Wow, people who play Magical Teaparty Make-Believe Time bashing people who play Magical Live-Action Make-Believe Time? It's like I'm really on the Internet! - Rustmonster, commenting on RPGers vs. LARPers
In most Asperian homes there are Bats in the ceilings. The rather clever animals keep watch over the houses and families that live in them. The screech of a Bat is loud enough to wake dogs and their masters. Most Dargonian provinces train these Bats to protect their homes. They are raised amongst dogs and the family they will protect. The Bats are usually fed by leaving berries on scented paper. Some Bats are awake at night and some during the day. Both breeds are kept in Asper, though most Dargonian houses keep only one of the breeds. The Night Bats are particularly hard to handle, due to their glow. Day Bats require special care to keep as when startled they use their death curse. Despite the difficulties in caring for such dangerous and powerful animals the benefits are manifest. Night Bats light the way through gardens in the eve, and Day Bats are the most efficient guard animals. Many Imperial nobles keep a Day Bat with them at all times.
The black birds of the Bottom Lands. These rather intelligent little creatures are possibly the worst gossips in the world. They are capable of normal speech as well as the chirp speech of birds, and yet they use it sparingly and only for their advantage. Most times a Raven will simply cackle in amusement as they watch from nearby trees. Dealing with a Raven is basically dealing with the tree whom they keep their precious shiny objects, and bargaining with the black birds is a simple matter. Unless instructed to seek a specific prize by their wooden allies, all a Raven asks for is something that glitters in the light … other than gold of course.
The common Snake is a slow predator. It is able to sit for weeks in one spot waiting for an animal to come by. The unwitting prey is captured in a single snap of the Snakes powerful jaws, and the strike of the Snake is like spring being released. The Snake’s jaw unhinges and swallows its prey whole, and the Snake is left to sit and digest its meal over the span of days. The larger Snakes are able to constrict themselves like rope around the larger prey while it slowly devours the animal. The illusion that Snakes are quick is part of their magic. Slivers of light “snake” out and away from the real Snake as it slithers slowly away from potential predators. Snakes also have a profoundly good sense of smell, and communicate more through scent than they do through the hisses and rattles they actually make to scare predators away from them. Some Snakes are poisonous, and some are fire tongues. The rare lightning Snake is found in the Sky Lakes, and certain areas on the bottom lands.
The wild Warg is a noble creature. Like the Hound the Warg gathers in packs. They maintain a territory and generally do not attack people like Mans. If you violate their territory or appear wounded however they may become hostile. Many Warg packs have tacit alliances with nearby civilizations. Tacit in that the animal is incapable of recognizing the larger implications, and yet understands the alliance exists. The alpha male of the pack is capable of forging these connections, and the bargain is always as follows. The Wargs will come to the aid of Mans if they are allowed to hunt in peace. The rulers that the pack is allied with must enter the Wargs den and give food to the alpha male periodically. This ceremony serves several purposes, but the primary reason is to teach the younger members of the pack what a Mans is and to recite the sound that is used to summon the Wargs.
Why anyone would even consider diplomacy with a Troll is beyond reason, however they are intelligent. They have a most cunning and ruthless intelligence, and they are capable of complicated speech and mathmatology. Though the average Troll would rarely bother. The reality is any Troll that would be invited anywhere in Imperial society will be a most unique and individual being. More importantly one should be aware of how to behave should they find themselves amongst a clutch of Trolls.
The vast majority of Trolls will be found in the care of other Orcnin, and as such treated as little more than wargs. Independent clutches of Trolls are rare, but still not uncommon on the Bottom Lands. Most often an individual Troll will live alone somewhere within a hunting range. The rare families of Trolls that exist outside of a hoard are usually a cluster of females with one male. The female Trolls will attempt to remain hidden at all times, and the male will roam the hunting territory that the clutch has claimed. If you find yourself dealing with the male simply escape or fight. If you somehow manage to find yourself face to face with the females there is one and only one “diplomatic” option that might leave you alive to bargain with the Trolls. Chop off a limb and offer it to them.
As most know Trolls can regrow limbs, and assuming you have good reason and willingly participate in their form of greeting – the females of the Troll species can lend their ability to regenerate to you. The question of will they, and why you would even bother is one best left to the insane individual that wants to talk to Trolls.
A more interesting possibility that is still nonetheless a bad idea is keeping your own Troll similar to the Orcnin’Sa. The process is simple. You must defeat the Troll, keep it in a dark place, and feed it constantly. Giving it a piece of yourself to hold onto will make it feel more comfortable.
The Great Isle of Dolor is the most unusual Island in the skies. The Island not in the skies in the ancient times, and in fact there were no islands in low sky until Dolor was created by the Dolorian Ogres. This noble breed of Ogre was created by the Light Lords durring the Wizard Wars. Unlike the Ogres of Ogran the Dolorians are beautiful to behold and even stronger than the grotesk Ogres that maintain their alligence to their ancient Patron. Due to their reverence of Elendria the Dolorians are pacifists and will loose their gift of strength and beauty if they ever harm a living beast. They rarely leave the island home that they created.
When Taurna fell in the final confrontation of the Wizard Wars much of the gold infused debries were strewn about the low sky along with the twisted remains of the Rover Islands. This (term) sealed the Bottom Lands away from the civilizations of the mid and high skies for centuries. When the Dolorians began their search for a home the world was not willing to accept them. The Elendi could see them as nothing more than Ogres with pretty faces. The Orcnin saw them as nothing more than elves. They were like the Gnomes in their complete poverty as a people.
Amongst the Dolorian people there were powerful druids and no small amount of masterful Arconists. As they migrated from Dargonia to Tolen to the Sky Lakes they formed a plan. The greatest of the druids began collecting the debries of the fallen islands and bringing themtogether into larger and larger clumps. The center of the Dolorian capitol city is what was once the largest clump and the first one that was settled by the Dolorians. The city GreenHome began as a simple staging ground for the druids.
From GreenHome the high druids of the Dolorians were able to bring more and more clumps of fallen island together untill, many generations later, the island of Doloria was recognized as a true greater island. Doloria is idylic. It is a crafted island. Roads were grown, mountains were scultped, and each tree was brought specifically to the island. It has only been with the last few generations that the ecology of Doloria has taken a life of its own - having reached a critical mass of bugs and plants needed to support the beasts that have come to live on the Island.
The Dolorians have a distributed form of government that does not rely on noble houses. Each region has both a master druid and a circle of Arconists. Many fear to sail to the island due to the number of Arconists that live and work their arts on the island - but most of the Arconistics practiced on Doloria are kept in strict watch by the master druid and their alcolyts. The peoples of Doloria live mostly simple lives and rely on their isolation from the other civilizations of the skies to keep themselves safe. It is hard to imagine how the pacifist Ogres of Doloria would be able to withstand a invasion force considereing their gifts of Elendia.
Very little is known about the pure lands. Many believe they are a myth, but they are not. Those who have found their way to the Pure Lands find themselves in a bit of a quandary. You cannot reveal the secret of the pure lands. It is not a curse of magical prohibition - it is an understanding that you gain when you find yourself there. What can be said of the Pure Lands is that the Mans that make their home there are unlike any other in the entire world. They are short furry and nearly Taurn in appearance. They have skin of dark tan, and bright eyes.
They live simply and do not know lies or hatred or fear. There is a ceremony that the Pure Lands practices to both excise and purify their people. It is called the simply the seeker of the stone. Once a generation a child is chosen of the people to carry an artifact known as the purpose stone out of the Pure Lands and into the larger world. The mans who bears the Purpose stone at this time is known only as Pa Wah. Those that meet the seeker may learn the secret of the stone, and perhaps the secret of the Pure Lands itself.
The Dariens are one of the most powerful peoples of the Bottom Lands. The Western swamps of the Bottom Lands are entirely controlled by the Darien Empire. Within their sphere of influence Orcnin, Naga, Elder Trees and many variety of swamp born make their homes. Discounting the loose confederation of the Elder Trees and their woodborn cousins the Darien's Empire is rivaled only by the Great Empire itself. Trade throughout the Western half of the Bottom Lands is carefully regulated by the Darien, this "many armed" people are observant and extremely calculating.
The Darien society is for the most part very similar to that familiar to most imperials. Complete with governors, councils, and officials such as sheriffs and the like. Dariens pay taxes to their government, and trade for goods and services. What may disconcert the average imperial visitor is the fashion of their construction. The Dariens make their buildings mostly from a unique fabric that special members of their species create naturally. Some wood is used for supports, but most walls are made of a flexible organic cloth of amazing durability. Some of the more wealthy imperial importers will recognize this substance, it is called silk.
The Dariens themselves are physically unique when compared to the many peoples of the world. Their skeletons are on the outside of their bodies, and their eyes are like many faceted gemstones. Most Dariens are in possession of at least one extra pair of limbs (taking Taurn, Mans, and Orcnin four limbs to be average). To the casual observer there seems to be no rhyme or reason for the number of limbs that a Darien may have. Some have the standard four, some six. The fact is that family and heritage play a large part in the number of limbs a Darien has and whether their spare limbs serve as legs or arms. Legends amongst the Dariens speak of eight limbed Dariens that are born in times of great calamity - a sign of the gods favor.
The gods of the Dariens are for a most part analogous to the gods of the Triune and the Empire, leading most to consider them simply Darien names for the great gods known to most, one diety in particular stands apart however. The Doomsayer. The Doomsayer is a deity known only through the words of her prophets. Described as a female eight limbed Darien of immense power - stories of The Doomsayer have reached imperial city by way of travelers and Tansian storytellers, but no appearance of the Doomsayer has been reported by the Imperial councils. Speculations as to whether the diety is anything more than an alternate face of Ogran, of the Triune, are rampant. Furthermore the prophets of "The Doomsayer" are known to rely on martial prowess over the use of greater miracles.
Despite this lack of manifestation by the Doomsayer deity - the faith in her philosophies are pervasive throughout Darien controlled lands. Each region of Darien controlled land maintains a temple to the Doomsayer - led by a "husband" of the Doomsayer - a male six limbed Darien claiming to be in contact with the deity. Their edicts are invariably in support of local authorities, and the cults that follow the husbands of the Doomsayer are called upon to quell uprisings or civil disputes should they occur.
Visiting a Darien controlled territory should result in no particular difficulties so long as your interests are apolitical. Dariens are as interested in trade as any people, and are willing to trade in either crystal or barter. Crystal trade is not as common in the Darien regions, and one may be forced to convert crystal into barterable goods such as forging metals or food. Silk is by far the most common export out of the Darien swamps, though Orcnin make regular trade of slaves with the Darien. Dariens that make their way into the skies are almost invariably interested in gathering slaves from the sky lands. Perhaps due to this - Gnomes rarely sell their sky ships to the Dariens. The Tolenese do not share this compunction - thusly fueling the crystal trade in the Darien Lands.
Entertaining Darien guests is a simple matter, if one that would disconcert the average Imperial pallet. Dariens feed exclusively on the blood. Cooked food is not digestible by their physiology. A simple order - draining blood being one of the standard steps for preparing food. Instead of discarding the blood simply give it to your Darien guests, and eat the meat. Similarly the Dariens seem to find it amusing that the "refuse" of blod drained meat that they generally turn into livestock feed is the staple of non-Darien visitors Diets. Despite their regular association with Orcnin the Dariens maintain no outright hostility toward their imperial visitors ... unless they are diplomatic envoys. If one intends to send diplomatic contact to the Dariens on behalf of the Empire - simply forget it. The Dariens have maintained a staunch support of the Orcnin over the Empire since the first contact with the Dariens dating back before the Wizard Wars.
One of three breeds of the singing flowers. Nixies are perhaps the most rare of all singing flowers, and are considered by most to be "dark pixies" though this is a misunderstanding of the relationship between the breeds of singing flowers. Unlike their larger cousins the walking flowers (or blooms, buds, etc) the Nixies are capable of speech. They are also nearly indistinguishable from Kinder Elendi except for the fact that their "hair" is made not of hair at all but petals. These petals are coated with a poison - that will render most Mans or Orcnin incapacitated or dead within moments. This natural defensive ability is the source of their moniker of "Dark Pixies" despite their sharing little to no appearance similarity to the Pixie at all.
The Nixies are found mostly on the Bottom Lands, but are also native to the Sky Lakes. Tribes of Nixie are found on the WildHome Isle, and an expeditionary force of mercantile oriented Nixies make a Guild Hall their home on Gem-Ron. The Merchant House of Strenmowla is not the strongest house on Gem-Ron, but their incomparable ability to facilitate trade with the Walking Flowers and the Trees of Gem-Ron Isle ensures them a position of power that is not soon to be contested.
Nixies like most of the woodborn need little more than water and sunlight to survive and trade primarily for the adventure and interest of it. The Nixies of the Bottom Lands are known to act as protectors of regions as of yet uninhabited by Mans or Taurn. They maintain the dominion of the woodborn with a ferocity reminiscent of the beast born they resemble. Truly the Nixies is the most bestial of all woodborn. That said "the Dark pixie" are not particularly hostile without good cause. They have been known to hunt and prepare meals for visitors, and many tales tell of them coming to the aid of travelers on the Bottom Lands.
Beyond the Merchant house of Strenmowla there are no known "nations" of Nixie - instead the Nixies of the Bottom Lands make their homes amongst other woodborn glens. Acting as the heralds or ambassadors for their silent cousins. The rare traveling Nixie is unlikely to seek audience or lodging of an Imperial house - but if they should it is best to treat them as simply as you would a Bloom, though with quite a bit more conversation.
The two legged children of the once proud Sataurn. On the Bottom Lands these sorry and disorganized peoples are usually referred to as Satyr. There are no known Satyrn societies in the skies and even the rare collection of Satyrn of the Bottom Lands are scarce. The Satyrn are perhaps one of the saddest testaments to the loss of Great Taurna. The once proud Sataurn, the wise philosophers and guides of Taurna, were struck down harder than the Centaurn. While the descendants of the Centaurn, the Centyrn are exant on Wildhome, Montaran, and other isles - The Satyrn are found only in the outlying areas of ancient imperial settlements on the Bottom Lands.
The Satyrn have more than suffered over the centuries since the fall of Taurna. While the other Taurn have made progress in their attempts to reclaim their civility and society, the Satyrn have literally wallowed in the mud of the bottom lands. With less civility than Orcnin the only Orcnin disgrace these Taurn have not succumb to is the eating of raw meat. Of course the Satyrn are like their hoofed Taurn cousins in that they cannot eat meat. Perhaps decrying the Satyrn for their falling is too harsh - The Sataurn were steadfastly of Taurna. Unlike many of their Taurn cousins they did not make settlements off of Taurna from which to reconstitute the society.
The future of the Satyrn looks bleak - without some driving force to lead them into the future they will most likely fade into history as the arrogant Mintaurn have. Should a Satyrn find themselves in your lands - treat them as you would a Centyrn. Though expect a lack of the social graces and civility that the Centyrn cultivate.
The grandest city in all the world, home of the High Imperial Council, and nexus of civilization since the dawn of recorded history. Countless myths surround the creation of the grand city. Stories of the city created by the hands of gods, or demons. Tales of how the city was forged by Dragons, Mans, Elendi, or even Dwarn abound. The truth is the many myths of Imperial City's creation are the result of the failure of fact to hold more power in the mind than fancy. The history of the creation of Imperial city is writ plainly upon the walls outside the High Council chambers.
In the most ancient times, before language had become codified into words, the greatest Arconistic masters came together in an attempt to end the savage conflicts between the many peoples that sailed the skies. Mans rode dragons out from the Sky Lakes and waged war with the Ronians. Elendi rose from the bottom lands to battle the Orcnin of the Arconistic Isle. Taurn found themselves allying with either side willingly or unwillingly, and Trees played each side against the other. In that time, some 100,000 years ago, Mans had only just begun to learn (or perhaps better to say steal) the arts of Arconistics from the Orcnin. The Elendi had yet to throw off the yoke of the Trees dominion, and the Dwar had never seen the light of the skies.
In the bitterest of irony it was the Orcnin Masters that created Imperial City. To this day there are places in the great arconistic device that is Imperial city that cannot be accessed by any save Orcnin, and those places have remained unreachable for over 10,000 years. Not since before the wizard wars have Orcnin arconistic masters been allowed in Imperial City. Orcnin certainly - so long as they forswear their alliance with the dark gods of the Orcnin, but none who maintain their allegiance to Ogran or his host. This prohibition is no hollow proclamation. In ages past the streets of the city were enchanted to harm any who walked on them that were not citizens or bearing the mark of citizens. In this age those enchantments are no longer active, but those that enter attempt to enter the city with Ogran or any Arcon known to be amongst his host will suffer the ancient curse of a thousand screams with every step they take in on the streets of the city.
The ancient Orcnin acronistic masters that created the city left a pictographic record of their work upon the walls of the council antechamber. In that time before the Empire the arconistics masters came together and made a great work - powered with the sacrifice of one million Mans. The city was created a perfect circle of seven stacked disks. The centermost and highest disk was designated as the seat of the gods. () thrones were set to honor the pillars of existance and () arcons were invited to take seat upon those thrones. The intent of the arconistic masters was to gain sway over the entire world by allying with the grandest of the arcons, and thereby overpower both Trees and Dragons alike. As history must certainly show - this grand design failed terribly.
The first tragedy that struck the grand city was when the acrons refused to remain in seat upon their thrones. The great arcons were intended to remain and grant their power to the city - keeping it in the skies amongst the isles. An artificial Isle, however the arcons began to bicker amongst themselves and then all but the dark lord Jakanar abandoned the city. The magnificent disks fell from high sky and by Jakanar's will the city struck the great island known today as Dargonia. Most historians who have studied the pictographs detailing this event are certain that it was Imperial City's impact upon Dargonia that began the slow, but steady, breaking of Dargonia. A process further aggravated by the great tether that links Dargonia to Tolen.
In further disaster, when Imperial City embedded itself into the side of the great Isle of Dargonia, then known as Ronerian, it shattered in twain. Almost half of the city fell off the side of Dargonia, and landed somewhere on the Bottom Lands. The location of this lost piece of Imperial CIty is unknown to this day. The arconistic masters that survived the process thanked their respective patrons and set about to salvage what they could of their great work. To their credit the city as is is today - with greater enchantments and the docks, and the landscaping (city walks, structures, and gardens) are for the most part the same as they have been for 50,000 years. Some minuscule personalization aside - the major structures other than the temples of the 5th tier are exactly what they were when in a final comedic turn of events the Orcnin lords of Empire city were overrun by Mans and Elendi.
Using both the miracles of Tree taught Elendi and arconistics stolen from Orcnin, and army of mostly Mans overpowered the lords of the city. The former name of the city is lost - its pictographic emblem remains above many archways of the city. A six pointed star surrounded by a disk with four arrows pointing inward toward the star coming from each cardinal point of the star. The taking of Imperial City (called in some Mans legend Orcnin City) marked the official beginning of the Empire. Mans arconistic masters could control the city, and miracle working Elendi could appease the arcons. Between them Imperial City took on something of its intended purpose - as a meeting place between the representatives of the most powerful of the mortal realm - and a council of the most powerful of the arcons.
I Apologize for any confusion. Arcons .. are Gods. As I eventually intend to collate all this into a book written entirely in character and the word "god" will eventually be removed entirely (for more than one reason as I am want) in favor of the flavor term arcon. Just in case your getting confused. (hence the "don't be an acronistic" thing - acronistics is the act of ... well "acting like a god" so inherently hubristic and most often eventually resulting in the other arcons requiring you to "pony up" so to speak - usually with rather nasty soul rending implications.
There is a specific couple of people that I want to work on the project with. Though any suggestions will be taken into consideration. I'm putting this stuff up (instead of keeping it to myself) as a ... erm "sneak preview" kinda stuff.
:P I'd also like to see if I can inspire some graphic artists :P ... any good setting book needs IMGs ...
Most Imperial Mans are familiar with the Pherthan, Weran, and Dardan peoples of the Taurn. Interestingly it is the Barkan that are by far the most populous of modern Taurn. The Pherthan are a close second most populous Taurn societies. The Barkan, similar to the Pherthan, were always a traveling breed of Taurn. Unlike the Pherthan they are almost entierly nomadic. Rarely will you find a city established primarily by a group of Barkan. Barkan tend to prefer to stay on the move, and while they are without cities proper to call their own they do maintain certain hideaways. Caches of resources that they will return to periodically, or seasonally. These caches are usually stored not on a greater isle, but on a smaller orbital isle to keep random passer byes from happening upon the Barkan tribes secret storehouse. These stores of equipment are usually redundant. Not so much necessary to the Barkan family in its travels – but a resource that they can return to in times of need or loss. Many such caches remain undisturbed for generations.
Barkan are extremely family oriented. Of course all peoples are concerned with their families, but it is very rare for a Barkan to leave their family unit. Barring disaster or marriage a Barkan will remain with the family that they were born into. When there is a marriage amongst the Barkan the will come together for almost a month of feasting and celebration – at the end of which more than one union may occur. According to ancient practices of the Barkan the newely bound will depart with the family that has the least numbers. Thereby steadily growing the strength of the weaker tribes, and preventing the larger tribes from growing too large to support. When a tribe grows beyond either five families or about a hundred or so members the Barkan will begin to seek a smaller tribe in order to balance their numbers more evenly. Centuries of this practice has helped maintain the Barkan as one of the most powerful societies of Taurn – even if they have no cities to to call their own.
Physically the Barkan and the Weran share much in common, but the two peoples of Taurn could not be more different from each other. In fact the antagonism between the Weran and the Barkan is the most likely explanation of why the Barkan are rarely found on Dargonia except in Imperial City itself. The two peoples of Taurn and their vicious disputes are the stuff of legend on lost Taurna. The most notable of which is the tale of Lyangi of Weran's War. According to the legend a Barkan tribe was moving through a territory claimed by Lyangi's tribe, and Lyangi demanded an offering of respect. Such an offering is very common amongst the Weran, as well as many other Taurn tribes, but the Barkan tribe refused. They claimed that they would be gone before Lyangi would have so much as a chance to appreciate any such offering. Lyangi responded by banishing any Barkans from returning to her territory for all time. The stories continues that the Barkan decided to test this prohibition again and again. Eventually the Weran and the Barkan were in full scale war.
After a generation of conflict, according to legend, Lyangi won the war and Barkan were all but banished from their homes on Taurna. Again, according to Taurn legend – this is the reason that the Barkan were found more commonly on other islands than Taurn itself. As with most legends, particularly Taurn legends, the actuality of Lyangi and his war is unverifiable. Perhaps the Barkan simply never made much of a home on Taurn – preferring to roam the world free of the more territorial Taurn's conceits. The problem for modern researchers and determining the truth of any such legend is that Imperial records have scare information regarding the Taurn or the history of Taurna. The legends of Taurna and its peoples and histories are nearly a millennium old and passed more often through campfire tale than texts. Weran legends aside, however, the Barkan themselves tell tales of “Vicious Lyangi” as a cautionary tale regarding why the Barkan do not stay in one place for long – though their versions of the legend are told more like ghost stories than history. The Barkan's Lyangi could be everything from cannibal to terrible torturer – and vile arcanist. No amount of historical accuracy remains in the tales they tell their children.
When a Barkan tribe enters your territory the most obvious sign (other than a disturbance amongst any other Taurn) will be their most notable form of communication: the Howl. The Weran that most Imperials are familiar with will howl as part of their ritual observance, monthly. The Barkan, however, prefer to howl almost constantly. If you can get past the constant howling – then they are generally pleasant guests. Do not expect them to provide any form of “offering” or recognition of territorial authority – the Barkan have a certain disdain for those that are “bound to dirt” as they call it. The one thing they will bring is their most trade able commodity – their wine. An individual Barkan is almost always seen carrying a jug – in that jug is a wine that is being prepared. In their carts the wine ages. They will rarely part with their prized wine for free, but if you do them a great favor they will most likely pay you with the wine. This wine is one of the best anywhere in the world and prized by those who respect great wines everywhere. Barkan are meat eaters, and like many Weran are quite in favor of cooked meat.
Should you find yourself in need of the aid of a Barkan there is one thing to be primarily concerned with. The males of the tribe are in clear and uncontested dominance. Barkan are polygamous and there are usually up to five primary males. Often these males are brothers. To travel with a Barkan tribe you absolutely must swear to follow one of the primary males of the tribe as though you were their child. That said – once you have passed that hurdle of diplomacy the Barkan are welcomed without and protected as one of their own. Sadly the truth is that there are Barkan tribes that have been whipped out to the last member when they welcomed too readily someone that was all to willing to deceive the trusting Barkan.
The dead who walk. There is not much to be said regarding the dead who walk. They are not polite dinner guests and in no way could they ever become so. They are dead. They have been reanimated by some dark force or another and there is simply nothing to do with them other than to put them down again. They are quite annoying - as they are already dead, and the only sure way to end their existence is to beat them most utterly into a pulp. The unfortunate peoples that must deal with them regularly are actually quite adept at doing so, and have one particular piece of advice: blunt objects. Blades seem to do rather allot of nothing to the pestersome beasts.
Dargonia is thankfully fairly clear of the creatures, however those that live on the bottom lands are plauged by them on a rather regular basis. Particularly the Karnian regions where any dead that is not properly inturned arrises as soon as the next dawn. Those who live too close to dark sky are also continually vexed buy the unholy creatures. Thankfully for the most part the "Zombies" are rather dull. Birds and badgers are regularly far more intelligent than the walking dead, and it is perhaps by this reason alone the creatures are more a nuesance than they are a danger.
In regions where the powers of death are great enough to generate hordes of the walking dead they are indeed a great threat, and it shows to the wisdom of those such as the Karn that they take regular precautions against such creatures. Salt is a certain protection against the zombie. The Karn lay salt in a circle around their cities in ritual fashion every night. The Revalians do so as well. Those in the skies are loath to waste a resource that, while common on the bottom lands is rare in the skies, in such a way. Thankfully the power of the churches also drives the walking dead back.
The only diplomatic advice regarding zombies that need be given is this: oft times zombies are governed not by pure dark forces alone - but by an insidious intellect as well. If such a dark arconistic practitioner is active in your region it is best to seek the aid of the nearest imperial outpost. The dragoons are adept of old at dealing with such dire arconistic practices. Attempting diplomacy of any who would raise the dead is a futile endeavor .. at best.
The elementals that are the living wind. These capricious and ephemeral beings are the most common of those known as the Sand Born. The term barely applies to the Wind Elementals. The substance that they are made of is the most non-substantial known to any and were it not for the powerful force they apply at times most would refuse to believe in it. Air elementals, like all Sand Born, are neither male nor female. They are created in a fashion inexplicable to those with blood or sap in their veins. Most presume they are eternal, however this is not so. Bizarre as it may seem even the wind can die.
An Air Elemental is immune to the strike of a sword or the swing of an axe, but there are certain arconistics and miracles that can destroy an Air Elemental utterly. In addition to mysticism, the Fire Elementals devour Air Elementals in the natural cycle of existence. Unlike the versus relationship that a blood or sap born creature would feel toward its predator the Air Elementals hold no grudge against the Fire Elementals. Perhaps the lack of family and children creates a lack of attachment to their own existence. Perhaps they are simply incapable of joy in the same sense as a blood or sap born creature.
While the Wind has no attachment to life - they still retain a certain willfulness that can be either boon or vexation to the blood and sap born. The wind may decide to rush strongly against building - rending structures to pieces that would otherwise stand strong. A Wind may decide to knock a person off their feet, or snatch a object from their hands. Conversely Air Elementals have been known to spontaneously aid a person by catching them and saving them from the long fall off an island. Many tales tell of someone that has fallen off the a ridge only to be rescued by the Wind.
Those who adhere to the Imperial Religions declare that there are two fonts of Wind. Two arcons, brothers in dire opposition, that generate the Winds in their divine forges beyond the mists. Dak'na'ule and Thamior. Dak'na'ule is the Lord of the Dark Winds of Winter, and Thamior is the Lord of the Warm Winds of Summer. Attempting to speak to the Winds regarding the brothers is pointless. The winds will only echo the words of those that they have heard, but avatars and heralds of the brothers most assuredly proclaim dominion over the Air Elementals - of one type or the other. This claim to dominion is not a hollow claim as the heralds and avatars of the brothers are readily capable of calling on the Winds to their aid - not the least of which is their ubiquitous ability to fly.
In the rare case that a Wind attempts some strange form of diplomancy, and manifests a visible or at least tangible presence in an Imperial court, they need no more hospitality than acknowledgment of their sovereignty. The Winds are the very vehicle of speech. Without their humble presence words could not make sound, and the vital energy of the arcons could not enter the bodies of the living. While Water, Fire, and Earth Elementals are far more tangible - it is the Air Elementals to whom all breathing creatures owe the debt of continued existence. It is unfathomably horrific to imagine what would happen to a city or land that drew down the ire of the Air Elementals. To have not only words but the very breath refused yourself and your peoples.
Indeed - praise the winds with every breath they deign to give you.