Autochthonia is a world outside Creation and is actually comprised of the body of the Primordial Autochthon. Also called the Realm of Brass and Shadow, it is a technomagical world of steel corridors, steaming pipes, whirling machinery and rigid order.
The Eight Nations of Autochthonia
The Eight Nations of Autochthonia are the political and geographical divisions of the population of the Realm of Brass and Shadow and are the only controlled areas of Autochthonia, relatively free from the terrors of both the Reaches and the Far Reaches of the Great Maker's body. The nations are as follows:
Claslat is the largest nation in Autochthonia and is home to the most boisterous of people. It hosts three large cities, eight smaller cities and several scores of towns. While it is considered to be the most cosmopolitan of the Eight Nations, it is also the most regimented. All of its cities are painted in garish colors and is the only nation where there is any sort of private commerce. It even has a rudimentary monetary system that uses colored industrial glass called glots.
Named after the most warlike of the eight heroes, Estasia is the only nation with a large, permanent army. Known as the Militate, this warrior class forms a large and pampered elite that has access to better food, larger living space and more privileges than the Populat that supports it. Members of the Militate all have red, triangular soulgems. Although it is the sixth largest of the Eight Nations, with three cities and two million inhabitants, Estasia has the greatest military might of any nation in Autochthonia. The Estasian military offers its services to other nations as a large mercenary force. In return for both payment and at least half of all plunder taken during raids, the army of Estasia will fight on behalf of one of the rivals.
Gulak is the second largest of the Eight Nations of Autochthonia and hosts eight moderately large cities. Gulak is home to the largest and oldest of all Autochthonian metropoli, Thutot, which is the site of many a pilgrimage, due to the perceived connection the Alchemical city has with the Great Maker. Due to the numbers of visitors to the metropolis of Thutot, the nation of Gulak charges a fee to each of the other seven nations based upon the number of pilgrims who come to the city.
Jarish is the smallest of the Eight Nations and only holds one or two major cities, with the rest of the population residing in smaller towns throughout the territory. It avoids war with other nations as it is seen as the most holy and pious of all nations, spending more time and attention performing the rituals devoted to the maintenance of Autochthon than all other nations. It is also the most conservative of all the nations, eschewing many innovations of progress common among the rest of the eight nations. Its capital, Jast City, is home to some of the oldest religious documents in the Realm of Brass and Shadows.
Kamak is the second smallest of the Eight Nations, but the wealthiest, possessing an unusual abundance of the Five Magical Materials. However, this nation's wealth also attracts an unusually large number of thieves, con artists and raiders, but the nation regularly hires Militate soldiers from Estasia to protect both its wealth and its people. The threat of restricted trade is enough to prevent hostilities from other nations against Kamak, and the nation does its best to stay politically neutral in its relations with other nations.
As a result of its fantastic wealth, the general population of Kamak has a much higher and more comfortable standard of living than citizens in other nations, but its peoples are relatively quiet and prone to secrecy.
Nurad is the fifth largest nation and is currently in truly desperate straits. Its stores of the Five Magical Materials are almost exhausted and the conduits containing nutrients that are in or near its cities have all begun to run dry. Nurad is dangerously close to a blight zone and has recently been moving away from other nations that could help support its needs. As such, Nurad is attempting to evacuate some of its population to Gulak to relieve some of its worst shortages.
Third largest of the nations of Autochthonia, Sova was once the rival of Yugash for being the most progressive and expansionist of the Eight Nations. However, it has sacrificed trade and progress in the name of national security due to a critical shortage of Magical Materials and the swallowing of the city of Ixut by Autochthon himself. The city was completely destroyed in six hours and only a quarter of a million people survived the devastation. The city fell due to not being able to get enough materials because of the tariffs of Yugash, which sparked a short war between the two nations which was ended because Sova and Yugash drifted too far apart to make war feasible.
Fourth largest of the Eight Nations of Autochthonia, Yugash sports four major cities. Before the Elemental War against Sova and Gulak, this nation was wealthy and powerful, but between the war and the shortage of Magical Materials, Yugash has been reduced to dire straits. Yugash has remained separated from the other seven nations for seven years now, which is very troublesome and has some believing that the nation has lost the favor of the Great Maker. To avoid being swallowed up by the body of Autochthon or conquered by another nation, such as Estasia, the local Tripartite has authorized the breach of the Seal of Eight Divinities.
The local Tripartite also encourages a high birth rate and sweeping innovations within the nation, and those who invent such innovations are rewarded with better living quarters and additional personal possessions and consistent innovators are often promoted—engendering a high rate of social mobility.
Autochthonian society is divided up into a multitude of subgroups whose position in life are determined by both their soulgems and their previous incarnation's assignment. The changing from one caste to another in Autochthonian society is uncommon, but not impossible.
One of the social strata of Autochthonia, the Lumpen occupy the lowest place in Autochthonian society, being slaves, exiles or outcasts.
One of the social strata of Autochthonia, the Populat form the bulk of the members of Autochthonian society and typically work in the factories of the Eight Nations of Autochthonia.
One of the social strata of Autochthonia, the Tripartite typically oversee the Populat and govern the cities. The Tripartite is split up into the Tripartite Assembly, each section having a function in Autochthonian society.
One of the divisions of the Tripartite, the members of the Olgotary control production schedules, city planning, making and enforcing secular laws and judging nonreligious crimes. As such, they wield enormous political and economic power. The Olgotary is divided into four branches.
The Branches of the Olgotary
- The Plutarchs
- The planners of Autochthonian society who propose new laws, plan for new cities and redesign old ones.
- The Regulators
- Autochthonia's police force.
- The Adjudicators
- The judges, juries and executioners for all crimes in Autochthonia, who are able to pass judgment on any citizen regardless of rank or station.
- The Autocrats
- The single highest ranking officers of the Olgotary in each city.
One of the divisions of the Tripartite, the members of the Theomachracy are the religious officials in Autochthonia. Their duty is to ensure that all are faithful to the will of the Great Maker. The Theomachracy is divided into four branches.
The Branches of the Theomachracy
- The Lectors
- Theomachrats that are charged with maintaining morale and devotion.
- The Preceptors
- Theomachrats that are charged with uncovering and eliminating heresy.
- The Clerics
- Theomachrats that are charged with running the Theomachracy, handling changes to overall doctrine and interactions with the small gods of Autochthonia.
- The Celebrants
- The single appointed Theomachrat that represents the Theomachracy and its interests in a city.
The Five Magnificent Sodalities of Penultimate Truth and Intransigent Gospel
One of the divisions of the Tripartite, the members of the Sodalities are responsible for inventing new techniques and technologies to maximize efficiency and solve problems within Autochthonian society. The Sodalities are divided into five branches.
The Branches of the Sodalities
- The Luminors
- The Glorious Luminors of the Brilliant Rapture are the creators and guardians of light in Autochthonia and are also in charge of fire-fighting and capturing souls and transferring them into soulgems. They also harvest and refine orichalcum.
- The Conductors
- The Illustrious Conductors of the Consecrated Veins manage the Great Maker's conduits, tapping them for all the resources needed in Autochthonian cities. They also regulate passage between cities by use of pneumatic trams. They also affix soulgems to the foreheads of the Alchemical Exalted, and of collecting and working starmetal.
- The Harvesters
- The Pious Harvesters of the Hallowed Flesh dispose of waste and return it to the Great Maker's embrace, gathering trash and junk for recycling. They remove soulgems from the foreheads of the dead and transform nutrient slurries into exotic and excellent foods. They are responsible for collecting and working with jade.
- The Scholars
- The Prolific Scholars of the Furnace Transcendent are the largest of the five branches of the Sodalities, building, designing and creating nearly everything in Autochthonia. They also operate and maintain the manufacturing facilities within Autochthonia. They create soulgems and the Charms of the Alchemical Exalted and are reponsible for maintaining the stocks of Autochthonian soulsteel.
- The Surgeons
- The Meticulous Surgeons of the Body Electric are the scouts and explorers of Autochthonia. They investigate for resources and problems, reporting back to the Harvesters or the Scholars. They are also in charge of all medical matters for the mortals of Autochthonia and the distribution of drinking water for the people. They are in charge of collecting and working with moonsilver and also use their skills to create the bodies of the Alchemical Exalted.
The Elemental Poles of Autochthonia
The Elemental Pole of Crystal
The Elemental Pole of Crystal is, in layman's terms, Autochthon's brain. The mentality of the Great Maker is stored within this colossal structure, and it is guarded accordingly by large numbers of powerful automatons. The Elemental Pole of Crystal also serves as the Primordial's equivalent of the Loom of Fate. Stored within are machines called design weavers, upgraded versions of pattern spiders, that serve to create Autochthon's causality while drifting in Elsewhere. Despite the Pole's equivalence to the Loom, Sidereal fate manipulation powers have no power here.
The Pole is not safe by any means. Aside from the aforementioned guards, massive bursts of lightning (the "nerve impulses" of the Great Maker) occur occasionally, providing a danger to even the Exalted.
The Elemental Pole of Lightning
Lightning is one of the six Elements of Autochthonia. It is the most energetic of the elements responsible for maintaining the populates power systems. The Elemental Pole of Lightning is the home/prison of Bodara, the Mother of Lightning.
It is associated with:
- Yellow and Blue
The Elemental Pole of Metal
The Elemental Pole of Oil
The Elemental Pole of Oil occupies roughly the top 5th of Autochthon's world-sized body. It is a massive ocean of oil, occupied by the occasional mechanism to keep things running properly. The oil is shunted throughout Autochthon's body as needed. The utter lack of air and the slightly toxic nature of the oil makes it unlikely that living things will last long here, but the occasional pipe running through it contains breathable air. It might also contain something much more dangerous, so this is not always a good idea.
The Elemental Pole of Smoke
The bottom fifth of Autochthonia is a barren and blasted wasteland that forms the single largest open space inside the Great Maker's body. The Elemental Pole of Smoke is a dark and poisonous realm, carefully sealed away from the rest of the Machine God by armored plates treated against the corrosive pollutants. Great automaton dirigibles plated with soulsteel to protect against the corrosive pollution suck in the foul air through purification baffles. From time to time, they dock with the colossal inverted spires that pierce down into the smoke at irregular intervals, air-scrubber drones pumping clean air into ventilation ducts, where it funnels back up through Autochthonia for the benefit of its biological denizens and the Primordial's own biomechanical subsystems. This complex system serves as Autochthon's lungs.