Zeitgeist: The Gears of Revolution
Every Risuri child knows that before King Kelland, no human nation had ever endured more than a few years in Lanjyr. The mighty nature spirits known today as the fey titans only allowed the elves to walk their domain, and they terrorized all others with beasts and storms and blight. But in 1200 B.O.V. (Before Our Victory), Kelland subdued the lord spirits of field and forest, of marsh and mountain. With their grudging blessings he established Risur.
The people of Risur offered the spirits tithing and tribute, and eventually lulled them to sleep. What were once uncharted wilds of fierce beasts and tiny enclaves of elves became a prosperous civilization of men.
In the seventeen centuries since, Risur’s rites of rulership have ensured that Kelland’s crown only passes to those mighty enough to cow the land’s primal spirits should they ever seek to reclaim their domain.
Land and Culture
Risur is a subtropical country, possessed of vast forests and fertile fields fed by hundreds of rivers and streams which flow from the southern Anthras mountains to the northern shore of the Avery Sea. Temperatures are warm but comfortable year-round, though a rainy season strikes near the end of what the northern nations consider summer.
Even the poorest Risuri can enjoy fresh fruit year-round. Wealthy foreigners cherish Risur’s pineapples, limes, bananas, and massive jackfruit, but most prized are its cocoa and sugarcane, and alcohols made of each. A typical Risuri meal consists mostly of fruit, beans, bread, and fish, with the occasional beef or pork. Factory workers in Flint seldom can afford quality meat, and instead make savory stews by soaking bones and sausages in dark beans. Holiday celebrations often include steaming milk flavored with either chocolate or honey.
Four main landscapes make up Risur. The northern Avery Coast is dominated by a mix of wooded beaches—where mountainous granite domes rise out of the sea and anchor dry lands—and forested swamps, often referred to by the native Elven word bayou – where the country’s many rivers sweep soil out into broad floodlands.
The Weftlands of Risur are low plains covering most of the western two-thirds of the country, which draw their name from the countless rivers that weave toward the sea like yarn in a cloth. Most towns and farms lie here, though pockets of wild forests and rocky hills create uninhabitable divides between provinces.
The land rises to the south, and in the mid-altitude hills an unusual swamp wriggles across the landscape, known as the High Bayou. Though the hills are uneven, huge numbers of nesting beasts and giant insects have dammed swaths of the land, slowing the rivers that flow out of the mountains and ensuring a steady source for rivers year-round. Few Risuri live here aside from villages of elves who never integrated with the rest of the nation.
Beyond the High Bayou, the rain-carved Anthras Mountains forms a broad border with Ber. Forests cover most of these mountains, though mining in the east has stripped many peaks. Centuries of attacks from Ber have kept many towns from flourishing here, but numerous old forts dot the King’s Road, which runs from the richest mining lands, all the way north to the capital.