Iron City of Azuul
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Approaching the Iron City of Azuul.

Places of Interest


  • Temple to Azuul
  • Forum
  • Iron Palace of Azuul
  • Vaneo (barracks)
  • Mentiri (prison)
  • Basillica
  • Therme
  • Opera House

History


The members of the Iron City arrived there long ago and built a holy site to Andarus. Since this site was fairly near Azuul, he ended up creating a barrier to Andarus and represented the god himself. As time went on, he was able to mould those inside into the exact perfect (in his mind) LE society. Every day was another push of ideas or thoughts of evil deeds among the populations until it exploded in civil war after the death of Andarus.

During this item, Azuul tried to create a 'utopia' for those inside. His idea of a utopia is that of strict law basis (So, LE), where every aspect of the society has rules and regulations. To show this, he created countless tomes called the Azuul Decree, which will list out these laws.

This is what we have today. Seeing it as perfection, he opened it up to all of Thain knowing that his grip on the city would not easily be swayed by others.

Groups


In the city itself, there are two main groups, the Hellknights and the Church of Azuul.

The members of the church are the ones that really know the laws (typically, every priest/cleric of Azuul would also be considered a solicitor) and they use Inquisitors to make sure that the laws are followed - they are the secret police - the last thing an Iron City inhabitant wants to see is an inquisitor. (Think FBI in the cold war days.)

The Hellknights are the ones that will follow the strict letter of the law. They are the standard guard force that every city has.

Inhabitants


Queen Imperia IV Thrune

Her Infernal Majestrix, Queen Imperia IV of the Thrice-Damned House of Thrune is the sixth ruler to wear the crown of the Iron City since her great-grandmother Abrogail Thrune I took control of the warring noble houses many years ago. As a young monarch, she receives advice from her pit fiend advisor Gorthoklek, who also served her great-grandmother. Azuul himself provided an erinyes named Contessa Lrilatha to serve as the young queen's instructor.

Beautiful and ruthless (in addition to being a powerful sorceress), Imperia makes a strong leader for the Iron City. According to rumour, Imperia is an immature, demanding, and spoiled ruler, but she has nevertheless proven herself to be a vicious fighter on the political scene. Ironically, whispers say that her fiendish advisers rein in her darker impulses. What is certain is that her quick wit and daring schemes can only help the Iron City regain a strong foothold in the overall political scene on Thain.

She does negotiate a difficult political scene where both the monarchy and the church are in control of the city.

Contessa Lrilatha (Erinyes)

Contessa Lrilatha is an erinyes sent by Azuul himself to assist House Thrune, the ruling family of the Iron City. She was specifically instructed to help in the education of its current monarch, the young Queen Imperia IV.

She also oversees the Inquisitors for Azuul.

Gorthoklek (pit fiend)

General Gorthoklek is a powerful pit fiend who serves House Thrune in the Iron City. He appeared sometime after the ascension of Abrogail I to the throne.

According to rumor, Imperia IV altered the infernal contract, originally signed by her great-grandmother, thus calling General Gorthoklek to the mortal plane. The devil serves as an adviser to the queen and an emissary to Azuul.

Those who have been in the court when he is present report that, while in court, the aura of evil and power emanating him is both overwhelming and unmistakable. Apparently, Imperia IV is herself immune to this power giving rise to theories that she controls the pit fiend; although she takes careful heed of his advice, it is clear that she is the one who controls the direction of the Iron City policy. Indeed, it is whispered that the devil reins in her worst impulses.

Marcellano Thrune, High priest of Azuul

The high priest of Azuul is slightly overweight and going bald. At 50, his hair (what's left of it) has gone salt and pepper. Meticulous in his grooming and in all other aspects of his life, he can often be seen fussing with his vestments to arrange them just so, even while in the midst of an important meeting or task.

Inquisitors

The Inquisitors, the Iron City's secret police, have the authority of the Church of Azuul and the tacit blessing of the nobility. They are the law’s appointed protectors, and the best way to avoid their notice is to avoid breaking the law. Of course, given the nature of the law, this is nearly impossible. Most people suggest keeping one’s head down and going about one’s business to avoid drawing attention.

Lady Pontia Runario Hellknight Durotas (Commander)

Pontia is a slightly heavyset and physically powerful woman. She's a mixture of Hamley, Amn and Haluraa, with somewhat darker skin than is usually seen in the Iron City heartland. The Amnish part of her heritage shows in her wavy black hair and her generous smile (though she displays it only rarely). Pontia spends most of her time in her armor-she wants to be ready for combat at any time, and it deters cutpurses and others who might otherwise prey on a lone traveler on the street if they're dumb enough not to realized they are looking at the commander herself.

Hellknights

The Hellknights are a collection of knightly orders with a unique focus on the promulgation of law. They are interested less in the social goodness and charity typical of paladins, but rather in the foundation and stringent maintenance of the Iron City at all costs. In their iron-handed exaction of law specifically, Hellknights emulate the most organized and effective armies in all the planes: the legions of Hell. They are not concerned with morality or methods, only results. If people cannot be trusted to obey the law out of their own senses of civility and social righteousness, Hellknights provide the need to obey out of fear of a master's stern hand.

There are two main ranks, Duxotari (i.e. Captain) and Dottari (solider)

Regardless of their severity, Hellknights are not an evil group. Although there are doubtlessly numerous evil members - particularly among the upper echelons of power-the majority of the orders are impartial arbiters and enforcers of order and justice.

They see the study of Hell's tenets and even the summoning of devils as tools meant to intimidate and strengthen the individual resolve of the orders' members. Hellknights are taught to replace emotion with steely discipline.

They train with summoned devils, coaxing the ingenuity of diabolical tactics from infernal tongues, while the rank and file members spar against the very denizens of Hell-making nearly any future conflict a far less daunting prospect. There is much to admire in the teachings of Hell: efficiency, order, hierarchy, knowing one's place in the world, cleansing uncertainty and chaos- these are all aspects of life lost with the disappearance of Andarus, and the rise of Azuul fills a hole many good folks of Thain barely realized was there.

One learns that sacrifices must often be made for the greater good, obey draconian regimens of military conduct, commit to encyclopedic memorization of the laws of their orders and local governing bodies, and undergo constant drills to train their bodies and minds.

While Hellknights are widely feared and respected, the common Hellknight joins out of a sense of duty and a wish to be a part of something greater, seeing a world ruled by laws and free of rampaging beasts and cheating thieves as a future well worth striving toward, even at the sacrifice of freedom.

Qenxahl (imp merchant)

This is a fairly standard imp who runs the Forum in the Iron City.

Halfling Slips

Almost every noble house has at least halfling slips, which is another word for slave. Every slip is bound to an Iron City contract that has been sealed in Hell, so they don't wish to break them. None the less, they don't know things being different anyway, so they are often rather happy.

Noble Houses

House Thrune may currently be the most powerful of the noble houses, but it is certainly not the only one. Some of these other noble houses have existed for centuries, while others were commoners raised after the civil war in payment for their loyalty to the House of Thrune. Most of the oldest houses survived the civil war, although those who aligned themselves with the diabolists early in the war have claimed the greatest prestige and wealth. Whatever can be said about the new nobility's morality, they objectively rule more effectively than the old nobility did before the war.

Most members of the nobility continue making pacts with various devils in exchange for incredible temporal power. Those who do not espouse diabolism keep it to themselves, as any talk against the methods of the current regime can lead to the complete eradication of an entire bloodline.

Commoners General View of the City


Three-quarters of the Iron City population are human. The pale-skinned population of the Iron City believe themselves superior to all other peoples. Their compact with great devils gives them power beyond measure, and no other settlement on Thain their summoners and warlocks when it comes to trafficking with dark forces. These devils require payment for their service, often offered up in the form of tender flesh and boiled blood. Slaves are an important resource of the Iron City as are artifacts of ancient power whose secrets are revealed to them by their timeless patrons.

Most of the Iron City's inhabitants have become used to their repressive government with its infernal ties, seeing it as the price they had to pay to be rescued from the anarchy of civil war. Those who actively support the government tend to receive the greatest chances at wealth and social advancement, while those unable or unwilling to contribute to the hellish regime reap no such rewards or are even the targets of recrimination and ridicule.

While it sounds depressing and dangerous, to the locals it is actually a utopia. Crime is low; it's rare that they have to worry about much, expect what to wear at the next Opera.

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