City of Mysteries
Situated in the northern foothills of the World’s Edge mountains in The Kingdom of Arranon, the City of Mysteries is far removed from the rest of the civilized nation. The city started as a small, wayside shrine where travelers journeyed to seek enlightenment. Masters of mysteries, oracles gathered here to learn and examine life’s puzzles. Now referred to as the Pintece Gaia (heart or womb of the earth), this popular location attracted more and more travelers as evidence of its illuminating power was learned.
A great temple was built to preserve and protect the solace of the area’s knowledge seekers. As the village grew into a small city, the oracles of the various mysteries began gathering into separate sections of the city. Each of the studied mysteries became their own canton, and each canton eventually erected their own temple for furthering studies and prayerful meditation. Needing a ruling council to support the growing city, each canton elected one of their oracles to sit on the Mystic Council. The title of each member of the Mystic Council is Grand Mystic, and each Grand Mystic sits on the Mystic Council for life. The Mystic Council eventually negotiated with Arranon for its sovereignty, but the city still maintains a strong relationship with King Gavran and the Royal Court.
Each canton personifies its followed mystery through its architecture and its thoroughfares. Inns and guesthouses are prolific in each canton to host the many travelers coming to seek answers, but travelers find maneuvering between the districts confusing because of the unique designs. Many who traveled to the City of Mysteries have stayed, becoming merchants, shopkeepers, craftsmen, or vagrants; but even the homeless earn coin as guides for new arrivals. These citizens of the city have built shanty towns and permanent structures along the outside perimeter of the cantons. Although poor, the people suffer from little to no crime. The people are humble and contrite, willing to accept their destinies. The Canton of Battle often patrols the city and maintains the city’s army. The patrols are more to deal with the frequent travelers to the city than to deal with the citizens of the city.
The city and its people produce little more than required to support its population, but few exports find their way onto merchant caravans. Hand-crafted prayer beads, holy symbols, cushions, and other instruments of meditation often leave the city on caravans. Each of the cantons have unique merchandize crafted by their acolytes: weapons, candles, miniature trees, magnifying lenses, and stone idols represent some of them. The most popular product is the Canton of Flame’s famous Stout of the Pyre, a wickedly spicy beverage with a powerful punch.