Tauria is a republic, and has experimented with the ideas of democracy. That is, it used to be a republic. Now its a dictatorship, masquerading as a republic, with laws permitting the army to be thugs.
The California of the Cosmic Era, Turkey
"Aye, Averoth! Land of banditry and corruption. Not a place for the faint o' heart, let me tell you. So's me and me mates went for a spell in them plains. We was lookin' for treasure, see, and them rovers and corrupt barons had it. So's we went, killed a bandit or two, maybe a couple o' orc tribes, and we made a fortune. 'Course, when we hit the Capital, we lost it all to thieves, hookers, and drink, but still, the memory of the weight of that sack..."
-Old Gerald, man in the pub.
topled down glory, and trod upon by time. Doth thy hollowed splender diminish? Nay, for Palisander, you grew bright in the imagination, always out of reach.
The Lairdlands of today are a peaceful seaming region of dairies, sprawling farmlands, and pastures of horses and cattle in the sunlight.
If it was a castle, it was the strangest one he had ever seen.
He of course saw the main tower - taller than anything he had seen outside of Stoneholt, the spire looked fragile and was topped by a glassed-in chamber.
The outer wall was so gently sloped that it would have only stopped a horde of hobbling old men, an able-bodied soldier could stride up to its crest with little effort. Within one saw a huge, nearly perfect bowl-shaped area with the base of the tower in the centre, covered in hundreds of mirrors.
This structure is a massive solar collector designed by the Wizard-King Aardwal in centuries past. He used the concentrated light in his investigations into the magic of light, and in the fashioning of flash crystals.