ok okay so. The goblands have been as they are for a long, long time. Prior to them, there were other beings that lived there, who were either wiped out or migrated elsewhere. A while afterwards, a different city was set up, and that one was destroyed as well, this time by a parasite that many of the residents believed was some sort of higher being. Goblands took over the cave near where that used to be, and much of the evidence of the first civilization living there had been turned into rubble. Other than the few larger structures, it's hard to tell that anything had been there at all.
Animalia isn't large, nor old, nor strong. Popped up and became big in about a month, riding on the coattails of an older civilization that settled down and was once either part of or closely related to the Goblands. Gobland records couldn't tell you what happened to them either, as they seem to have simply dissipated with little fanfare. Which means that, either Goblands cut contact, or those that lived there joined back with the main of the Goblands and writing it down for the records was unnecessary. Animalia appears brand new - because it is - and was created for the sole purpose of giving animals a comfortable home to stay in. Even then, it's well known to the citizens that certain laws of the city are only there for show, and there will be few repercussions for breaking them. Terrifyingly, one of those laws-for-show is the law against murder. You can know that if you die in Animalia, you will have been loved and respected. Crime rates are fairly high here, but other than fear for your life, you will live comfortably.
Stratos' lower level was not always as nicely decorated as it is now. The only relatively nice area was the fountain centered in the middle of the small town. The god of what would soon become stratos appeared in the town one day. He told the citizens to move back, then stuck his hand in the fountain and called a strike of lightning down onto the tip of the fountain. The land around the fountain then pulled itself from the ground and rose up, and up, and up, clouds in the sky turning themselves into more islands. Joel would later on create larger buildings for the citizens of the lands below him. He spoke sometimes, of how upper Stratos was for the upper class of the entirety of Stratos, but that was a lie. Stratos has it's own economy, and Joel himself is the only one to live permanently in upper Stratos. Economic standing has nothing to do with it. Those who lived in Stratos prior to the raising of the fountain are presumed to be the remains of whomever lived in the Golden Age Empire - or the archeology site that Pixlriffs is examining.
Chromia is known to have been built in record time - faster than Animalia, and with less resources. It's citizens are colourful beyond words, purposefully using mismatched and bright colours to disguise themselves in plain sight. Crime rates may be lower than in Animalia, but they're a close second - and that's a difficult placement to get. While Sanctuary was created to give those looking for peace a place to exist and live safely, Chromia was created to let in those who need a place to stay, no questions asked. The only thing they ask is for no one to break into obvious fights on Chromia land. Leave the area and you're free to do as you like. Chromia's people are as mismatched as its colours, and they all bring in a bit of their old lives with them. Chromia has no history, other than being a small town with an ever shifting population. The only ones that stay are Scott Smajor - the unofficial ruler - and those that work in Chromia. And, of course, the llamas.
Sanctuary's citizens come from a different continent. The magic of Sanctuary comes from the grand tree. Long ago, she may have been called the Mother Tree. This was before she grew further, covering what was once dry land in lush grass and jungle. The people themselves are from an old, old kingdom, having been built [or possibly rebuilt?] not long after the end of the rapture. The people who lived there once had good and steady lives, but the rise of a new king who had very specific wants for the kingdom changed all that quickly. The downfall of the kingdom is coming quick, especially as a second and newer kingdom - Sanctuary - rises from its ashes.
The Eversea is a sailor's dreamland. Just on the edge of a river to the sea, it's stocked with everything someone going out to sea could need. More recently, it's been slowly populated by a crew of pirates, each with a cruel tale of why they had been out at sea for so long. The first to show up was Pirate Joe, a small fish man with scrapes and cuts and one single large wound along his side. Pirates, for the most part, have been unwelcome in Eversea. Ever since Pirate Joe came along, they've been a little more willing to cooperate, and it's been alright - the pirates live alongside as opposed to pillage. Pirates as a whole have been a terror to the lives of many who live in Eversea - the town being made of sailors and their families. The original town of Eversea was the first settling place by a group of people who came from a separate continent and found their way down the river. Most to all of the descendants of those people have left and found a place to live in some other settlement, and instead new people from both other continents and other parts of this one fill the population. Still, the land has a rich history built on the cultures of everyone to have brought their own.
The witches, on the other hand, have technically owned the land of the Evermoore for centuries. Ever since it first began to get reports of being haunted and dangerous, the land was called witch's land and trespassers were not allowed. Over time, the trespassing rule was less and less enforced - at some point it became witch property in name only. This, of course, is not to say that nothing and no one lives in the forest. The idea is simply that you are less likely to find the way out the more you want to. It's also a folktale among witches: to be sent to the Evermoore is similar to being handed a death sentence, but with the hope that you may - however slim the chance - survive. The idea of fixing, or even understanding the Evermoore has become an impossibility - a dream of young witches that think they will grow to be grander than they will. Still, it's a widely entertained theory that the deeper forest has an ecosystem beyond the imaginations of anyone. When Shelby first finds the large frog, she begins to think that it may be a theory she can prove.
Glimmer Grove is a relatively new kingdom, in comparison to somewhere like the Goblands or Eversea. The continent is in a strange state of a lot of movement, and a lot of new places being created in the span of 50 years. Glimmer Grove is older than that - 300 years old instead of the 500+ that some other kingdoms have. Glimmer Grove was once the same kingdom as Dawn, worshiping the sun and the lot of them believing in the full day - from the sun rising till it sets. At one point, the kingdom was split. Supposedly by the religion of the sun, as those who would later become the citizens of Glimmer Grove found it to be idiotic. Those who believed in the power of the sun would leave and become Dawn [more on that later], while the rest [including the current royal family] would also move and become Glimmer Grove. A couple generations later, Glimmer Grove and Dawn would reach a shaky alliance - One that neither would break, but was created on a strained divorce already. Despite the kingdom’s lack of belief in the sun god, they are still always sure to be inside when there is no more light left in the sky.
Dawn believes in the sun as a god. The one that the god blessed was the first Queen of Dawn. Her daughter was then the princess, and so on the descendants would go, called Princesses of Dawn despite taking the role of queen. Queen is a label reserved for Prophets, and King the label for a hypothetical Prophet that would be male. Dawn hasn’t had one yet. Dawn has had a shaky relationship with Glimmer Grove, but it’s gotten better over the years. At the time of Princess Gem and Princess Katherine, the kingdoms are fairly close. The history complicates things, but the two are attempting to mend the rocky roads. Dawn is a bustling kingdom that quiets as the sun goes down - a way of life they’ve practiced from the beginning of the kingdom. The kingdom is full of pacifists, and weapons are outlawed for the most part. A phrase the kingdom enjoys saying to outsiders that like to play bully is that “even the bee stings.” It is a kingdom of farmers - they’re strong. They can defend themselves reasonably well if necessary. And if they can’t in hand to hand combat- daggers are always kept on hand in case something needs to be cut.
Tumble Town is old. Not as old as Gobland, but about as old as the kingdom that Dawn and Glimmer Grove split from. It’s assumed that if those that lived in what is now Animalia didn’t move underground into the greater Goblands, they likely went to Tumble Town. Tumble Town and the Goblands have been allies for centuries, goblins eventually using their sheriff to choose their own leaders. The sheriff is the highest power in Tumble Town, but are generally meant to be on the same level as everyone else, unless they are actively working on a case. Tumble Town, being surrounded by walls of terracotta, has had a lot of issues with interacting with anyone but the Goblands, who are able to dig their way into the bowl. The railway, and anything outside of the bowl, is very new to the empire, the path for the railway being blown out by the sheriff prior to Jimmy, and the rails being laid by Jimmy himself. The whole of the Town is really bad with allies and enemies - having only begun having any so recently.
Cogsmead is another place for people to stay when they have no where else to go. This one is for those who aren’t animals, and don’t want the hustle and bustle of Chromia, and aren’t sailors enough for Eversea. Sanctuary also offers homes for creatures of all kinds, including humans, but even then, the whole place can be a bit overwhelming for an outsider. Cogsmead culture is entirely whatever one wants it to be. Many of the people keep to themselves, but are close knit enough that the murders are a well known secret. It’s a new empire, like Animalia and Chromia, but it’s been built with speed, homes appearing seemingly overnight, and people coming in within the week to fill them. Everything has a very blink and you’ll miss it feel. The ruler of the empire is well known to be the one doing the work, but she seems to be only half aware. It’s an interesting thing. Despite the danger that lurks under the whole place, it’s easier to stay - and most people do. It’s a place for those who keep quiet, and go with the mystery, making it unnerving for outsiders.
I can't believe you abandoned your boys... You should talk about dragon Tango for 10 paragraphs to make up for it :D
From the journal of M. Littlewood:
I had my first encounter with a red fireback today - Jimmy says he calls himself 'Tango'. There's never been a sighting of one so far north, curious as to what brought it him this way. He's very temperamental, common trait for these beasts, approach with caution.
Firebacks are territorial creatures, Tango's no exception, he seems to have fully made Jimmy's ranch his new home and takes guarding it very seriously. His relationship with the livestock is fascinating, Jimmy says he's not once tried to hunt or eat any of the animals. The chickens especially seem to be enamoured with him.
Apparently Tango hunts outside the ranch grounds, so Jimmy says. They can communicate mentally, something he conveniently left out in my first round of questions.
Ever since our party's arrival Tango has been more on edge Jimmy says, the merchant and his dragon seem to be on bad terms with the two. Tango doesn't like the other dragons here, makes him twitchy. Keep distance.
Tango has deemed me worthy of speaking to, have to admit, not how I expected him to sound at all.
Tango's been following Jimmy around like a puppy, he won't let people near him either without Jimmy's consent. It'd be cute if he wasn't an 8ft. dragon capable of burning you. There was a spat between Tango and two other dragons and it seems to have hit his pride hard. I should have tried to stop Cleo
Best keep this one in the book for now