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Sunberth

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Sunberth
RegionSylira
NotabilityLawlessness
LeaderN/A
Population13,000
Races
Human93%
Other7%
LanguagesCommon
ImportsFood
ExportsSlaves, Alcohol


Sunberth is a city on the eastern coast of Mizahar, known for its lawless atmosphere.

Contents

Geography and Climate

Sunberth lies in an area of gently rolling hills that flatten out just before the shoreline. The climate is temperate, with four distinct seasons. Snow is very common in the winter, and temperatures rarely rise above freezing during the winter months. Summers are hot and humid, and daytime highs can easily exceed 100 degrees F.

Scattered small farms with the occasional plantation dot the countryside. The main portion of the city is pressed against the ocean. Immediately to the northwest is a massive open pit, carved into the ground through centuries of labor. A maze of tunnels open up into it, but the area is now abandoned.

History

Prior to the Valterrian, Sunberth was a major mining center. Gold, silver, and other metals came from its seemingly inexhaustible shafts. It is rumored, though not confirmed, that some of Mizahar's unusual gems also came from this source. Nearly the entire population of Sunberth worked in the mines, often from long before sunrise to long after sundown. Children began working as young as five or six, and adults worked until they were physically incapable of doing so. It was a hard, dangerous, unhappy life, but there was no other employment available, and the government of Alahea wasn't interested in losing its supply of mine laborers in any case.

Sunberth was almost entirely destroyed in the Valterrian, and the remaining citizens were left largely to their own devices. These people, as well as their descendants, remember all too well the history of misery that was theirs in the mines, and indeed, the memory is in many ways their cultural identity. As such, they are violently opposed to anything or anyone that might establish another political entity capable of replicating the evils of Alahea -- and by extension, any organized entity of any kind.

However, there were several notable points in history (all Post-Valterrian) where the city fell back into it's old system of being enslaved. The most recent was when the crazed wizard, Obal Causten, and his small cult of apprentices arrived in town, and with their magic, they easily destroyed the few leading syndicates and placed Obal as the supreme ruler of Sunberth. This all occurred in AV 454, and lasted for fourteen years until Ordreck Silverbeard and his son, Olsten the Giant led a rebellion against the Magic-Abusing Cult (which was known for its decline already as members fought for Obal's favor). Ordreck himself slew Obal Causten, but at the cost of losing his only son. Even today, Olsten is spoken with reverence in Sunberth among the common folk, the oppressed, and any who would seek courage and freedom. However, for most foreigners, the name Olsten the Giant means nothing.

Demographics and Politics

Sunberth presently has perhaps 13,000 inhabitants. It is 93% human, with a smattering of other races.

The city has no official organization of any kind. A shifting handful of loose syndicates and powerful individuals "govern," if it can be called that, through informal agreements and handshake deals, but due to the mindset prevalent among Sunberthans, few alliances last long. There is no law enforcement, and indeed, even if there were, there is nothing to enforce.

The real power of Sunberth lies in the ironclad will of the people. Though they often disagree -- violently -- they are one in the sense of their utter hatred of control. In a sense the city stands as a democracy, where the opinion of every individual is heard among the masses, albeit that opinion is more often ignored than considered. The people's voting process takes form of large scale riots and rebellions and riots, taking the heads of those that would dare try to control the rambunctious freemen of the city. This is, of course, only when one man or group proves to be just too oppressive or controlling to allow.

Currently, the city of Sunberth is divided into three primary sections by the three primary syndicates. The Daggerhand, led by Robern Dalagner, a ruthless man who is not above the execution of hundreds to keep the imagine of being merciless and terrible. The Sun's Birth, a self-proclaimed group of saviors to the city who were, at one point, the ex-knights of Syliras. Now the Sun's Birth has degraded to simple group of rogue knights, or even just men who never knew knighthood, and control for their own gains. There is no single leader of this group, but rather several powerful proprietors of exceedingly successful businesses. Lastly is the The Night Eyes. The newest of the Syndicates which brought a whole new game to Sunberth. Where the previous two syndicates deal with issues brutally and with open violence, those that oppose the mysterious Night Eyes almost seem to just disappear without a trace. They are, without a doubt, the most mysterious of the syndicates.

However, they must always be wary as to further blacken the boiling pot of anarchy many gangs will always attempt to rise and overthrow them. Though with the main syndicates prepared for such things it would be difficult. But that's only a concern if the masses don't get them first.

Sunberth Today

The citizens of Sunberth share a passionate hatred of governments, organization, and even of order itself. Things long forbidden in many other parts of Mizahar, including gambling, growth and sale of drugs, extortion, and even slavery, are practiced openly. Walking the streets is dangerous even for residents, and strangers take their lives in their own hands by doing so. Not, however, that this stops many people -- those drawn to danger, excitement, and thrills often find themselves in Sunberth, although they don't always leave intact.

Despite their hatred of establishment, the people of the fair city are not exempt from hypocrisy. They tolerate the various territorial syndicates and men of power due to their necessity regulating food, trade, and all the services that such a large population requires to get by. This tolerance has lead to the emergence of particular sections of power inside the city, making a few, key individuals a great deal more powerful than the rest. Yet those same industrious folk understand the ways of their people, often curbing their own enthusiasm and expansion in favor of halting city-wide riots, and certainly their own deaths. Still, it is only a matter of time before they city falls to complete anarchy or is tamed by emergent ambitions.

Within the city, there are many mysteries to be discovered, though with life being a constant struggle to simply live, very few of the residents are aware of them. Some rumors here and there have a sliver of truth, though most are simply too dated to be credibly true.

Possibly the most important fact about the typical population of Sunberth, regardless of Faction Allegiance, race, or age, is that they despise the use of magic. This hatred, or fear, tends to be greater than even most other cities in Mizahar simply because of the past struggle against Obal and his cult of magicians that managed the longest rule of Sunberth in centuries. For those that managed to see those days, and still survived to the present, magic is forbidden, and most do not hesitate to spread their hatred and fear of it to the younger generations.

Locations of Interest