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Offline Alec_Shadowkin

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Byrlothia
« on: May 23, 2005, 04:27:00 PM »
“Hello? Who are you? Where did you come from? You don’t remember? Well, you certainly don’t look like you’re from around here, with those outlandish clothes. What exactly is a nie-kee? Well, perhaps the Sky-Lords brought you here from another world, it has been known to happen. In any case let me help you up. There, that’s better, now let us get you inside, you look parched and I’m sure you could probably use some food, eh? I thought so. Come along, its not far.

What? Where are you? Why, you’re in Byrlothia, on the island of Mutani. No, it’s actually pretty small. If you look off that way and kind of squint your eyes a bit, you can just make out the island of Tythanus, that’s the biggest island. Yep, that’s right, nothing between Tythanus and us, just air. These islands fly. I don’t think anyone’s quite sure why, though plenty of religious fanatics could give you their opinions, I’m sure.

Hmm… it’s already midafternoon. I hadn’t realized it was getting that late. I usually take a nice walk after lunch; it’s a good way to clear my head before going back to work. Oh, I’m a historian and a Tal-Magi. Cornelius Yulani, pleased to meet you. Yes, magi means wizard, I can cast a small number of spells, nothing very impressive I’m afraid, but it’s a talent not a lot have. Wait, what’s that? No, over there, flying toward us. Oh! Quick, get under those trees!

Whew, that was close. No, that was a Dragon Mage. Probably out looking for some poor soul to murder so he can power his infernal Staff. You don’t know about them? That’s probably a good thing. They’re not exactly pleasant people. Come along, only a short ways to my house.

Here we are, my humble abode. I know that it’s not much, but I can stay hidden; not too many people live out here, so I’m able to keep my privacy easily. Well, I need my privacy, you see, I’m a member of the Byrlothian Resistance and if the Dragon Mages were to find me I’d have a rather short life expectancy. As it is I’ve had to move out into the middle of nowhere. I used to live in a large city on Tythanus, but we found the Dragon Mages searching for me and I was moved out here. No, actually I like it. I have all the time I want to work on anything I feel like.

Well, we can get you out of here in just a day or so. The Gwynith will be flying past tomorrow morning and I can place a signal so she’ll land, then you can go wherever you’d like. We can always use new people to join the Resistance, but you’re certainly welcome to leave for any place you’d like. An assistant? No, I don’t have one, though I can’t imagine what I would have one do. You’re sure you wouldn’t rather join an airship crew, or just go off and try to make a living in one of the cities? Really? Ok, we can give it a shot. Yes, I can try to teach you magic, though don’t be surprised if you can’t, most people aren’t able to.

Yes, this is a rather interesting place, I suppose. I’ll do what I can to get you used to living here. Byrlothia is big and there’s a lot to learn. You’ll need to be careful or you’ll end up in a lot of hot water.


Just remember: Keep one eye looking forward and the other on the sky.
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- "You're Hells Angels, then? What chapter are you from?"
- REVELATIONS, CHAPTER SIX.

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Offline Alec_Shadowkin

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Byrlothia
« Reply #1 on: May 23, 2005, 04:41:26 PM »
The World of Byrlothia


Brylothia is a major work in process. I am looking for any and all help/suggestions/criticism/commentaries people are willing to give. I am working on following Moonhunter's suggestd task of "ten posts in ten days", with this thread alone, which will hopefully force me to get as much as possible down for you to all read and, hopefully, enjoy. Again, let me know anything you think of, I'll definately appreciate it.



Themes and Images:
   The Dragon Mages are the ultimate rulers of Byrlothia. These Pah-Magi(false wizards), as they are called by the populace, gain their power through the capture and enslavement of souls. They have control over a number of dragons (hence the name) and are complete dictators of the races of Byrlothia. The Byrlothian Resistance was formed to combat the Dragon Mages.

Worlds Specs:
   Byrlothia is a series of flying islands with no greater ocean or landmass below. These islands are orbiting in set paths, determining the calendar, as well as other things. The islands themselves are mostly of a plains terrain, with a number of small woodland areas spread throughout. There are three tiers of islands, a middle tier, where most of the inhabitants live, a lower tier, darker and much warmer, which is mostly uninhabited and an upper tier, which is extremely cold and has no known inhabitants. There are rumors of a tier below the lower tier, but no one who has attempted to travel there has ever returned.

Terrain:
   The islands are composed of a lightweight but hard coral-like material called aeristite, created by the digestive processes of a species of large grub called an air-worm. These grubs also excrete a gas that is lighter than air. This gas becomes trapped in the tunnels that the air-worms burrow through, holding the islands aloft.

Flora/Fauna:
          Byrlothia contains earth-like plants and animals. More specifically, it contains plants which resemble various earth plants: ferns, palm trees, funguses, scrub brush like holly bushes and some vegatables, etc... These plants are strains of the species which do not require a lot of water to survive, and some of them even store water, such as the suka tree(resembles a coconut palm, but it stores water in its trunk like a cactus).
          The animals of the world are also both similar and different from Earth animals. There are eagles, racoons, squirrels, frogs, and others that we have here, but there also fantasy creatures. I will be making a thorough post about these fantastic beasts later, but for now I will just give the example of the wrok. The wrok is a massive hawk-like bird, large enough for two full-grown men to ride it. It feeds on smaller avians like eagles. There is a tribe of humans to the harthern coast of Harandis which has the wrok as its totem and tames these magnificent birds as guardians and mounts.

Resources:
   The most important resource in Byrlothia is water. The islands have no standing water and they rarely get rain (a light shower every few weeks at best). Any rain they do get is immediately sucked up by the plant life. Granite is another extremely precious resource, as is any stone or ore. The aeristite contains little amounts of other minerals, except for that of the islands in the lower tier. These islands are loaded with great amounts of various minerals, which explains their lower altitude, compared to the middle tier.

Races and Peoples:
   The races of Byrlothia are few, but varied.
Humans: Humans are the most barbaric among the races of Byrlothia. Typically living in yurt camps, there are several tribes, each taking after a patron animal, such as the horse, boar and eagle tribes. They tend to stay away from the more civilized races, except for when interested in trade. The humans average around 6 feet in height with many variations in hair color and eye color. They tend to have tanned skin, due to their outdoor style of living.

Elves: The elves are the most common race amongst the islands of the middle tier. They are great airship flyers; the most famous captains are from among the elves. A few of them have the innate ability to control magical forces and enter into one of the many sects of sorcerers. Elves are a few inches shorter than humans, on average, though the females are generally taller than the males. They tend to wear their usually dark hair long and in a braid. They generally have lighter colored eyes and an off-white shade of skin.

Dwarves: The dwarves are among the greatest the craftsmen on Byrlothia. They typically stand about 5 feet in height, with dark skin, brown or reddish-brown hair and dark eyes. The dwarves used to live mainly on the island of Lesser Harandis, but when the Dragon Mages came into power, they were arrested and transferred to the other islands in order to make room on Lesser Harandis for whatever plans the Dragon Mages had. While dwarves are usually slow to anger, mention their usurped birthland and you’d better have somewhere to hide.

Kreesha: The kreesha are a race of cat people, said to have descended from a mythological demi-god who frequently took the form of a humanoid cat. Whether this is true or not, the kreesha are an amazing people. Standing tall, with an average height of around 6 and a half feet, they are extremely lithe and agile, with massively powerful legs, allowing them to propel themselves a full 8 to 10 feet straight up from a standstill. Their fur color ranges from white to gray to black to brown and everything in between and their eyes are generally green or yellow, with an elliptical iris, just like normal cats. They have claws, which they can retract into their hands, and a kreeshan who has training with a weapon is rare, as they take a great pride in unarmed combat using their own claws.


Cultural Overview:
       The sentient species of Byrlothia are at peace with one another as a whole. The Dragon Mages are from all the different species of the islands, the only major conflict is directly related to the tyrannical rule of the Pah-Magi.

Calendar/Standards:
   There are ten months in the calendar of Byrlothia, dictated by the movements of the four largest islands in the upper tier that are visible from the middle tier. In order from the beginning of a halo (year) these months are: Darth, Syim, Toral, Castan, Portou, Jhaleg, Makim, Tyril, Yasa, and Bortha.

       Their directions are different than ours, since, without an actual planet, there is no magnetic pole to determine direction. Instead, the Byrlothians use the alignment of the four islands of the upper tier, which never changes as their standard. Their four main directions are harth, milin, rek and fult.

Institutions-Major:

Laws and Morals:

Family:

Social classes:

Political Power:
       The only political power in the world is held by the Dragon Mages. Different Dragon Mages hold control over different areas of the dominated islands, ruling with extreme cruelty. The Byrlothian Resistance holds no actual power, though many people of the world are collaborators to one extent or another.

Economics:
        The main standard of currency on Byrlothia is water. Gold and silver hold minor value as luxuries and can be used to buy things, but water is so limited that a man with a moderate amount somehow stored (a moderate amount being maybe 50 - 100 gallons) is considered filthy rich. A couple examples of exchange values is two gallons of water for a well-forged sword or enough bread, cheese and killik (an alcohol made from the fermented fruit of a myria bush) to feed a man for a full three days. A well-trained horse may cost up to 10 gallons of water. Obviously, carrying water around in these quantities is difficult, so there are bone coins made which have a magical sigla on them to prevent counterfeiting. One coin is the equivalent of a quart of water and can be turned in at any water-repository (like a bank, water is delivered to the repositories from the water-plants for distribution) for an equivalent amount of water.

Religion:

Technology and Common Power:

Military Weapons and Tactics
Industrial/ Production
Medical
Agricultural
Communication
Math and Science:
Construction
Information:
Other Knowledge

Holidays:

Transportation:

Arts/Literature:

Power:

Paranormal:
      Magic is a diverse issue on Byrlothia. There are a number of different "schools" followed by different people of the world. The most readily noticable and publicly known is the soul-magic of the Dragon Mages, siphoning energy from captured souls to create mystical(usually destructive) effects.

The barbarian humans train their shamen and wise-women in the practice of moon magic, or natural magic, this magic uses the excess energies of nature itself. The strength of a moon magic practicioner waxes and wanes in relation to the current phase of Silvanus, the largest of the three moons of Byrlothia. Natural magic is(obviously) oriented in the physical, creating food and water, helping crops grow, forseeing the future weather patterns and enhancing natural abilities of hunters being the typical uses.

The elves and dwarves use rune magic. They draw sigla on objects, gesture them in the air or tattoo them on themselves, with different combinations of runes producing different effects. This style of magic is very exacting in practice, requiring the memorization of dozens of runes and all their myriad of combinations. The uses of rune magic are widely varied, with different combinations of runes being able to accomplish almost anything, though the current practicioners have little knowledge of the nuances of this magic, and so far have yet to learn how to do much with these runes.

History Brief:

Rules:




Like I said, a work in progress. I plan to fill in the remainder of this worksheet, then continue on and flesh out other areas, such as the magic system, etc.... Let me know what you think!

5/26 Updated Economics, Calendar/Standards, Flora/Fauna
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Offline EchoMirage

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« Reply #2 on: May 24, 2005, 03:56:20 AM »
I' just curious what is at the very bottom - a sea with those worms making islands?  
I actually have got a setting of my own very similar to this, with floating islands and a lack of resources.  
 
Where do they get the water from? I'd imagine that the steppe humans would have quite a difficult time obtaining it... yet they do have to.  
 
In my setting, the people used bone, wood and leather to compensate for a lack of metal... what do they use in yours? Biotech? (Fleshsculpting?) The same like mine? Something totally different?
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Offline Alec_Shadowkin

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Byrlothia
« Reply #3 on: May 24, 2005, 03:13:14 PM »
This will all be explained in full later on, but I'll answer your questions now, since I don't know when I'll get to it.


1. "What's at the bottom?"

Answer- Nothing. The world is composed of an atmosphere filled with air, and these numerous islands floating in their various tiers. The islands themselves are the only landmass, and there is no body of water in the entire world larger than a puddle, and even a puddle is extremely rare, usually only found in inefficient water-plants. The inhabitants of Byrlothia have no knowledge of any part of their world beyond the three main tiers of islands. They have yet to discover a way to travel to the upper tier without succumbing to oxygen deprivation or hypothermia and while the Gonme of the lower tier are suspected to know of what is below their tier, the other races can't get a word out of them about it and have no tolerance for the higher pressure or scalding temperatures, as well as the massive and violent storm which rage below the lower tier.


2. "Where do they get their water from?"

Answer- The majority of their water comes from a few different plants. One is a tree much like a palm coconut tree in appearance. Water is stored in its trunk, similar to a cactus Another is a fern that grows to the size of a large car and grows fist sized pods which store water. These two plants, as well as a couple others can be found in the wild, but the inhabitants of Byrlothia have cultivated them to create farms or water-plants, providing the main sources of water for the populace. Most of these water-plants are currently controlled by the Dragon Mages, allowing them to charge what they want in taxes for the water to be supplied to the citizens of the middle tier, though the Resistance has built two of their own water-plants, and they, along with the wind-pirates, frequently conduct raids on the plants controlled by the Dragon Mages.

3. "What do they use in Byrlothia to compensate for a lack of metal/mineral deposits?"

Answer-  The lower tier of Byrlothia is lower for a good reason, the islands are heavier. They contain rich deposits of granite, bronze and iron, and other minerals such as gold and silver. A race known as the Gonme live on the lower tier and are well adapted to the higher atmospheric pressure, higher temperature and they provide the races of the middle tier with shipments of minerals in exchange for water and wood, which grows poorly on the lower tier.
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- REVELATIONS, CHAPTER SIX.

-- Death in conversation with a biker (Terry Pratchett & Neil Gaiman, Good Omens)

Offline Incarnadine

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Byrlothia
« Reply #4 on: May 24, 2005, 08:00:11 PM »
Have you looked at any different Flora/Faun for the islands? Obviously, a world made of floating rock is going to have some very different animals- for example, almost no land animals would be dangerous enough to kill a human (the islands are too small to effectively support a decent quantity of these creatures). The air, however, would be host to a whole plethora of killing machines, which could be very fun to explore.

The flora would be different too. A lack of water means that many cactus-like plants would exist. Off of the islands, gas balloons that condensate water on their outsides would be common. Funguses also.

Just ideas to throw at you.

Offline EchoMirage

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« Reply #5 on: May 25, 2005, 09:06:47 AM »
I'd actually expect some Avians to have developed sentience on such a world.

Another note: when people find themselves transported into this world, can other things too? I imagine shards of destroyed worlds floating around, sunken cities vanished from the ocean floor - just think of the PCs stumbling upon a fragment of Atlantis, all covered in seashells and algae, or a piece of Pompeii, charred and covered in ash... or a piece of Alderan :)
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Offline Alec_Shadowkin

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Byrlothia
« Reply #6 on: May 25, 2005, 09:19:38 AM »
Echo, that is a fabulous idea! It would make for a great campaign arc. I'm planning on working on this world throughout the summer, and then when I go back to school at the end of August I'm going to start a small game with a few friends who I know I can depend on. Perhaps I should have them run into a small section of an ancient city, floating among the islands of the lower tier  :twisted:
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- REVELATIONS, CHAPTER SIX.

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Offline Alec_Shadowkin

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The Cast
« Reply #7 on: May 30, 2005, 09:33:58 AM »
This is an ongoing list of major NPCs for Byrlothia. Each one will get a short bio for now, and I will write them up more completely when I have the time.


Captain Roland Tiberious Ferell:
            Captain Ferell is the commander of the BRS Gwynith. He is a daring air-ship captain, repeatedly striking at the Dragon Mages, though he has had no great defeats and has never been caught. The younger members of the Resistance look to him as a rolemodel. Ferell is elven, just over 6 feet in height, average weight. He has long black hair that he keeps tied back in a pony-tail, and he wears a necklace with the fangs of a drakulian he killed after it murdered his first officer.

Cornelious Yulani:
             Purportedly one of the greatest Tal-magi currently alive, Cornelious is a member of the Resistance council. He lives in almost total seclusion on the island of Mutani and spends his time trying to unlock secrets of the rune magic. He knows how to do more than anyone else in the world and usually has one or two apprentices learning from him and assisting him in his research. He is an older elf, with a short-cropped grey beard and green eyes which glow, ever so slightly.

Uln-Kaegara
              Kaegara is the leader of the Wrok Tribe. He stands at an impressive 6'7, extremely tall for a human, clean-shaven with short brown hair and rides a wrok which he calls Iseenari(ee-see-nar-ee) which, in the human tongue, means sky-guardian.

Red Sharpe
             Currently the leader of the Wind-Pirates, Sharpe is known as the world's greatest thief. He was the mastermind behind the theft of the island of Sala. He is of average height, elven with long black hair that he keeps loose. He is usually seen with a specially made scimitar at his belt and his soft grey eyes can render almost any woman speechless in seconds. He is extremely charismatic, and also extremely clever.

Sorry, ran out of time for any more. I will add to it most likely tomorrow.
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Offline Alec_Shadowkin

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The Drakulia
« Reply #8 on: May 31, 2005, 08:11:33 PM »
Drakulia are known for their cruelty and their total and unflinching loyalty to the Dragon Mages. They were created during an infernal process involving soul-magic and a number of dragon larvae. The process spawned this race of intelligent, humanoid, dragon-blooded lizardmen. The drakulia are vampiric. They each have a set of hollow fangs, used to drink blood from whatever creatures they manage to get ahold of. The blood is digested in a special organ the drakulia have, then the remains are stored and used for various abilities the creatures have, such as an acidic spit and a slimey coating they can excrete which allows them to climb walls and ceilings. The creatures are usually used as troops and airship crews.

Personality:
        The drakulia are malicious, savage, greedy and angry by nature. Unfortunately, they are also loyal to a fault when it comes to the Dragon Mages. They fight amongst themselves, but only when they have no task given to them by the pah-magi. Drakulian ranks are determined by strength of arms and combat expertise, as well as cruelty. An example of their nature is as follows: A drakulian first officer, if he sees his capatin showing any sign of mercy to an enemy or a crewman is expected to kill the captain on sight, to prevent the weakness of compassion from spreading.

Physical Description:
         A typical drakulian is about 70 inches in height. They are slender, though muscular, with sharp claws, a pair of fangs and short tails, usually tipped with small barbs that they use on combat. Their eyes are usually grey or black, and their scales range from mottled brown to green to grey. They have no body hair and they usually have sharp ridges on their foreheads. Their bodies are normally covered in battle scars, more often than not from fighting with other drakulia.

Relations:
         Drakulia are willing to prey on anyone they feel is weaker, whether that is a human, elf or other drakulia. They take perverse pleasure in killing another being, though thety don't torture without reason. If they kill it is quick, considered unhonorable if the death is drawn out unneccessarily. That gives no great comfort to victims of the draculia, however, since the creatures are expert killers and rarely have a survivor.

Religion:
         Drakulia worship no god, as such. They don't have any religious sense, and only worship the Dragon Mages as instinct from their genetic and magic coding.

Language:
         The drakulia speak a gutteral, rasping language, known only to themselves. Dragon Mages who work with the lizardmen regularly, come to understand a few phrases and choice words, usually orders given on a regular basis.

Names:[/u]
         Most drakulia have two names: one is their "flesh" name, the one that Dragon Mages and other non-drakulia know them as. The other name is their drakulian name, only known by other drakulia. The draculian name is unpronouncable to any without the tongue and vocal chords of a lizard or dragon.
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Offline Alec_Shadowkin

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Byrlothia
« Reply #9 on: June 03, 2005, 03:25:43 PM »
Thieves of the Sky
         If you were to travel to the rekward end of the middle tier, you would find a series of islands, all small, almost as if they are pieces of what was once a larger island. In the middle of this stretch of tiny islands, there is a hole. The space is large enough to fir one of these small islands, but there is nothing there but air. In fact, an island used to be there, it was called Sala, and it was stolen.

         A group of people, mostly elves and dwarves, with a few kreesha and humans, form what are known as the Wind-Pirates. Imfamous thieves to a tee, they are the sole source of blackmarket trade for raw goods and water in the world, and they make sure things stay that way. They have a small fleet of ships, sleeker and faster than the ones used by the Dragon Mages or the Resistance and regularly perform raids on various water-plants and they will attack transport ships if given the opportunity.

         The biggest problem faced by the Wind-Pirates at one point, was weight vs speed. If they were to steal water or a large amount of goods, their ship would be so laden down that they had a difficult time getting away with the plunder. They were rarely caught, hence their continued existence, but they still would take heavy damage to their crews and ships trying to escape with their spoils. Until Red Sharpe, came along, that is.

         Sharpe is currently the unofficial leader of the pirates, considered public enemy #1 by both the Pah-magi and the Resistance council. He is a shrewdly intelligent elf, with a head for tactics and sailing both. He joined the pirates in his 50's(relative to late 20's in a human) after being caught by them while he operated on his own, something very much looked down upon(read: the offender will likely have few limbs left over when the pirates catch him) by the wind-pirates, and his skill was so impressive that instead of teaching Sharpe a lesson, they recruited him. Shortly after joining, he invented a way to use a secondary engine crystal to store energy for what he described as a jump. The premise being that once the raid was finished and the ship needed to escape, they would activate this jump-stone, and the ship would be hurtled hundreds of feet upward, depleting the power of this secondary crystal, but effectively getting them away from any pursuers.

         With this new system implemented, the pirates' "business" increased substantially. They needed a place as a headquarters, somewhere they could hide out without fear of being caught. Previously they had been forced to move to a new location two or three times a year. Again, Sharpe came to the rescue. Under the cover of night, the pirates worked in five seperate groups and installed special engine-crystals to the cliff-edges of the uninhabited Sala, allowing them to move it like a slow airship. When people living on nearby islands awoke the following morning, Sala was gone. Unequivocably the greatest heist in Byrlothian history, the story has become a legend, told to young boys the world over.

          Red Sharpe and his pirates now live on Sala, slowly moving it around the fringes of the middle tier, completely unlocatable by any authorities. They steal water and goods, that they then sell to the general populace, as well as to both sides in the world conflict. It is said that they have an outstanding relationship with the gonme of the lower tier, allowing them great access to ores and other supplies.

            Without a doubt, these pirates are known of the entire world over and anyone managing to catch them would be rewarded beyond their dreams, though with Sharpe in charge, the chances of this happening are non-existant.
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- REVELATIONS, CHAPTER SIX.

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Offline Alec_Shadowkin

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« Reply #10 on: June 04, 2005, 04:00:25 PM »
A Dissertation on Soul Magic: How the Pah-Magi came to be

Dragon Mages. Pah-Magi. Soul Eaters. However you name them, the tyrants of our world have discovered a practice of magic before unheard of. Considered infernally evil beyond belief, with their soul magic the Dragon Mages have unquestionably become the most powerful users of the arcane arts in Byrlothia. In this essay I will try to explain the origins and mechanics behind the Dragon Mages and their power.

Part I: Solarin Rindaal

About one hundred and twenty years ago, there was an elf named Solarin Rindaal. He lived on the island of Harandis and was a rune-mage. He was originally just a normal person, had a wife and a child and was content to research the runes at his leisure, occasionally unlocking a new glyph.

When Solarin was in his late 60's(relative to about 30 years human), he lost his wife and child in a freak storm. His sanity rapidly dissolved. He became obsessed with finding a rune combination capable of bringing his family back to him. With year after year passing and him not seeming to come any closer to a solution, he finally snapped. The frail bit of mind he had left to him died, and he went mad. He started branching out, despite his friend's plees. He experimented with the human moon magic, hoping that the power of nature could restore his beloved and his only child. When that failed, he delved even more into the mysteries of the arcane. He discovered a mineral known as solinium that, when touching a person at the moment of death, would become slightly warm to the touch. He gathered a large quantity of this mineral, hoping to discover its secrets.

What he discovered has been the bane of our existance ever since then. Solarin figured out that when the mineral became warm, it was actually absorbing the soul of the dying person. His decayed mind found a way to pervert this and harness the energy of the absorbed soul. He failed trying to bring his wife back from the Land of Endless Waters, but also realized the power he had at his control. He began to assert this power, destroying those he deemed his enemies and taking over small towns and villages. Within a year he had a small kingdom at his control, and a number of followers equally disenchanted with the power of runes. They began making staves that they would coat with the solinium. These staves allowed then the power to conquer the majority of the middle tier. It also gave them control over the dragons of the world, gaining them faithful mounts. Another use of the magic was to pervert the larvae of a number of dragons, spawning the race of the drakulia, giving the pah-magi troops to enforce their rule.

Solarin is alive to this day, using the soul magic to extend his life beyond nature's intent, keeping him young so he can remain in power. He is the most feared and hated being in Byrlothia.

Part II: Soul Energy

None of the tal-magi of Byrlothia are entirely sure how the soul magic works, but we have determined a few things.

I. While normally, when an individual dies their soul passes to the Land of Eternal Waters, being absorbed into solinium prevents this passage, trapping the soul on our world. When the soul is siphoned from, it slowly is killed, so that the soul actually passes out of existance. For the poor beings captured in this way, there is no land of Eternal Waters. When enough of their energy is siphoned off, they simply cease to exist.

II. The dragons held in the pah-magi's control actually feed off of the souls themselves. In effect, the dragons are not so much held  or enchanted against their will. They have complete free will, but the source of food from the dragon mages' staves bribes them into submission. Again, these dragons are not dominated in any way, they choose to work with the dragon mages out of sheer greed for the sustenance of the soul energy.

Until we manage to unlock much more powerful glyphs and rune combinations, I fear the general populace of Byrlothia will be unable to break the chains cast upon us by these evil magic-users. I myself am considered an accomplished rune-mage, but I can do little more than levitate fairly light objects and create small flames. Either our magic must be increased, or we must find another way of destroying the dragon mages.

~Cornelius Yulani
    written Jhaleg, 829
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Offline Alec_Shadowkin

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Rhuinopolis: Heart of Byrlothia
« Reply #11 on: June 06, 2005, 05:37:21 PM »
Overview

Ruled over by the Dragon Mage Nistrum Seth, Rhuinopolis is the capital of the middle tier and considered by its residents to be the greandest city in the world. It is massive, almost 25 miles across with a gigantic airship dock, a huge and legendary garden, an open-air marketplace known around the tier and it is populated by all the races of Byrlothia: elf, human, dwarf, draculia and gonme. Despite its ruler being a pah-magi, Nistrum Seth is somewhat more benevolent than most Dragon Mages and Rhuinopolis is flourishing, growing more and more every day.

The Jaguar Totem

The humans who live in Rhuinopolis have their own tribe known as the Jaguar Totem. They have their yurt settlement on the harthern side of the city and are almost completely self-sufficient. They hunt for their own meat, they have small gardens where they grow fruits and vegetables and they avoid the city water-tax by growing a small number of tala ferns(Massive ferns, about the size of an apple tree, which grow double-fist sized pods that store water like a coconut does milk), thereby providing their own water supply. The jaguar totem is well known for their high quality skins and bone tools, which they trade in exchange for those few items which they cannot (or choose not to) produce themselves.

The "Junkyard"

This gonme enclave is located on the milinern border of the city. They live in small huts, though there seems to be no consistance in their living arrangements. Individual gonme seem to go inside whichever hut is closest when they decide to head indoors. They are obviously very closely knit, much like a gypsy band and the enclave's unfortunate nickname stems from the gonme's penchant for being "packrats". They refuse to throw anything away, always assuming that it will one day come in handy. The huts are surrounded by broken wagons, pieces of equipment, piles of refuse, random bits and pieces of detritus, and many other things that no one but the gonme seem to want. The plus side of this is that the small people keep it very sanitary, they have never had an issue with rats or other vermin, and they keep the streets of the city clean, acting almost as substitute garbage men.

The Merchant's Paradise

This huge, open-air market is renouned for its wide range of items and services to be bought and sold. People travel to the city from all over the tier to sell in this marketplace. It is said by the resident merchants that anything a person could possibly want can be found, for a price, in the Paradise and indeed, not only are food and clothing for sale there, but also equipment, airship parts, teachers for hire on almost very subject, books, minor magical items, even sexual rendezvous can be scheduled here. If you are looking for something, the Paradise has it. Though some of the corners of the market are a bit shady, for the most part it's bright and clean with hawkers almost every step. The only real danger of the Paradise is to not let your purse get too low by buying what you don't need. Some of the merchants can be extremely persuasive.

Inhabitants of the "Heart"

Lance Brigham
An eccentric well-known throughout the city, Lance is considered by most as slightly insane. He is rich, a huge inheritance from his parents. He lives in a large manor, fronted by a pair of granite carvings: a giant eagle and a roaring grizzly bear, these statues showing the massive wealth Lance has. He is known for dealing with many different characters including tal-magi, supposed Resistance members, merchants, and more.

Nistrum Seth
A Dragon Mage of great power. He lives in a small citadel harth of the Merchant's Paradise. His dragon is named Stiletto, a blue dragon, somewhat young, but well-proven in battle. Nistrum is not particularly cruel to his subjects, prefering to reap the spoils of the city's growth than to crush them under his heel and destroy his source of income. He tends to restrict his soul gathering to convicted criminals, the mode of punishment acting as a good deterrant, keeping Rhuinopolis' crime levels fairly low.

Richard "Swear on my Grandmother's Grave" Locke
A dubious merchant, known all over the city as having questionable quality goods, but always seeming to have something to sell in with a given situation such as his draculia slaying knives, which he sold during the most recent drakulia occupation of 817. The knives were never proven as unable to do what Locke claimed, since no one who bought one had a chance to use it before the draculia they attacked killed them. People who know him advise others not to try his "genuine chicken wraps", since no one is quite sure if his wraps actually contain chicken.
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Offline Dragonlordmax

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Byrlothia
« Reply #12 on: June 25, 2005, 09:27:11 PM »
Have you ever read any of the Death Gate Cycle, by Margaret Weis & Tracy Hickman? Your world sounds somewhat similar to the one in said series.
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Offline Alec_Shadowkin

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Byrlothia
« Reply #13 on: June 25, 2005, 09:49:13 PM »
Yes, the basic idea behind Byrlothia is from the book Dragon Wing, the first book in the Death Gate cycle. Arianus, the setting of the book, is a world somewhat similar to my setting, though also different in many ways.
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- "You're Hells Angels, then? What chapter are you from?"
- REVELATIONS, CHAPTER SIX.

-- Death in conversation with a biker (Terry Pratchett & Neil Gaiman, Good Omens)