Locations (Eclipse)

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Sun--Moon--Man--God--Apostasies--Apotheosis

Eclipse * History * The Solar Empire * The Lunar Empire * Locations * Cast

Contents

The Astral Temple

The Astral Temple is located on highlands in the shadow of mountains on the large western isle of the Skyfalls. It is the most sacred location in the lunar faith, but it is also a sacred site to the solars, and this tension has led to many of the great wars between the two cultures. It was at the Astral Temple that the solars discovered the sun pact. To them, the place fulfills a prophecy of a sacred temple where Surya will grant his children his blessing. To the lunars, the site represents a place of communion with Chandra. They also believe that, as it is an astral observatory, they can use it to predict the future.

The temple is circular in design with a diameter of about a half mile. A crenelated wall surrounds the exterior, with archways leading in at true north, south, east, and west. This exterior wall is carved from white granite and probably once sparkled, but has now lost most of its sheen and begun to crumble.

An inner circle lies at the heart of the temple grounds, an open-air ring of seven stone columns connected by a top ring. This site, when the temple was in the position of one side or other, was the center of religious ceremonies. Each of the pillars holds intricate recorded carvings in some lost language. Both solars and lunars believe that the mysterious script represents the words of the gods and that whoever can translate them will rule the universe.

In the forum south of the central atrium, two great stone bowls have been carved into the ground. These bowls contain coordinate grids and carved out sections which, when taken together, allow for precise calculations of the position of the sun or moon. Further, a set of stairs on either side of temple leads to observatory towers which contain precision instruments for taking celestial measurements. Using these devices one can create a map of the heavens and even calculate when celestial events will occur or become visible.


Ayu

The spired city of Ayu, capital of the Lunar Empire, is a gothic maze of alleys and sky bridges, towers and catacombs. Those that know the city well find it awash in varied goods and opportunities; those that don't often find a knife in the back. Being a lunar city, Ayu comes most alive at night. While many markets open by noon, few become bustling until twilight.

Founded almost a thousand years ago as a port-of-call for sailors and pirates, Ayu has grown from a stopping point to a cultural center and architectural wonder. Despite its dangers, the city holds an appeal for many lunars. Even those that have never seen its twisted towers see it in a romantic light. Ayu is the setting for most lunar dramas, while solars tell stories of its horrors or decadences.

The city lacks a central design, but rather has evolved organically, making it more difficult to navigate for non-natives. True to the city’s history, its heart remains the port in the northern quarter. From there, markets sprawl around the winding streets throughout the city. The most important citizens have claimed the greatest spires--the higher a tower one can build, the more prestige it brings. Most of the largest towers lie in eastern quarter.

The Coliseum

Located in a massive underground chamber, the coliseum is lit by skylights which funnel in the moonlight, and by a ring of fire above the heads of the patrons. The ring is a trough fed oil from a vat with a pull of a lever. The vat closes to prevent the fire from spreading to it. The coliseum is home to all manner of competition from footraces to werewolf fights.


Kasusthali

Kasusthali is the capital of the Solar Empire, a radiant place of light and crystal waters. The city sits on the edge of a lagoon, but much of it is actually built below the surface of the waters. Clear glass tubes connect underwater domes to each other and to the surface, creating a city both beautiful and very difficult to assault. The city is laid out in a diamond shape, with the imperial palace at the western peak, in the waters, and the Sun Temple at its heart, also rising from the waters. The southern point of the diamond is the harbor, while the northern point holds the Academy. The nicer residential areas lie on the eastern point, while markets and common neighborhoods fill in the middle.

The Imperial Palace

The imperial palace rises out of the sea--its great hall a massive crystal dome that thrusts above the waves and drinks in sunlight, while the depths of the palace lie on the sea floor. The palace rises for five stories at the peaks of its four towers, and three stories elsewhere. It is constructed of polished golden stone that gleams in the sunlight. It houses dozens of families, hundreds of servants, and five hundred palace guards, not including the Arun Guard.

The Academy

The Academy is a university for the wealthy to send their children to find secular education. While many take education from the Children of the Sun, others choose the Academy, while the truly important may take learning from both. The Academy teaches a balance of arts and academics such as history and science, however, it also allows specialize in a single subject. The highest pursuit at the Academy is that of music. An Academy graduated artist is sure to find employment with a wealthy benefactor.

The Sun Temple

The Children's center of power and worship is the Sun Temple, a great dome rising from the sea at the heart of the capital city. This dome is lined with mirrors that reflect sunlight down into the atrium. Here, the faithful gather to sing the hymns of the sun, which reverberate throughout the capital, carried through the water by the crystal tubes. The Sun Temple houses all of the initiates and curates living in Kusthali and offers the occasional bed to those in need. Its golden halls are decorated with fine paintings of religious scenes, such as Surya blessing the solars to accepting the Radiant Queen as his bride.

The Harbor

The harbor offers births for two dozen large ships and many smaller ones. The harbormaster carefully tracks comings and goings of all ships, applying appropriate taxes and docking fees. City watchmen under the harbormaster’s command keep the harbor safe and secure, showing no tolerance for troublemakers.


Moon Mountains

No one remembers what ancient name the lunar mountains might have once born. Since the lunars came to power centuries ago, they have born the name Moon Mountains. These mountains, covered in mist and trees, offer a refuge to the lunars. Those that tire of the cities take solace in the peace of the wilderness. In modern times, they have become especially important to therianthropes who have become territorial about certain mountains.

The Moon Temple

With the loss of the Astral Temple, the lunars built this temple to become the new center of their faith. Its location in the Moon Mountains remains their most closely guarded secret, a secret they would kill even their own to protect. The temple is of circular design similar to the inner ring of the Astral Temple--a series of stone columns support a stone ring and create an open-air temple in which the lunars can worship the moon.