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Orcs

"Dishonor begets dishonor. The virtues of the mind must be the virtues of the hand" - First law of the Gau'sho.
A history steeped in brutality, rage, and tribal competition defined much of early orcish history. It was Naran, the revered First Kagar and Avatar of the goddess Batari, that united and raised them from their savagery. Following a strict code of control and discipline called the Gau'sho, the orcs have become a proud people that represent a culture of honor, fealty, strict discipline, and the virtues of the warrior. Now led by the might of their Dai'jun general and the hallowed blessings of Kagara Empress Meera, perhaps it is time for the orcs to finally reach again beyond their ancestral lands. Perhaps it is time to plant the flags of the great orc houses on foreign soil and bring the enlightenment of Batari to the rest of Itaire.

Starting Location: Agun Batari

Translated into “Batari's Fist” and situated in the heart of the Dai'junate, Agun Batari is the training ground for the Dai'jun's numerous legions. Situated near Ulugar itself and founded during the first days of the bitter war against the First Elven Empire, Agun Batari represents a rare instance of cooperation between the the great orc families and their mutual desire to preserve, and even expand, orcish influence. The area is a collection of colored tents, troop formations in training, and countless personal shrines of calm and worship. Orcs from all over Itaire travel here on pilgrimage, or to seek training as orc Legionnaires or Dai'jir (elite warriors responsible for the protection of the Kagar and the Dai'jun). Even aspiring orcish ascetics learn the basics of arcane principle from the many scholars that have taken permanent residence in the camp (before moving onto Galaan).

"Find peace in yourself. Take solace in the peace you bring to others." - Excerpt from the proclamations of prophet Freil, second length of the Amgaal.

Starting Capital: Ulugar

Built when prophet Naran led the first of his followers away from Varuun Mol, Ulugar is now one of the largest and most advanced cities on Itaire. It is also the place of residence for the Kagara herself, from where it is believed she stands atop the high balcony of the Imperial House, the better to watch her land and its people.

Ulugar itself sits upon the Great Hebi River, carving a watery border through the middle of the city. Surrounded by  high walls constructed from expertly positioned and reinforced stone, its impregnability is a thing of renown.

The city is divided into four districts; each one is overseen by one of the four major families, or clans. Each clan is responsible for the management and protection of one of four gates leading into Ulugar. The Suroi Clan, most militant and warlike, are caretakers of the Earth gate and north-western quarter of the city. The Osun Clan, a family of merchants and sailors, hold the north-eastern quarter and Air gate. The Aargor family, an ancient line of scholars and magicians, protect the south-east quarter and Fire gate. Finally, the Taaki Clan, a mysterious and influential group of information brokers and rogues, watches over the south western portion of the Ulugar and the Water gate.

Leaders: While the Kagara or "Empress" is exalted as avatar and prophet of the goddess Batari, she actually participates very little in the day to day administration of orc society. The wisdom and concerns of the Emperor or Empress are considered above the comprehension of any outside her closest advisors. To this end, a Dai'jun or "great lord" and a group of clan governors called Ganjuun or "little lord" are elected to manage the orc territories.

Meera – Revered Kagara and Avatar of Batari - Second daughter of the previous Kagar, Zarogar the Accursed, Meera, eleven at the time, was chosen as successor after having claimed visions from Batari. In private demonstration before the Imperial court, she is said to have blessed the spear of one of her retainers with the "waters of paradise", granting the weapon the ability to create freshwater springs when thrust into the earth.

In the two decades since her rise, she has strictly enforced the religious tenants of the Amgaal (a series of commandments focusing on self control and the need for inner peace through worship) and, more recently, proclaimed measures meant to limit the rights of visitors in orc lands. However, having becoming increasingly absent and distant, even from her advisors and the Dai'jun, rumors have begun to circulate of an illness afflicting the Kagara.

Mahabar – Dai'jun - Elected after the untimely death of his predecessor in NIY 767, Mahabar is considered inexperienced by many of his contemporaries. His military career though, while brief, includes victories against the feral orcs of New Varuun and the daring rescue of the Ganjuun of the Osun clan, Vezad, from a rogue goblin prince in NIY 760.

While his career includes conflict against the other races, Mahabar, moreso than many of his elders, understands the need for peace and cooperation if the orcs are to prosper and expand.

Gai'ti – Elder Ganjuun of the Suroi Clan - Willful, proud, and single minded even at her advanced age, Gai'ti is an active supporter of the militaristic expansion of the orcish empire. Having personally led expeditions against the barbaric peoples of the Great Expanse and the tribes of feral orcs amongst the ruins of Varuun Mol, she has becomes a respected figure among her people and her enemies. And as governor of the most well trained and numerous clan in Ulugar, her influence amongst her peers is undoubtedly significant.

A vocal opponent against the election of Dai'jun Mahabar, some speculate Gai'ti's own ambition to become military leader of the orcish realm, and indeed, even suggest that she might engineer events to make it happen.

Batari

Orcs worship the goddess Batari, their creator and the one to raise them from their savagery through the prophet and first Kagar, Naran. The lessons of Batari are those of discipline, temperance, and minimalism. The sum of her teachings and those of her earlier prophets manifest in a series of commandments, recorded visions, and parables that together form the Amgaal.

Despite the existence of the Amgaal (something almost all orcs are expected to follow in their day to day lives), there is no organized church of Batari. Indeed, historical attempts to form one have been met with resistance and disdain. As a result, orcs are free to worship Batari and interpret the Amgaal as they might, save that it does not adversely affect the clan or community as a whole.

It is important to note that the Amgaal is entirely distinct from Gau'sho (orc-law), which serves more as a primer on rules of war and the code of conduct all orc warriors, of any station, are expected to follow. Some of the Ganjuun even employ the lessons of the Gau'sho when making political decisions.

"Shed these shackles of pacifism from your mind! Send forth the legions! Unleash the Dai'jir! Let our people have the world that is rightfully theirs!" – Governor Gai'ti of the Suroi Clan, at an audience with the Imperial Court, NIY 774.