The Coming of the Zioth

The Three Kingdoms

All three of Rangplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big The Kingdom of Rang

Overview

Rang is a huge kingdom, covering more than a million square miles, and extending from the Great Sea to the Ice Sea. It dominates the area politically, militarily and religiously. Rang is a monarchy, led by King Diure LXIV, but its immense size weakens the central government. Most feudal lords manage their lands independently, and only answer to the king in the loosest sense. The king does have several pockets of power, such as in Huerten, which allow him to maintai…
's western neighbors are dominated by the same variety of Andrithanismplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big Andrithanism

Based on original ideas from Karl Schinke (Ardith). Symbols for aspects other than the Mother, along with the artwork, were contributed by Myron Wyles (Halaren).

Andrithanism and its variants are the dominant religion in Rang and the surrounding kingdoms. Within the boundaries of
as is Rangplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big The Kingdom of Rang

Overview

Rang is a huge kingdom, covering more than a million square miles, and extending from the Great Sea to the Ice Sea. It dominates the area politically, militarily and religiously. Rang is a monarchy, led by King Diure LXIV, but its immense size weakens the central government. Most feudal lords manage their lands independently, and only answer to the king in the loosest sense. The king does have several pockets of power, such as in Huerten, which allow him to maintai…
. All share the same language, Gallian, but the Mezonese commons do not speak it. Rather, they speak a hybridized offspring of Rouchplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big Language

Rouch

Rouch is the vernacular, or common tongue, spoken throughout Rang. Because of Rang's influence, it's also a trade language in the surrounding kingdoms.

Sarnam

Sarnam is the “old tongue,” spoken by the priests of Andritha. Most of the nobly-born are familiar with the language.
and Gallian known as Mezonese. As in Rangplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big The Kingdom of Rang

Overview

Rang is a huge kingdom, covering more than a million square miles, and extending from the Great Sea to the Ice Sea. It dominates the area politically, militarily and religiously. Rang is a monarchy, led by King Diure LXIV, but its immense size weakens the central government. Most feudal lords manage their lands independently, and only answer to the king in the loosest sense. The king does have several pockets of power, such as in Huerten, which allow him to maintai…
, a large percentage of the clergy and nobility converse in Sarnamplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big Language

Rouch

Rouch is the vernacular, or common tongue, spoken throughout Rang. Because of Rang's influence, it's also a trade language in the surrounding kingdoms.

Sarnam

Sarnam is the “old tongue,” spoken by the priests of Andritha. Most of the nobly-born are familiar with the language.
.

Each is roughly equal in size and power, and all currently have strong central monarchies, unlike Rangplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big The Kingdom of Rang

Overview

Rang is a huge kingdom, covering more than a million square miles, and extending from the Great Sea to the Ice Sea. It dominates the area politically, militarily and religiously. Rang is a monarchy, led by King Diure LXIV, but its immense size weakens the central government. Most feudal lords manage their lands independently, and only answer to the king in the loosest sense. The king does have several pockets of power, such as in Huerten, which allow him to maintai…
, which has power fairly well- distributed among semi-autonomous nobles.

Mezonee, with Cour-du-Roi as its capital, is located in the northeast of the region, and claims to be the oldest of the three (a dubious claim at best). Mezonese legend holds that an ancient king of the 200s, Guillame the Dragonplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big Dragons

Last updated for turn 216

There is a wide variety of stories about dragons. Some tell of majestic and benevolant beings who are willingly given tribute. Others tell of horrible, mindless creatures who think of nothing but destruction. Dragons in myth range in size from smaller than a blade of grass, to larger than Aerv itself.
-Slayer, founded their kingdom and their capital. Allegedly a paragon of nobility and martial prowess, he is said to have gathered a Fellowship of Knights with which he unified all the area of the three kingdoms as the kingdom of Mezonee, converted the heathens to the worship of Andrithaplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big Andrithanism

Based on original ideas from Karl Schinke (Ardith). Symbols for aspects other than the Mother, along with the artwork, were contributed by Myron Wyles (Halaren).

Andrithanism and its variants are the dominant religion in Rang and the surrounding kingdoms. Within the boundaries of
, and held tribute from parts of what are now Terradiaplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big The Free States of Terradia

Terradia is a region to the southwest of Rang, separated from that great kingdom by the Koril Mountains. Most trade and travel between the two regions is done through waterways, as they are much more passable than the Koril Mountains. Terradia is bordered on the south and west by the Great Sea (or the Heirului Sea, as it is called in most of Terradia), and on the east and north by the Koril Mountains.
and Rangplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big The Kingdom of Rang

Overview

Rang is a huge kingdom, covering more than a million square miles, and extending from the Great Sea to the Ice Sea. It dominates the area politically, militarily and religiously. Rang is a monarchy, led by King Diure LXIV, but its immense size weakens the central government. Most feudal lords manage their lands independently, and only answer to the king in the loosest sense. The king does have several pockets of power, such as in Huerten, which allow him to maintai…
. Legitimate historians hold this to be complete literary invention. For one, there is no real evidence that Guillame ever existed. Second, there is reason to believe (albeit reason contested by the church), that Andrithanismplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big Andrithanism

Based on original ideas from Karl Schinke (Ardith). Symbols for aspects other than the Mother, along with the artwork, were contributed by Myron Wyles (Halaren).

Andrithanism and its variants are the dominant religion in Rang and the surrounding kingdoms. Within the boundaries of
did not exist as early as the 200s. Most convincingly, however, is the evidence that the practice of knighthood did not begin until early in the 300s. Nonetheless, the commoners and many of the nobles, not only of Mezonee, but also of Gallia and of Lyonnele, take the legend quite seriously. It is true that the knights of Mezonee, in striving to emulate the alleged prowess of the Fellowship of Knights, train extremely rigorously and are thus some of the finest heavy cavalry of the known world.

Gallia, located in the southeast of the region, has borders with both Terradiaplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big The Free States of Terradia

Terradia is a region to the southwest of Rang, separated from that great kingdom by the Koril Mountains. Most trade and travel between the two regions is done through waterways, as they are much more passable than the Koril Mountains. Terradia is bordered on the south and west by the Great Sea (or the Heirului Sea, as it is called in most of Terradia), and on the east and north by the Koril Mountains.
and Rangplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big The Kingdom of Rang

Overview

Rang is a huge kingdom, covering more than a million square miles, and extending from the Great Sea to the Ice Sea. It dominates the area politically, militarily and religiously. Rang is a monarchy, led by King Diure LXIV, but its immense size weakens the central government. Most feudal lords manage their lands independently, and only answer to the king in the loosest sense. The king does have several pockets of power, such as in Huerten, which allow him to maintai…
. Gallia is a very hilly country, and much of its wealth derives from these hills. Many have excellent conditions for grape-growing, and others have been used as sheep pasture as long as anyone can remember. Marais, on Gallia's southern coast, has grown wealthy through export of wine and of wool from the hills of Gallia.

Lyonnele, based in the city of the same name and the westernmost of the three kingdoms, is the poorest of the three. 150 years ago, after a lengthy war with Mezonee, the Lyonnese economy was shattered and the Lyonnese king slain in battle, leaving the two branches of the royal family to maneuver for guardianship of his two-year old son. A lengthy civil war erupted which was only settled when church soldiers under Draclau, Rector of the City of Lyonnele, arrested the few surviving members of the royal family for treason against the late queen (who was assassinated early on in the fighting). With popular credibility in the crown shattered and with the nobility decimated in the fighting, very few protested when Draclau joined the offices of Rector and king. The Lyonnese crown has stayed with the Rector of Lyonnele since then.

Religion

All three kingdoms are dominated by the same variety of Andrithanismplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big Andrithanism

Based on original ideas from Karl Schinke (Ardith). Symbols for aspects other than the Mother, along with the artwork, were contributed by Myron Wyles (Halaren).

Andrithanism and its variants are the dominant religion in Rang and the surrounding kingdoms. Within the boundaries of
as in Rangplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big The Kingdom of Rang

Overview

Rang is a huge kingdom, covering more than a million square miles, and extending from the Great Sea to the Ice Sea. It dominates the area politically, militarily and religiously. Rang is a monarchy, led by King Diure LXIV, but its immense size weakens the central government. Most feudal lords manage their lands independently, and only answer to the king in the loosest sense. The king does have several pockets of power, such as in Huerten, which allow him to maintai…
.

Ancient Gallian religion had a huge pantheon of gods in its myths, but it revolved around a single “heroic family”, for which the other gods were largely things to conquer. This family consisted of:

  • The Sky-Father: King of the gods, and patron of rulers and great nobles.
  • The Earth-Mother: His wife, and patroness of agriculture, serfs and women.
  • The Bloody Son: Their elder son, a fierce warrior, and patron of soldiers and the minor nobility.
  • The Burnt Son: Their younger son, a blacksmith, and patron of artisans and freemen.

Both sons were married, but their wives are barely mentioned. The ancient Gallian religion was never very organized, and gave way relatively easily to missionaries of more organized faiths as they came in.

Serfdom

In the Gallian kingdoms, the traditional feudal order still holds much more strongly than in Rangplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big The Kingdom of Rang

Overview

Rang is a huge kingdom, covering more than a million square miles, and extending from the Great Sea to the Ice Sea. It dominates the area politically, militarily and religiously. Rang is a monarchy, led by King Diure LXIV, but its immense size weakens the central government. Most feudal lords manage their lands independently, and only answer to the king in the loosest sense. The king does have several pockets of power, such as in Huerten, which allow him to maintai…
. The kingdoms are largely agricultural, with the military elite of the minor nobles ruling over serf-worked manors, and answering to the major nobles, who themselves answer to the King. Cities and towns are few, and tend to be built with the aid of specific crown charters so as to attract the limited freeman class. They are governed strictly by Royal Governors who answer to the crown. The Church is the best bet for a peasant or freeman in the Gallian kingdoms to get ahead, and even that is largely reserved for the nobility.

Gallia itself has a highly compact political structure compared to its neighbors, due to its history of wealth and peace. The king holds a great deal of personal land, and the next level of nobility, which seems to be a fairly random assortment of dukes, counts, marquesses and barons, is more often than not the lowest level. One side-effect of this unusual structure is that there are a great many knights and gentlemen with large manors over which they have almost complete power.

A Story - The Blood Master of Gallia

By Corbynplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big Corbyn Wren

Corbyn is a 19 year old man with straw colored hair (indeed his thick locks greatly resemble a thatched roof upon his brow). He is quite thin and has rather spindly limbs that are nevertheless quite agile. Despite his youth, he wears the short robes of a scholar over his breeches and introduces himself as a tutor for hire. He prefers scarlet cloth for his robes and more pedestrian materials for his trousers.
Wren (turn 209)

“So Milady Mia, I am not sure what you may know of the Three Kingdoms, but they are distant lands and it sounds like you have not had the opportunity yet to roam into the great west. But you no doubt have heard some accounts of those realms. We refer to them as the Three Kingdoms because of their close proximity and shared history, but there have been countless numbers of wars and less widespread disputes between the three countries. We probably do not do them justice by just referring to them as the Three Kingdoms because there are differences that set them apart.

“Gallia is a hilly country famed for their great wine, but they are not the only one of the Three Kingdoms that makes wines of exquisite character. Gallia is the nation that produces and exports the most wine to the west, but Lyonelle is home to several vineyards. According to legend, this is due to one poorly misunderstood old farmer.

“You see, while the Three Kingdoms theoretically share one language, there are substantial differences in the local dialects that are not always readily understood. It does not matter for the high and mighty who speak to each other of important affairs in Sarnamplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_big Language

Rouch

Rouch is the vernacular, or common tongue, spoken throughout Rang. Because of Rang's influence, it's also a trade language in the surrounding kingdoms.

Sarnam

Sarnam is the “old tongue,” spoken by the priests of Andritha. Most of the nobly-born are familiar with the language.
, but the common people from different ends of the Three Kingdoms will often have difficulty conversing with each other. Oh, they can understand each other well enough, but it takes some effort and there is always a bit of confusion along the way.

“As I heard the tale, there was an old farmer from southern Gallia who had spent more than fifty years in the fields owned by his lord, turning seeds into bottled wine every year. The old farmer was skilled and became the head of the vineyard he worked at, earning the title Visto Mest. Now in the Gallian version of Mezonese, that means master wine maker. Visto is the Mezonese word for blood, but the Gallians also use it to refer to wine because they view wine as the life-blood of their country.

“But the years had taken their toll on the farmer and with the passing years it became harder and harder for him to supervise distant fields from dawn to nightfall. So the lord that owned his vineyard decided the old farmer needed a vacation, the first of his life. The prospect of a trip terrified the man, as it would any tiller of the earth who had never strayed more than a dozen leagues from home in his life, but he could not refuse an order from his lordship.

“So the farmer was given the task of bringing a cart full of grape plants to a distant cousin of his lord in the Kingdom of Lyonelle. That way the farmer could care for the plants along the way and make sure they reached their destination alive. With the old farmer he sent a young page from Mezonee who had traveled between Gallia and his homeland, but not to Lyonelle. This will turn out to be important.

“The two set off with a driver and a guard and I do not know if anything interesting befell them on the long trip, that is not part of the tale I learned. But I do know what happened when they reached Lyonelle. The traveling farmer and young page were many leagues into Lyonelle when they came to stay at an inn along one of the larger trade roads. Also staying at the inn was a noble lord of somewhat foul questionable temper, his difficult nature arising from a constant ache in his back, the result of a riding accident in his youth.

“Well it so happens the young page had taken to leading the little company escorting the grapes and negotiating with the locals, even though his understanding of the Lyonelle dialect was quite poor. Thus, upon arriving at the inn he had introduced himself as a page serving a noble family and the old farmer as a respected Visto Mest. But Lyonelle did not have the same heritage or affinity for wine that Gallia did. The the ears of people in Lyonelle, Visto Mest meant simply 'Blood Master' rather than 'Wine Master.' So, in the local parlance, the page had identified the old farmer as a great healer.

“The noble lord and his retinue overheard this introduction of course and immediately demanded that this respected doctor attend to his lordship as the bad back of the fellow was proving especially troublesome. Thus, the secretary for the lord demanded that the farmer use his skills as Visto Mest to aid the suffering nobleman. This of course, confused the young page and absolutely terrified the farmer. He had no idea why this great man wanted the skills of a wine-maker, but he could not refuse such an important man.

“Tell me Milady, do you know what happens to the first crop of grapes that are plucked from the vine? How the cream of the crop is juiced?”

“Yes, they stomp the grapes to release the juice, the very best juice to make into the first batch of the season. So can you guess what the old farmer did when the traveling lord demanded that he use his skills upon him? He told the lord to lie down on the floor and then proceeded to walk all over his back. The lord's party looked at him askance but the noble fellow himself was willing to listen to a renowned healer from Gallia. The lord screamed in pain at first and the farmer could all but feel his head leaving his shoulders, but after the initial rush of agony, the process appeared to soothe the lord's pain. You see the farmer was quite expert about kneading his grapes just so and the effect on the muscles of the back proved to be quite beneficial, at least temporarily. The lord was so delighted he paid for a banquet for the farmer and his company.

“The farmer and the page intended to carry on with their mission the next day, but as it turns out, the traveling lord was headed in the same general direction and decided to join them on the road. While the lord felt much better than he had in years, a day in saddle led to more pain. So that night he demanded a better solution from the farmer. The farmer, still terrified and fearing for his life, went to his wagon and fetched out – well he fetched out a wine press. That is what you use on the grapes after the first wave of juice is stomped out of them. It looks rather like a vise or an unpleasant torture implement.

“You can probably guess what happened next. The farmer clamped the wine press on and the lord spent a night sleeping with device holding his back in place. This time, the farmer's solution kept the pain away for three whole days before the pain of riding caught up with the lord again. And of course the lord turned to the Visto Mest to assuage his pain again.

“But at this point the old farmer was bereft of ideas. He still did not truly understand why he, a wine-maker, was being asked to use his knowledge on this great lord, but since the lord seem to pleased with the results the farmer had little choice but to continue. But after the wine press, the physical treatment of the grape is done so the farmer was unsure of what to do next. In a panic, he settled on the only thing he could do.

“I am sure Milady knows what happens to the grape juice after it has been freed from the husks?”

“They wait for it to ferment?” Mia replied.

“Yes, it goes into the barrels. So the farmer told the lord he should pack himself into a barrel for the night, and given the success of the prior treatments the traveling lord agreed with the proposal. And fortune continued to shine upon the farmer, for sleeping in the narrowed confines of the barrel forced the lord's spine into a proper shape and alleviated the pain of the day. And from that day hence, this Lyonelle lord spent two nights a week in a barrel, and amazingly enough it improved his temper a great deal.

“The paths of the farmer and the traveling lord diverged soon after, but the lord was so grateful for the remedies provided that he bestowed a great gift upon the farmer. He granted the wine-maker ownership of a fair sized tract of land with a request that he should bring his Gallian arts to Lyonelle. And once his mission was done, that is exactly what the farmer did. He obtained leave from his Gallian lord and some grape plants of his own and moved his family to Lyonelle where they started the first of the Lyonelle vineyards and where his descendants have risen greatly in prominence and wealth.

“And to this day, according to the story, there is a noble line in Lyonelle whose members all wear a rather odd necklace – a simple metal strand holding a single cork – all because long ago a great healer informed their ancestor that keeping a cork in place would keep one free of foul influences. Like the barrel, it seems to have worked for them.”