Engines in the Dark
“There was a time, a long while ago, when all the different races lived in different kingdoms. But then the dimming spread, and they fled to the only place of light that they could find; The Shining City. Don’t mean that they still don’t hate each other.”
The Aethiria Empire is home to a variety of sentient races (“the Emigra”), all of which form a rigid chaste system.
Races of a lower level may not address those of a higher chaste, unless addressed by them first. This is most true at The Shining City, and fades the further one travels from it.
The Noble races tend to show off their status by wearing the latest fashion, Royal Blue (Thyr) or Blood Red (warriors), silverite jewelry, lace, silks, and long flowing coats and robes. During some festivals and parades, they might wear antique plate mail armor or long exotic dresses. (The richest never wear the same thing twice.)
- Aethir – The purest born, the Aethir are the rulers of Aethiria and are said to have invented Thyr and used it to build the Empire. They typically have pale white skin, black hair or white hair, standing at least 6 feet tall.
The Nobility ranks of the Empire are very important to understand.
The Middle Races wear boots, woolen pants, linen shirts, aprons, fur coats, thick belts, and other trappings of their trade. Warriors might wear splint armor, or piece-meal plate. They would never wear Royal Blue garments, as they are not nearly durable enough.
- Sesha – The merchant class, the Sesha are often mixed blood, most of which are at least 1/5th Aethir blood. (Their blood mixed with the Aethir 2 centuries ago.) They stand 5-6 feet tall, with black or brown hair. (Most like humans.)
- Durga – Stocky and bearded, this nobel race was driven from their mountain home of Thromholt to join the Empire 5 centuries ago. They stand about 4-5 feet tall, are very strong, and rarely back down from a fight.
- Daar – These diminutive woodsmen are smaller than the Durga, but have a much lighter spirit. They love the trees, a good song, laughter, and a pocket full of gold; don’t discount their skills, they are most excellent archers. Slur: “Pekk.”
The Low Races might wear burlap shirts, woolen britches, fingerless gloves, shaggy woolen coats, and shabby shoes if they can afford them. They might wear studded leather armor, padded vests, and bowl helmets. They would never wear silks or Royal Blue, as they cannot afford such things.
- Balor – The working class, Balor work the docks, farmer and street street labor. The Balor have ruddy skin, shaggy brown hair, and amber eyes and stand anywhere from 8-12 feet tall. They are incredibly strong, and surprisingly thoughtful.
- Grigg – These green skinned humanoids stand 3 feet tall, and have wide heads and a mouth of wide, sharp teeth. They are crude, dirty and have recently (albeit reluctantly) been accepted into the Empire.
The Machines (Ancient wonders)
Machines wear their outer casings as they were constructed by their maker. High House Machines might be outfitted in brass housings with silver trim, while those of the Block might be covered simple iron and wood. Machines would never wear Royal Blue, as fine clothing is never made for common devices.
- Apparatus – Sentient machines in service to the Empire, most of which are peddlers.
- Aethir Engines – Huge walking batteries that harvest Thyr and provide the light.
The Dark Ones seem to be attracted to black, ragged clothing, goggles, and sometimes even masks. They have no sense of style, and seem to be equipped for nothing but war. Their weapons are as crude and ugly as they are.
- Vulthien – A race from the far North, who prosper in darkness and war.