The Plutars as a Whole
In the Plutars there are the 3 Majors and the 2 Minors, named for the relative sizes of the city-states. The states are organized together under a council composed of five representatives, one from each of the five cities. Each counselor is singlehandedly the wealthiest person in each of the cities, chosen due to his wealth. If a councillor’s wealth ever falls below the amount it was when they were appointed councillor, they are immediately stripped of their position until they can attain more capital than their next replacement.
The councillors are separate from the cities’ individual rulers, which govern the cities themselves. The council governs laws and treaties that affect all the cities, including tariffs, peace treaties, declarations of war, economic sanctions, etc. If any city is found making these sorts of deals without counseling the others, the other four cities put a trade blockade on the fifth, preventing all goods from ever reaching it until the fifth city apologizes and ceases its activities.
Each counselor is also joined by a Proctor, who is essentially a representative of the city’s dominant commercial industry, and is there to make sure that industry’s interests aren’t being forgotten. How much power the Proctor wields is different depending on the city, the industry and the personality of the counselor. Proctors, unlike the counselors, are not chosen based on wealth, but the various businesses in that industry come together and vote on who will attain the position. Unless a major issue occurs, the Proctor is a lifetime position.
A council decision has the authority to overrule any decision the individual rulers make, but no council decision can affect only one city. This prevents the council from deposing or electing leaders as it sees fit, but it also means one leader can’t come to the council for aid if he/she alone is suffering a crisis. Every city also has its own unofficial title, a nickname given by others to differentiate one city for another quickly.
The 3 Majors
The city of Renen is the oldest of the Majors, and almost coincidentally the city is focused on the oldest human need; food. The city doesn’t produce traditional bland staples, but instead focuses on luxury cuisine, creating dishes that are fusions of many cultures and are often seen nowhere else. The city is ruled by a hereditary ruler named the Pharon who wields absolute power within the city's walls, and has a group of secret police willing to deal with any dissidents. The city also has a large industry in poisons; if there's an irritant, allergen, poison or venom in the world, you'll likely find it within Renen's walls.
Jambha is the second oldest of the Majors and was founded shortly after Renen was. Jambha is the city of crafting. While others create far more product than Jambha, the city focuses more on providing quality rather than quantity, and as such its goods are some of the most expensive in the world. Butchers, glassblowers, candlestick makers, shipbuilders, blacksmiths, pottery makers, gunsmiths and weavers all congregate in Jambha, and the quality is some of the finest seen anywhere. The city's ruler, the Doget, rules for a number of terms dictated by a spirit of tactics named Alexhil, who creates tests for the applicants; the more who passes the most becomes Doget. Every citizen (male or female) starting at the age of 10 must be trained in warfare, both land and naval, and so every citizen knows his place in the event that the city or the Plutars must be defended. The city's crafters including many experts in ship-building and weapon creation, helping to make Jambha's navy the most powerful and the most numerous of any of the Plutars.
While the other Plutars have their fair share of commerce, it’s in Laksh that commerce and money really shine. The city is home to the headquarters of the Bank of Valin, one of the premier banks in the world, doing its business with as many different cultures as it can possibly manage. The city's government is supposed to be a leaderless system where anyone can put forward proposals for new laws or try and get old ones removed. Unfortunately, the major banks and businesses have created a form of cabal and have used all their influence and ability to make Laksh;s laws the most lax in all the Plutars, allowing any and all form of business to spring up, including selling children, hiring assassins, counterfeiting foreign currency and all manner of things that would seem horrid in other lands.
The 2 Minors
The city of Atheese is the center for learning in the Plutars. The city itself was founded when explorers stumbled upon a tall pillar of white marble standing out in front of the current harbor. The pillar is covered in strange symbols that constantly move up and down the pillar, changing form and structure. No one knows who built it or why. The city is home to two main centers of knowledge. One, the Grand College of Spirits, is a place dedicated to learning the secrets of the spiritis, and if they don't want to share, the College's many binders will happily take it. The second is The Archive, a collection run by a sect of Librarians that are bent on gathering knowledge others wish to be destroyed. Because of the influx of new ideas flowing into the city, the citizens have pledged to change some aspect of the government every 10 years, whether minor or major, until they find the "perfect" system of governance.
Known as the City of Song, and for good reason, the first thing a visitor hears as they’re entering Bacchil’s harbor in the early morning is of a great voice echoing over the harbor area. This voice belongs to the leader of the city, known as the Songweaver. The Songweaver, elected by popular vote based on his talent in all the various arts, is charged with creating a new song at the beginning of his term, and singing it to wake up the rest of the city at the beginning of every day. The city is home to every kind of self-expression imaginable, no matter how dehumanizing, vile or dangerous it may be considered in other cultures. The city also does a very large trade in mind-altering substances. If there's a new addiction in Solumaros, you can likely trace it to Bacchil
| Majors: Renen · Jambha · Laksh |
Minors: Atheese · Bacchil