• Lore • City of Treidhart (Knowledge Section)

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Home to the ellune, Oscillus is a frozen land that contains pockets of civilization. The brutality of the sub-zero winds does nothing to break the resilience of the natives of Oscillus as they determinedly battle against all odds to revive their beloved Treid.

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City of Treidhart (Knowledge Section)

T R E I D H A R T
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“A great lake sprawls. The borders of it are lost in darkness. An icy cliff looms above like a waterfall halted in motion.
This is a frozen world.
Yet life flickers in the form of a thousand blue lights, meandering like fireflies within the glowing alcoves of the mountains above. The lake mirrors the lights as they dance to a different tune. It is more beautiful than the stories they tell.
But I am dying.
My hand grows numb as I write and I can do no more...
Before I die, know this: I am humbled that the last thing I see is this great city - this city of Treid."


Unknown, note stuck to the fingers of a dead outsider. Nearby is a trail of frozen bodies belonging to his caravan.

Welcome
Welcome to Treidhart: the first great city of the Ellune!

Within its ever-moving glaciers and looming mountains, live a civilization that thrive on cold. As an outsider, the hundreds of ice caves, caverns, halls and temples await exploration. You may find the Ellune less than welcoming, but venture on and you will find more than hard stares. If you are a resident Ellune, you are perhaps living in an alcove in a mountain overlooking the beauty of Oscillus, or in the guardhouse as a member of a Tri. You may be using ice to sculpt furniture, form defences or even weapons. Likely, you will be involved in some way or other with the arduous dig for Treid's heart, located at the bottom of the great icy chasm nearby. Whatever you are, Ellune or not, wonders and opportunity await you!
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City of Treidhart (Knowledge Section)

History

Treid blessed the skin of the Ellune to adapt to the freezing conditions of Oscillus. No longer would the Ellune solely exist on the northernmost areas of Oscillus where it was just slightly warmer. Now their bodies were changed by Treid, not only to merely adapt to cold but to thrive in it.

They followed the cold as they collectively moved south.

Treid never really anticipated, after enabling them to adapt to the cold, that the Ellune would undertake this mass migration. It reminded him of his own traveling prior to making Oscillus his own home. Changing the Ellune was simply a reaction to ease the suffering of his people - nothing more. It had, however, set off an unexpected trail of events that would forge a strong relationship with his people.

As the Ellune moved south, they soon encountered the coldest winds, the highest peaks, the thickest ice and the deepest glaciers in all of Oscillus. This southern tip of Oscillus became known as Treidhart.

The Ellune hailed Treid as they basked in the freezing south. As they did so they began to build crude temples and statues to cherish their immortal and began to develop a skill at ice sculpture unparalleled in Idalos. Treid was so filled with happiness at the love manifested by his people through creation, that he began to aid the Ellune by providing them with an ice power.

This ice power became the catalyst to the greatness of Treidhart.

Treidhart was formed into the glacier and it grew in size more and more as the Ellune mastered their new power. Soon the great halls were so large and intricate that little room could be made to accommodate the growing population. After many arcs, it was decided that expansion into the mountains was necessary. Using the natural ice cave systems as a base, the Ellune shaped it to their own uses with crude, battered metal to slowly chip away at the rock. The resulting rock was re-used for the substrate of the defensive walls, coated in ice. The defense was done under the guidance of Treid himself, as during his travels, he learned much of human development throughout Idalos. Treid knew that his gentle people would need to concentrate on defense first and foremost. The Ellune, in his opinion, did not have the sheer ruthlessness and brutality characterized by the other races.

Construction of larger roads to Port and Little Sol commenced to improve the constant movement of goods between the two. A tunnel system also was created - though some are quite secret - out from Treidhart to various locations in Oscillus.

Treid spent much time in Treidhart. He was pleased with it.

But it was not to last.

Audrae, with Faldrun, betrayed Treid despite his adoration of her and cast his heart deep into Oscillus nearby the city of Treidhart.

The Ellune did not mourn because in their minds, Treid had not really died. He had simply been divided in half. Fixated on this fact, they translated their many emotions into a determination to put things right. Digging began immediately. It was a large effort that involved their entire people's but as the city began to fall into disrepair and their people began to starve, it was soon found that they would need to tend to their well-being if they were to stick out the long arduous process of finding Treid's heart.

Treidhart has changed little since. Where there had been a large room dedicated to the worship of Treid, is now a deep chasm where the digging Treids heart is still underway. A bridge connecting all parts of the city join directly above the centre of the chasm, from which steps branch off into the darkness below. Many stand and look down as they dream of the day that will eventually come. They hope that soon Treid will rise again and give the Ellune the direction they need in these uncertain times ...
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City of Treidhart (Knowledge Section)

Geography

A deep glacial mass sits between two strings of mountains that run in a north south direction. This large glacier flows slowly from the center of Oscillus down toward lake Terminus, where the glacier calves away into icebergs. Ice ‘calves’ fall into the lake in large chunks and is accompanied by a large cracking and booming sound. When the ice crashes in the water, it causes large and hazardous waves to any fishing boats that may be floating nearby. Permanent tunnels and caverns have been carved into the mountains and lined with perennial ice to serve as homes for the Ellune. The mountains are peppered with arched openings that capture cold winds to create drafts through cross ventilation. Tunnels and caverns also are located within the glacier important areas like the halls, guard house, storage of food is located due the cold, consistent temperatures. The movement of the glaciers is slow enough to adapt to constant changes in the caverns and tunnels and construction – excavation and creation of ice – is constant, but well worth the time.

Climate

Treidhart is the coldest of the three cities of Oscillus. Few animals and plants exist on this side of the island which mainly consists of snow covered mountains and enormous glaciers. Vhalar season can vary between warmer and freezing temperatures and will transition slowly into the colder Zi’da temperatures. The Zi’da and Cylus seasons can be brutally cold and coupled with freezing southerly winds, can freeze warm-blooded outsiders in a matter of hours if unprotected. The Ellune, on the other hand, use this time to lounge in exposed openings in the mountains to ‘soak up’ the freezing temperatures. The Cylus season is a favourite season for the Ellune to relax and most outdoor activities occur during this time. The Ellune from Little Sol and Port travel to Treidhart for vacation during these months.

The Ashar season is a time where the Ellune lament the diminishing freezing winds and prepare for the Hot Cycle to come around. The Ymiden and Saun, while relatively freezing cold, are slightly uncomfortable. More time is spent in the city for the Ellune, where the glaciers provide consistent cooling. The temperature outside is still tolerable compared to the more northern cities. Outsiders enjoy these temperatures more than the Ellune and are more likely to be outside to explore and soak up the sun.

Architecture

The Ellune have gone through a few minor architectural styles but have settled for the 'Ice Treidic' style of architecture (Gothic in reality). This was a reaction to the load bearing nature of ice and the need to support existing ice caves and glaciers, though it was truly the grand look that became appealing to the Ellune.

Treidhart consists of several natural glaciers and caves and many created caverns by the Ellune. All areas are networked cleverly to reduce the effectiveness of invasion and slow down advancing troops. A variety of activated traps and blockades are pre-built to close off areas or destroy whole swathes of invaders.

Building areas in Treidhart begins with the over-excavation of an area of ice to create a large cavern, propped with ice columns for stability. A foreman instructs a variety of trades specializing in forming structural ice (columns, arches, vaults, buttressing) to produce the overall building form. Building practice is rather clever in that the ice is able to move without cracking by providing numerous expansion joints throughout. Once complete, specialist detailers then begin to create ornamental designs into the built structure. It is common for the same trades people to build furniture (chairs, beds, cupboards etc), chandeliers (with blue ice lights) and doors as part of their scope.
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City of Treidhart (Knowledge Section)

Military

Though lacking the ruthlessness of some races of Idalos, the Ellune are still fierce and capable fighters and attuned to the art of war. The military garrison in Treidhart, located nearby the Hall of Statues, consist of defensive units, engineering units and an elite contingent of covert units. Rarely do the Ellune need to engage in a pitched battle, rather battles are fought by siege and guerrilla warfare via tunnels. The Ellune are not particularly aggressive in terms of warring with other nations. This means that high emphasis on training is high priority to ensure the military is at the top come the time of war.

The military operates on watch shifts that break up an arc (day). The arc is divided in blocks of time called Watches, each being 3 breaks (hours) long. Please note that there are 24 breaks (hours) in a trial (day). Soldiers are expected to spend one Watch whether it is at day or night, at the walls, as a guard or on patrol in or around the city. Two Watches of time are spent training, one in morning one in afternoon. The rest of the time is labour required in the military area to keep things running, or projects run by the Council, the Dig Site. Soldiers are constantly busy with patrolling the city, taking watch on the battlements, guarding the Frozen Vault, the Dig Site and the Hall of Statues and training in the courtyard.

The ranking system is a simple affair with the Ellune. The ranking system is based upon the structure of a snowflake.

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  • Tri: Each soldier has a 'left hand' and a 'right hand' - making up a small contingent of three. These three develop a strong bond of trust and reliance on each other that is critical for battle. One of the three is granted Trion rank and has a duty to lead them. The Trion wears a frozen emblem of a triangle on their chest.
  • Star: A Starion leads four Tri's, to become a Star, consisting of 12 units. The Starion wears a frozen star on their chest.
  • Cluster: A Clustion leads four Stars, to become a Cluster consisting of 48 units. A Clustion wears a frozen multistar on their chest.
  • Myriad: A Myrion leads four Clusters, to become a Myriad, consisting of 192 units. A Myrion wears a frozen snowflake on their chest.
  • Infinitude: An Infinion leads four Myriads, to become an Infinitude, consisting of 768 units. An Infinion wears a frozen lemniscate (infinity) symbol on their chest.


There are five Ellune troops:

  • Frozen Blades: The Frozen Blades have the ability to create weapons at will, usually the sword and shield but they can also revert to a spear if required. In fact, they are able to produce any weapon they wish. They are clad in standard issue ice armor with a battered metal substrate for strength.
  • Sublimators: The Sublimators are excellent at casting icy beams and projectiles to freeze their opponents. They wear a light ice armor.
  • Ice Mechanates: Mechanates are skilled at the operation of anti-siege weaponry such as large ballistae and catapaults that cast enormous shards and boulders of ice, with a metal or rock core for added strength. They also work with Sappers to assemble any anti-siege weaponry in new positions. They wear a light ice armor.
  • Icicle Archers: These archers are adept at creating arrows on command and shooting them rapidly at their enemy. They wear a light ice armor.


There are three Ellune special forces troops:

  • Black Ice: Named after ice that is difficult to see and slippery when stepped on, the Black Ice contingent are adept at guerrilla and covert operations. They are hand selected from all other troops and are put to rigorous tests before being able to join this elite force. They are usually adept at several types of weapons and are created when required. They operate through the huge network of tunnels that cover all of Oscillus.
  • Treid's Sappers: These troops are the minds and muscle behind all excavation, from the glacier work for the expansion of the city, to the creation of the tunnel system. They are adept at using their ice powers to manipulate the ice to break off in large chunks.
  • Cold Saboteurs: Masters of sabotage, this troop work closely with the Black Ice troop to create intricate traps in glacial areas and pinpoint avalanches that can kill entire armies.


Defenses

Treidhart’s main defense is the freezing cold. Any enemy army decide to invade during any time of the arc, save for the hot season, will find an enemy far worse than the Ellune: the cold winds bring temperatures far below freezing and is brutal to even the most prepared warm-bodied outsider. Thus, Treidhart is built as defensive as can be in order to drag out invasions into the cold seasons.

Treidhart’s location is difficult to reach from all directions whether it is up the mountains on the four corners of the city, to the ramped entry to the gate at the east, across the treacherous glaciers from the north, or up the glacial cliff that is prone to break away to the south.

The outer defenses are made up of a ‘death trap’ gate system with large ice walls. These walls run around the four mountains of Treidhart, which contain ice caves for the residents to live. Approaching from the north of Treidhart contains treacherous glaciers that are prone to collapse. The approach from the south is even worse – with the glacier fronting the lake so fragile that a sneeze could cause the glacier to break away in great sheets.

The inner defensive layer of Treidhart is located inside the glacier that flows between the mountains. It contains a second set of fortifications, including ice chasms bridged by a thin arched walkway. The inner layer of Treidhart consists of a large arched hall, Treid’s tomb, guard house quarters, storage areas and a large pit where the digging of Treid’s heart is underway.

The following is a breakdown of Treidharts defenses:

  1. Outer Fortifications: Death Trap: The ‘death trap’ is an added wall projection added to the front entry of the ice fortifications. Ice ramparts line the ‘death trap’ on all three sides, crenelated for archers, and the front is closed off by a large metal plate door. Two sets of portcullis, made of ice with a metal substrate, are located on the front and back to trap the enemy within, exposing them to the murder holes above, where freezing ice, ice shards fired by archers, massacre the attackers.
  2. Outer Fortifications: walls: Ice is packed to densities as hard as stone and reinforced by rock. They have two sets of ramparts with crenelations above and ice shard slits in the middle. The walls do not wrap around the mountains, instead, the mountains have ramparts carved in them; the mountains themselves steep enough to make the ascent extremely difficult. All walls run deep in the ground, with multiple pier footings to prevent walls collapsing if undermined.
  3. City: Ice Caves: The ice caves are located in the mountains which open up into large arched openings on the sides of the mountains. Natural glaciers and caves are networked cleverly to reduce the effectiveness of invasion and slow down advancing troops. A variety of activated traps and blockades are pre-built to close off areas or destroy whole swaths of invaders.
  4. Inner fortifications: Ice Chasms: Between the city proper and the glacier is an almost bottomless icy chasm. A thin walkway bridges the two and a large gap is met by a draw bridge from the glacier side.
  5. Inner fortifications: Glacier Walls: Two large spiked ice towers flank the gate with three different statues of Treid: one holding the moon, the other holding an icicle and the other a book, representing the moon, ice and knowledge respectively. The glacier is hollowed out to the front to house further double-layer ramparts, with further arrow slits. Another set of two portcullises to trap enemies, with murder holes above, is located here.

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City of Treidhart (Knowledge Section)

Schooling

Schooling of the Ellune in Treidart is primarily family based at early years, conducted by the father, or in large families, by an Elder in the extended family who would become the family pedagogue. The Ellune of Treidhart recognize that starting education early on was important due to small children being specially retentive at that age. Here they learn basic literacy, numeracy, history and religious ideas in a family setting. Also, honing their ice ability is seen as a main priority. Children are taught initially to create ice from near-frozen cold water when they are being bathed, or when preparing drinking water. These basic changes of states begin to advance under the instruction from the parents until the family Elder begins to instruct advanced creation of ice. During this phase, children are taught to observe, draw and model things, out of ice at an early age to start developing understanding of three dimensional models. This proficiency at object creation is advanced by ability and hard work, rather than age. Once children become teens they are apprenticed off into various crafts and professions in Treidhart where they begin to specialize within the creation and manipulation of ice.

Only the wealthiest of Treidhart's families can afford a personal tutor and a full education, though this would consist of rhetoric and philosophy in training to be an Elder and thus education is more of a social status symbol than for practical reasons. Ellune that are not so wealthy, leave their families at a young age to pursue an apprenticeship, join the military and so on.

Government

The system of government of the Ellune is close to a “oligarchal- theocratic” system, in which members of the Ellune, divinely touched with Treid's Mark may enter his Order. Elections are held on major positions of the Public Council. Most of the Public Council consists of those senior and wiser members of the Ellune society. They consider issues and are argued by the councilors by order of seniority. A vote is then cast via a yell aloud or show of hands. Once passed, the issue is resolved and/or a law is made.


Taxes

Current Tax Rate for Treidhart is 2%.


Laws and Punishments

The law operating within Treidhart has improved dramatically since its establishment. Punishments no longer so harsh such as being burned alive for petty theft. Now, monetary fining and hard labor in Little Sol are the main punishments if proved guilty of crime. Murder, however, is still seen as completely abhorrent – a reaction to their peculiar way of viewing death – and those guilty of such heinous crimes are exiled to the hotlands where death is assured, but not directly dealt.

Law is based on legal status. Only the Ellune have full civil and political rights. Foreigners are considered ‘outside of the law’ and therefore are at risk by living in Oscillus as they can be beaten and even killed without legal repercussions. Outsiders can even be taken as slaves and become an object of property. The outsider then obtains a higher status as a slave due to their connection to the Ellune. For example, if the outsider with a slave status is killed, then the law of wrongful damage to property applies.

Delicts of Ellune Law

Murder:
• A person found guilty of murder shall be exiled to the hotlands.

Grievous bodily harm:
• If one has injured another, let there be retaliation. If retaliation is unable to be made, the one who is guilty of causing injury is given a monetary penalty or sent to do labor.

Bearing False Witness
• A person bearing false witness and found guilty is given a monetary penalty.

Wrongful damage to Property:
• A person that destroys the property of another and is guilty of malicious intent shall be sent to do hard labor in Solaero.

Treason:
• A person that becomes a public enemy or aligns themselves to an enemy of the Ellune will be sent to do hard labor in Solaero, or worse, sent to the Hotlands.

Thievery:
• A person guilty of stealing the property of another must pay back what is stolen and shall be sent to do labor.
• If one is slain while committing theft at night – he is rightly slain. A thief must not be slain at day time, lest a weapon is held by the thief and uses it to fight back.

Blasphemy:
• A person guilty of speaking ill of Treid is sent to do hard labor in Solaero.
• A person must attend public prayer at least once a week.
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