Looking at the Alfar
By: Joey O'Leary
2.0 Society of the Alfar
2.1 The Fair Lands
When the Concordat was reached, our rulers, Oberon and Titiana formed the Fair Lands and allowed us their followers and worshippers to live their as well.
The Fair lands is circular. The outer most area is the the Sea of Tears, for it is said that it represents the sadness of our rulers at leaving the world behind. In it are the Star islands, quiet and peaceful places.
The next areas one comes across are the Wailing Desert, the Green Fields, the Misty Moors and the Hollow Hills. These areas are like wedges with the first bordered on the one side by the last and, on the other side, by the second.
The next area is circular and is the Cloud Mountains. There are four roads that go through and over the Cloud Mountains. One for each of the four areas that border it.
On the other side of the Cloud Mountains are the Woods of the People, with the Lake of Wonder and the only city in the Fair Lands, Feycaern, at it's center.
It should be remembered that while Feycaern is our only city that many towns and villages are spread throughout the Fair Lands.
Feycaern is truly a remarkable place. Here the buildings are as much grown as built, as much pruned as renovated. Giant trees stand beside magically grown crystal and buildings of concrete, steel and glass. As with our villages and towns, Feycaern is surrounded by a wall and is fortified. Unlike humanity we do not forget the lessons of the past.
And at the center of Feycaern is the Floating Palace. It is a mile above ground, generally, and is the home to our rulers, their court and the bureaucracy. It can be reached by the crystal bridges, through teleportation and the griffons and other steeds of our people which can fly.
There is no day and no night in the Fair Lands. Light that is clearer and yet less harsh than sunlight seems to come from the entire sky.
In the Fair Lands time works differently. While here humans will not age further if they already are adults or will age until they reach adulthood. However, humans (and all other creatures, which are also effected by the time alteration) have fewer children in the Fair Lands than they would during the same period on Earth.
Our fields, our mines and our people produce all that we need. We have the same technology as humanity and our sorcery as well. Our population however is small. The Fair Lands contains 6000 alfar and 400 humans.
Humans have the same rights as alfar but cannot become members of the Nobility or Crafters in the Crafts. Most of them are those who have brought to the Fair Lands are either devout worshippers of our rulers, soulmates to alfar or true and loyal agents and allies. Despite the legends, alfar do not force or trick humans into coming to the Fair Lands so that they may be our slaves. We have technology and magic enough not to need to; and that route also leads to stagnation.
2.2 The Nobility
The nobility of the alfar is more and less than the nobility of humans. Our nobility is not hereditary and contains much more power than human nobility does today and, in many ways, more than it ever had.
Nobles act as judges, officers when war comes our way, and as adminstrators. They are appointed by Oberon and Titiana and may have their titles taken away by them at any time. This is not viewed as a disgrace, as the job they do is both difficult and trying; and, in many cases, they request to be releaved of their posts so that they might rest from the stress.
At any one time there are the following number of nobles: Duke/Duchess (4); Count/Countess (16); Baron/Baroness (48); and Baronet (192). Women may hold a title just as men can. Children do not hold titles, although it is common for public service to run in families. Each noble has four nobles of the next level under him or her. The nobles are divided into four courts: Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter. Each court is 'ruled' by a Duke/Duchess. Spring nobles are in charge of social programs and medicine. Summer nobles are in charge of law enforcement and defence. Fall nobles are in charge of buildings and engineering. Winter nobles are in charge of the land and the courts. It should be noted that there is much overlap between the courts and the above definitions should be taken as general areas of interest. It should also be noted that the spouce of a noble does not have a title. Usually an alfar holds a title for 20 years before it is passed on to a new alfar. This is partially due to stress and partially to get 'new blood' into the system.
2.3 The Crafts
The Crafts are like guilds, unions and companies all rolled into one. They are in charge of many different areas. The Crafts are:
It should be noted that all alfar are soldiers and can (and usually do) belong to multiple Crafts and may be Nobles or Wanderer's as well. The ranks in the Craft's are:
- Miner's Craft
- Bard's Craft (music, history, philosophy)
- Smith's Craft (production of various materials and items)
- Farmer's Craft
- Fisher's Craft
- Beast's Craft (taming, raising, training, healing)
- Healer's Craft
- Mystic's Craft (sorcery).
- Crafter (note that Crafter's are in charge of sections of their Craft; ex: a Crafter in the Miner's Craft may be in charge of gems.; because of this they (like Nobles) tend to hold this title for only 20 years before becoming SubCrafters again)
- Supreme Crafter (note that each Craft may only have one Supreme Crafter; they too tend to hold office for only 20 years before becoming SubCrafters again).
2.4 The Wanderers
At one time or another these were called scouts, explorers, travelers, and spies. They crossed the globe learning new skills and gaining knowledge which they then gave to the appropriate Craft(s) and/or the Nobility. Even after the Concordat, when our people left the Earth, they continued to do so.
There are a total of 500 Wanderers among our present population. They cannot become nobles or advance in the Crafts above the rank of SubCrafter due to their habit of leaving the Fair Lands for unknown lengths of time for unknown reasons.
Many of us cannot understand why they risk their lives going to Earth for even without Omegas humanity's tools of destruction have advanced to levels even we must be cautious of. However the technology and information they bring back makes it counter-productive to try to stop them. The Wanderers have no ranks among themselves. The standard Wanderer group is a 'fist', a group of five wanderers. It should be noted that all Wanderers regard each other as 'Cousins', even other Wanderers that they dislike, and will *always* attempt to aid another Wanderer who's in trouble.
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