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Moratan Culture

Those Alfar who remained in Morata after The Fall of Morata have been dramatically influenced by the sudden collapse of their ancient homeland. With multiple millions dying to volcanic eruptions, famine, and war the remaining population has become suspicious of outsiders and very insular.

The leftovers of the governance structure of Morata have largely been abandoned. Instead, there are now three large social groups that make up the majority of survivors.

Shadow Lodge and Thuria

The Alfar living in Shadow Lodge and Thuria are the closest to their old style. As birthrates are low, the population here is in gradual decline.

Commissars

A commissar is the executive and judicial branch of government here. Although many commissars were historically zealots of Feyus, the role is almost entirely secular now. In times of conflict or hardship, the commissar has the ability to confiscate any material (including crops or land) for the defence of the cities. To become a commissar, one must be appointed by a supreme commissar. Since the death of the last supreme commissar, the local commissars make appointments based on merit.

Clerics

Clerics in Morata act as the center of civil life. Each cleric is responsible for their town of perhaps hundreds, and has ultimate legislative power to make laws that fit the needs of that community. Worship of Feyus has gradually been replaced with a poly-theistic worship Akatu. Clerics of Feyus exist, but they are less likely to hold large communities, and may instead be employed as beekeepers, artisans, or wine-makers.

Blood Knights

Blood Knights replaced the sun knights in guarding Shadow Lodge and Thuria long ago. Their unscrupulous pursuit of any Iridians found within the valley has made them feared. Frequently using face-paint or tattoos, a blood knight is equipped most often with a sword and shield, though serrated weapons are kept as they are more efficient while fighting unarmoured foes - the blood knight enemy of choice. A blood knight is independent of all laws and obeys no authority but their own orders' decrees.

Lifestyle

The Alfar in Shadow Lodge and Thuria are primarily farmers. Most live in stone cottages built on elevated ground or hillsides to prevent flooding with a dug out basement to serve as a cellar. Towns are arranged in circles, with farmers owning the land extending out in a ray away from the centre. The middle common grounds are reserved for Sunrays, orchards, or central plazas. Larger towns will have short platforms of earth upon which a central market is located. Although nominal observance of many religious holidays are maintained, the harsh reality of life means that festivals are quiet and very conservative.

The Sungrass

These alfar had been on the fringe of Moratan society before the collapse. Now, they are gradually becoming more nomadic and are facing new threats from the encroachment of Tokai and Vasten without the support of the Emerald Valley's warriors.

The Clanmaster

A clan of Sungrass alfar follow the commands of the Clanmaster. A Clanmaster is ceremonially tested in combat and is proclaimed by census among the warriors based on their ability. Behind the scenes, warriors appoint based on other qualities such as wisdom and leadership ability. The Clanmaster is the highest authority on all matters within a clan and are seen as the religious head even though direct training in divine magic is not required.

Lifestyle

The Sungrass Alfar live a semi-nomadic lifestyle. Though they move their tents and camps frequently, they generally remain within the same part of the Sungrass and do not intrude on another clan's land. At night, they frequently sleep in large family tents with a central fire and open roof. Clans that do meet often have pre-arranged meeting places for their festivals and arrive when the stars display the right signs. Tobacco is often brought and ceremonially smoked, and clan members have a chance to move to another clan where their skills are needed or to find a partner for marriage.

Food Sources

Among all alfar societies, the Sungrass Alfar are most likely to hunt for food and for clothing as a regular part of their diets. Most of their clothing comes from animal hides. They also herd sheep for food and milk, but their wool is used more often for bedding than for clothing. Clans travel with their herds to find land to graze upon and otherwise forage for food. In the spring, a clan may plant corn or squash before departing for the summer but returning to harvest in the fall.

Religion

The Sungrass Alfar did not shun Feyus as did many others. Instead, they drifted apart as a result of the collapse taking the structured religion away from them. A clan's cleric is not restricted to one god, and many clerics worship multiple gods, particularly Lesellia, Akatu, and Feyus.

Nolaria

Deep within the heart of Alyza's Vale is the old Alfar capital of Nolaria. Defiant in the face of overwhelming odds, this final holdout of the ancient regime of Morata believes that one day, Feyus will descend from the sky and save them. Though the city was once a mirror of its former self and maintained its old traditions, the society grew less and less able to defend itself. Its ability to trade with the outside world vanished over a hundred years ago when Cellian Merchants stopped trading despite the huge profits for a successful voyage. In the last fifty years, nobody has visited Nolaria and returned. Some question if the entire city may have succumbed to the toxic merrin weeds or if Alyoza wiped out the last light in the Emerald Valley.