An Exalted Empire
The city was and still is a major waystation for trade along the Northbound Route out of the Three Streams Province. It has been an independent small city-state for most of it’s time, and tends to keep politically neutral. The city expanded when trade increased dramatically over the last century. It calls a few outlying villages as belonging to it’s banner, but has never been interested in expanding it’s control much farther.
The ruler of the city-state is Enno-Choi Kam, a middle-aged man that has ruled as hereditary lord for more than twenty years. He is focussed on matters of trade, but has become increasingly worried about the expansion policy of Iyo-Chin and has begun to counteract some of the influences.
Population: 5.200 Citizens plus approximately 200 transients at any one time
City-watch: 100, supplemented by mercenaries and soldiers in certain districts
Military: 250 professional soldiers, 200 mercenaries on hire, up to 1.500 militia levy
Goods and Services: Trade Way-Station (Services mostly), some farm goods
Primary influences: The Guild, Rauken’s Swords Guild (Mercenaries)
Primary Language: Forest Tongue, Riverspeak
The city has no thorough layout plans and grew organically. Three of the four districts into which the city is divided are encompassed by a stone wall of maybe four meters height. The wall was built about half a century ago when marauding warbands threatened the existence of northern cities.
This district is the primary location for all transient visitors to arrive, stay, and leave from. Most never see much beyond this district. It is moderately wealthy, sporting good shops and crafters, and plenty of taverns and sleeping halls.
It is the busiest place in the city and rigorously policed by the hired mercenaries to keep trade flowing without disruption.
Government-district. Named as it is due to an urban legend about the current dynasty’s first ruler kneeling on the steps of the Lord’s Hall (primary government building) and asking the old lord to retire and hand over the city’s reigns to him. He kneeled for three years until despair drove the old lord into madness, and then was named ruler.
The district is the wealthiest and houses the nobles and rich of the city, as well as a slew of the middle-class. There are fewer services and shops, but those present are nominally of higher quality. The standing soldiery acts as guard and city-watch in this district.
Though the forest is a good five kilometers away, this district is closest to it and named after it. According to histories this district may have at one point be bordering the forest truly, though the treeline receded over centuries.
Forest’s Edge is the common man’s place, where they live their lives and work. The city-watch patrols this district and tries to keep strife to a minimum.
Named as it is for being outside the wall, this district is primarily made up of farms, homesteads of small-scale artisans and loggers that wander to the forest for days at a time. It is the place least safe, but in turn provides a bit more wealth than the Forest’s Edge district, due to the increased amount of artisans.
The city-watch patrols this district in larger groups at night, sometimes supplemented by the military or volunteers from the population.
The city-leader is worried (rightly so) that Iyo-Chin is trying to extend their reach farther into the north, taking Dai’i Chuy as part of their growing nation. Sentiments rise among the people and dissent is spreading.
Various factions hold influence within the city.
Rauken’s Swords Guild represents the standing mercenary force hired by Dai’i Chuy as additional military force. They are well-paid and so far remain mostly loyal to the local ruler. Iyo-Chin has made advances on Rauken, the leader, promising much more coin and good employment in the future for his support, but so far the man has rejected the offer.
The Guild carefully retains a facade of neutrality in the trade-war, though behind this mask things look mighty different.
Some Iyo-Chin Supporters exist within the population. These people see Iyo-Chin as a good force and wish to become part of it’s realm without moving away from their home. They want Dai’i Chuy to join up without having been forced to do so.
On the other hand exist the Loyalists, which maintain that Iyo-Chin isn’t the better path for the nation-state and wish it to remain independent.
The Military has so far remained loyal to the local ruler, though there is some small shadow-war going on in the higher echelons, a vying for dominance between several leaders that want to define the course of history.
The actual government is obviously loyal to their lord and the official bureaucracy has begun finding ways to intimidate or otherwise urge supporters of Iyo-Chin to leave or bury them in fines, bureaucratic paperwork or the like.
- Enno-Choi Kam, ruler of the city-state. Middle-aged bald man, platinum-rimmed glasses. Soft-spoken and mature.
- Loi-Shau Tuan, chancellor and spymaster for Enno-Choi. A wizened man with sharp intellect and many plans prepared ahead of time. He has an unruly shock of white hair and brown eyes.
- Bao-Chei and Bao-Chun, the two brothers that act as Servant-Guards to Enno-Choi.