Endless Blue – Week 125 – Governments of the Fluid Nations – Yaun-Teel Bights   Leave a comment


Governments of the Fluid Nations: Yaun-Teel Bights

Yaun-Teel Bights
Aliases: The Vault Unyielding, the Prosperity of Merchants, Gem of the Pecuniary Stream.
Region: Hinterseas
Capital: Sher-Umaruramu

The Yaun-Teel Bights rests between the Arctic Circle and the Tropic of Cetacean, north of the Mer Currents and east of the Chelon Sea. It has temperate waters bounded by long archipelagos of sand bars which form the aforementioned bights.

Climate is mild in these waters, and seasons have little variation. This make farming a poor prospect, but living area is plentiful. Since much of the nation is shallow open waters, travel into, across, and through is relatively danger-free, further contributing to the nation’s rise as the prominent trade force of Elqua.

The Pecuniary Stream, a jet stream current that circumnavigates around the Fluid Nations between the Periphery and the Hinterseas, both begins and ends in the Bights, making it a prime trade route for the Known World. This connected circle, along with the Yaun-Teel’s reputation for opulence, gave birth to the nickname “Gem of the Pecuniary Stream” as it resembles the precious stone at the apex of the current’s ring.


Demonym: Yaun-Til
Population: 38,564,000
Races: Yaun-Teel (23,100,000), Orcan (1,450,00, 105,000 of which are Narwahl), Chelon (770,000) , Kouton (385,000), Locanth (4,025,000), Lumulus (1,925,000), Mer (5,761,000), Sahaguin (1,148,000)
Other: Ceph (182,000), Kelpygmy (unknown)

Be it taxation on trade, tithing toward church works, or donations to the public good, every part of life in the Vault Unyielding is an exchange of value. The majority of the nation’s work force is fulfilled through either indentured servitude or out right slavery. By exploiting the financially vulnerable, the nation maintains a constant income to fund the homesea’s needs.

This system of forced servitude is enabled through a cultural dogma known as the Principles of Service, which permeates every level of how Yaun-Til society works. The core of the Principles is the belief that everyone must serve another. Slaves serve their Master, workers serve their employer, leaders serve their people, the clergy serves their hods, and the gods serve the faithful. By doing works that benefit others, you justify your existence. To seek only yourself lessens those around you, denying them the good they deserve.


Official Religion: The Idolatry
Accepted Religions: Pantheon worship, specifically Merrshaulk
Alignments: Chaotic Evil

The Yaun-Teel Bights is the birthplace of the Idolatry, a form of Pantheonic worship where the gods are more piscean in form, and their lives are moral lessons to be learned from by the masses. The Book of Idolatry contains stories wherein two or more of the Pantheon, in more modern form, express the flaws of leaning too far to the right or left of a moral belief. As Merrshaulk is the classic deity of the Yaun-Teel, his lessons in the form of Avarita of the Greed illustrate her failings when being too greedy, as well as not greedy enough.

Yet, for all these claims of “serving others for the greater good”, the rights of the individual are violated. It goes beyond “give until it hurts”, and religious mantra reinforces the expectation that you are to give up your own existence when the nation requires it. Service is not negligible — it must be felt.


Imports: Everything, luxury items
Exports: Access to Everything.
Currency: Barter in trade, exchanged coinage from other fluid nations, or forced “indentured servitude” called a torc.

Wherever the Yaun-Teel dwell, trade develops. It is no wonder that the homesea called the Prosperity of Merchants became the center of trade for the Endless Blue. Trade unions have grown in reach and power over the years, with the Liga Synarr being the most prominent. They are the ones that were most interested in serving the public need for trade, finding the best sources of craft and connecting them to the most needy of customers. All for a moderate cut of the profits, of course. It is said that no Liga Synarr would give up on an exchange until all parties are satisfied.

While decried by all other Fluid Nations, slavery is alive and thriving in the Yaun-Teel Bights. Not even the subjugation of the Known World by the Kraken Occupation has stopped the Yaun-Teel peddling of flesh and scale. This is heavy-handedly normalized by the Principles of Service. Some serve willingly, others against the will, but all will serve somebody.

The hub of international trade is the Grand Bazaar, a “tent city” known for an ever-shifting layout of artisans, merchants, and craftsmen come to sell their wares. “Anything can be found for purchase in the Grand Bazaar,” it is said, “but never in the same place twice.”


Government Type: Capitalistic Plutocracy.
Ruler: His/Her Equitableness, the Supreme Usurer of the Bights.
Selection Process: An appointment for life, the works of the most prominent citizens are audited and the results sorted by greatest value to the community. The individual that has given the most is placed in the role of national ruler.

Ruled by the rich, leadership is literally bought by the individual from the society. Financial influence directly translates into political power. Incrementally, as an individual does service — usually by paying for good works to be accomplished — the greater his esteem will grow in the community. After all, he has made all these sacrifices in the name of serving others, why wouldn’t he continue to better society in a place of influence. The greater the donation to the community, the higher the individual can climb up the governmental ladder.  Following the Principles of Service, donations to programs and infrastructure that best benefit the community hold greater weight.

As such, it is nearly impossible for a unknown Yaun-Teel with aspirations to swoop in and steal a position of political power. The lengthy process of spending on public projects is what brings the individual to political prominence. Without that long history of servitude and donation to audit, political hopefuls find themselves spurned by the culture’s adherence to the Principles of Service. This also applies to those who inherit their wealth: It was not their acts that earned their wealth, but the acts of another who in death served them. In fact, it actually becomes harder for the nouveau riche to ascend in popular opinion, because it is so much easier for the wealthy to give away in a moment what the rest of the populace would need years to earn. There is no service without sacrifice.


Name: By individual mercenary charter.
Organization: By individual mercenary charter, modified by official letter of marque.

Despite the existence of a Central Bank, the Yaun-Teel government does not fund a standing military. Instead, smaller local trade institutions bankroll mercenary companies, many of which exist solely as subsidiaries of the institution. The largest mercenary company is controlled by the Liga Synarr, which not only has credit unions all over the Yaun-Teel Bights but in most major cities in the rest of the Known World.

In times of great need, the Hoarder bandits that normally prey upon the remotest settlements of the Bights are bribed into service. Hidden among the No Mer’s Seas between fluid nations, letters of marque can be issued by financial organizations as needed. Be it either established or ad hoc formation, expenses for military companies are tracked and later remitted to the Central Bank for reimbursement. Again, the Principles of Service ensure that amounts submitted are not egregious and that reimbursement is not withheld, as the loss of reputation in the eyes of the Yaun-Teel public would be devastating. In fact, one of the most infamous moment from Yaun-Teel history was when Supreme Usurer Benoit withheld remittance to the Liga Synarr for their mercenary forces during the Occupation. It was only after decades when the Soddengate trials were resolved Benoit deposed that the debt repaid.

Who do you serve?
Do you serve your own needs, which only bolsters your own survival?
Or do you serve the needs of the majority, and bring prosperity to all?
Would you aid those that sought only for themselves?
Or do you do better everyone so you yourself better served?
Who do you serve?
– Oath of the Central Bank of the Yaun-Teel Bights

Endless Blue – Week 124 – Governments of the Fluid Nations – Sahaguin Lagoons   Leave a comment


Governments of the Fluid Nations: Sahaguin Lagoons

Sahaguin Lagoons
Aliases: The Stalking Expanse, Apex of Predation, Dominar’s Dominion
Region: Hinterseas
Capital: None.

The Sahaguin Lagoons lay directly south of the Creche of Civilization and east of the Maw of the Kraken. They are the most isolated of the Fluid Nations, and share no common border with the other homeseas. This suits the Sahaguin fine, as they prefer to deal with their own business, without the scrutiny of the other piscean races looking down on them.

The majority of the region falls under the dim, greenish shadow of the Sargasso Ring, and as a result the nation is known for its dark waters and muted coloration. With only the weakest wavelengths of light left to illuminate the homesea, aquaculture is relegated to the sliver of waters in north western areas not eclipsed by the Sargasso Ring.

The Lagoons is a shallow nation, nestled among the Shoals with the closest Shelf depths laying southward in the sub-antarctic zone. This limits the size of native sea life which in turn makes it less risky for Sahaguin settlements to set root. The true threat is the surface abominations that live a semi-aquatic lifestyle. These towering monstrosities wade the waters of the Stalking Expanse searching for food on a constant basis. Rarely a day will pass without some kind of skirmish between the natives and these wandering aberrations.


Demonym: Sahaguin
Population: 10,420,000
Races: Sahaguin (8,500,000), Orcan (500,000, 450,000 of which are Narwahl), Chelon (25,000), Kouton (10,000), Locanth (10,000), Lumulus (50,000), Mer (75,000), Yaun-Teel (1,250,000)
Other: Ceph 42,000, Kelpygmy (unknown).

Sahaguin society concentrates on the readiness of the individual to fight for survival. Great emphasis is placed on the need to compete in every aspect of life — competition for resources, for mates, for survival itself. Life is a struggle, so you need to be the best you can be — because there is always someone better looking to take your place.

It is a challenge to become accepted into a Sahaguin settlement as a Sahaguin, let alone those of the other piscean races. The physical prowess inherent to sea tyrant biology outstrips the capabilities of most other races. Orcans and Narwahl succeed best, but the former balks at the culture’s obsession with dominance while the latter revels in it.


Official Religion: Sekolah
Accepted Religions: The Pantheon, the Idolatry, but with emphasis on Sekolah/Ira of the Wrath.
Alignments: Lawful Evil

The femininely dominated Sekolahite Church has little in the way of a hierarchy. Instead, clergy referred to as Elders are overseen by a single Priestess. They do little other than guide Sekolah’s faithful through the trials that life presents them. Thus the clergy fill the role of teaching fry what it means to be Sahaguin and the reasoning why might makes right. All Sekolahite faithful — Sahaguin or not — are expected to undergo the Calving of the Shoal as they age, culminating in the infamous abduction and abandonment in the wilderness trial of legend.


Imports: Weaponry, exotic fauna for sport/food, minor aquacultural plants
Exports: Cured meats, leather, obsidian, exotic wildlife, warbeasts
Currency: None

Having essentially a decentralized government, the Sahaguin Lagoons do not recognize a common currency. This is a hindrance to commerce, and relegates Sahaguan merchants to trade only. Coupled with the species’ inherently confrontational demeanor, and few other than the Yaun-Teel will deal with them.

Cultural norms in the Lagoons dictate only things of use are valued: tools, clothing, livestock, or weapons. Frivolities such as toys or excesses like fancy jewelry are seen as negative to Sahaguini culture. If it does not help you kill or stop you from being killed, it is weakness. This does not mean that Sahaguin with wealth do not show off for others, just that what a Sahaguin deems “admirable” would be the quality and usefulness of their possessions. Tools have use, and keep you alive; baubles do not.

Wildlife is a thriving economy for the Sahaguin. Many species of fauna are only found in the mangroves of the Lagoons, and demand for such rarities/delicacies can fetch a high price. But beyond mere exotic dishes or pets, Sahaguin are known for raising the fiercest warbeasts known to the Endless Blue. These monstrosities are bred to be killing machines – frothing, frenzying creatures of pure aggression – and can only be handled by the sternest of packbreeder hands.


Government Type: Kratocracy
Ruler: Local warlord
Selection Process: Brutality and coercion.

Rule is simple in the Apex of Predators: the strong rule by right. This is a kratocracy, where in those with the might to enforce their will have the right to do so.  The Sahaguin have such a strong belief in might makes right, wherein the victor writes history and thus determines what is right and what is wrong, that it permeates their daily dealings. 

Seizing power successfully is enough to legitimize a claim to rule, but not the only way to hold on to it. A warlord may be strangely generous to those that serve him, so as to not give them any reason to challenge his rule. But be certain, every warlord is ready at a moment’s notice to bring violence and pain down on a subordinate, whatever the reason. A wily ruler uses any fallout of his decisions as an excuse to reinforce his reign.


Name: None.
Organization: Locally organized muscle backed by the reputation of a powerful Sahaguin.

Military forces for Sahaguin border security by immediate conscription. This is actually an expected volunteerism, where any citizen refusing to take arms is either immediately dealt with or shunned afterwards. Not even the Orcans are more willing to drop everything and swim into combat than the Sahaguin.

It is common for violence to erupt between neighboring warlords over territory and imagined slights. Depending on the amount of threat or influence each side has determines which side the locals will fight for, or even if they fight at all. Petty squabbles are settled quickly between individuals, while major power grabs could bring an entire settlement to ruin.

Swimming through the kelp beds, what do I see?
I can see Sekolah taking note of me.
Hunting among the prey herds, what do I see?
I can see Sekolah looking back at me.

Fighting for my honor, what do I see?
I can see Sekolah chanting praise for me.

Failing to kill my rival, what do I see?
I can see Sekolah, his back is turned to me…
— The Song of Stalking, a Sekolahite Agoge Chant

Endless Blue – Week 123 – Governments of the Fluid Nations – Bay of Kouton   Leave a comment


Governments of the Fluid Nations: Bay of Kouton

Feudal State of Kouton Bay
Aliases: the Northern Wastes, Echoes of the Unspoken, Vault of Secrecy
Region: Hinterseas
Capital: None.

Just north of the Tropic of Cetacean and west of the Prime Meridian, the Bay of Kouton lies on the outer edges of the Cetacean Ocean. Small in comparison to the Cetacean Ocean, Kouton Bay is essentially cut off from the rest of the Fluid Nations. If not for the Cetanate’s blessing allowing free passage across its territory, Kouton Bay would be isolated from the other piscean races. Further west of the Bay lies the forgotten remains of the extinct Icht, and the Kouton guard this area zealously. While the ruins of the Kraken Empire are off-limits to all piscean races as per the Fluid Nations Accord, the Icht are believed by most to be fictional in nature, giving the curious Kouton unfettered opportunity to plumb its secrets for themselves.

Existing in the northern temperate zone, the Bay is the termination of a series of jet streams that drag particulate matter and pollution from the Periphery nations into Kouton territory. This constant accumulation of silt and marine snow leaves the homesea under a constant blanket of thickness that harbors all manner of bottom feeding fauna. As a result, the waters of the Kouton Bay are ignominious for being polluted. To say there is no beauty in the pale seabeds of the Kouton Bay is wrong, but to apply the idea of elegance to the monotony of grey that covers the Bay is also incongruous. “Drab comeliness” is the best approximation of Kouton Bay seascape.


Demonym: Kouton
Population: 23,825,000
Races: Kouton (11,500,000), Orcan (2,725,000, 950,000 of which are Narwahl), Chelon (1,325,000), Locanth (1,100,000), Lumulus (1,550,000), Mer (1,750,000), Sahaguin (683,000), Yaun-Teel (1,250,000)
Other: Ceph 842,000, Kelpygmy (unknown).

Kouton society is concerned with “perceived influence”. This stems from the native Kouton, whom posses a flush reflex that triggers on emotion. All Kouton have this minor color changing capacity, but cannot control its autonomic function. Since this pigmentation change clearly gives away the motivation of the Kouton, their culture developed around disguising this weakness.

Shrouds are worn — male and female alike — to hide their faces. A shroud consists of a semi-ornamental skull cap from which hangs a veil. The veil is long enough to hang down to the chest and wide enough to cover the entire mouth and face, leaving only the bulbous eyes of a Kouton exposed. Non-Kouton pisceans native to the Bay also wear this garment out of tradition, even though the piscean themself has no blush reflex to hide.

The Kouton take this obfuscation further into their political influence. It would be crass for any Kouton to flaunt their wealth or power. Instead, they employ rumor and inuendo bolster their reputations. This makes knowing who is most influential in an area difficult for the visitor, and they must pick up on clues given by the locals.


Official Religion: Varies by local influence, but Suminarae is everywhere.
Accepted Religions: The Pantheon, the Idolatry.
Alignments: Chaotic Neutral

Kouton culture grew from the worship of Suminarae, whose teachings reinforce the confession of sins. After all, She Who Knows already knows the truth — to hide secrets would be pointless in her all knowing presence.

With the clergy of Suminarae being privy to the confessed truths of the populace, one would think the church itself would hold more political sway. Instead, it plays out differently, with the clergy playing “kingmaker”, showing preference to those individuals whom have revealed themselves to Suminarae.


Imports: Aquaculture, meat, information
Exports: Quartz and other semi-precious stones, artifacts, information
Currency: Talents (1 vert talent = 4 or talents = 16 purpure talent = 64 gloss talent). Vert talent ≈ 16 gp.

Kouton economy uses specifically cut gemstones called talents. Clear quartz crystals are used as gloss talents, with higher denominations made from naturally tinted stones such as amethyst (purpure), citrine (or), and vermarine (vert).

As the currency consists of cut gemstones, it is difficult for the Kouton government to maintain perfect consistency. Thus, it is up to the individual’s appraisal skill in determining whether the talents offered in exchange are genuine. This has caused a state of inflation in the Bay of Kouton, sometimes rising as high as five times those of other homeseas. Conversely, have a unique ware or service, and the interested Kouton may pay a king’s ransom.

Raising livestock and farming is difficult in the polluted waters of Kouton Bay, thus the natives depend on importation of food stuff. The homesea has very little in the way of natural resources, and its climate makes it a poor location for aquaculture. The area does have some mineral deposits, mostly in the form of gemstones, that the other races will trade for. But the Bay of Kouton is best known to be the ultimate fount for the rarest of resource: knowledge.

Perhaps it is racist to say so, but the Kouton value information over all else. The fewer that know what a Kouton knows, the more powerful he becomes. Those who seek the secrets of ancient Elqua might best be served by seeking answers in the Bay of Kouton, the Vault of Secrecy.


Government Type: Feudal Timocratic Anarchy
Ruler: Whomever has the most political pull at the moment.
Selection Process: Accumulation of influence and reputation.

Feudal State of Kouton Bay is a timocracy, where only property owners may participate in government.  It isn’t just seafloor ownership that dictates the individual’s influence over the government, but any good, service, or information the Kouton possesses. This makes Koutonese governance a game of brinkmanship, where Kouton interfere with each other using reputation, public knowledge, and subtle innuendo to hint at the results they seek without producing definitive evidence or direct extortion. Letting others think you are more in the know than you really are is often the quickest way of gaining influence in the Northern Wastes.

The Kouton tendency to isolation and secrecy led them to a true Anarchic form of government.  Core is the belief that individual freedom should not be impinged upon by others.  No piscean can achieve their potential when other pisceans are prevented from achieving theirs. Thus, Kouton “laws” only really exist in the densest populations. In the more sparsely populated areas, those with influence act as they see fit while trying to avoid other’s reach.


Name: None.
Organization: Locally organized muscle backed by the reputation of a powerful Kouton.

More organized crime enforcers than any sort of military organization. Kouton tend not to confront their invaders in the open, and instead deal with them stealthily or through non-direct means like diplomacy or coercion. This has given the Bay of Kouton a negative reputation for “capitulation” with bad political actors, as noted by their infamous, though alleged, co-operation with the Kraken during the Occupation of the Verdigris Epoch.

Some secrets are best kept hidden,
others demand to be told.
Some are lost with the passage of time,
and others, once found, can never be sold….
— Catechism of the Repentant Araki Kisho

Endless Blue – Week 122 – Governments of the Fluid Nations – Gulf of Locanth   Leave a comment


Governments of the Fluid Nations: Gulf of Locanth

Odayal Commune of Locanth Gulf
Aliases: The Flowing Gulf, the Circulating Kith, The Nomadic Tides
Region: Hinterseas
Capital: Moenkopia (“Where the Flowing Waters Meet”)

The Gulf of Locanth lies in equatorial waters north of the Tropic of Kracken. To the homesea’s north stretches the vast Cetacean Ocean, and to its south dwell the depths of the Lumulus Basin. It is bordered by a crescent of islands to the west which itself faces the Core of the Known World. Coral grows in abundance in the Gulf’s placid waters, which also serves as the basis of a complex underwater biome. There are so many varieties of tropical fish that the curious will find a new species daily.

Locanth are nomadic in nature. The Locanth long ago learned the lesson of over fishing waters and over tilling shore beds. They listened to what the sea life taught them, that life worked in repeating patterns. Fish that graze the reef one day end up moving on to fresher waters later, allowing the reef time to regrow. The shark frenzies on schools of fish, but enough get away so that their numbers can replenish during spawning season. Just as a circle has no beginning and no end, neither does the migration of sea life. Thus, so do the Locanth. This is the Tradition of Enso.

Despite this “life on the move”, there are some permanent settlements in the Gulf of Locanth. These are the Locanthic Pueblos. They were built over time in areas where where the nomadic kith would find the seasons the most difficult to survive. Stores of food collected over the prior year and used to sustain the migrants, and surplus non-perishable staples are securely stored there in reserve for a severe future time. Anyone who finds them self desperate for shelter or survival and discover the cliff-hugging buildings of a pueblo, take note that Locanths believe it is honorable to partake of their stored supplies. If there is need, they provide respite. But to plunder their stores for profit, or neglect to restock what is take, this shows opprobrium. This is the Tradition of Honor.

Moenkopia is one such pueblo with a distinctive history. It is where the Locanthic kith send their representatives to meet and decide the gravest of all threats. As such, it serves as the homesea’s capital, but it lacks the bureaucratic complexity that mire the capitals of the Fluid Nations in the Periphery. The last time the odayal met in Moenkopia was during the Verdigris Epoch, responding to the encroaching navies of the Kraken Empire.


Demonym: Locanth
Population: 16,670,000
Races: Locanth (15,720,000), Orcan (350,000, 65,000 of which are Narwahl), Chelon (75,000), Kouton (45,000), Lumulus (100,000), Mer (337,000), Sahaguin (13,000), Yaun-Teel (19,000)
Other: Ceph 2,000,000, Kelpygmy (unknown).

Locanth villages are noted as their “Kith”. Part of being in a kith is blood/matrimonial relation, but other parts are regional proximity. “Of the same nation” is good approximation of a definition for kith, if it is perhaps a bit to wide reaching. It has a connotation that all are part of the same colony. It can mean family, or neighborhood, or village. Multiple local kith can even be described another, over-arching kith. Even all life under the wave — all flora, all fauna, all pisceans — are their own kith versus the abominations of the Vastness. This is the Tradition of Kith.

There are over 300 formal kith in the Locanthic Gulf, with innumerable informal kith comprised of multi-species pisceans. Locanth are open to other species joining their kith, but their minimal life style and constant movement are not for everyone. Having to constantly migrate with the sea life makes the accumulation of material goods a hindrance, thus most Locanthic kith discourage the accumulation of material goods and encourage the dependence on others. Despite the Locanths’ openness to migration, it is still dominated by its indigenous species.


Official Religion: Eadro, the Changing Tide.
Accepted Religions: Source, Ancestory and/or Spirit worship.
Alignments: Neutral.

The clerics of Eadro are shamans. Their worship of the Changing Tide is not of praise, but of guidance. They seek out signs of Eadro’s will by interpreting the behavior of the waters. Thus these shaman, called Ardent, advise the kith when it is time to move on to clearer waters, which direction to migrate, what species of fish to consume.

The kith come to their shaman for aid in their everyday activities.  They seek blessings for births, charms for unrequited love, curses on adversaries, and myriad other inconsequential acts.  It is up to the shaman how far to fulfill these petitions, but most often will send the individual off with a magic charm of some sort to mollify their need.


Imports: Raw and Exotic Materials for crafting.
Exports: Exotic crafted ware, acari, other food stuffs.
Currency: None, see langeneli below.

The major export from the Gulf of Locanth are crafted goods. The Locanth have spent generations living off the waters, utilizing every part of the fish they feed upon to make their clothes, shelter, and tools. In doing so, they have honed their skills to an incredible degree, resulting in crafted goods of such incredible workmanship that they fetch a high value to those with an eye for quality.

Transient lifestyle of the Locanth makes it difficult to trade with other cultures. It is kind of hard to reliably build up a business when you cannot be not found in the same place you last sold your trade. This is why most kith pass by or directly cross the Pecuniary Stream, a trade route well known to carry wealthy merchants across the Known World. This small window of time is the only opportunity to easily trade with the Locanth without deviation from the stream, forming a bottleneck in the flow of Locanthic goods out of the homesea.  Ambitious traders can take the risk and travel deeper into the Gulf of Locanth to reach the nomadic kith during their migration, but the Stream caravans will not wait for their return, essentially leaving them behind.

There is no recognized currency traded in the Gulf of Locanth. Instead, a system of barterable debt is used. The Locanth keep a series of leather strips tied together and woven into a personally recognizable pattern as a form of “debt record” for services rendered to them. It is not just the strip that has significance in the debt, but the style of weaving and usage of knots to denote details of the transaction. When the original party has been repaid, the strip is removed from the weave and returned.  These redeemed strips become prized mementos, tangible proof of a young warrior’s dedication and trustworthiness to fulfill his debts. Locanth merchants vouch for one another, showing the array of strips as evidence of trustworthiness. 

A recent trend has begun of trading these debt strips to third parties, who themselves can either collect on the debt or trade off to yet another merchant, making the langeneli the first banknote of the Known World.


Government Type: Kritarchy
Ruler: The Meeting of Odayal
Selection Process: Life-long expression of responsibility and wisdom.

A Kritarchy, wherein government is ruled by judges, or elders. Laws are not made out of whole cloth, but instead created as judges, called odayal, decree what is legal by the judgements of the cases they rule over. This is called Xeer law, where in the brother is responsible for the brother, neighbors are responsible to each other, where a migrating kith is responsible to the waters it travels. This is the Tradition of Xeer.

Odayal are chosen organically. They are the wise ones, the individuals that all others know instinctively as the fairest of judgement, the calmest of minds. No one can seek to become an odayal — the recognition of intrinsic demeanor and behavior makes you one. In a family, who do you look to for guidance? In a village, who is sought out for their wisdom? These are the odayal.

While some Eadroan shaman can become odayal, their dedication to the faith is a bias in their judgement. Thus rarely is a kith’s odayal also its shaman.

Issues are addressed as close to the level of involvement as possible. Part of Xeer law involves solving problems by those who the problem affects. The only way to understand a problem is be subject of the problem. Regardless of complexity, it is rare for a problem to require judgement from a higher level odayal. Only wider ranging problems necessitate seeking a meeting of odayal from neighboring kith.


Name: N/A
Organization: Local militias organized by kith in the area.

The primitive races of the Fluid Nations do not have standing navies. Instead, militia are drummed up as needed to face threats to safety. In this way, each kith is dependent not only on the bravery of its own mariners, but on the support of neighboring kith.

It is the Tradition of Kith that keeps us united.
It is the Tradition of Enzo that keeps us going.
It is the Tradition of Xeer that keeps us true.

It is the Tradition of Honor that keeps us noble.
It is the Tradition of the Locanth that keeps us alive.
— Locanthic “Oath of the Odayal”

Endless Blue – Week 121 – Governments of the Fluid Nations – The Mer Currents   Leave a comment


Governments of the Fluid Nations: Mer Currents

Federation of the Mer Currents
Aliases: The Sea of Ideas, the Pearl in the East
The Periphery
Capital: Special, each current has a government with capital, and the newly elected ruler chooses which of these capitals will serve as the national seat of government.

The Federation of Mer Currents is located in the east of the Core, directly north of the Creche of Civilization, with the Chelon Sea to the northwest and the Yaun-Teel Bights to the north east. It is the shallowest of all the Fluid Nations, and it’s position close to Elqua’s equator results in year long temperate weather.

While the Mer Currents presently consist of eight provinces, there were at one time thirteen. Some of these original currents were wiped out by military actions of others (The Cetacean Hordes or The Kraken Invasion), some have wiped themselves out through fighting each other, or even by their own hand. From west to east, the remaining Mer Currents are Yrmensas, Mensas, the bifurcated North and South Estuary, Mere Paradise, the surrounded East Loch, and the paired Novum Cascade and Verdant Shoals.

The Dark of the Dumasque

The Dumasque were one of the original thirteen provinces. History tells that the Current was exterminated by the expansionist Cetaceans during the battle known as Khan’s Folly. This is not the whole truth.

Make no mistake, the Cetacean Hordes slaughtered many of the Dumasque as they fled the Horde. This became known as the Mer Exodus, and had the Dumasque Current migrate north through the Chelon Sea in order to escape the First Khan. Ultimately the Khan’s navy trapped the Dumasque. With victory almost within reach, the remaining Mer Current decided that death at their own hand was preferred to complete slaughter. They threw themselves into the Undertow, and as it dragged them down they denied the Khan his prey.

Infuriated, the Khan drove his tired and wounded forces into the whirlpool. Just as the Dumasque were swallowed into the sea bed, so were the Cetacean Horde. Thought lost and his victory stymied, the Khan retreated. But in truth, both the Dumasque stragglers and the Cetacean veterans survived, dragged into the subterranean expanse beneath the sea floor. They became trapped there by the “Bubble Below”, a vast cavern of air that the Undertow poured through.


Demonym: Mer, Merfolk (antiquated)
Population: 54,870,000
Races: Mer (33,000,000), Orcan (2,100,000, 150,000 of which are Narwahl), Chelon (1,100,000), Kouton (550,000), Locanth (5,750,000), Lumulus (2,750.000), Sahaguin (1,640,000), Yaun-Teel (8,230,000)
Other: Ceph (260,000), Kelpygmy (unknown, believed none)

Population Breakdown per Mer Current

  Yrmensas Mensas North Estuary South Estuary Mere Paradise East Loch Novum Cascade Verdant Shoals
Mer 9,220,000 7,575,000 6,255,000 4,609,000 334,000 3,290,00 987,000 658,000
Orcan 614,000 505,000 417,000 305,000 22,000 215,000 66,000 43,000
Chelon 307,000 252,000 208,000 153,000 10,500 106,750 33,000 22,000
Lumulus 768,000 361,000 521,000 384,000 27,500 292,500 82,500 54,200
Kouton 153,500 126,200 104,000 76,750 5,400 53,800 16,500 10,750
Locanth 1,490,000 1,262,000 1,050,000 77,250 52,500 543,000 171,000 109,300
Sahaguin 460,000 378,000 312,000 230,500 16,500 144,500 49,500 32,750
Yaun-Teel 2,304,500 1,893,00 1,563,750 1,152,000 82,000 823,250 246,750 164,500

Due to the Mer Currents’ small size and its temperate climate, it is the most densely populated of the Fluid Nations. Add the homesea’s openness to new ideas and discoveries, pisceans have schooled to nation. One prominent group of immigrants were the Anatomists — forefathers of modern medicine — whom established the College of Doctors in the heart of the Mer Currents as a result of the Culling Purge.

Because of the heavy population density of the Mer Currents, it is believed that no Kelpygmy tribes reside inside its borders. There are few untouched kelp forests inside the Federation, and any credible sighting to the vegetative bantams has always been along the borders of the no-mer’s-seas between homeseas. Such incursions are quickly classified as extra-national and the idea of kelpygmy infiltration dismissed.


Official Religion: None, but generally expected Trishnan values, with a rising contingent of Olyhydrans.
Accepted Religions: Pantheon/Idolatry accepted, other religions tolerated.
Alignments: Lawful Good, trending Lawful Neutral

Trishnan tradition is deeply ingrained into Mer culture. Popular belief held by a majority of Mer is that, while the Federation is not a religious regime, it is a regime that follows the ideals of Trishna.

The domination of Trishnan culture in the Mer Currents is slowly eroding away. A new religion has formed, given sanctuary due to the Mer’s intrinsic acceptance of new ideas. Olyhydranism, the worship of the Mistress of Law, is growing in popularity, population, and power. Waters have be conceded to the Church of Olyhydra slowly over time, as the faithful worked their way into political influence. One day, with the right piscean as Head Presider, the Pearl Pontiff may decide it is time for the Holy Waters of Olyhydra to demand independence.


Imports: Nacre, abalone, ice, luxuries.
Exports: Ricelqua, textiles, jade, religious artifacts (Olyhydran).
Currency: Nobles, sovereigns, and crowns (100 noble = 10 sovereign = 1 crown)
and Cupreium, argeium, and aurieum (1 cupreium = 8 copper, 1 argeium = 8 silver, 1 aurieum = 8 gold).

The Mer employ two separate monetary systems, rural coinage, and lucrum (trade coinage). Rural coinage is the money used in everyday transactions — buying food, paying debts, etc. These are the noble, sovereign, and crown. They are comprised of a special red coral and carved into distinct shapes that make it impossible to be chiseled down into the other coins.

Lucrum, on the other hand, is designed for trade with other nations. Each octagonal coin is comprised of a troy ounce of its respective metal, tying its worth to the material. The coins are etched with grooves that aid in snapping the coinage into fractions. This allows a trader to make exact change on the spot while also taking price fluctuations of the base metal into account. The Federation can later re-press separate coin pieces into new, whole coinage, as the value of the coin is based on the metal, not the minting.

The majority of the Mer Currents consists of great swaths of fertile, shallow shoals and shore whose temperate waters make them perfect for aquaculture. The bordering island chains that shape the Mer Currents are sparsely populated, and what abominations that do live above the sea are relatively placid. With few “apex predators” to worry about, this has allowed the Mer to farm sea beds closer to the surface than any other homesea.

With greater farming land comes greater harvests. Ricelqua aquaculture prospers in the Mer Currents, as does the raising of staple flora and fauna used for textiles. As a result of this trade, the Federation economy provides even the lowest economic performers with a higher level of living. When everyone has a chance to import luxuries, everyone’s standard rises.


Government Type: Religious Democracy
Ruler: Head Presider w/presidium council
Selection Process: Hierarchical promotion from province level government, general election otherwise.

The Federation of the Mer Currents is a Religious Democratic Federation where the leaders are elected on a local level, but those representatives decide who will be the nation’s leader. That leader then decides which provincial capital too use as the nation’s capital.

Each current is ruled over by a central council named after the province of origin (North Estuary Council, for example). Those council nominate and vote upon which of their number will serve upon the national Presidium Council. This process is repeated again with the members of the Presidium Council to determine the ultimate head of the Federation, the Presider.

With the growing conversion of Merfolk to Olyhydranism, the religious underpinning of the Mer culture is becoming more contested. As each election passes, Olyhydran adherents progress further up the electoral ladder. This is by design of the Church of Olyhydra, and they believe it is only a matter of time until circumstances are perfect for an Olyhydran to claim the Mer Presidency. The shift between traditional liberalism of Trishnan beliefs and the more orthodox conservatism of Olyhydranism is something the Federation has not had to deal with prior. But the Sea of Ideas is nothing if not accepting of new interpretations.


Name: United Marine Command
Organization: Multiple squads, called shoals, forming larger military units.

All military shoals initially consist of six mariners and two attachments — one packbreeder, and the shoal standard bearer, a vexillifer. Groups of 2 to 4 shoals form a School, 2 to 4 schools form a Company, and so on, creating Flotillas, Brigades, Division. Corps, and finally the complete a Fleet. Fleets, of which there are traditionally thirteen, are led by Admirals (for active fleets) and Rear Admirals for retired ones.

Ranks in the UNC start at Ensign and rise to Captain, with further promotions into Fleet command starting with Commodore and ending with Fleet Admiral. Fleet Admirals report to the Presidium Council.

“If no navy can stop an idea whose time has come;
What can stop a navy mobilized by those ideas?
Not tyranny, not doubt.
Only by letting it slip from memory can our navy truly die…”
— “Epigraph of the Dumasque”

Endless Blue – Week 120 – Governments of the Fluid Nations – Lumulus Basin   1 comment


Governments of the Fluid Nations: Lumulus Basin

The Lumulus Basin Unitary State
Aliases: Percipience Parliament, the LBUS, the Forgeclans Collective
Region: Periphery
Capital: Q’ur-Lurgal’zu

The Lumulus Basin is the second largest fluid nation on Elqua, and lies far to the south of the Cetacean Oceans. Q’ur-Lurgal’zu is designated the capital city, and here the Percipience Parliament resides. The city itself is the farthest south city in all the Fluid Nations, and is locate well inside the Antarctic Circle, butted up against the mountain-islands of the Spine of the World.

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Endless Blue – Week 119 – Governments of the Fluid Nations – Chelon Sea   1 comment


Governments of the Fluid Nations: Chelon Sea

The Great Chelonite Empire of the Endless Blue
Aliases: The Old Empire, The Birthwaters
Region: Periphery
Capital: Arce Novum, the City of Spires.

The Chelon Sea is located eastward from the Cetacean Ocean and is bordered to the west by the Yaun-Teel Bights northward and the Mer Currents southward. It is mostly Shoal to Shore depths waters with only a few area deep enough to be considered the Shelf.

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