The World Of Khoras - Civilization - Cities

"Sloppy, Loud, and Dumb, like a city of barking dogs."
- Zalmaer Vrage, Aukarian Freetrader

Okslad

Ruler Arch Praelet Ofedor
Population 84,000
Demographics Magrakian 55%, Eshtari 10%, Human (Aukarian) 9%, Hyttar 8%, Sybrenar 6%, , Pugnar 5%, Human (Tomarin) 3%, Trossali 2%, Other 2%
Adjectival/Demonym Oksladian/Okskadi
Languages Magrakian 70%, Hyttar 7%, Aukarian 5%, Eshtari 4%, Human (Tomarin) 4%, Sybrenar 3%, Human (Chaddamarian) 2%, Vaullian 2%, Saridian 1%, Human (Padashani) 1%, Other 1%
Nationality Magrakor
National Colors Black and Grey
Year Founded 737
Currency Magrakian
Natural Resources Forests, granite, shale, iron, silver, copper, maritime fauna and flora
Manufactured Goods and Major Exports Lumber, wood crafted goods, iron ingots, iron forged goods, pelts, leather crafted goods, quarried stone, salted beef, salted fish
Wealth Average
Government Type Feudal Monarchy
Government Stability Stable
Allies Eshtar
Enemies The Sybren Imperium
Walled Yes. Stone curtain wall.
Crime Level Moderate
Technology Level Dark Ages
Primary Religion Bromat
Other Religion Trodule.
Climate Cool temperate
Terrain Coastal plains, rolling plains and sparse forest

Overview

Okslad is the capital city of Magrakor, the homeland of the Magrakians. This grand city is a major seaport with constant traffic in its harbor. Cargoes from all over Aggradar and Qeshir make their way through this port. Due to the central location of Magrakor and the friendly nature of the Magrakians, Okslad is something of a cultural melting pot with dozens of races living and working together peacefully. 

History

The history of Magrakor is like its people - slow, plodding and methodical. After the devastation of the Kytohan Empire, the remnants of this region were little more than scattered villages and hill clans. Raiders and bandits prowled the region for years afterward. Fragments of the Kytohan military fought to protect what little was left of the Empire. Towns, villages and soldiers banded together for protection under the flag of Magarak, a military officer. This small collection of peoples held together during the dark years after the Cataclysm. For centuries the towns and militias stood together. By 1000 CY, they had coalesced into seven distinct counties. In 1457 CY, these seven counties united under a single banner and formed the United Counties of Magrakor. The town of the largest and most powerful county, Goloti, became the capital city.

Government

The Arch-Praelet is a hereditary position much like a King. The Arch-Praelet rules from the capital city of Okslad with input from representatives of the seven counties. Arch Praelet Ofedor is aided by a council of advisors and scholars. These provincial representatives and advisors together make up the Grand Council of Okslad. They hold court once a month with the Arch-Praelet in attendance.

The realm of Magrakor is divided up into seven counties. Each county is ruled by a Praelet (similar to a duke or baron who also serves as head town official). Each county is ruled by its largest town which protects and taxes all the villages of its region. Each Praelet answers directly to the Arch-Praelet. The largest county, Goloti, is headed by Okslad itself. The Praelet of Goloti is the Speaker of the Grand Council.

Law

The legal system of Okslad is tough, but fair. While the magrakian people are a hardy race who can endure much physical punishment, they dislike the cruelty of sheer torture and similar forms of punishment. Crimes are typically punished with stiff fines, hard labor, imprisonment and banishment. Execution is reserved for only the most heinous crimes.

Hard labor is probably the most common form of punishment. Most cases are brought before a judge and these wise authorities often mete out punishments that involve patience, hard work and persistence. Punishments usually relate to the nature of the crime in some way. For instance, a thief who steals from a jeweler might be indentured to work at a diamond mine for one year with all of his wages going to the jeweler he stole from.

Disputes between magrakians are often settled with duels which run the gamut from civilized sword play to board wrestling. In addition, every city, town and village has at least one pair of "sitting poles". Sitting poles are considered a time honored method of settling a dispute. Each contestant will climb to the top of a sitting pole and sit at the platform on top. Sitting poles are always found in pairs and they are usually placed on either side of a public street so that the two opponents face each other. While engaged in a sitting pole "argument", neither may eat or sleep or drink. It is a test of endurance. The first to climb down forfeits his claim in the dispute. Some particularly stubborn magrakians have died when engaged in such matches.

Military

The City Guard Keep, a huge circular tower near the center of the city, houses all the forces of the Okslad City Guard. Some 1,500 guards operate out of this squat seven story stronghold. The City Guard Keep houses barracks, training facilities and administrative offices. The lower levels contain the main city dungeon which has eighty dank and dreary cells.

The magrakians favor a weapon that they call a spade sword. It is a heavy, two edged blade which is wide toward the tip than at the handle. Spade swords come in a variety of styles and sizes, but all have generally the same shape. Some flare out quite dramatically. Magrakian spade swords require great strength but little dexterity to wield. It is, essentially, a hacking weapon.

Religion

The chief diety of the Magrakians is Bromat. Bromat has several small churches in the city and one huge temple complex. The great temple features a massive central dome and four towers, one at each corner of the grounds. A statue of Bromat is in the center of the temple directly beneath the dome.

Due to the racial and cultural diversity of the city's inhabitants, there are dozens of shrines around the city devoted to almost every god.

Economy

Okslad has a bustling economy and one can find goods for sale in the market plazas here from all over the continent.

Theport district has a large paved area next to the harbor where cargoes are carried off the ships and laid out on the ground in great piles. Cargoes are haggled over right there in the market. It is a buying frenzy with much shouting and bell ringing. Most of the commodities sold here are right off of the ships and involve large stockpiles of goods. Huge quantities of fresh fish and iced seafood are also sold here.

The main market square of the city is an enormous paved plaza near the heart of the city. On market day, held twice a month, it is crowded with stalls, booths, tents and other makeshift structures arranged in a laybrinth of paths that meander between them. A multitude of races mingle here, buying, selling and hagglnig. Pickpockets are especially plentiful here and it's easy to get robbed.

Guilds and Organizations

-

 

Important People

Arch-Praelet Ofedor

A rotund magrakian known for gregarious banquets held at the palace.  Rules over a large, but informal court. Arch Praelet Ofedor rules the entire nation of Magrakor and the city of Okslad. He oversees the Grand Coucil of Okslad. He also performs all important ceremonies, makes public appearances and occasionally travels when necessary.. but he leaves most of the tedious paperwork and details to his City Administrator, Vaprak, whom he trusts implicitly.

Vaprak

Vaprak is the City Administrator. Vaprak manages the administrative offices of the city, acts as the liaison between the various political offices and generally keeps the city running. He generally frees the King from the daily worries of running the city. Any important matters are brought to the King by Vaprak himself. Vaprak is also in charge of the city magistrates who rule over the courts and take care of legal matters in the city.

Othok

Othok is the City Warden. He is in charge of the city guards, the militia and generally keeping the peace. His men patrol the streets of Okslad and the countryside around it. He dislikes court life and paperwork. He prefers to be alone, riding his horse, out in the countryside. His duties interfere with that far too often. Othok is also in charge of the prisons in Okslad.

Pagrad, Chief Scholar

An ancient magrakian who serves the King as Chief Scholar and head of the King's Library. He is also one of the king's advisors on magical matters and mystical phenomena. Pagrad speaks several languages - Magrakian, Aukarian, Eshtari, Tomarin and Vaullian. He even speaks a little bit of Rukemain.

 

Culture

In general, magrakians are an extremely friendly and sociable race. They love to eat, drink, socialize, dance, laugh and play games. Taverns here are always filled with laughter. Magrakians are a gregarious lot whose humor is sometimes seen as crude. 

Gift giving is an important part of social life and occurs on a daily basis. Gifts are exchanged at greetings, partings, introduction between strangers, important life events, parties and often for no reason at all. The gift is given along with a brief explanation of its history or meaning to the possessor. "I gift you with this dagger – given to me by my uncle seven years ago, made by a master smith of the north lands." The value of the gift and the nature of the "speech" is directly proportional to the significance of the event. For instance, during extremely important events, family heirlooms may be given away with a long prepared speech and open weeping. On the other hand, magrakians meeting for the first time may exchange small token gifts and a brief blessing or statement of friendship. Such items are often kept on hand for just such occasions.

Gambling is popular among the magrakians and a variety of games can be found in most taverns. The most popular form of gambling is a board game called malja which is a fast paced card game with lots of betting. 

Sports are very common in Magrakian and gambling often centers around sporting events. One popular sport in Magrakor is board wrestling. Board wrestling involves two combatants who face off in a circular fighting ring. They are stripped of armor and clothing from the waist up. Their arms are tied with large, flat pieces of boards so that their elbows cannot bend and their hands cannot grasp. The wooden boards usually have small metal studs. The two combatants then pummel each other to unconsciousness. This is a very bloody sport which is extremely popular with magrakians. Board wrestling competitions and the betting that surrounds them are fast and fierce.

Being a friendly people, the magrakians go out of their way to greet everyone, be it life long friend or complete stranger. The most common Magrakian greeting is "Stone and Strength to You!". A common blessing, quoted often, is "Be like stone" which sums up much of the Magrakian beliefs.

The most popular alcoholic beverage throughout the nation of Magrakor is something called baklath (BOK-loth). This foul concoction is made from fermented fish guts. Various kinds of fish guts are used, but true baklath is made from the guts of silver tarns, the long, bright silver fish common in the Murky River and Bay of Okslad. Magrakians love baklath, but most other races are barely able to tolerate the stench. It is typically served in bowls. A ladle is used to fill the bowls because baklath often has chunks of fish meat in it. Many magrakians like to drink their baklath warm.

Festivals are frequent and popular throughout the land. The largest festival is the Okslad Summer Games, a week long celebration centered around wrestling, races, tests of strength and endurance and an array of cooking and brewing contests. Another important festival is the Sea Fair which involves boat racing, boat building, swimming and seafood. Most of the Sea Fair activities are conducted on hundreds of boats out in the Bay.

There is a large population of hyttar here due to the influx of hyttar refugees that began when the hyttar homeland fell to the Trossoli invaders. The magrakians took pity on the pathetic hyttar and welcomed them into their city.

City Districts

-

Monuments and Public Spaces

Statue of Karag

Karag is the founder of the city, a great war hero and general. His illustratious career spans decades and many great battles are attributed to his leadership. The statue of Karag shows the great magrakian general seated on a tremendous throne with an array of weapons. The statue and throne are 23 meters tall (76 ft). This statue sits at the edge of the harbor as a greeting, and warning, to all incoming ships.

The Challenging Poles

Two huge stone pillars with a small stone platform on each. Sitting contests, which are a common way of settling disputes between disgruntled commoners, are conducted here. Several pair line the street at intervals. No schedule is kept. Available poles are simply taken. Other make shift sitting poles exist scattered out throughout the city.

The Arena

A large circular building built around a gladiatorial pit. Board Wrestling matches are common here.

Architecture and Infrastructure

Magrakian architecture is predominantly stone and timber. though crude and of simple construction, Magrakian buildings are tremendously strong with thick walls and heavy doors.

Crime

The magrakian tendency to socialize has lent an odd twist to the underworld. The city of Okslad and the nation of Magrakor are home to dozens of separate thieves guilds, crime cartels and criminal organizations. Most of these groups are small with individual magrakians that may be a member of two or three different groups. This results in a rich underworld tapestry where everyone knows everyone. Some of the more powerful criminal groups include the Shadow Vipers (a general guild of thieves and fences), the Under League (a network of crime bosses that deal in smuggling, bribery, blackmail and extortion) and the Juggernauts (a network of mercenaries, soldiers, assassins, bounty hunters and other "lone" agents).

Inns and Taverns

Name and Proprietor Description
The Iron Ring
Yrag
Gambling Hall/Tavern/Arena - A large and very popular tavern built around a huge central circular fighting pit. The pit has a sand floor and is used for all many of arena combat. Patrons of the establishment sit on tiered seating around the arena, drink their ales and bet on the combatants. Magrakian board wrestling is the most common type of event.
The Grand Okslad Inn
Jorma Poolse
Inn - The largest inn of the city. Over 400 rooms with multiple courtyards and a staff of 160. Very luxurious and expensive.
Krad's Ale House
Krad
Tavern - Krad is a very short and stocky magrakian. Has a gravelly, raspy voice due to a throat wound he suffered when he survived the attack of a dragon eel when he was young. (It is a story he tells often). He is blind in one eye and has only one arm. Still he manages to run his tavern, brew a powerful ale and win a few wrestling contests.
Inn of the
Three Hammers

Kohark
Inn - Reasonably priced and of acceptable quality to a weary traveler, this inn caters mostly to traders and caravan hands. There is an excellent messenger service here, as well as a standing offer from the innkeeper: Anyone who can guess where the three hammers above the bar come from receive a free room for the night.
The Bentbow Tavern
Gourtaf
Tavern - The speculation is that Gourtaf is doing something new to his baklath. Nobody can guess what he's started putting in the stuff (and some guess that magic is somehow involved), but all agree that whatever change he's made, it's delicious. Gourtaf brags that several establishments in the area have made him generous offers for his strange new recipe, but he has turned them all away. In the meantime, his business is suddenly booming.
Pugnar's Brew
Pugnar
Tavern - Run by a Pugnar Aukarian hybrid. Since most people find his true name unpronounceable (and because Magrakians have poor memories), most people in town just call him "Pugnar".
The Gutted Pup
Jartusk
Tavern - Down by the docks. Caters to a seedy clientele. Thieves and cutthroats mostly. A great place for a few floating rumors and a bar fight. Jartusk, the imposing barkeep, is so tall that his head almost brushes the dirty ceiling. Though he could easily put a stop to any sudden fight, he much prefers to let such violence sort itself out. To amuse himself, he will randomly throw a steel tankard into the melee, often knocking out a combatant or two.
The Beef, Bay and Bottle
Barnur
Tavern - Considered by many to have the best food in the city. Perched on a cliff overlooking the bay, it also has excellent views.
Titan's Hull Tavern
Jurgan
Tavern - This unique establishment is located a kilometer (half mile) south of the city, on the coast. The building is actually the upside down hull of a huge ship. The vessel was once a grand sailing ship, of ancient design and immense proportions. It is obvious that this great ship was built and sailed by giants. It was discovered many years ago, washed up on the Aggradar coast in a remote wilderness region. It had lain there for hundreds of years. It was looted bare, nothing remained save the hull. The tenacious magrakians that discovered it spent seven years getting it down off of the rocky coast, flipping it over and towing it back to Okslad. It took a dozen carpenters, scores of workers and 3 mages working for four months to flip it back over and convert it into a functional building. Jurgan, the wealthy entrepreneur who paid for this colossal project, has reaped great profit from it since then as it has become one of the most popular taverns in the nation.

Shops

Name and Proprietor Description
Hall of Tomes
Pagrad
Library - Government historical archive and library. Chief librarian is a very old magrakian named Pagrad, who, despite his grand stature, is humble and respectful to all.
Hall of Decadence
Faurik
Brothel - Home of the sturdiest female escorts in Aggradar. No bouncer. These girls can take care of themselves.
Fang and Flagon
Cujef Tagh
Trading Post/General Store - Tagh's eclectic assortment of goods benefits greatly from the city's role as a cultural melting pot. This trading post is surprisingly active center of gossip, as many freetraders make a stop here when passing through.
Blade of Stone
Yohna
Blacksmith - Yohna is a bullish magrakian, with arms that burst from his sleeves whenever he works. A recent surge of bandit activity just south of Fyrren's Wandering have him working well into each night, trying to meet the increased demand from caravans needing extra protection. He can usually be found at his forge, pounding away on less than an hour of sleep, irritable and muttering to himself.
Hounded Hunter
Rauff
Stable and Animal Grounds - Located on the outskirts of town. Sells horses, trained dogs, mules and donkeys.
Sarkod's Metal Shoppe
Borog
Smithy - A large metal working shop and smithy with four junior smiths and one master smith. Each with a different specialty.

This web site last updated Thursday, November 28, 2019 . Copyright 1990-2011 David M. Roomes.

Contact Webmaster