The Fort Towns of the Empire

By Kikir

Much has been made of the Lu’egal’s reputation as castle people, and for good reason. They are not only excellent builders of castles, but great users of castles as well. Although in their home isle imperial fortresses bear the mark of Lu’egal architecture, in the South they are distinctly foreign, repurposed from the remains of past great powers. In Tachak these buildings often take the form of great churches more like citadels, the construction of which would almost be offensive to the religious sensibilities of today. Even further South, on the Eastern fringes of Tajlyn, the forts bear a great resemblance to places one might find in Bag, a holdover from an empire that has almost been entirely forgotten today.

Of even more interest than their architecture, however, are the communities that form around these fortresses. Although there is little love for the Umbigal Empire outside its heartland, proximity to one’s rulers still has its benefits. In addition to the obvious trade and security, there is also something to be said for the isolation it provides from local factors. This has attracted characters of all stripes, ranging from local families farming small plots of land around the forts, to traders, pretenders, and those of a less savory disposition taking refuge within its walls.

As someone’s whose home has always been independent, her blessing be praised, it is curious to see the stark binary that exists within the Empire’s territory. You could travel straight from Tajlynd’s Southern tip to the Ruk peninsula, and the whole time believe there is no authority in the land greater than that of the local baron. But stumble upon one of these fortresses, and it would be like you had been transported to the very heart of the Empire itself, with all that entails.