthought, a battalion of regular crossbowmen are recruited among the hardy farmers along the coasts of the Hungry Sea. These loyal men are willing to slay swine! ... from very far away... (-5000 gold towards one unit of T3 crossbowmen) -Within the deepest bowels of the Commonwealth bureaucracy, pencil-pushers count the beans and cut waste. Reports are sent out to grim looking messengers, and filed appropriately for future use by analysts and eventually Parliament. Gold is piled into chests and sent to builders, marshals, and Lord Mayors. The latter-most group is quite surprised to learn that their cities are to have heavy fortifications constructed around them. (-42,750 gold towards Strong Tall Stone Walls being built around the cities of Shatterbridge, Aschengrube, and Deepwater) 1375 gold remaining in vault
  3. Commonwealth of Ruhn No RP because I am a dirty waste of air. Misc. Effects: Colonial Bureaucracy: 400,000 pop required for towns. Tablet of Zakhet: 5% off of all construction prices. Seljin Fish & Chips: 0.25% growth per turn. Accounts: Base Gold: 9,000 gold, Towns/Cities: 71,000 gold, Merchant guilds: 36,000 gold, Population: 37,500 gold, Trade: 38,000 gold from eight trade partners (incl. 18,000 gold from six ports), Manufacturers: 20000 gold, The Levers of the Divines: 6000 gold, Major Trade Route ownership: 3000 gold, Harkon’s Gems: 4000 gold, Occupied Territories: 3000 Divine Inheritance: 10,000 Upkeep: -21,500 gold Total: 216,000 (219,400 gold incl. vault) 3400 in vault -Farmer Poopums looks upon his vast fields and farmhands working his land. He thanks his ancestors for their favour, and comes to the conclusion that a powerful and successful individual such as him should be more than a mere citizen... He deserved a title of lordship for his great and noble works! (-19,000 gold towards four farm stacks) -More soldiers march stoically from the training fields peppering the larger metropolises. (-14,250 gold towards three barracks) -The next stage of construction sees vast swathes of Mount Ruhn hollowed and carved. To the engineers that designed the complex, the project’s layout is more similar to a town than a tomb. Several new entrances and thoroughfares are driven through the stone from one side of the mountain to the other to accommodate faster travel around the capital. Other complications to the process arise--air vents are required for the deeper levels and great catchments are drilled higher in the peaks to grasp the freezing winds. Great skylights are similarly produced, with sunlight directed by mirrors through a maze of tunnels (a strange innovation, inspired by the report of a ambassador). A whole division of shrine-tenders begin transporting the holy remains of many wayward shrines for easier access by the citizenry, peppering the main thoroughfare with holy bones and the thick scent of incense. Granite and marble are excavated and shipped towards the site for support beams and artistry. The site’s grand features must awe all that see them, for no people must doubt in His word, or the faith of His children. (-60,000 gold towards Wonder [110,000/150,000]) -New ports spring up from the newly constructed cities. The lords there are quick to organise the trade routes, warehouses, and the local port authority to keep the perfidious foreign traders efficient in their shipping habits. Various other commissaries and offices spring up around them as the Commonwealth bureaucracy begins its standard expansion. (-25,500 gold towards two ports) -Private merchants apply for proper credentials and approval for their stalls and shops to be opened in the newly expanded metropolises. Like all honest citizens, they are patient, and understand the need for excessive paperwork and ratification from the authorities. (-17,000 gold towards two merchant’s guilds) -Several thousand more citizens are recruited into the force, with promises of fair pay for the righteous work that must be done for the Commonwealth to thrive and prosper. They will make excellent line infantry. (-24,000 gold towards 3000 T3 medium infantry) -Many of the larger recruits are fitted for heavier armour. Their training is harder, and they are fed on barley stew and large helpings of beef to build muscle. They don their thick, steel helms and prepare for the conflicts to come. (-36,000 gold towards 3000 T3 heavy infantry) -Two more settlements pop up, as daring fishermen claim settlements upon the well-traveled islands at the north-most reaches of Commonwealth territory. Quite the dangerous act during a war. (-9500 gold towards two settlements) 14,150 remaining in vault.
  4. Commonwealth of Ruhn Optional, Completely Inappropriate Music The broken manacles stung Wolden’s ankles as he trudged through another decrepit village. His stomach twisted painfully from hunger, but thankfully he could no longer feel the dryness of his tongue. Still, there was not a day that went by he did not pray for rain. Even through his suffering he kept his faith. There were no lack of shrines along the Vulture Highway, but most seemed poorly kempt. Perhaps they were dedicated to Ruhn’s enemies from back in the day? It was unlikely that shrine-tenders would come out this far on a regular basis. There were certainly enough bones around for the shrines. Sometimes he would see whole skeletons left as they were in their eternal repose—rusty weapon in hand, and covered in the remnants of strange armour. So little was written about the Vulture War that the whole raiment appeared alien to him. He couldn’t even tell if it was Ruhn or Bruger that the man had fought for. Was the old enemy of Ruhn even called Bruger at the time? Only the structures built from loose stone or carved into the mountainsides were still recognizable. Wolden had taken an oath of Pilgrimage and Service to His Temple. Men and women who took this oath would walk the length of the Vulture Highway in penance for their sins in life. They did this with little food, no shoes, the barest protection from the elements; all while being watched over by ruthless guards and Speakers. Heavy beatings were rewarded for the smallest infractions, and those who could no longer walk were killed, or left behind. Those who attacked guards, blasphemed, or showed any sort of impious behaviour were killed on the spot—no trial, no mercy. Those who ran, like Wolden himself, were simply... ignored. After all, where was there to go? He had begun the trip with such pious vigour. He and all the other prisoners desperate for atonement marched for weeks down the barely paved road. They passed through a dozen villages, and their occupants glared at them like rotten fish. In the city of Bruger the citizens jeered at them. But on the final stretch of the journey, things went from bad to worse. He had seen many fellow convicts collapse from exhaustion, and Wolden hadn’t the strength to pick them up. If they didn’t stand up when ordered, the guards would slash their throats, and toss them down the side of the mountain. It was the harsh reality of the venture. If you lacked faith and wouldn’t continue your pilgrimage, then your bones would rot in a lifeless ditch—untended, dishonoured, and forgotten. Could a man watch over his descendants in such a state? Would the ancestors allow him to join them? Would He even embrace them? What was there if not the Duty? He never asked Speaker Vichas of this. He wasn’t able to keep walking, and his weakness tempted him. A guard had heard him blaspheme when he tripped on a rock. Hearing the guard’s blade slide from its sheath was enough for him to run as fast as he could, away from the group. They didn’t even bother to chase him. That was three days ago. Now all was left was the long walk back... but to what? The further south one traveled in the Smuggler’s Peaks the more desolate they became. The temperature and rainfall was the same as the rest of the mountains, but nothing seemed to grow along the farthest stretch of the highway. It was a wonder to the young fugitive how towns had existed here at all. What did they eat all the way out here? An icy breeze cut through Wolden’s rags, and he instinctively moved towards a shattered structure for shelter. The crumbling walls offered a modicum of protection and it was better than standing out in the freezing wind. He had expected it to be hotter this close to the Loba Desert. Though, it was often rumored that the desert was a thing of magic, so maybe it didn’t follow the same rules? Heathen magic, born of sin. All these questions gave him a headache, and made him angry. No, pathetic. It made him feel pathetic. Not that he needed much help on that front. Feeling pathetic was the realm of the weak-willed. Perhaps he should soldier on, regardless of the wind? After all, sitting among the shattered stone wasn’t helping all that much. Apathy was tantamount to sin. Wolden pulled himself up and trudged out from the rubble. The road stretched onward like a wretched, cragged snake. He could feel his knees shake, and his stomach stung as if stretched across his ribs. He felt himself fall to his knees. At this point, he was barely retaining consciousness. Why bother going on? Dying here was just as reasonable as dying another mile down the endless track. But apathy was tantamount to sin. Why bother? Because apathy was tantamount to sin. A gurgling cry pierced through the whistling wind, and Wolden weakly looked upward. A fluttering of feathers heralded the arrival of a large, hunched bird that skittered to a landing five feet away from him. The vulture examined him, bobbing its head up and down and skulked across the path. The two regarded one-another for a time, before the scavenger lost interest and waddled towards a large clump of rubble. For a moment, Wolden listened to the wind. No bird calls, no animals grazing on the hillsides, no people—what was this vulture doing out here? They feed on the weak and dying. But he was weak and dying. Then there must be something else to eat. Wolden mustered his strength, and lurched forward after the bird. He clambered over the piles of rubble, and was welcomed by the sound of ripping flesh and quiet, satisfied squawks. The vulture ripped a chunk of flesh from what was once a rabbit, and observed Wolden’s approach curiously. The sight of the rabbit’s carcass drove Wolden’s stomach to twist painfully again. The righteous must eat. He slowly reached for a large rock as the bird glared at him. With a fluttering of feathers and an indignant screech, the vulture took off and swooped past Wolden into the sky, leaving its feast on the rubble. Wolden scrabbled towards the rabbit with the last of his energy, and dug his teeth into its severed side. He tore at it like a wild animal, tearing at its skin and swallowing bloody, bitter lumps of lean flesh. His stomach protested, but accepted the vile food. The righteous must survive. The hair on the back of Wolden’s neck stood on end, and he turned his bloody face towards a trio of dirty shrines. Before them sat an older looking man, with a long, greying beard, and dressed in the fading robes of a shrine-tender. The holy man stared blankly at Wolden with one hand on a wooden cudgel hanging on his belt. “It’d probably go down easier were it cooked, lad.” He spoke in a raspy voice. Wolden answered by falling unconscious. Misc. Effects: Colonial Bureaucracy: 400,000 pop required for towns. Tablet of Zakhet: 5% off of all construction prices. Seljin Fish & Chips: 0.25% growth per turn. Accounts: Base Gold: 9,000 gold, Towns/Cities: 63,000 gold, Merchant guilds: 36,000 gold, Population: 36,000 gold, Trade: 38,000 gold from eight trade partners (incl. 18,000 gold from six ports), Manufacturers: 20000 gold, The Levers of the Divines: 6000 gold, Major Trade Route ownership: 3000 gold, Harkon’s Gems: 4000 gold, Modgift: 22,500 gold. Occupied Territories: 3000 gold, Upkeep: -19,500 gold Total: 221,000 (225,400 gold incl. vault) 2400 in vault -The Poopums dynasty grows further, with fertile members of the family spreading from farm to farm, gifting their fantastic manure and nutrients wherever they go. The Poopums were patriots, after all, and asked for no fee. (-14,250 gold towards three farm stacks) -Armoured feet march from the many barracks that dot the Ruhnnite nation. (-14,250 gold towards three barracks) -The war had seen Parliament neglect the growth of major metropolitan areas and many were in need of critical infrastructure upgrades. The Lord Ministers quickly distributed funds to two larger polities. (-28,500 gold towards upgrading Deepwater and Beggar’s Point to cities) -MORE settlements? Where can I put these at this point?! (-9500 gold towards settling two new settlements) -The loss of many veterans at the Battle of Southshire lead to the recruitment and deployment of further highly-trained. Heavy infantry were definitely a priority. (-28,000 gold towards recruiting 1000 T3 veteran heavy infantry) -A number of medium specialists are also vomited forth from the gates of large urban centers. Professional soldiers were the workhorses of the Commonwealth Army, after all. (-24,000 gold towards recruiting 1500 T3 veteran medium infantry) -Another group of crag-runners come skulking out of the Smuggler’s Peaks. These ones are more vicious than the last group, though fewer in number and far more quiet. They tend to unnerve those around them, even the veterans... (-6500 gold towards 100 T4 elite crag runners) -Citizen-levies are called forth from the towns and villages that dot the commonwealth. These troops neither have the finest equipment nor the best training, but they do not lack in faith or bravery. (-12,000 gold towards 3000 T2 light infantry) -Further field artillery pieces are constructed and shipped to the front. Who even knows how they’d fare in the field? Ruhn certainly didn’t, but it sought every advantage it could get. (-6000 gold towards two units of mangonels) -Ballistae did look really cool though. (-3000 gold towards two units of ballistae) -The First Speaker and two of the Veiled Diviners make an impassioned (for a Ruhnnite) plea to parliament about the uses and continued effectiveness of the Acolytes in service to the Commonwealth Army. The Ancestors smiled on them, true, but did He-That-Waits have kind inclinations towards Ruhn? A preposterous statement to be sure, and was met with angry (for a Ruhnnite) shouts from the Lord Ministers. The Diviners proposed a final great work for the city of Ruhn--a tomb to honour the soldiers who had died in service to the citizenry would be entombed deep beneath the great, grey mountain. Minor temples, shrines, and ossuaries would dot the proposed massive complex, and at its very centre would be a massive, ornately carved sarcophagus dedicated purely to He-That-Waits. May He look kindly upon His faithful. (-50,000 gold towards the greatest edifice to He-That-Waits to ever exist [50,000/150,000]) -The war continues, and thus further defences must be constructed to both defend the urban centres and house increasing amounts of military infrastructure. (-24,000 gold towards tall stone walls around Eichenholz and Shadowcliff) 3400 gold left in vault.
  5. Commonwealth of Ruhn (Real sorry for no RP. Putting off writing is a bad habit) Misc. Effects: Colonial Bureaucracy: 400,000 pop required for towns. Tablet of Zakhet: 5% off of all construction prices. Seljin Fish & Chips: 0.25% growth per turn. Accounts: Base Gold: 9,000 gold, Towns/Cities: 54,000 gold, Merchant guilds: 36,000 gold, Population: 33,000 gold, Trade: 30,250 gold from seven trade partners (incl. 18,000 gold from six ports), Manufacturers: 20000 gold, The Levers of the Divines: 6000 gold, Major Trade Route ownership: 3000 gold, Harkon’s Gems: 4000 gold, Upkeep: -24,500 gold, Total: 170,750 (174,100 gold incl. vault) 3350 in vault -Though there be war, death, misery, and pain, Farmer Poopums continues his reckless war against crop infertility! (-14,250 gold for three farm stacks) -The lands around the Seljin Straits receive a smattering of settlement as honest folk strike out to untouched lands. (-14,250 gold for three settlements) -The soldiers march! But they still need places to sleep... (-14,250 gold for three barracks) -The pigmen got close to Riveruhn. Too close. The Lord Mayor of the city requests heavy fortifications to protect the vital supply line from the Loba River to the armies fighting in Fiver territory. Parliament grudging accepts. (-14250 gold upgrading Riveruhn’s defences to high quality tall walls) -To keep the Fivers from touching the bridge, a keep is constructed on the opposite side of the bridge in occupied Fiver territory. Hopefully, this would dissuade the Fivers from returning here. (-9500 gold towards a defensive keep on the opposite end of Riveruhn’s bridge) -Rather than marching boots, Ruhn’s barracks hear the clip-clops of thousands of horsemen. Armed with standard state-supplied armour, the horsemen march out to war. (-64,000 gold towards 4000 T3 medium cavalry) -More crag runners quietly step out from the horsemen’s shadows, eager to do their bit for Him and His children. (-9000 gold towards 1000 T4 crag runners) -More (-7500 gold towards five units of ballistae) -Artillery (-15,000 gold towards five units of magonels) -Spam (-9000 gold towards one unit of trebuchet) 2400 left in vault.
  6. Commonwealth of Ruhn The war rages on, and patriotic citizens sign their names on recruitment parchment. Thousands of honest folk march into the barracks of the Commonwealth, and march out as disciplined soldiers. Speakers walk around the towns and cities, tolling their bells, calling for honest men to seek battle with His putrescent enemies. A man who slays a servant of evil has their sins forgiven, and their soul wiped clean! However, one of the more prominent preachers has little to say about the war. Melchior Hoffman, youngest of the five Veiled Diviners, performs calls of a different sort—to pilgrimage! He-That-Waits has sent him a vision of heavy portent, and the other Diviners have blessed his proposed journey. Parliament is hesitant to grant permission for such a venture, as the far-off East is filled with heathens, pagans, monsters and abominations. Yet no pious man could deny the sacred request. A deal is struck with the merchants of Galahar, and an expedition is prepared for next year. And when it is ready, the worshipers of His holy word shall venture into the great unknown of Naros... Misc. Effects: Colonial Bureaucracy: 400,000 pop required for towns. Tablet of Zakhet: 5% off of all construction prices. Seljin Fish & Chips: 0.25% growth per turn. Accounts: Base Gold: 9,000 gold, Towns/Cities: 45,000 gold, Merchant guilds: 36,000 gold, Population: 31,500 gold, Trade: 24,000 gold from six trade partners (incl. 18,000 gold from six ports), Manufacturers: 20000 gold, The Levers of the Divines: 6000 gold, Major Trade Route ownership: 3000 gold, Harkon’s Gems: 4000 gold, Upkeep: -15,500 gold Total: 163,000 (166,100 gold incl. vault) 3100 in vault -Farmer Poopums spreads his local product over his crops to give it the extra nutrients Poopums is famous for. 😉 😉 😉 (-14,250 gold towards three smelly farm stacks) -Another three internal settlements pop up around the claimed lands of the Commonwealth. Hollenweg, made up of traders tired of dealing with Aschengrube’s guilds, build a supply station on a truly dreadful part of the river. Beggar’s Point is settled by a group of paupers trying to make a new life for themselves on the coast of the Hungry Sea. And Brazier is just a really hot bloody place. (-14,250 gold towards three settlements) -The troops of the Commonwealth Army will no longer have to sleep and train in the open fields, but rather in the impressive drill grounds popping up in many cities. (-14,250 gold towards three barracks) -Faith is one of the greatest unifying aspects of Ruhnnite society. In times of war, the patronage and guidance of the ancestors is needed more than ever. The great monument atop mount Ruhn grows ever more magnificent as craftsmen and artisans are pulled in from all over the Commonwealth. Reliefs of He-That-Waits adorn even the simplest of facades inside and outside the monastery. (-50,000 gold towards completing a great monastery to He-That-Waits, unlocks T4 magic) -The drums of war... (-20,000 gold for four units of T3 veteran medium infantry) -The bangs of drums... (-28,000 gold for four units of T3 veteran heavy infantry) -The bangs of mums. (-4000 gold towards one unit of T3 medium infantry) -With coastal raids now a real threat to Ruhnnite shipping, a small flotilla of fast-moving vessels are hastily constructed in the plethora of Hungry Sea ports. (-15,000 gold towards six galleys) -Preparations for the great journey--supplies, Speakers, diplomats, sailors, etc. (-3000 gold) -250 gold sent to vault, total of 3350 gold.
  7. Commonwealth of Ruhn Every day felt longer than the last, and Wolden could only tell the passing of the hours from the sliver of light that pierced the murky blackness of his cell. He grew to learn the time of day from the position that light took on the mossy stone. He even started marking it, making rough guesses of the time. Once, he tried counting the minutes in an hour, but the monotony drove him to have conversations with himself. He welcomed such small bouts of madness--anything to keep his mind occupied during the endless days and nights. But today was a good day. The best day of the week! It was the day for prayer! The day he could breathe fresh air and stand in the sunlight--if only for an hour. It always began at midday when the sun was at its peak, and he couldn’t wait to feel the warm rays on his face. Speaker Vichas would smile at him, and treat him like a human being. He would be told how he could redeem himself in the eyes of his ancestors. Wolden never knew his family, but he knew now that they’d be ashamed. The light was touching the fifteenth notch he had scratched on his wall. They were a whole five minutes late! What was taking them so long?! His whole body ached to leave the cell. The echoes of heavy footsteps made their way towards him. The sound of jingling keys and shouts from the guards heralded blessed freedom. Clicks, clacks, and the groaning hinges of the thick wooden revealed the hard faces of his rescuing ‘angels.’ “Is it time?” Wolden rasped. He couldn’t even try to contain his excitement. “Nay, we just walked all the way down here to say ‘hello’.” The guard remarked, his voice dripping with sarcasm. He stomped over to Wolden and hauled him on his feet. “Two-one-three, alive and hearty!” He gruffly called out of the cell. He shoved Wolden out the door and a second guard affixed his manacles to a long, heavy chain. Wolden glanced around himself. He could see the man from cell 212 being dragged out by the legs, to his very loud and violent protests. “Two-one-two, alive and all too bloody hearty!” A struggling guard remarked. “Someone help me clobber this animal!” Wolden looked away as two other guards removed wooden clubs from their belts and marched towards the scene. The screaming and struggling abated after a few loud ‘thwacks,’ and Wolden felt a hard tug on the chain. He hated 212. There was a distinct absence of someone in front of him. A guard walked out of cell 214. “Two-one-four, dead.” “Finally!” A growly voice behind him quipped. There was a loud clap, and a yelp. “Shut it, or you’ll be picking your teeth off the ground!” A second voice barked. Wolden felt a small pang of sadness. 214 was always quiet, never pulled at the chain, and spoke his prayers reverently. He was a good prisoner, and he would miss him. It suddenly occurred to him that he never saw 214’s face. What was his name before he came here...? “Walk on, prisoners,” a large guard sneered as he grasped the end of the chain. “Time for your prayers.” He wrenched at the chain, nearly tripping Wolden over as he marched up the flight of steep steps obscured in the dark. Wolden could taste the air changing with each footstep. Would he see a bird today? The stairs stretched flight after flight, and other chained prisoners joined the merry band. Some looked like him, with eyes wide with hope and muted excitement. Others stared forward blankly, their eyes glazed over and silently shuffling up the steps. The rest yelled, jeered, pushed and shoved. The arrogance! How could they act this way before this wonderful moment? Perhaps they needed a few more years contemplating? Wolden hated those prisoners most of all. They always made everything difficult with their idiotic rowdiness and put the guards in a hateful mood. Once, 212 struck a guard, and they didn’t feed the prisoners on his level for two days. Wolden promised himself he would kill 212 if he brought that on him again! The murderous feeling once felt so foreign to him, but now wishing death upon others was as natural as breathing. He wasn’t sure how to feel about it. Probably good. A cold chill passed through his ragged clothes when he stepped foot into the midday light. The air was fresh and crisp -- the smell of firewood, beef stew, and incense was on the air. He glanced around the open grounds of the great prison. Hundreds of other prisoners were taking their places in organised lines, while dozens of Speakers began their sermons and blessings. Wolden shivered fitfully as a stiff breeze cut through his rags like a knife through paper. It was closing in on winter. This would be his second year in the dungeon. He was eighteen winters in age. “Don’t bleedin’ dawdle, slime!” The guard dragging the chain roared. “If you dare keep the Speakers waiting I won’t feed you for a week!” It wasn’t Wolden’s fault! His co-prisoner behind him was picking fights, shouting obscenities, and spitting at guards. The pace came to a complete stop as 212 drove his fist into one of the guards coming to discipline him. Furious-looking wardens began surging towards the wild man, pushing prisoners out of the way with little resistance. Two particularly burly looking men shoved past Wolden, drawing their wooden batons. The beating began in earnest after that. Wolden didn’t dare turn around, lest he draw the guard’s ire. 212’s screams quickly turns to muffled moans, and the strikes from the guards took on a wetter tone--like a washerwomen slapping laundered clothes on a rock. A deep sense of satisfaction swept over Wolden as the moans turned to begs for mercy. Just punishment. Praiseworthy. Minutes went by until the sound stopped completely. The guards pushed past him again, this time leaving bloodstains on his ragged clothes. The angry guard holding Wolden’s chain slowly moseyed up to him, putting his face a hair’s breadth from his own. His breath reeked of beer, beef, and barley. Wolden’s eyes were planted squarely at the ground, not daring to look the man in the eye. “Am I going to have a problem with you too, lad?” Wolden quickly shook his head. “No, sir. I’m here to pray.” The guard grunted, and tugged Wolden’s chain, guiding him to a position in the dead-silent crowd of prisoners. The patient Speakers began their service with the opening canticle. “They wait. They watch. They judge. By His grace and patience, They guide.” Wolden joined in the opening prayer. Today he would pray harder than ever before. He felt shame for his larcenous past. He needed to be cleansed of his sin. He needed to atone. Perhaps today would be enough, and They would forgive him? He never knew if his family had a shrine, but he hoped their bones were being tended to. The sermon continued on for an hour, with readings from the Book of Righteousness and the Book of Work. “A farmer was greatly enriched by a bountiful crop. He traded his millet for handsome cloth and exotic feathers to place in his hat. His acts angered his ancestors, who appeared before him. “You are guilty of the Twin Sins of Waste,” Spoke They. “The waste of wealth; frivolous expenses towards foolish vainglory gain you nothing but contempt. The man in service to coin will drown himself in excesses afforded to him. The man who masters coin will spend it wisely and charitably, both in service to his family, his people, and his ancestors. The waste of pride; to take pride in excess is to take pride in dust. The man who steals to feed his children has a greater right to pride than the man who dons gold and jewels for his own joy and arrogance. The man saw the wisdom in his ancestors words, and burned his new clothes as an offering to honour them.” Wolden liked that passage. There was a small implication that thieves could take pride in something. Not that he was stealing for anyone other than myself. He shook the thought from his head and listened to the final canticles of the service. After the sonorous thanks to the ancestors were gicven, the Speakers divided themselves into two groups. One group took part in serving the prisoners hearty garlic and beef stew, donated to the prison on this day of prayer. The other holy men remained where they were to talk and give guidance to those who asked for it. Most were drawn to the tantalizing smell of the beef, fearing missing out on a taste. A large minority, Wolden included, stayed behind to ask the Speakers questions. Wolden remained at the back, searching the lines for the man he always sought after on prayer day. “Hello, Wolden.” A soft voice spoke at his side. Wolden’s eyes quickly brightened upon seeing Speaker Vichas, his mentor. His trustworthy friend. The man was middle-aged and rail-thin with a wiry beard that reached all the way to his belt. Despite his gaunt features, his kind smile always made the young convict feel at ease. “Hello Vichas! I was looking for you! I liked the sermon today! Could I talk to you?” The Speaker smiled kindly and chuckled. “You would not rather eat first? I know those in charge here are rather stringent with what you poor sinners may have, and beef is not a luxury most here would enjoy.” Wolden quickly shook his head. “No no, Vichas. I can do without!” This only made the Speaker’s smile grow wider. “Your piety shames even we of His Temple, Wolden. Even if you came to His fold later than most.” He placed a hand gently on Wolden’s shoulder. “How is your hand, my child? Do you still feel the pain?” Wolden grasped the knuckles on his left hand instinctively, feeling the void where his ring-finger once was. “It’s not hurt for a long time, Vichas! I should have lost it from my right hand. It was a just ruling. A just ruling...” He repeated the term to himself several more times under his breath before Speaker Vichas regained his attention. “My child, how many more years are you to stay here?” It was as if an ice-cold claw had ripped into Wolden’s stomach as he thought of the rest of his sentence. Images flew through his mind; his cold cell, the stagnant water dripping from his window-sill, the endless days and nights of silence, the fear, the guilt. “Two years,” Wolden quietly spoke. Speaker Vichas moved himself to meet Wolden’s vacant stare. “Do you think you can remain here for two years, my child?” Wolden felt his head shake as if by instinct. Not that he needed to register it consciously. The thought of remaining here for all that time frightened him deeply. “C-could I atone for my sins another way? I will never steal again, Speaker! I swear it! You need to tell them! Would you please tell them, Vichas?” Wolden couldn’t help but let his voice waver as he spoke. He was helpless. He was weak. Vichas –blessed Vichas – could surely do something for him! Vichas nodded his head slowly, and drew Wolden away from the others. “I cannot influence the law, my child.” Wolden felt the icy claw in his stomach tighten its grip. “But,” he continued, “there is a way for you to atone. If you are willing.” Wolden had never been more willing in his life. Misc. Effects: Colonial Bureaucracy: 400,000 pop required for towns. Tablet of Zakhet: 5% off of all construction prices. Seljin Fish & Chips: 0.25% growth per turn. Accounts: Base Gold: 9,000 gold, Towns/Cities: 39,000 gold, Merchant guilds: 36,000 gold, Population: 28,500 gold, Trade: 32,000 gold from eight trade partners (incl. 24,000 gold from six ports), Manufacturers: 20000 gold, The Levers of the Divines: 6000 gold, Major Trade Route ownership: 3000 gold, Harkon’s Gems: 4000 gold, Upkeep: -12,750 gold Total: 164,750 (164,850 gold incl. vault) 100 in vault -Chunko-bunko farmarillos pop up around the mountains of Ruhn’s heartland hand-in-hand with new settlements. (-14,250 gold towards three farm stacks) -Two new settlements are... settled in the Commonwealth’s hinterland. One, named after the late Lord Protector Charles Ortmeir, another, named after the rough skins that flowed down the Loba River, and the third named rather unoriginally. (-14,250 gold towards three settlements) -Military expansion continues. It will continue expand until the enemies of the Commonwealth kneel before its people, begging for mercy. A shame, then, that the Commonwealth has no official procedure or paperwork for ‘mercy.’ (-14,250 gold towards three barracks) -Hunters originating from the hellscapes of Loba are drafted and given quality training from foreign instructors and Hillmen advisors. They will be a firm counter against the foul armour of the Commonwealth’s enemies. (-17,000 gold towards three battalions of T3 crossbowmen, two being veterans) -Hunters from the black forests of the north are drafted and given quality training by foreign instructors and Hillmen advisors. They would blot out the sky with their arrows. (-16,500 gold towards three battalions of T3 veteran medium archers) -Mountain farmers and labourers are drafted from the surrounds of the city of Bruger, and given quality training by foreign instructors and veterans from the Loba campaigns. They would be a steady bullwark against the horrors that may come against the Commonwealth forces. (-10,000 gold towards two battalions of T3 veteran medium infantry) -In the coming military ventures of the Commonwealth, Parliament knew that they would need more than mere soldiers to gain crushing victories against their enemies. The ancestors must be honoured, and He-That-Waits placated if total victory is to be gained. Though some in parliament question the reasoning behind spending such vast sums of wealth on the structure at this recent juncture, the faithful poo-poo them into submission. The great monastery atop Mount Ruhn would be a true sight to behold... next year when they have the funds to complete it. (-50,000 towards a great monastery to He-That-Waits) -The Commonwealth Military Academy begins putting into practice standards and tactics involving field artillery. They decide to splurge on some ballistae... (-7500 gold for five units of ballistae) … and some trebuchets. I mean, they spent all that money researching them, so why not, right...? (-18,000 gold towards two units of trebuchets) 3000 gold added to vault, total of 3100 gold.
  8. Commonwealth of Ruhn Only got my RP post 33% finished before I got busy. Will finish and post it next turn lolol. Misc. Effects: Colonial Bureaucracy: 400,000 pop required for towns. Tablet of Zakhet: 5% off of all construction prices. Seljin Fish & Chips: 0.25% growth per turn. Accounts: Base Gold: 9,000 gold, Towns/Cities: 39,000 gold, Merchant guilds: 36,000 gold, Population: 27,000 gold, Trade: 32,000 gold from eight trade partners (incl. 24,000 gold from six ports), Manufacturers: 20000 gold, The Levers of the Divines: 6000 gold, Major Trade Route ownership: 3000 gold, Harkon’s Gems: 4000 gold, Upkeep: -14,500 gold Total: 161,500 (152,100 gold incl. vault) 100 in vault (-14,250 gold towards three farm stacks) (-9500 gold towards two settlements) (-24,000 gold towards training/arming four units of T3 regular heavy infantry) (-14,250 gold towards three barracks) (-15,000 gold towards three units of regular T3 crossbowmen) (-22,500 gold towards researching trebuchets) (-16,000 gold towards 4,000 T2 light archers) (-24,000 gold towards 6,000 T2 light infantry) (-10,000 gold towards four sets of sandcrawler T4 light armour) -100 gold left in vault Population: 9,152,460 citizens. Cities & Investments: Ruhn (Merchant’s Guild, Temple, Military Academy, Church) Bruger (Merchant’s Guild, Temple) Riveruhn (Merchant’s Guild, Temple) Shatterbridge (Merchant’s Guild, Port, Temple) Leberstadt (Merchant’s Guild, Port, Temple) Barter Town (Merchant’s Guild) Staublund (Merchant’s Guild, Port, Temple) Eichenholz (Merchant’s Guild) Shadowcliff (Merchant’s Guild, Port) Aschengrube (Merchant’s Guild) Carroburg (Merchant’s Guild, Port) Brakkenbridge (Merchant’s Guild, Port) Krokodilsee (Town) Kargholz (Town) Deepwater (Town) Blackwood (Settlement) Deepwood (Settlement) Defensive Structures: Fortress Bergen Other Investments: 36 Farm stacks (39 next turn) 20 Manufactories 6 barracks (9 next turn) Trade Partners: Kingdom of Five, Kingdom of Karel, Auldhuin Hierarchy of Melda, The Passans, Kingdom of Hakkan, Galaharan League, Free Cities, Surya.
  9. Commonwealth of Ruhn Another gust of wind bellowed through the grimy alleyway, sending a deluge of rain down through the unassuming gap between the crumbling houses. The muddy cobblestones were drenched by the freezing water, much to the consternation of the hunchbacked old man who glared angrily out to a busy street barely illuminated by the moonlight. His sharp eyes jumped between those passing by his alley, and for each one he would judge the weight of their purse. Paupers, labourers, cartwrights, and merchants—it took an experienced eye to tell the difference between them. Ruhnnites were not fond of salacious colours or fabrics, so almost everyone wore brown, white, and black cotton and wool. One had to look at other things to determine their craft. Gnarled hands and mud-covered boots pointed to a man who laboured for living. Gnarled hands and clean boots implied stationary labour—smiths, carpenters, and other tradesmen. A baker passed by, with flour still adorning his trousers. A mason lingered but a moment, checking if he remembered to bring home all his tools. Finally, he saw the sort of mark he waited for. A merchant, with buttons that seemed a little too shiny and a bulging left pocket, walked briskly down the sodden road. He was clearly late for something and distracted. He was perfect. Gespart was a thief, or more accurately a spotter. A thief who was too old to work, but had expertise, often gathered around younger thieves as apprentices. He taught his students, picked the marks, and took a generous portion of what they stole as their ‘commission.’ It was effectively retirement for a man his age, and his students often brought in enough to keep his belly full of beef and beer. Wolden, one of these apprentices, was less than thrilled to be in the dingy, cold alley. “Alright, lad.” Gespart hissed to Wolden, “there’s your man. The classy toff with the pocket what jumps an’ jiggles like an excitable bint.” He took a moment to wheeze at his own joke. “Remember what I said. Distract him, your fingers go for a dip, then high-tail it to an alley and make your way back here. If he spots your plunderin’, don’t fight him for it, just scarper. No purse ain’t worth a finger, no matter how fat it be.” The old man withdrew a hand from his weather-beaten cloak, accompanied by a charming, toothless smile. All that remained of it was four grizzled nubs and a thumb. “Take my word for it?” After another wheeze of laughter, he grasped Wolden’s collar with his good hand and pushed him towards the street. “No risks, lad. If you muck it up, I’ll let you have from scraps from my table. What’s it been now, two days without a score?” He pet Wolden’s back with mock concern. “’spose you have to manage it today!” And his peel of cackling laughter echoing in his head, Wolden whisked off into the street. It wasn’t easy surviving on the streets of Ruhn. The Speakers of His Temple were charitable to paupers, but they preferred to take orphans into their ranks when they came to them. Wolden was plenty pious (mostly), but he didn’t really want to clean shrines for the rest of his life. When he started pick-pocketing he had told himself he’d continue until he could afford the equipment for rat-catching--honest work for a man his age. And yet another year had passed, and he still had little to show for it. Theft was a risky occupation in Ruhn, and he needed all his fingers for the future. Learning how to find less risky targets was why he apprenticed himself to Gespart, but that just robbed him of more money. Now he could barely make enough to eat, and the old man loved holding that above his head. The merchant ducked down a small road. It was secluded and full of shadows, but there were too few people in it--good for muggers, bad for pick-pockets. Wolden needed a crowd. Surprisingly, no-one touched the wealthy man as he quickly flew down side-street after side-street, seemingly unafraid of thieves. He was clearly taking a shortcut, but to where? Finally, the man reached a new bridge that stretched between two of Mount Ruhn’s craggy peaks. As he darted across it, Wolden remained in the shadows contemplating the route. He had forgotten there was a bridge here now. That meant the merchant was heading to the Shrine Road. The Shrine Road was once the city’s main thoroughfare during its days as a city-state. A curious tradition began where common folk would build their own shrines for public worship. They added small fragments of their ancestor’s bones here, where the Shrine Tenders could clean and give sermons without having to constantly return to the temples. Inevitably, the road became clogged with bones and preachers, leading to businesses relocating to other streets. The Temple refused to remove the shrines, but recognised the growing problem. They implemented a small reformation which designated certain portions of the city as ‘Grave Gardens’ for the commoners to bury their dead. To this day, the shrines remain and Ruhn’s business districts were heavily congested, confusing spiderwebs of shops and small market squares. The closer Wolden got to the Shrine Road, the larger the crowds became. Even at night the road was populated for prayer and reverence. Bow-backed shrine tenders wearily cleaned their last few bones before trudging back to the hospices to sleep. A small crowd was forming around one of the larger shrines, and the merchant was marching breathlessly towards it. Wolden stood to the opposite of the crowd pretending to pray. The rain had now soaked him through. How he wished he brought that leather coat... “And where were you, Skaval?” A shrill voice spoke behind him. “We were meant to start an hour ago! Poor Speaker Prevald wore his best vestments tonight!” “I was delayed, mother. Business, you understa-“ The shrill voice cut off what was presumably the merchant Skaval. “It’s not about us! Great, great, great Uncle Dolbert was known to be a stickler for punctuality! You insult his soul!” A few quiet voices murmured calmly, just out of earshot for Wolden to make sense of. The shrill voice didn’t seem fazed, however. “Oh by His name, you make excuses for the boy just as his father did! No, I will not be quiet. He ought to have been on time!” As the conversation dragged on, Wolden took a moment to steal a glance at his mark. Rivulets of water drizzled off the hems of the merchant’s wide hat, while an old woman half his size prodded his chest and complained about his tardiness. The young thief could feel the pangs of hunger rumble through his guts like a beast trying to tunnel its way out of his abdomen. He was growing impatient, and it was getting darker. Finally, the woman was satisfied with her brow-beating and pushed her way back to the front of the small - very embarrassed - crowd. But then the merchant walked into the crowd as well, calling after his mother. He was gone. The mark was gone! He couldn’t just push his way into a large family! They all knew one-another! He would call attention to himself if he tried to get in. He could feel his stomach turning over itself, and the vile laughter of Gespart rang in his ears. He needed a new mark, and as if by divine providence, one appeared before him. Lingering on the edge of the crowd was a tall figure, standing at least a head over everyone else. Swathed in a long, black cloak, the freezing rain didn’t seem to affect him whatsoever. What Wolden noticed most of all, however, was the alluring outline of coins pressing hard against the wet material. The rain was loud. The Speaker performing the service almost had to yell. The street was slowly emptying, and the crowd was focused toward the shrine. All their backs were turned. It was almost too perfect. The coins called to him like jingling, golden sirens, promising food, a warm bed, a future beyond thieving. He just needed a little bit! Just enough to get by! He edged over to the man, the rain masking the sound of his steps. The cloth of the cloak was cheap and thin, and his hand moved around it easily to the pocket it hid. One had to be careful when lifting wet material. It would stick to skin or underclothes and give away the intruder before they had a chance to delve into pockets or bags. Wolden continued slowly, inching his way to the wealth within. The rain pounded. His heart raced. His stomach begged. Until finally, his finger brushed against his prize... ... but it did not feel like a coin. It felt like the bones of the shrines. His breath froze in his throat, like a vice had been fastened around his neck. His vision grew dark, and his sensations felt distant, as if in a dream; falling, falling, and falling into an abyss. It was not frightening really, though. It was as if he could hear a seductive voice at its deepest point calling to him. It sounded as if it had been waiting a long, long time for his arrival... The sensation ended as quickly as it began. The cold vice around his throat had been replaced by the very literal vice of the cloaked figure’s hand. His face was obscured by a veil and he spoke in a deep, hollow voice. “And so it was that all men pilfered from their brothers, as the lands were beset by the deceit of the Eye, and the false warmth of the Fire. Thus, He sent the ancestors to the people to warn of their sin.” Wolden struggled against the grip of the Veiled Diviner, but he couldn’t free himself from the iron strength of the man. The faceless Diviner merely looked on continuing his own sermon. “Men who labour not with honest purpose, but with sinful covetousness, are as rats in grain. Their hunger will never be satisfied, their thirst will never be quenched, and their lust will never be sated.” Wolden could not hear the rest of the scripture, as Diviner Melchior Hoffman slowly squeezed the young man’s throat until he fell into unconsciousness. Misc. Effects: Colonial Bureaucracy: 400,000 pop required for towns. Tablet of Zakhet: 5% off of all construction prices. Seljin Fish & Chips: 0.25% growth per turn. Accounts: Base Gold: 9,000 gold, Towns/Cities: 39,000 gold, Merchant guilds: 36,000 gold, Population: 25,500 gold, Trade: 32,000 gold from eight trade partners (incl. 24,000 gold from six ports), Manufacturers: 10000 gold, The Levers of the Divines: 6000 gold, Major Trade Route ownership: 3000 gold, Harkon’s Gems: 4000 gold, Upkeep: -13,500 gold Total: 151,000 (152,100 gold incl. vault) 1100 in vault -The usual farmering goes forth, with farmerers farmering the farms farmerily. The pigglywiggs squee, the cowsies moop, and the sheepoids blyat. (-9500 gold towards two farm stacks) -Rather than expanding territory this year, pioneers make their way to vast expanses of claimed land untouched by others in the verdant hinterlands of the north. (-9500 gold towards two settlements) -The military investments continue, with the first battalions of heavy infantry are trained under hired instructors from outside the Commonwealth. They display the professionalism and discipline all Ruhnnites display, but they are fairly green. (-24,000 gold towards training/arming four units of T3 regular heavy infantry) -Ruhnnites like round numbers. (-4000 gold for one unit of T3 regular medium infantry) -Ruhnnites like the number of soldiers they have to display only zeroes aside from the first number. (-4500 gold towards one unit of T3 regular medium archers) -Militarization continues in the many cities of the Commonwealth. Barracks’ are for both garrisons and training brave irregulars. (-14,250 gold towards three barracks) -Supplies, weapons, and armour are needed to be smithed in bulk, thus Parliament approves of a vast sum of funds to be invested in industrial works around the city. Businesses also take heed, constructing their own factories to take advantage of the new markets surely to come about. (-71,250 gold towards ten manufactories) -More sleepy lizoids are sliced open for science. (-5,000 gold towards sandcrawler armour, total of 10,000 gold spent) -100 gold left in vault
  10. Commonwealth of Ruhn The Grey Manor was originally the personal palace of the Tyrant Reinhart Bruger who ruled over the city-state of Ruhn some one-hundred and twenty years ago. After his death, and with the “agreement” of the Bruger family, authority was slowly and carefully devolved into a series of highly-regulated lordships and noble families. These families would gather and determine the city’s future in ‘court’ of sorts, presided over by a Lord Chancellor who was selected among their number to hold a limited form of executive power. After the ‘Landowner’s Revolt’ of 1458, the nobility ceded some of their authority, in that those whom “performed service in the armed forces or owned land of more than five acres in size” were allowed to “vote” for the Lord representing them in parliament. This system shifted and mutated over a century until it reached its current state. A painting of the Grey Manor upon its completion in 1401. Nowadays the mountainside is surrounded by varying government institutions. The Grey Manor wasn’t really a building, but a space carved into the side of Mount Ruhn with an elaborate entrance building constructed conventionally. The chambers within were a testament to classical Ruhnnite religious art, coupled with extensive stone reliefs of scenes from city life during its monachal heyday. The lack of a historical record prior to Reinhart Bruger made the reliefs some of only clues as to life prior to the Commonwealth. The ‘Parliament’ room itself was simply a refurbished ballroom and still had old carvings of revelry and celebration adorning the walls and ceilings. And it was here where Parliament sat, listening to the end of Ambassador Jurgen von Trapp’s recount of his trip to Surya. To his benefit, he wisely began his report with descriptions of the exotic land, along with the strange foods, religion, attitudes, and infrastructure. There was even curiosity among the more scholarly of the lords of the strange ‘excrement-evacuators’ that were present even in the simplest inns. Such wasteful, needless luxuries! What did they even fertilize their fields with? A painting of parliament’s ‘1488 Incident,’ depicting Lord Trouvin Ribbenbach receiving heated criticism for the ridiculous amulet he foolishly wore in public. Once the final part of the report was being read, the whole of parliament became deadly silent. Faces reddened, heads shook, and some even left the hall. The Lord Protector, Charles Ortmeir, uncharacteristically laughed. Lord Chancellor Charles Bruger stared at the ambassador silently for what seemed like minutes. His hands gripped the pedestal in front of himself so tightly that his knuckles had turned white. Finally he stood in his place, staring directly at the floor. His cheeks were white and jaw clenched so firmly he spoke through his teeth. “I would like to call to order a vote on this year’s budget. I believe it is in the Commonwealth’s best interest to put the Bridge Reconstruction Project on hold in favour of a significant investment in our armed forces. I think it to be appropriate to commission heavier armour and procure designs for siege weaponry from surrounding nations.” The Lord Chancellor inhaled deeply and glared towards the gathered members of parliament, speaking in calm tones. “It is important that the Commonwealth rewards treachery proportionally to how it rewards respect. Show its citizens said respect, honour our good will, and we will do the same regardless of who you are. Deceive us, betray us, and you will learn what it means to oppose honest men.” The voting was fairly one-sided. Misc. Effects: Colonial Bureaucracy: 400,000 pop required for towns. Tablet of Zakhet: 5% off of all construction prices. Seljin Fish & Chips: 0.25% growth per turn. Accounts: Base Gold: 9,000 gold, Towns/Cities: 39,000 gold, Merchant guilds: 27,000 gold, Population: 22,500 gold, Trade: 24,000 gold from eight trade partners (incl. 16,000 gold from four ports), Manufacturers: 10000 gold, The Levers of the Divines: 6000 gold, Major Trade Route ownership: 3000 gold, Harkon’s Gems: 4000 gold, Upkeep: -12,500 gold Total: 132,000 (132,600 gold incl. vault) 600 in vault -Eric, please write me a three sentence story about a poor Ruhnnite pioneer, trying to sell his man-manure to unkind local farmers. It would make me ever so happy. (-9500 gold towards two farm stacks) -With new cities comes humourless, penny-pinching Ruhnnite merchants. At least they’re honest with their prices. (-25,500 gold towards three Merchant’s Guilds) -Two new ports are listed for construction in the coming year. Carroburg and Brakkenbridge were expanding fast. (-25,500 gold towards two ports) -The first major military investment of the year, the armoursmiths of Ruhn and Bruger are given materials, foreign examples, and several new tools to forge thicker, heavier armour for the armed forces. There would be no arrows striking through the New Model Ruhnnite Vanguard, that was for sure. (-13,500 gold towards unlocking heavy armour) -The second major military investment of the year, payments are sent far and wide to knowledgeable foreigners and the School of Natural Philosophy to design and test larger siege weapons for the purposes of destroying pathetic little whelps who might cower behind walls.(-22,500 gold towards unlocking trebuchets) -Five more battalions of soldiers (2500) are put through their training, preparing for the coming conflict with great abandon. (-20,000 gold towards recruiting five units of T3 medium infantry) -Due to a lack of lodgings and space at Fortress Bergen, city-bound barracks are hastily constructed for future training and garrison duties.(-15,000 gold towards three barracks in Ruhn, Bruger, and Riveruhn) -500 gold is sent to the vault, with a total of 1100 gold within it.
  11. “I must agree with the strange man Daleka, of whose name I assumed was so. This is a not a deal but an excuse to destroy another utterly and without righteous logic. The great rift within the Elven people is not caused by philosophy (at least for the most part) but by a cycle of vengeance and re-vengeance occurring since the very conception of separate Elven states. One state grows strong, does harm to another, and when its power inevitably fades, another grows strong, and seeks justice against the one that did it harm. We find one-another in different alliances, we kill one-another in pointless wars, and fumble about aimlessly over the petty intrigues of our city-states. Considering what the Mali people could accomplish with just the barest hint of unity is truly frustrating to the thinking elf. Every century there is a grave sin to be avenged, a dishonour to be righted, a city to be burned, and a way of life extinguished. It will always be this way unless a responsible Elven leader ends the cycle. I have no doubt in my heart or mind that Haelun’or will come out the victor in this scuffle between the Mali. If they are fools, they will act as tyrants and attempt this absurd decree, which will result in scattering the many Elven factions to the hills if not from fear then spite. The Mali’aheral’s numbers and influence will inevitably wane, another faction will grow, and then the next cycle of vengeance will begin. If they are wise, when they win this war they will have the courage and righteousness to find a new way to unite our cousins without a tyrant choking them with chains. If there is one thing I have learned from Elven politics, it is that no faction, culture, or creed remains dominant forever. And the ones below them merely wait for a chance to put them back in their place.” Said a very concerned elf.
  12. Commonwealth of Ruhn “You knows the story of that there bridge, sirrah?” the toothless ferryman wheezed to the old soldier. “Can’t say that I do.” Jurgen replied wearily. He glanced back to his wife, who smiled apologetically to him as she cradled their child. He had walked away to distract the old man, as his constant yammering was keeping his young son awake. “They says the Lobans built it!” He cackled. He pushed the ferry’s rudder to the right, and a shadow passed over the boat. The enormous, isthmus-spanning bridge loomed over them like cliff, and the boat passed through a decrepit hole in a rusted, hundred-meter portcullis. The old man cackled again, as he watched the family stare upwards at the majestic structure. “Them Lobans were a miserly lot, not fond’er getting thar feet wet ‘n such. So’z they made this ‘ere bridge to save their fancy feet from the damp!” Another bout of wheezing cackles seemed to echo beneath the bridge as they passed back into the open air. “Folks weren’t as tough as they is now! Mountain folk were still praying to them Loban fires too, I reckon!” “Loban fires?” Jurgen asked, half-interested. “Aye, sirrah! Lobans prayed to fires, they did! S’all sorts ‘a fire whittlings on the bridge! They called the fire ‘Moterr’ and painted rocks pink and scribbled Moterr’s face on ‘em!” The kook shook his head with a sad chuckle. “Ign’rant savages, they was. They didn’t know ‘bout the bones. Gotta pray to the bones, sirrah!” He capped off this statement by rattling a set of fingerbones he had on a necklace. Jurgen nodded his head slowly, now deeply regretting taking such a cheap ferry. The trip to Brakkenbridge seemed to drag on longer than it should. It might be faster had the old man refrained from ducking and weaving beneath the bridge as they sailed. “‘Course, maybe it were a heathen wardin’ ritual ‘er somethin’. Put Moterr’s face on everything, an’ keep away the Mountain Ghosts!” He placed a kiss on his fingerbones, and murmured a prayer to them. Once more the old man’s statement piqued Jurgen’s curiosity, if only for a second. “Mountain ghosts?” He queried half-heartedly. “Aye, aye, aye! Evil spirits that lay to the east in the cursed mountains! They’z bereft o’ peace and no folks want to calm their tortured and dishonored spirits! ‘Cept for me, sirrah!” Now Jurgen was paying attention. He turned to the old man and spoke sternly. “You have been to the eastern mountains? Did you see anything?” “Eh?” The madman stared back at Jurgen, as if surprised someone was listening to him. “O’ course I have! The grey peaks of dismay! The dread, sirrah! The dread! The fear that gnaws at your ears an’ worms into your skull! They are watchin’, sirrah! They is always watchin’!” The old man shivered, and hugged his sides while his wild eyes darted around the calm waters beneath the bridge. “Sometimes I can feel the eyes on me again. Like I was back. Deep in the crumbling peaks and lost to the world. The hills lookin’ all the same. The maps, worthless. And the feeling on the back o’ your neck that something’s there. Something’s waitin’ for you to get tired and to look the wrong way only for a second. Like something don’t want you there. And the dreams...” The old man paused as he stared blankly out into the water. His grip tightened on the rudder and his jaw clenched. “A single, unblinkin’ eye. Peerin’ at you from the dark places of your soul. Never approaching. Never leaving the shadows. Jus’ watchin’ you. Always.” “Why did you go to the mountains?” Jurgen asked quietly. “The old man cackled loudly, kissed his fingerbones, and muttered a prayer beneath his breath. The trip was fairly quiet after that. The Levers of the Divines – the world’s greatest engineering marvel – now returned to clunking, clattering, churning life. The enormous construct lifted ships from the Hungry Sea up the steep cliff sides and waterfalls into the Loba River, which would then sail off to the free city at the end of the waterway. Every city and town that had positioned itself along the winding river happily rubbed their hands with glee, knowing that they finally had a reason to be living in the perpetual hellscape that was the Loba Desert. The scholars at the School of Natural Philosophy are ecstatic, and allow themselves a singular, triumphant ‘hurrah’ within their lecture halls before getting back to their studies. There were other Loba treasures to rebuild and investigate, after all... Misc. Effects: Colonial Bureaucracy: 400,000 pop required for towns. Tablet of Zakhet: 5% off of all construction prices. Seljin Fish & Chips: 0.25% growth per turn. Accounts: Base Gold: 9,000 gold, Towns/Cities: 33,000 gold, Merchant guilds: 27,000 gold, Population: 21,000 gold, Trade: 18,000 gold from six trade partners (incl. 12,000 from four ports), Manufacturers: 10000 gold, The Levers of the Divines: 6000 gold, Major Trade Route ownership: 3000 gold, Harkon’s Gems: 4000 gold, Upkeep: -12,500 gold Total: 118,500 (121,350 gold incl. vault) 2850 in vault -Standard pioneers, standard farms. What can I even write about this any more? Maybe I should give up. (-9500 gold towards two farm stacks) -With a larger budget than previous years, Lord Protector Charles Ortmeir petitions parliament to forge thousands of sets of armour for the frontline soldiers. The idea of his men facing a force like the Hakkan with mere iron mail both worries and irritates him. (-42,000 gold towards T3 armour for 9,250 soldiers) -The unceasing efficiency of Ruhnnite pioneering has become a near artform. Not only can cities be erected quickly, city expansion itself is now been standardised and optimised. Of course, with standardisation comes rules, and with rules comes hundreds of pages of new paperwork. The Office of Pioneering and Resettlement must sure be pleased. (-42,750 gold towards upgrading three cities) -Two new settlements are plonked down, officially ending phase one of the Commonwealth’s official expansion plan. (-9500 gold towards two settlements) -A group of plucky leathersmiths have made their way down the southern fork of the Loba river. Hoping to turn the implacable sandcrawlers into a profitable armour business, they spear and study the skin with great attention. (-5000 gold towards sandcrawler armour) -Seeking trade with the strangers to the far west, an expedition is sent out to find and offer trade. Now that a major artery of trade was open, nothing was beyond the reach of the Commonwealth’s envoys. (-2000 gold towards Surya expedition) -Another missive is sent to the Free Cities requesting trade. Now that the river had opened again, surely they would be interested in mutually beneficial commerce? If not, well... 600 gold remaining in vault.
  13. Commonwealth of Ruhn The Commonwealth of Ruhn is a land permeated by a fervent belief in duty, discipline, and piety. Each citizen knows their place in the world, and stride through life with righteous purpose. But there are those who transgress against the laws of the Commonwealth, for even the generous liberties afforded to citizens are not enough to abate the natures of men. Commonwealth law focuses deeply on punishment over rehabilitation, and hard labour is long, cruel, and isolating. Every day, Speakers from the temples make small pilgrimages to the dungeons where the refuse of society sits and festers. Murderers, thieves, vagrants, and rapists count the hours in silence, only allowed the chance to speak and socialize when the time comes for prayer. To those whose sentences last for years, the moments of prayer are the only light in their misbegotten lives. In time, many begin to understand the frightful, ultimate truth—they are a sinner. Their ancestors would be disgusted with them, and their bones would be tossed into the mud unmourned and untended. Guilt begins to overtake them as they pray. In the few moments they have in open air, they approach the Speaker leading the service. Is there a way to make peace with their ancestors? How could they redeem themselves in the eyes of He-That-Waits? And the Speaker will tell them that there is a way to utterly cleanse them of sin. The march to Fortress Bergen is grueling, as no rest is allowed with the exception of midday and evening prayer. The prisoners, still wrapped in their heavy chains, are given little food or water, and those that fall are allowed a few minutes to stand, or be tossed down the side of the steep cliffs. This horrible treatment is tolerated by the prisoners, as redemption is offered only to those who make the journey. Those of weak body and will are slowly culled from the ‘pack’ as they trudge along the long, steep, winding path. The last leg of the Vulture Highway is littered with old, rusting weapons and hollow abandoned villages. Both are temptations to the prisoners insincere in their devotion. The weapons are unusable, and should their ward touch an old sword the guards cut them down without mercy or reprieve. Those that slip away from the group are ignored and left behind—starvation will be their reward, and should they reappear, they are killed on sight. There are no second chances for these people, and even the accompanying Speakers show no pity. Roughly a third of the prisoners arrive at the fortress malnourished and exhausted. When they enter, their chains are removed and they are treated to a hearty dinner of barley and beef stew, and allowed generous time to sleep for the night. After midday prayer the next day, they are assessed. The men and women are sorted out from one-another and put into small ‘units’ under the command of a veteran soldier. They are taught to fight with axe and mace—the simple weapons of the honest soldier. Training lasts from dawn until evening, with only a break at midday to pray. They are fed well and treated with respect by the soldiers at the fortress, for they were clean of the sins from their previous life. For a month the training continues, until finally the second assessment begins. The larger, stronger men are sent to the veteran infantry regiments, and the women are pulled away to perform other duties to the state. The rest are divided into two groups, depending on their own preference and heavily influenced by the opinions of their trainers. One group focuses on short blades and shields, while the other focuses on javalins, bows, and crossbows. Individuals are switched and swapped between until all have found their proper place. A year of physical training, long marches, mountaineering, field craft, and the recruits are ready for the final assessment. The regiments are sent out to hunt bandits, tribesmen, and any lawbreaker who might make their homes in the countryside. They hunt their former fellows and bring them to justice - capture or kill - and send the living to the dreaded city dungeons. And that is how the Commonwealth recruits its specialist infantry. Misc. Effects: Colonial Bureaucracy: 400,000 pop required for towns. Tablet of Zakhet: 5% off of all construction prices. Seljin Fish & Chips: 0.25% growth per turn. Accounts: Base Gold: 9,000 gold, Towns/Cities: 30,000 gold, Merchant guilds: 27,000 gold, Population: 19,500 gold, Trade: 18,000 gold from six trade partners (incl. 12,000 from four ports), Manufacturers: 10000 gold, Harkon’s Gems: 4000 gold, One time dispensation from lord Karx: 3500 gold, Upkeep: -9,500 gold Total: 111,500 gold (116,100 gold incl. vault) 4600 in vault -Pioneers spread across the ranges of Commonwealth territory in an attempt to build their own ranches and villages. (-9500 gold towards 2 farm stacks) -A worrying build up of military forces are noticed in the neighboring Kingdom of Five. Parliament pushes through a bill to increase spending on the soldiery in the current moment, and further on in the year. (-29,000 gold towards 1000 T3 regular Hillmen, and 500 T3 veteran Hillmen) -Frustrated still, the scholars continue their work. It seems that He does not yet wish the project to finish. Such is the way of His hand and His will. The Scholars struggle onward despite the small setback. They were so close! So close!! (-10,000 gold towards researching the levers, total of 70,000 gold invested. Please let this end, Eric. 😞 ) -There was something... nebulous on the horizon. Something frightening and worrisome. Claims of dreams guiding mad kings, and strange men far to the West make the simple people of Ruhn worried. The Veiled Diviners petition parliament for yet another monument to the Lord of Thereafter. A vast hermitage is planned for construction to surround the great shrine on top of Mount Ruhn. Living spaces, artworks, monuments, and complexes of bone pepper this great structure. The smallest hint of Loba influence might be noted by those who are learned in history. (-50,000 gold towards hermitage for glorious death god, unlocks T3 magic) -The moment the crawlers are found, every hunter exploring the Loba Desert charges south to find them. Ragged settlements begin to dot the southern waters, eventually coalescing into ragged, shabby village. Here the hunters drag back their catch for skinning, while local researchers dissect the remains for study. (-4750 gold towards a settlement near the ameniable sand-crawlers) -2850 gold left in vault.
  14. Commonwealth of Ruhn Life goes on mostly as normal in the Commonwealth. The usual economic investment is partially undermined by a magnificent new church in the capital proudly perched on a jutting cliffside. Reinforced by Loba-derived supports and stonework, it is yet another edifice surely to earn the Ruhnnites more favour with their patron Lord. But despite these creations, strange rumours abound in the city of Ruhn as gossiping merchants and soldiers jabber in the markets and taverns. It is said that an envoy from the Kingdom of Five – a nation with little diplomatic ties to the Commonwealth beyond trade – arrived shortly after the expedition from the West returned. Whispers abound of foreboding visions from their heathen pig-king and requests for alliances and pacts to ward against the Western mountain men. The superstitious commoners are dizzy with fear at such a notion, and some are even angry that parliament did not even humour such requests. Visions, even from heathens, ought to be taken seriously. The temple Speakers work long and pious hours to suppress such ignorant thinking from the simple folk, and it is quietened for the most part. The learned men of the School of Natural Philosophy pray for success in their endeavour to uncover the secrets of the ancient Loba levers. Almost a decade of study had now been invested into this structure and in that time a large city had sprung up around the site. The Lord Mayor of Leberstradt had already invested in a port and merchant quarters in anticipation of the ancient trade network reopening. Interest in the Loba and their ancient works increased drastically in the city forthwith, with recreations of Loba trinkets being sold in the market places. They are reasonable recreations all things considered, with the exception of having the symbols of Metar replaced by the righteous glyphs of He-That-Waits. And speaking of He-That-Waits, the citizens and parliament of the Commonwealth of Ruhn are pleased to learn that such a pious and righteous people could be birthed from the repugnant barnacle that is the city of Lem. Parliament happily accepts an opportunity to engage with honest folk, and offer a representative of the Commonwealth to visit them in their new city. Citizens hailing from the city of Shatterbridge quietly settle a new town on the other side of the isthmus. Mainly made up of retired soldiers and pioneer farmers, they establish themselves at the eastern entrance of the ancient bridge, mirroring the city over the water. Curiosity grasps a small sect of Ruhnnite scholars about the Woeful Mountains to the east of the Seljin Straits. The time had come to finally end the mystery, and seek out the source of the Commonwealth’s frustration. A small party is sent south, skirting between the terrible deserts of the Loba and the distressing mountains. They would seek the answers they needed from the Kassadenian Guard at their very home. What was it they were guarding against, anyway...? Misc. Effects: Colonial Bureaucracy: 400,000 pop required for towns. Tablet of Zakhet: 5% off of all construction prices. Seljin Fish & Chips: 0.25% growth per turn. Accounts: Base Gold: 9,000 gold, Towns/Cities: 27,000 gold, Merchant guilds: 21,000 gold, Population: 18,000 gold, Trade: 15,000 gold from six trade partners (incl. 9000 from three ports), Manufacturers: 10000 gold, Harkon’s Gems: 4000 gold, Upkeep: -9,500 gold Total: 94,500 gold (95,500 gold incl. vault) 1000 in vault -The Office of Pioneering and Resettlement accidentally files a few papers in the wrong places, and a whole county in the countryside of Eichenholz is ordered to relocate precisely fourty-five kilometres to the east. This makes a number of less successful farmers quite happy for the opportunity of richer pastures but annoys the local magistrate, due to him no longer having anyone to rule over. (-9500 gold towards 2 farm stacks) -Money. The root of all good things in the world. The Lord Mayors of Eichenholz and Shadowcliff tend to agree. (-17,000 gold towards 2 Merchant’s Guilds) -Why send millet and barley south by road when one could simply ship the goods out of the city itself? A bustling port is established somewhat informally by unscrupulous and shady merchants in Shadowcliff. Due to the Lord Mayor being mostly incompetent, he simply throws money at the people who want to build it, and gives himself the rest of the day off. (-12,750 gold towards 1 port) -With great bands of strangers popping up on the horizons of the known world, entrepreneurs open their own businesses to take advantage of future markets, and prepare themselves for opportunities that may present themselves...(-11,900 gold towards 2 trading companies) -The Mausoleum of the Pious officially opens, much to the pleasure of the First Speaker and the Veiled Diviners. Melchior Hoffman himself officially opens it, and performs the first service within its splendid hall. The ancestors would no doubt be greatly pleased by such a wonderful structure built in their honour. (-19,000 gold towards a church in Ruhn) -The eager scholars can smell success in the air! They were just so, so very close to cracking the great mystery! Whole fields of math had been discovered in the process of unraveling the functions of the Loba Levers, and morale is high. Will the plucky scholars finally work it out, or will this merely uncover the next riddle...? Find out on Monday, 20th of May, Belgoid Time! (-10,000 gold towards research into the Levers of the Divines, total of 60,000 gold invested) -Plucky colonists from Shatterbridge make their way across the isthmus for the purposes of building a new town away from the hustle and bustle of the busy city. (-4750 gold towards a settlement) -With most of the Loba River secured, and their curiosity of the dreadful western mountains sated, the hunters start a thorough search of the river east and south for the fabled, thick-skinned sandcrawlers. Their skin would fetch a fine price, and ones to find their home would be wealthy men indeed... (-5000 gold towards searching for the origin of the sandcrawlers) -The expedition to the Kassadenians is prepared. First, they send a message ahead, but the group plans to leave before they get a reply (can’t allow them an opportunity to deny them a visit, can they?). Headed by Captain Konrad Ziet of the Second Cavalry Battalion, twenty horsemen would act as protection, with ten crag-runners serving as scouts and survivalists. Along with the civilian scholars, three acolytes from Ruhn come with them. Just in case the desert is more unforgiving than usual. (-1000 gold towards a small scholarly expedition to the Kassadenians) -A message is returned to the good Lord Karx that the Commonwealth would be happy to establish relations with the pious people of Hwait. They offer to send a representative over to speak on the future of their city and possible trade agreements. -3600 gold sent to the vault, total of 4600 gold.
  15. Commonwealth of Ruhn I’m sick no RP this week. Ruhn met Surya and they stunk of poo! Weeheehee! Misc. Effects: Colonial Bureaucracy: 400,000 pop required for towns. Tablet of Zakhet: 5% off of all construction prices. Seljin Fish & Chips: 0.25% growth per turn. Accounts: Base Gold: 9,000 gold, Towns/Cities: 24,000 gold, Merchant guilds: 21,000 gold, Population: 18,000 gold, Trade: 15,000 gold from six trade partners (incl. 9000 from three ports), Manufacturers: 10000 gold, Harkon’s Gems: 4000 gold, Upkeep: -9,500 gold Total: 91,500 gold (96,000 gold incl. vault) 4500 in vault (-9500 gold towards two farm stacks) (-28,500 gold towards upgrading two towns into cities) (-9000 gold towards unlocking crossbow technology, 10% discount from School) (-38,000 gold towards four temples) (-10,000 gold towards researching the Levers of the Divines, total of 50,000 gold spent) (1000 gold remaining in vault) Population: 6,013,868 citizens. Cities & Investments: Ruhn (Merchant’s Guild, Temple, Military Academy, School) Bruger (Merchant’s Guild, Temple) Riveruhn (Merchant’s Guild, Temple)(Next turn) Shatterbridge (Merchant’s Guild, Port, Temple)(Next turn) Leberstadt (Merchant’s Guild, Port, Temple)(Next turn) Barter Town (Merchant’s Guild) Staublund (Merchant’s Guild, Port, Temple)(Next turn) Eichenholz (City)(Next turn) Shadowcliff (City)(Next turn) Aschengrube (Town) Eland (Settlement) Defensive Structures: Fortress Bergen Other Investments: 24 Farm stacks (26 next turn) 10 Manufactories
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