Weizao

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Establishment

The people of Weizao are descendant from the human tribes of what are now the countries of Sho and Wu. The island kingdom was originally part of the mainland 3800 years ago. The five tribes of Weizao formed while Weizao was still part of the mainland. When the tribes were still very young each tribe was taken under the protection of a Draconal Agathion who guided the tribes spiritually. Those Draconal leaders grew in power and each vowed to become the guardians of the five tribes of the Weizao. Rising to the power of Archon, each Draconal found that they had become more and more detached from their charges. Seeing time and events pass in such a different way that they eventually met only with the council the tribal leaders but rarely spoke with anyone else. Over a the centuries the tribes occasionally quarreled between each of them but the Five Archons always stepped in the quell the disagreement. Realizing that this kind of quarreling would lead to the tribes destruction, they pushed each tribe to choose a single ruler. The tribal leaders failed to come to an agreement and during this period of unrest between the tribes and between the tribes and the Archon the Oni of Kami began to turn their attention to their neighbors, including Weizao. Seeing the need to unite at once, the Draconals searched until they found a single monk who met each tribes' requirements for a single ruler.

Kami attempted to infiltrate Weizao, but the wisdom of the Archons foiled them. However, the kingdom was simply too large for five Archons to protect. They pressed the tribes again to accept their candidate for King - Shu Ma. The tribes argued and delayed - and the Kami attacked. Shu Ma took command of all warriors of the five tribes and met the Kami in battle - Shouting out orders that were carried by the wind to each warrior’s ear. The defeated the Kami and threw them back again - but the Oni were fiendishly clever and numerous, and they would return.

Knowing that Weizao could not repulse the assault of the Oni of Kami forever, the Archons crowned Shu Ma. His first act as King was to ask the Archons to move the land of Weizao away from the Kami threat. A disciple of all five masters, Shu Ma saw how to combine the powers of the elements ins ways even the Archons could not. The Archons heeded Shu Ma's request, and in a massive ceremony, cleaved Weizao away from the mainland.

Terrain

Waizao

Nearly the entire western edge of the island is made up of cliffs, with the exception of a single port in the south. The cliffs in some areas are over a thousand feet, though in the south they ebb to merely several hundred feet above the sea.

After years of seaborne and skyborne attacks from the mainland, the King asked the Archons to add additional protection to the island. The Archons would the elements together into a storm that would circle the island in each of the four elements. A rocky reef with clouds of sand and dust, fog, and lightning storms that would lash out at unwanted travelers. The Curse of the Archon’s Storm has protected the island for over two thousand years. Only the ships of the Sea Elves proved capable of navigating the storm - and once year would come to trade.

Ryu Island lies in the far north. The island is wilderness and very high in elevation. The island is a part that broke off of the sheer cliffs during the islands move so long ago. Supposedly over the last thousand years much of the rock between the mainland and island of Ryu has worn away by constant blowing of the wind. On the north side of the island a single spire juts up into the sky. Unclimbable by normal means, few have ever made the trek to the top of the spire. Rumoured to be the home of the Archon of Air.

The island is also home to Griffin and other winged creatures. Some fishermen have said that have seen winged creatures riding the winds and thermals for hours at a time while hunting the waters below. A few have even mentioned the sighting of large metallic colored dragons in the air and in the water around the island of Ryu.

Tiny Chuji Island lies next island running counter-clockwise. This island is a tiny speck on the map. Although the Archon’s Curse does flow around this island too. It is rumored to be home to one powerful Wujen. But no one has approached the island for many years. The rumor goes on to say that the Wujen found a way to manipulate the curse to cover his island so that no one would bother him. The tiny island is also supposed to be home to lots of other very unpleasant creatures.

Dao Island is the largest island to the south of the Kingdom. On the very southern point of the island lies an active volcano. The smoke and fumes from the volcano rise up and become part of the Archon’s curse. Some say that it is the source of the Curse’s power. Only the Archon of the Kingdom are allowed near the Volcano itself. Huoshan, as it is know has lava flows are usually fairly small but do occasionally flow out into the sea to the south of the island. This has happened for many years and yet no land has formed from those flows. Again, most people are afraid to find out why. The rim of the volcano is also where the Archon of fire resides. People who have attempted approaching the dwelling have come back with terrible burns and could not get close enough to actually see the home of the Archon.

Mae Dai Island is frequently the butt of many jokes among the citizens of Weizao who can speak western. Mei Dai is the art center of the kingdom. Many schools of dance, music, sculpture, and such exist on this island. Being selected to attend the schools of this island is a great honor. Said to be a very vigorous program for each skill many people joke that it is so tough that you “may die” on Mae Dai. The school is located in a town on the north side of the island. A high wall separates the school from the rest of the island. There is a small community of Goblins on the island but they live symbiotically since the school throws its trash and food left overs where the Goblins can collect it.

Much of the main island of Weizao is hills and mountains. Many of the villages are set up in tiers where rain water is caught in bogs at the top of the farm lands and irrigation is used to allow the water to flow down to crops as needed. Being an island kingdom they usually have more than enough rain to maintain their crops.

Weizao is over nine hundred miles long, from the northwest tip of the island to the southern most point. The island is nearly two hundred miles from east to west at its widest point.

Culture

Public education is available to all of the people of the kingdom. This education includes reading and writing, basic arithmetic, basic martial arts skill and some history. At the age of majority, assessments are made to determine what future each child has and where they will receive the remainder of their education.

Birthdays are celebrated as a community. Six months after the celebration of the Jia Hu is the Sheng Ri. Everyone celebrates their birthdays together. Origami and other small offerings are made to each other and the community makes a large offering of crops to the King. Usually in the fall after the harvest. At the ceremony recognition is given to communities for their progress in the kingdom. For the last 200 years the King has sent banners or building crews to build a monument to the community or to build homes or community centers for business and fellowship. Or sometimes to repair things broken over time that the community cannot repair for itself.

Language

The local folk speak Eastern, though many learned scholars and studious monks learn Celestial and Draconic.

Faith

The folk of Weizao do not worship deities as others do. Instead, they place their faith in the elements themselves - Earth, Air, Fire, Water, and Void.

Kong, the Air Temple is one of the hardest temples to gain entrance. Not so much because of the clerics or monks like the Shui Temple but because this temple is built high up on a spire of rock with no easy climb to get to it.

Shui (Shoe-ee), Temple of Water. Said to be one of the most beautiful temples in the world, the clerics and monks of the temple do not like visitors. People not of the temple are considered a distraction from daily duties and are often given a large security detail so that no one is allowed to damage the beauty or sacredness of the temple.

There is rumor of a sacred pool hidden somewhere in the temple with the ability to complete a full resurrection on almost any state of a body. Even if all you have left is a bit of their person.

The temple of Fire. Puo (Poo-oh) A few of the greatest tacticians of Weizao studied in the Fire Temple before joining the army. This temple’s focus is on the art of war. Most of the monks rarely leave the school. When they do leave they are always drawn to hostility where they will observe and make notes on strategies and tactics. Most will return to the temple and place their works in the temple library. The library is supposed to have an extensive account of every major war since the fall of Skos.

According to legend, an Monk/Historian living on Skos at the time of the fall recorded the day of the fall and that scroll is said to reside in the library.

The Earth Temple, Tu (too). Located at the north most point of the island. It is rumored that the Earth Temple also has tunnels and catacombs that run from one end of the island to the other. Even some tunnels that run under the sea to the other islands of Weizao. Supposedly at one time centuries ago Dwarves were brought in to teach the Disciplies of Earth how to mine correctly. The Dwarven community still exists in an underground city on the south end of the mainland.

Government

The King is an enlightened monarch, advised and guided by the Archons. It is said that every King inherits the wisdom of his predecessor when the Archons place the crown upon his head.

The five tribes are all nominally led by their own Draconal Archon. Usually a shaman or wise monk completes the quest to see the Archon and learn from them directly, and often these wise folk return to their tribes and are deferred to when decisions need be made for the body of the tribe.

Military

Weizao relies upon the Archon's Curse as its first defense from outsiders. Many monsters and dangerous creatures reside upon the island, and are opposed by local monks from the many small temples of the elements, or local warriors from the many small farming villages around the islands.

Magic

Clerics of the Elements are extremely common in Weizao, though few grow to any great power. Arcane magic is rare, but still known.

Cities

There is a single mountain that rises above the rest by an extra thousand feet approximately one third south of the northern tip of the island. The top of the island is flat almost like a rock that has been struck by a giant hammer. The mountain is steep and treacherous except for a single staircase that leads to the top. Half way up the mountain is the temple of the Air. At the very top lies the Forbidden City - home to the King, the elite guard, and the king's advisers. The only other people allowed inside the city are servants and family. The servants are taken from families as a great honor at birth but once someone is taken to serve inside the city they are never allowed to leave again. This is both for the sake of purity for the Enlightened King and also for security as no one outside of the city knows their way through the maze of corridors and bridges that connect the various parts of the palace and city structure.

Kotokoji faces east, away from the mainland. The city extends all the way around the V shaped bay with a large lighthouse on the point on the east side of the bay. This city is known as Kotokoji. Named after a king whose lineage can be traced back to the kings of Sho.

The Western port is a much smaller town. Yuuchi is named the Fish Home. The people of this village fish the waters just inside if the Archon’s Curse. They are also supposed to have a dialogue with some race of water dwellers.

Races

Humans are by far the most common people of Weizao. Elves, Dwarves, and Gnomes are known but quite rare. Sea Elves are well thought of but no permanent population resides on the island. Other races are poorly known and usually suspected of being Kami in disguise.