CtW:Cities of Ayin

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Change the World
 Creator(s) Bloodnose
 System(s) GURPS
 Genre(s) Alternate Universe

Cities of Ayin

The fictional Kingdom of Ayin in Bloodnose's Change the World setting is comprised of four cities, each one ruling over a province of the same name.

The City of Kedda

Kedda is the capital of the Kingdom of Ayin and seat of the Hakimate. It is in Kedda that the Palace of Ayin was built in the 3rd century B.C.E. for the early Hakims. Kedda was always a very populous city, but it only became a culturally important city with the rise of Tamism. The first stupa, the Al-Tamah Stupa, was built in 53 B.C.E. to inter the body of Sayid Harat Gau-Tamah himself. The remains were later moved to the tremendous and ornate religious complex that is the Mahabodi in 7 B.C.E. The academies that then sprouted from the walls of the Mahabodi further added to the importance of Kedda as a city, where in years prior it was overshadowed by the grand buildings and wondrous feats of architecture north in Medua. Just as important were the conversion of ancient sites to Tamist shrines, like the Oracle of Kin-ma, a domed structure of pagan importance that was restyled and painted orange, covered in phrases attirbuted to Sayid Harat Gau-Tamah. Similar changes were conducted upon the massive Temple of Vos, an ancient sea god to whom an incredible feat of ancient engineering was dedicated. Rows of columns support the ancient slant-roof structure that is now a shrine to Tamism dwarfed only by the Mahabodi itself and the Pyramid in Medua.

In recent years, overcrowding and the disease associated with it have sparked unrest in all the major cities, including Kedda. The Bi-Ku priest caste has helped to calm the populace, as has the relatively new aqueduct system, which brings in cleaner, fresher water from Lake Domir than flows in the River Darkha. Still, the Hakim maintains a sizable military presence within the city walls.

Rendering of Kedda

The City of Medua

The Second City has, for centuries, been culturally and architecturally superior to Kedda. Its people are traditionally better read, its academies are finer, its arts more pure and its buildings more splendid. The rise of the great temples and Tamist schools in Kedda has helped ease the debate toward the Keddan side, but the Meduans are still considered, on the whole, to be the more cultured people.

The first great Meduan feat of art and architecture is the mysterious henge of colossal stones just outside the modern city limits. Scholars from the Meduan Madrassa suggest that the ancient people who lived on the upper River Darkha used it as a calendar system for their summer and winter rituals, though no one can know for certain. It is typically dated to the tenth century B.C.E.

A much easier monument to examine is the Pyramid. A gargantuan architectural and geometric marvel, the Pyramid stands at the center of Medua, a tomb for a long dead pagan Molokh Vartu whose life ended in the 6th century B.C.E. The Molokh presumably wanted to be buried higher on the River Darkha, equating it with a higher life. His remains were since removed, his possessions confiscated by Hakim Mogen Al-Kumesh and the passages, chambers and other aspects of the Pyramid were turned over to the Bi-Ku to use as a monastic facility. Monks enter the Pyramid for months at a time, being sealed away in an ultimate congress with themselves and the ethereal, many then emerge claiming to have achieved the state of Buhd-Ha.

In addition, it was a Meduan architect, Kyn Shi-Han, who planned and largely oversaw the construction of the Bhozad Wall. Not to mention the importance of the Meduan Madrassa as a school of non-Tamist learning or the writing of the Kinimaed by a Meduan poet.

Medua, however, is far from a utopia. Those who cannot afford to participate in the high culture of the city tend to be desperately poor and miserably unhappy. The rapidly rising population has contributed to the same type of unrest that has grown in Kedda and the Ayinite Army has a strong presence in this city as well.

Rendering of Medua

The City of Morad-dar

Morad-dar was originally a village of subsistence farmers that were then able to move their primary livelihood to mining the Dom Hills after receiving workers and food imports from the Darkha River Valley. The focus on gold and other valuable resources in the rich hills helped to create a society of people that are generally known as hardier and more resilient than other Ayinites. This became especially true during the construction of the Bhozad Wall, when the longest length of the fortification had to be built nearest to the city. In the Ayinite Military, Moradite soldiers are known as the strongest and most dangerous.

It is because of this, that the people of Morad-dar are not notoriously well-educated or cultured. They have an ancient temple, similar in many ways to the Keddan Temple of Vos, though the Moradite building was dedicated to Kyn, an ancient sky and thunder god. Of course, now the entire structure has been rededicated to Tamist pursuits.

The city's latest and greatest project was the construction of a gigantic pyramid, not at all like the Pyramid of Medua that was largely a cultural and spiritual pursuit, but of a multi-level step pyramid called Khikan-Tza, a military complex and fortification built into the city walls. The building serves as a training ground, a war room and a tactical school for hopeful generals. The tactics, however, are mostly theoretical, as the Ayinite Military has never fought a full-scale war.

Rendering of Morad-dar

The City of Mot-ka

Mot-ka is the Fourth City, it is small in comparison to the other three and has little to speak of in terms of cultural pursuits. Its first and only true Tamist temple was compelted in 468 C.E., and is the only Mottite building of any cultural significance. The rest of the city is devoted largely to fishing and farming, more the former than the latter, being the kingdom's only coastal city. Mottites live on the fruitful bounty of the sea, so fruitful is the bounty that they supply the rest of the kingdom with a ready supply of fish, though due to its distance Morad-dar doesn't benefit much from the seafood.

Due to a very small upper class and a brimming lower class with little access to fresh water, Mot-ka is the most unruly city in the Kingdom of Ayin. Little military importance is placed on the city, though, and so the garrison remains rather small. The lack of water coupled with the high population density has contributed greatly to a poor standard of health in Mot-ka, and disease runs rampant through the streets. Riots remain a common sight in the Fourth City, and Amir Sabah Al-Hamad regularly petitions the Hakim for additional soldiers and an aqueduct system to provide the city with a more ready supply of fresh water. The king has remained silent on the issue.

Rendering of Mot-ka