“Welcome to the Ibis continent of the world of Axon, pilgrim! I’m sorry, but the Holy City of Ibis is currently in disrepair. Due to some misguided zealots, the entire empire actually is and, frankly, I’d advise you to go back where you came from and tell your family and friends that you have witnessed the dusk of a new era!”
Merchant to traveller from Eldos, from The Fall of Empires, a new play brought out 2 weeks ago.
The world of Axon is an old one, steeped in magic and myth. For millennia, the Ibisian Empire has ruled the continent of Ibis and held most of the world in it's economic and political power. That was then. This is now, for better or worse. Three weeks ago, a group of revolutionaries/do-gooders/misguided zealots/fanatics/traitors (depending who you ask) killed the last of the Emperors, a corrupt woman named Arkida, who had been ruling for 300 years magically prolonging her life by draining the youth of her family members until they were all dead. Posing as a suitor and entourage, this group got into the city, proceeded to make war on the Emperor and her High Court, and destroyed it.
The economy has collapsed. Anarchy reigns over all, even if that's a paradox. The Empire has fallen into minor nations and city states and the Holy Fleet that once controlled shipping over the world has turned to piracy. The armies have revolted and established kingdoms all over the empire and even on the neighbouring continent of Eldos, where they were supposed to be trying to help stop a military uprising. In the northern mountains, the creatures of evil long held at bay by the empires magics and armies have begun marching south. Faced with the giants and trolls of legend, people have begun fleeing south, seeking refuge in the broken Holy City.
Elsewhere, the fall of the Ibisian Empire has led to chaos and turmoil. Old trade agreements collapse, colonising efforts flatter from lack of funding and people try and find a place to stand in a changed world.
The world of Axon is divided into 3 major landmasses, Eldos, Ibis and Ithaca. Of those, Ibisians consider Ithaca to be a useless backwater and Eldos to be drastically inferior the glory of the Ibisian Empire. Even now with the Empire fallen in to disarray, Ibisians have not lost the habit of centuries - their superiority complex is deeply ingrained in the people. The folk of Eldos, subjected to this for over 5 millenia, do tend to feel inferior, but some of them still recall the glories of Magan, still the worlds largest city, before its fall. The people of Ithaca, when questioned about their attitudes to the others, just smile and say that there is more to the world than rulers and kings.
Unless stated otherwise, all people mentioned in the white text are human.
"One cannot seperate the land from the people and except them to be the same. The land shapes them even as they shape it with ploughs and words and blood. Ibis has shaped an Empire, but Eldos is divided into many lands and many peoples. No ruler can claim the land who has not bled for it; no ruler can claim Eldos who has not bled themselves of need.
Karle, from his Essays On Eldos.
Eldos is a continent of contrasts, from the unclaimed farmlands of the Free Lands to the desert of the Wastes and the black smoke billowing from the hills the gnomes have delved into in search of ores and learning. It is a land of high hills and bleak plains, it's great woods long used and farmlands of low yield, unless left fallow in wars or seeded with the blood of the slain and the ashes of farms. It says muich about Eldos that not even the geography is free from the political realities there.
Ardeen: The western most city of the world, Ardeen has seldom been compared with it's eastern conterpart of World's End. Ardeen is a large, airy city filled with parks and scattered woods arond it. As the weapon smiths of Ardeen always need wood, some druids make sure that the various Ardeen Woods are not too depleted by this needs and often arrange for trade with wood from Ibis' Southern Wood. As well as being one of the few cities or towns to be unwalled, Ardeen's crafspeople are known for producing some of the best quality weapons around. Some even claim that dwarves come to Ardeen to expand their own crafts.
All ardeen-made weapons are automatically masterwork.
Bomis: The chief trade city of Eldos, Bomis is a large island that acts as a haven for smugglers much like Manchee does in Ibis. As an island, Bomis is able to be a little lax with some common Eldos taxes and they are accepting of any travellers. Leaving the city, however, can prove harder than entering it due to the alert city guards. Some stories claim - with some truth - that Bomis was walled not to keep invaders out but to keep Bomisians in. The city is also famed for it's glassworks and the superb quality of fish found off its shores.
The Causeway: The Causeway is one of the world's architetural marvels. Carved out of the land and rock, this artificial river goes from the north cost of Eldos to the fabled city of Magan. It is regularly patrolled for pirates and travel down it is strictly monitored by the Magan fleets since if it was closed the city of Magan could well be cripped. No one knows who made it any longer and in traiditional Magan fashion the architects were killed so that they could not make the sam kind of marvel anywhere else.
The Free Lands: These lands are the only truly arable farmland left in Eldos and not claimed by any nation due to an ancient Magan decree on it, a decree that the Empire enforced as well. Essentially, no nation may rule these lands and the few villages that crop up are autonomous. Most of the farmland ia run communally and there have been no wars fought in the Free Lands for over 300 years.
Gnomes Pits: The dwarven lands in Eldos, this area is filled with strange mechanical things and dark, ugly smoke billows over the sky. Here, the gnomes dig into the earth for minerals crudely and strip the land for their experiments. It is said that they capture children of all the races to be used as labourers in their mines and factories. As a result, gnomes are largely despised and hated by everyone on Eldos, but almost impossible to drive out of the pits, even if an army could try to, due to their technological achievements.
Hellsport: The means of transportation to Magan and guard way to that ancient city, Hellsport is a bleak and forbidding place. Travelers have called it an overgrown fortress to repel invaders and they're right in many ways. Hellsport is a city of war and doesn't take pains to disguise that fact. The city is run by the military and boasts almost no crime (well, no repeat crime, since the punishment for almost any offense is death) as well as a very orderly way of life. It even has a curfew and outsiders are required to bear papers proving who they are at all times. After being in this city for a week, most travellers are very eager to leave. It even makes Magan look pretty by comparison, which could well be the whole point of Hellsport.
The Hundred Nations: A collection of warring city states, the hundred nations are a cesspitt of violence and dishonour. Even the Magan Empire was scarely able to hold them together in it's time and when it fell to Ibis, the Hundred Nations exploded into wars and feuds the next day, much to the shock of Ibis. The Ibisian Empire kept order here by what amounted to a reign of terror by troops and the slaughtering of entire city-states on occasion. It never really helped much and the collapse of the Ibisian Empire makes it likely that few Ibisian troops in the hundred nations are still alive.
Magan: The city of Magan is the largest city in the world, an enormous multi-walled city with tall buildings and cramped streets, Magan is a chaos of roads and people meeting in a sprawl that the constantly expanding walls barely keep in hold. The city has little to offer it, most ancient buildings having fallen in fires over the millenia or lost to the ravages of looters and the desires of new rulers to destroy the past in preparation for the future. The Magan Empire held most of Eldos for over 4 millenia before falling to the Ibisian Empire in a nasty trade war. The fact that the Magan Empire actually held the area of the Hundred Nations together by giving every ruler status of Raja, or king. The Empreror was the Maharaja, the Great King. All queens are called rani, named after a legendary dragon, while the sons of kings are rajput. the name - according to scholars of Magan language - of a variety of rabbit in north Eldos that breeds a lot but have a tendancy to fight predators instead of run from them. The only other title of importanace was Nawab, learned man, a title given to scholars - often mages. Important officials were called Nizam and ranking within the Magan bureaucracy is legendarily complex and orderered. Their belief in tradition and ritual was the large reason this empire fell, but also why it lasted as long as it did.
The people of magan believed in revering ancestors, so much so that clerics are given the title of Arehito Tenno, Gods Walking Among Men. Clerics could elevate dead Emperors to the status of gods and the magan gods were effectively a divine bureaucracy, one that remains to this day in subtle forms despite claimed devotion to the God and Goddess. The people also have a habit of throwing stones for luck and divination, allowing anyone to be an oracle of sorts. The stones are round on one side and flat on the other and, outsiders ironically note, are often thrown until the user gets the result they desire.
The Wastes: The Wastes are an arid desert in the south of Eldos. Legend claims that some nations warred there - in much the way the Hundred Nations do now - and sapped the energy from the land to to the point where it died and took them all with it, refusing to let any leave it's borders. Whether this legend is truth or fact, the wastes have never decreased or increased in size since and only bands of nomads live their now.
Golden land and heart of Empire,
Helping hand and gleaming spire,
Shining bright in walls of night,
Bringing light to make things right;
Oh, let me no more need to roam,
I can see this place is my home!
Inscription about the eastern gate of the Holy City, author unknown.
The continent of Ibis is largely mountains, hills and plains.The areas north of the Heart Wood - the oldest standing wood on the continent - are largely hills and valleys, while sourth of it is rolling plans and farmland. The Mountains dominate most of the western part of the continent and few travellers enter them in this day and age.Well, not if they expect to return alive.
Almago: The northern city of Ibis, this city was the largest port for the Ibisian Fleet and the people there famed for their common sense and skill in driving bargains weith others. Many famous tapestries and weavings hail from this city. After the destruction of the city and everything for 3 miles around during the battle with Arkida, this area has suffered a dramatic decline in fortunes. The noblity were forced to move to a large village north of Dalgo Lake and discovering that someone has sealed their ancestral lands magically hasn't helped much.
Lord Damien: Eldest son of Elliande and Geoff, Damien is next in line for the dukedom and spends most of his time with his grandfather, Lord Randall. His elder brother and younger sister died when Almago was destroed.
Duchess Elliande Almago: Ruler of the city, the duchess' family is almost as old as the city and have ruled it with skill and poltical acumen for millenia. Her husband currently runs their estate near Dalgo while she is trying to get the King to remove the barrier around her city (or help remove it, if he did not put the barrier up). The family fortunes have not declined yet, mostly due to wise investments in things other than their city.
Duke Geoff Dalgo-Alamgo: Husband of Lady Elliande and duke of Almago, he currently runs the families summer home near Dalgo and tries to fend off his former families attempts to take advantage of Almagans right now
Lord Radall Almago: Elliande's father, the former duke spends his time travelling between Ibis and Almago and it was his foresight that is responsible for the family having any fortunes right now. There are rumours that he was intimate with Arkida in the past, but he has never confirmed for denie them.
Dalgo: The city of Dalgo is nestled among hills among the Dalgo Lake. A smaller dukedom than many others, dalgo produces much of the fish and bottled water for Ibis. The people tend to be friendly but reserved and a surprising amount of dwarves make thier homes in the duchy, making it the most tolerant of dwarves than many other places. The ruling family tends to be rather laid back but they were jealous of Almago for taking much ocean trade away from them in the past.
Duke Markas Dalgo: Ruler of Dalgo, the duke is known as a competent military man and is surprisingly honest for nobility. A blunt soldier, he rules Dalgo efficiently and with an eye towards expanding the dukedom southwards to the rich farmlands there. He is currently unarrmied as his wife died last year in the plague.
Lord Ordin: The son of Markas, the heir to the dukedom of Dalgo is currently away in Eldos on a campaign wit the Ibisian army. His fate.now that the army has largely revolted is in question and his father has no idea where his son is.
Dalgo Lake: This lake is a very large body of water that supplies Ibis with lots of fish as well as making an excellent training place for the Ibisian Fleet. With the demise of the fleet, the fortunes of Dalgo have taken a minor downturn.
Eris: The only mountain duchy of Ibis, the city of Eris is eccentric even by the standards of Ibisian nobility, which seem to attract strange people. The fact that this family produced Arkida and considered her to be "a bit of a problem child" says a lot about them. The city itself is stone, cold, forbidding and generally inhospitable to outsiders. The architecture is fairly creative, and the ducal palace itself seems to have been built on a slant and always looks about to fall over. It is perhaps the only city that can inspire motion sickness just by looking at buildings on a windy day. They export dwarf goods here.
Lady Alyen: Elder daughter of the duke and duchess, Alyen was put aside for her brother Poee for not being a proper "erisian" whatever that means. She is sober and kind to others, as well as being a cleric of the Goddess.
Duchess Kallisti Eris: Considered the prettiest woman in Ibis, the duchess is a striking woman who wears no jewelry or scents and is still capable of causing people to fight duels to the death with a faint smile at the age of 45.
Lord Poee Eris: The brother of Kallisti, his marriage to her was rather shocking in it's day and the cleric who presided over it was banned from the Order of Clerics according to rumour. He is a plain-looking man with keen eyes and a razor wit that had devastated more than one opponet in the past.
Duke Macalypse: The younger son of the duke and duchess, Malcalypse is considered a few bricks short of a load, as it were, and generally the family keeps him away from sharp knives. Aside from this, he is a brilliant - if slightly demented - sorcerer and is excellent as knowing what people are thinking.
Heart Wood: The oldest standing wood in Ibis, the heart wood is an enormous forest (and swamp, in the northern part) that can literally take people's breaths away to see. Many druids live here and treants are said to make it their homes, guarding it from loggers and environmentalists alike. It is considered a national treasure and draws tourists yearly just to see some trees older than the Empire itself.
Ibis: The heart of the Ibisian Empire, Ibis is also a nation itself. Here, the Emperor is King as this is the heartland of the Empire, not some conquered or vassal state. The cities of Ibis are protected by very well trained city guards and the Ibisian Fleet. At least, they were. No one is sure about the current status of either right now but no "nations" have invaded as yet.
Admiral Avren Dalgo: Head of the Fleet, he was en route to Ibis from Almago when Arkida dies. His current whereabouts are unknown, as are the 200 ships he had with him.
General March Borchal: Chief general of the Empire, March was assassinated in his rooms 3 days ago by someone using a poison unknown to the royal healers. The assailant has yet to be found.
The Chancellor (Human?): The chief official of the Empire, whose word is second only to the Emperor. He has served the empire at least as long as Sytus Idorian and seems to be 40 years old, forever. No one knows of his past or how he came to his post, but he is amazingly efficient at running the Empire. Some people have tried to assassinate him, believing that it would hurt the Empire more than the death of the Emperor. No one has succeeded yet.
The Oracle: One of the few reliable oracles, the oracle of the city of Derry was slain by Arkida during the battle to her death. Some visitors to the site of her tomb in the burnt holy grove have claimed to have received visions and inspiration there, however. Whether Derry will have another oracle is unknown.
Gereral Sytus Idorian (Elf): The chief strategist of the Ibisian Empire, Sytus was personally responsible for ensuring the port of Ithaca was built and functions well.800 years ago.
Manchee: A secondary port of Ibis, Manchee is a haven for some unlawful types and last lots of small islands off it's coast which make it ideal for smugglers. The city is plain, walled, and has never fallen to an invader before. The rulers of the city are in many ways the merchant guilds who keep everything functioning smoothly and the money circulating - they bribe lots of people. The duke has often been considered a figurehead with little actual power.
Duke Jamisen Manchee: Currently unmarried as his last wife died of the plague, officially. He is a hard, strong man who is more a merchant that ruler of his dukedom. While this earns the scorn of the gentry, it has earned him grudging respect from the people of the city. He is also very practical, in a ruthless way that reminds people that a dukedom is more than just a title.
Lady Sarah: The duke's two year old daughter. Rumour claims he is already accepting marriage prospects.
The Mountains: The mountains of Ibis are the only uncivilised part of the continent, a fact that is often ignored by Ibisians. The spells woven by Arkida's mages to hold the legendary inhabitants of the mountains - giants and trolls of myth - in them have been wearing away and stories abound of villages sacked and burned by monsters in the night. No Ibisian army has been sent to the mountains in living memory, for reasons that perhaps died with Arkida.
Southern Wood: The southern woods are a largely tamped forest used for firewood and building homes. Some druids live there, making sure that trees are replanted and stopping most poachers. Quite a few of them die. And, since the druids here tend to be peverse, most get reincarnated. Sometimes, if rumour is true, as the animals they killed, or even trees. Other than that, it is a mostly normal wood.
The Tower: The centre of Talrien, the tower has stood longer than the Empire, according to some; an unchaging white building rising 13 stories above the ground and dominating central Talrien. The wizard who rules it is said to be the most powerful wizard in the world and none enter or leave The Tower without his - or her, or its, depending on what legend you listen to - permission. None ever speak of what they see inside it.
World's End: The eastern most city in the world, World's End is a dark and gloomy place, the land used too often and the waters filled with reefs. Many people consider being sent to this old stone city an exile and the dukes and duchesses of it tend to be strange folk for the most part. The ducal line of World's End is only nine hundred years old, making it very new, but not unusual for World's End which has never had a ducual line last longer than two millenia.
Duke Bashen End: The current duke of World's End is a scandal to most gentry, who try to keep their private lives somewhat private. He is said to be a very good bard and a surprisingly adequate fighter. Rumour even claims he trained with assassins in his youth. The only reason be became duke was because all other candiates died in the plague, so he is very new to his post.
Lady Rena End: The wife of Bashen, Rena is a cold, efficient lady who somehow manages to deal with her husband. She has some sort of understanding with her husband since she gave birth to Shen, widely believed to not be Bashen's child.
Lord Shen: Technically Bashen's child (he has claimed Shen as his own) and heir to the dukedome, Shen is a bitter young man who is said to not really want to be a duke at all. There are also rumours that he and his father has some falling out recently, which is why he is in Ibis and not at World's End.
In the other world we see
Things that must, yet never, be;
Dreams are shown to those who still
Speak the words that free Their will;
What is in you, that you take,
Here you stand, and here you make,
Dreams are truer than we know -
What we see we can make so:
Truth there is, for you to find,
In your heart, and in your mind.
Old Ithacan holy chant.
The land of Ithaca has never been mapped, so it's geography tends to be rather hazy. Ithcans seem to consider the idea of naming or claiming land to be unholy or disrespectful and go to sometimes extreme lengths in order to not name things, while still being very descriptive about them. For example, the Dark Wood is the "area of land that the sun sets westward on." If pressed, an Ithanacan might describe the types of trees broadly, but naming it would be offensive. This makes it diffuclt for Ibisian and Eldos scholars to map anything, as does the very nature of Ithaca, where people seem to have difficulty destiguishing between fact and fancy in describing what they find there. The general description of Ithaca tends to be: a big forest with some scrubby plains south of it, a decription that has never entered a single geographical or historial treatise.
The Dark Wood: The Ithacan Woods are old, the forest becoming swamp interchangably at times. The woods aren't dark in any real sense - at least, no more so than any other wood. The Heart Wood of Ibis is likely older, but there is something about the Ithacan woods that merits the name dark, for these woods have never been tamed and the cities that once were here have been claimed by the jungle long and long ago.
Land of Grisly Death: The what of what? is generally the response to this land, and no one is sure quite how it managed to earn this dubious title. A race of man-eating giants is said to live there by some, others claim it is cannibals of <insert any disliked species here> that prey on travellers. A few odd stories even claim the lands were made into what they are by travellers from other lands arriving there and killing lots of people somewhere in the past, at the point where myth and legend are indistinguishable from history. A curious fact about this place is that they refuse to use plates to eat food here. Taking one there is dangerous, breaking one is a certain death sentence.
Moon Home: The Moon Home is an old temple of unknown age made of some glass-like substance that captures and stores moonlight. Some elves live here, but the function of the temple and what deity - if any - it is sacred to is unknown. Few travellers ever seeking it manage to find it, and some claim that it does not dwell in this world at all.
The Port: The city built largely by Ibisian traders over the past half millenia, the port is a small, unwalled city where traders, travelers and the curious come to explore Ithaca. Some Ithacans have left to other lands, but they tend to be the exception rather than the rule. The port is run largely by some Ithacian sorcerers and the fact that people who tend to draw weapons here seldom live very long afterwards.
Ye Olde Ruins: The ruins of a city that was quite possibly larger than Magan. No one knows anything of it, or who built it. Other ruins of smaller cities are scattered around it, many of the buildings too large for most races to live in confortably. These ruins don't even have any writing or pictograoms on them at all, which tends to puzzle amateur acheologists.
I believe what I believe, you believe what you believe. Neither of them is what They believe. So, somewhere in betwen our ideas there might even be a truth or two, eh?"
Verdan, human Cleric.
Religion is a very complex issue on Axon, mostly because of it’s long history. Currently, Ibis and most of Eldos worships the God and Goddess, the 2 Beings who were said to come into Time at the same moment and created the world, or perhaps brought life to it. Most clerics are still unsure where the Deities made the world or not, but the God and Goddess aren’t in the habit of answering questions. There have been other deities worshipped through the millennia, from Arth’Ba’Toch the death god to the Sleeping God Cthulhu. Most of these gods are forgotten save to clerics and in the occasional artwork on older buildings.
Current belief holds that They each hold aspects of good and evil in them. The Goddess is generally seen as birth, life and death while the God is seen as fate. These beliefs are relatively interchangeable and personal beliefs tend tavern due to sex and temperament, for examples. A woman who praises the Goddess for her garden each day could one day curse Her (or the God) for a bad winter killing some of her sheep, a soldier than the God for a very timely thunderstorm during the war. The possibilities are endless. The actual presence of the God and Goddess is seen in the fact that the world works, magic exists, clerics can call upon and, sometimes, avatars embodying aspects of Their personalities can appear, but the latter is rather rare.
Most clerics believe that the world often runs itself without aid from the Divine, save by Their presence in the world. There was even a heretical notion that the world could continue without Their aid, but the cleric who thought of it spent his last few days knowing the joys of red-hot pokers. The simple fact is that with cleric so loosely spread over the world, unusual theologies (heresies) tend to crop up now and again, and are often deal with by the death of those involved. Some heresies, such as that Death is an avatar of one of Them, or that omens are signs of Their will, are commonplace - and widespread - enough that most clerics just sigh and ignore them.
Clerics of the God and Goddess tend to be travellers, heading across the lands and aiding those in need. A few will stop for a time at villages to rest and tend the sacred places - groves and trees and the like - that have been claimed by or for Them. With the exception of The Sanctuary in the Holy City of Ibis and the scattered estates where clergy get trained, worship of the God and Goddess is done entirely outside or in the privacy of ones own home.
Religious tracts to exist about the religion (written in common). They are not that common, since written works are a product of their times, whereas oral tales can change. Most of the works tend to extol the virtues of the God and Goddess and tell people that, while They do have their dark sides, Their goodness always wins. Examples of this are the God as the sun dying in the night and rising again each dawn and other metaphors. Their is no established creation mythology since no one is sure whether They made the world or not. As well, They claim to be here to aid the world, not protect it. In order words, people are free to do the evil and god they please with no divine commandments to guide or limit them. This obviously suits most governments very well.
Some Current Heresies
For those who need to know this sort of thing, the God and Goddess both have access to all the Spheres. Using your chosen sphere is more than picking it, it is also living it. A cleric of the Sun must be up at dawn each day to watch the sun rise and watch it set as dusk as well, praying to Her or Him at the time.
The holy symbol of the God is a small golden trident. That of the Goddess is a small silver shield. A clerics holy symbol incorporates the trident or shield and their own Sphere.
"Magic makes the world go round,
It lets us fly above the ground,
It shows us things on crystals,
Things we never knew at all,
Things that we could be watching:
Why are we out here skipping?"
Popular children skipping song, from the Crystal Show "Wizard Knows Best"
To begin, technology does not exist, except among the Gnomes, where they invented the printing press and are roughly at the Industrial Revolution time frame in Eldos. Technology, to most people, is magic. Or, more accurately, really advanced magic that mimics modern technology in many ways. How many, well just read on to find out.
Computing: While computers themselves aren’t possible, some specially designed crystal balls - called Oranges, since the elemental in their gives them an odd orange colour - serve the same function. They record and store all verbal communications said to them, and a few can even “see” copies of written paper, storing them in it’s memory and creating duplicates of them at need. A few even allow non-verbal communication, but they are largely experimental. The air elementals imprisoned in the crystals tend to do very good service, but become rather set in their ways over time, and demand that they be placed near windows, so they can see the air go by and other strange things. They have also developed a language among themselves called See due to their ability to see air in a strange way that allows them to link and communicate with each other, like strands in some net.
Media: Crystal balls are wonderful things. As with Oranges, many other developments in them have been possible. Besides the semi-illegal method of using small crystals balls to record everything they see in areas as a security measure, a method of using the net idea of Oranges to send visual scenes to peoples homes was popularised about 700 years ago. Nowadays, most people have house crystals of this nature, for communicating with neighbours or getting news, sports, weather and entertainment, paid for by the renting of the balls themselves. It is also the largest reason why the printing press was successfully banned in Ibis.
Travel: Travelling the Ibisian empire was relatively easy, if one could afford it. In every small and large settlement, there was a specially made gateway on the ground. these portals - called highways, since originally only nobility could use them - were made of many small stones interconnected to each other. Step on a certain point, and you would appear at another highway instantly. Merchant caravans able to afford the fees saved a lot of money on travel by sending each wagon through at a time and banditry in the Empire itself became almost unheard of.
Unfortunately, the highway spell system was a closely guarded secret of the Ibisian Empire - almost as much as the one that created the Imperial Guard. When Arkida fell, many of these wizards died trying to use the highways to send too many men to aid her, or close them down in a hurry. In the northern city of Almago, where The Company tried to commandeer one, the wizard there broke the spell. The resulting explosion levelled the entire city and almost everything for 3 miles around became a big crater around the spot where the highway had been. As a result of this, it looks like an island in the middle of some strange lake and tends to be called the 3 mile island, for unknown reasons. Currently, there is a magical wall up around the entire thing. No one knows who put it there, but it prevents anything from entering of leaving Almago.
For common travel, some enterprising Wizards had developed a way to built wands of flight into actual wagons and carts themselves, allowing someone to get in one, speak the right words, and fly it as long as the flight spells remained functioning. This method of travel is fairly common, but still hazardous - mostly because you can run into other flying vehicles.
Weapons: Wands tend to be the weapon of choice for city guards, so much so that the general enemy neutraliser - abbreviated gun for short - has been developed, a wand of magic missiles that, instead of shooting multiple missiles, shoots one with the accumulated energy of 3 of them at once. While limited in ammunition, these tend to be very effective weapons and rarely miss their targets. Other weapons can be developed at player and DM leisure.
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