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Aegis


Overview


Aegis is a fantasy world composed mostly of air, with small land masses hovering throughout. Its primary inhabitants are the Alboros, the Khoda and the Scyphoza. Elemental magic is the most common kind, and is practiced by both the Alboros and the Khoda, while the Scyphoza seem to have strange powers of their own. Magically-powered air vessels are popular, as is the summoning and use of Elementals (or other beings connected with the elements such as Djinn or Efreet).

It was created during Episode 1.

Geographical Details


From a distance, the world of Aegis appears to be a light (pumpernickel) shade of blue. It is a world ruled by the four elements: Air, Fire, Water and Earth. In this world, the most powerful and versatile element is Air. Fire and Water are the next most powerful, sitting in opposition to each other, leaving Earth as the least powerful of the elements.

Land masses are generated from a volcanic core (known simply as "the Core") that steadily releases part of its ever-replenishing matter to drift upward into an orbit around it. The masses closest to the Core move more quickly. The farther away from the Core the land is, the slower it moves. Temperature works in a similar fashion - it is very hot close to the Core, but the temperature drops as one moves further up into the atmosphere.

Aegis does have a sun (with day and night cycles depending on the positioning of the individual land masses), but the Core generates much of the world's heat. Some say the Core is made of pure magma and renews itself from a gateway to another plane. Others believe that the Core contains a massive elemental of great power trapped at its center, while still others say that the Core is a living thing, itself.

Squalls of water travel through the sky. They are the world's primary source of liquid. Diviners are often trained to predict and collect the water from these storms. The largest of these storms is a giant, perpetual funnel hundreds of miles across. It's referred to as Ouroboros because of its slight resemblance to a snake consuming its own tail.

Some of the larger masses in high orbit have ruins on them, many of which have frosted over because of how cold it is at that distance from the Core. It is believed that much of these are ruins of ancient Khoda kingdoms. The most famous ruin site is called the Frozen Throne, a dangerous area that may contain a wealth of untapped resources.

Inhabitants


The Alboros have a democratic governed overseen by a parliament. They are humanoid for the most part, with feathers covering those parts of the body where humans would have hair. They have three-clawed talons for feet and four-fingered hands (with opposing thumbs), and feathered wings on their backs. Their clothing is simple, usually a sash around the chest with another draped at the waist. The Alboros are masters of Air magic. They live in large communities they call Aviaries and smaller communities called Nests.

The Khoda hold the claim to the lower land masses, closer to the core, and have established their monarchies there, each one ruled by a Sultan. They have good facility with fire, water and earth magic. They are reptilian humanoids. Scales cover their body and most have leathery wings. Status is important to them. The rich among them wear expensive silks embroidered with silver or gold.

The Scyphoza have a collective intelligence and seem to communicate telepathically with each other. They are capable of flight and resemble large, white jellyfish. They are solitary creatures who are very untrusting of beings not like themselves. This idea is so prominent that they often seek to destroy beings that are different. It is believed that those Scyphoza who occupy Aegis were banished there from a place beyond the stars for their treacherous crimes.

Culture & Beliefs


A common theme of Aegis' religions is the idea that when one dies, one "returns to the center." It is commonly held that any vision of heaven must be contained in the world's core, while hell may exist beyond the upper atmosphere. This idea is central to the reasoning behind much of the conflict that occurs between the Alboros and the Khoda. The Alboros are of the belief that the Khoda, who are closer to the Core, are trying to prevent them from reaching the center (and according to some accounts, that the Khoda are preventing Solstice from occurring). At the same time, the Khoda often view the Alboros as whelps who escaped their rule and are trying to take what's rightfully theirs.

As far as the Core is concerned, there is much debate over whether the Core contains heaven, or is nothing but molten rock. Some view the being that may or may not inhabit the Core as a god, while others say that if it exists, it's nothing but another kind of elemental.

History


The first age of Aegis is known as the Great Molding, a time when the world was much smaller and everything was contained in a shell of earth much closer to the Core. The early Alboros and the Khoda were trapped very close to each other. It was a time of great struggle - the two races fought one another constantly for space. During this time the Khoda were the superior power, using their still-developing elemental magic to oppress any who stood against them.

This changed with the event known as the Unfolding of the Sky. The fundamentals of Air magic were discovered one day by an Alboros named Kleitos, who became known as the Opener. Some accounts say he wounded the Core (or perhaps the elemental at its center); others say he appeased it in some way. Whatever it was that happened, Kleitos found the means to break the shell of earth open, sending the large rock fragments spinning up into the atmosphere and allowing access to the sky above.

When the Alboros began to settle in the upper atmosphere, they soon discovered and made contact with the Scyphoza. However, relations were not friendly, as the Scyphoza soon began their program of eradication in an effort to exterminate any life form that was strange and different to them. Despite this, the Alboros were able to spread out and build a civilization for themselves among the clouds.

The present age is referred to by many as the Settling. It's a time when conflict between the races is less direct. The Alboros population is now large enough to provide a serious challenge to the Khoda, and while the Alboros' Air magic is the most powerful, the Khoda still have mastery over the other elements, which provides them with enough versatility to be able to stand up to them. Direct conflict often leads to a stalemate, so more covert means of warfare are often employed. The Scyphoza are still a threat, but are thankfully not great enough in number to overrun either of the other two main civilizations.

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