Map of the Karedarzin and Lbront Nevn Basins

The Karedarzin and Lbront Nevn Basins

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These basins are related only in that they are close to each other. They are so small that to give them each their own map would be grossly unfair to larger basins like Trenst where the map is already twice as far from east to west as this one. Geologically Lbront Nevn is part of the Edniktar/Mountain Basins and Karedarzin is part of the Fmak. Those shapes would not make convenient maps.

By putting them together we show a wilderness that is very important to the history of this area, the desert known as 'The Dead Marches' to the people of Lbront Nevn. When the first modern maps were drawn, the whole area was shown in black with some deep indentations. The area is very nearly flat and those areas that are below 13,717 feet are not far below. Those that are above are not far above except for the 'Ramparts of Doom' which are ancient basalt fissure plugs like the Hiconnah. This region is over a million square miles of tussocks and sand dunes. The largest dunes on Kassidor roam the desert and no doubt some of the areas marked as above 13,717 have moved since the charting was done.

The dark on those plains can get down to -140F (-96C) in winter and the Afternoonday can get to 140F (60C) in summer. Extreme expeditions have made it thru the area but it takes more than a year to make the crossing. Almost all contact the Lbront Nevn Basin has with the outside world are the passes thru the Ramparts of Doom that leads to the outermost of the Depemoce Valleys in the Trenst basin. It is this route that is important to the history of the planet.

The other possible route is very tedious, but it is the route thru the basin to Aurailia. It is not as bad as crossing the Sahara but not as easy as crossing from Texas to California if there were no people at all on the planet. You climb over twelve mountain ranges from 8,000 to 21,000 feet high. Actually there are people in those thousand miles of mountain and desert, but they keep to themselves and few who make it thru ever find them.

There are three other places within the Hyerpazza that have water and vegetation that together are larger than the Lbront Nevn basin, but no Kassidorians live there. The air density in the deepest is higher than Naiho at 7185 feet above sea level. All are habitable with Centorin technology and two land consortiums are boring deep lines thru to them now. When that is complete it will be possible to reach them from anywhere in human space or from the Highlands by changing to a Centorin tube car at the dome.


The Lbront Nevn Basin

This is the second most isolated basin on the planet. It is the last major culture to be contacted by the remainder of the planet. The basin may eventually be accessible on Kassidor's tube system, but it is likely to be more than a century. Till then only the most intrepid make the trek. Following the twists of the trail it is over a thousand miles of desert from the last inn in Depemoce to the first village house in Lbront Nevn. At the end of that journey is a Shangri-la as big as Iran with some of the most spectacular scenery on Kassidor.


History

This land wasn't always a Shangri-la. In prehistoric times a Troll or Nordic people reached here, presumably from Aurailia. Most speculate they were Trolls driven south before the Nordics. They inhabited the basin for about fifteen thousand years and never advanced above a paleolithic culture.

It is presumed that some time before the Energy Age one of the early great dynasties of the Fmak invaded Aurailia and dispatched an expedition to the south thru the mountain passes. The Fmak did not write at the time, though their weaponry was superb. That expedition never returned, but founded a dynasty among the Trolls of the basin. That dynasty obviously practiced polygamy because Fmak genes show up in the entire population.

The Energy Age found them, but not till 2880bc, when the glideway thru Karedarzin bore heavy traffic and the emperor vacationed there. The basin was seen from above and habitation was detected. That was seen, but the more advanced culture in Ydlontrostl was missed. An expedition was mounted and contact was made. The Emperor was left on his throne in Lbront Nevn. The technology of the Energy age was made available to him.

A glideway was not built to the basin, so contact was very limited in the Energy Age. More limited than today by far because there have been data connections since Earth's eighteenth century. There was a blinker code connection to the basin at one time, but it was not maintained even as long as the military take over of Dempala.

The pall of The Fall ravaged the land, and the virus that wiped out the grubs reached there also, but a generation later, so for the basin it was a double blow. All contact with the outside was lost and did not resume until 754ad. For over three thousand years the people of Lbront Nevn did not know there was an outside world. Longevity was reserved only for the nobility and they had stores that lasted them only a few generations. Their language lost the ability to express the concept of a foreign language.

The emperor retained the throne. He subdued the entire basin, there was never any effective opposition, and thus conditions remained for three thousand years. Conditions here have been compared to conditions in the Tthmuurng basin. Conditions here were nowhere near as harsh. Private lives were private. Third sons were the harshest tax, they were taken to work in the emperor's service. They made up the military and the civil service. They served for life, but in return, they were set for life. Most raised families.

Some rulers were harsher than others. During the worst it may have approached the conditions of Tthmuurng for brief periods of time. The emperor was overthrown twice, by plots within his own temple. In each case it made little difference, we would consider it a new dynasty.

In 754ad, an expedition out of the Depemoces made it's way thru the pass in the Ramparts of Doom and noticed the land ahead was descending. They pressed on into the desert and in a few hundred miles discovered the last unknown basin.

At that time, there was no Instinct, but peace had come to Kassidor thru other means, mainly genetic modifications that made alpha males unattractive to females. People still COULD hurt each other, but nobody wanted to. Governments had been unable to function for centuries, most people were centuries old and getting to understand just how much they would lose by getting themselves killed in a fight or war. There were no real police forces and certainly no military.

The explorers were brought before the emperor of the time, who listened with interest to the tales of the outside. He was first assured that he would be cured of his age as soon as possible. He next took steps to make sure the changes that made people peaceful were not released into his population. He waited to be sure his captive's promises had been kept. When he was pretty sure he was getting younger, he allowed his captives to return, leading an army of thousands.

For two generations the forces of Lbront Nevn were unstoppable. His empire grew daily. He took so much land he couldn't garrison it all. The technology in use in the Trenst basin in the late forties was magic to the people of Lbront Nevn. Self fertilizing plants, automatic pest traps, flush toilets, showers, all were unknown in Lbront Nevn. The troops eventually entered the city of Depemoce itself. It was less than three hundred thousand at the time, but in it the invaders found the machines that made some of the wonders they were encountering. Machinery joined the wagon trains of booty that snaked thru the pass.

Some of the machinery belonged to Brancettrabble and he became angry enough to do something about the invader. He set his labs on a crash program to develop a virus that would neutralize the invader's use of violence and military power. The result is the Instinct. It was flown into the area by high altitude balloon and released in 812ad. That was the end of the military threat from Lbront Nevn and the end of all coercion planet-wide soon after. Brancettrabble has written that he let his emotions get in the way of that decision, especially with Centorin in the picture.

The basin has spent the time since then trying to catch up, peacefully, with the remainder of the planet. The emperor is still in place, but he has no coercive power. His civil service, known as the 'trebure' is still functioning but it is no longer all third sons, nor is it restricted to third sons. The basin has retained a lot of it's old forms, but the life in the fields is more like modern Kassidor today.


Culture

Tradition and honor are still very important here. There are titles for people and much of society is organized around the remnants of the emperor's government. The emperor remains as head of the church and membership in the church is just about universal. In their religion the emperor is divine. He is still the same one who made sure the claims of eternal youth made by the expedition in 754 were true. He does not want his name made public to any non-members of his faith.

The church runs most schools, most of the big agribusinesses and most entertainment. Shipping, meats and produce and garments are usually not made by church employees, but those businesses are closely watched and commented on. Small holders are all but ignored by the church, and all but ignore it. They make up about two thirds of the population. Church employees make up about 1%.

The inhabited parts of the basin are deep enough to be frost free, and most people today live in archwood a little like the New Midlands. Their homes are not as leafy and they have more open fields. They often have larger families with tall homes and a couple living on each floor with a common kitchen connected to the 'barn'.

The church is most of the entertainment but that doesn't mean all people do is go to church services, it means the church is heavily invested in the entertainment industry. There is actually little outright censorship, they won't show video that glorifies destruction of church property or violence, etcetera. Local artistry leans heavily on painting or today the visual arts. Most music shows are performed in churches but as long as the band doesn't ask the audience to burn the place down, they interfere little in what is played so long as the draw is good.

The values of the church itself are honor and duty. Keeping one's word, taking responsibility. The church is not opposed to having a good time, but is opposed to letting the good time get in the way of doing one's duty. Looking after public property is a duty, and the streets and parks are all clean and in good repair. Courtesy is a duty and some compare it to Japan.

The basin has huge plantations growing commodities like grain that are almost all run by the church. They were slave camps before contact where all the culls of the Trebure were sent. Today they are what 'working off the boards' is in most parts of Kassidor, the employer of last resort. They also pay piecework and the rates are sometimes little more than enough to eat for the day. When the price is better, some can save up or walk to town and have a good time.


Visiting Lbront Nevn

Should you make the arduous trek to this basin, you will find relative comfort while you are here. You may be chilly on Nightdays if you don't pick up your own heater. The inns don't provide that but if you keep the mats down it won't be too bad, it seldom gets below 50F (10C). All but the saggiest inns have good plumbing and decent food. Cooks now serve buffet style as in the Trenst Basin unless they are ultra traditional in which case it is a cafeteria line.

Companionship is possible if you choose the right people. High ranking people in the church or some private companies are quite restricted in who they can see. You will need to make appointments and be investigated. They will find out you're Centorin and there will be a lot of talk about that. These women keep their hair either short, or bound. You're supposed to know that. If you don't, she may be forgiving or might not.

Those women with their hair free and beautiful may be approached. It is the custom in this culture than everyone asks something, if you think it is prostitution and it turns you off, you'll probably spend the time alone. If she's really not in it for money, as most are not, any common wildflower will suffice as her payment. Don't give them extravagant amounts, that will make them feel like whores. The nicest and most appreciated is usually to give them dinner. Most Centorins find that to be enough a part of their culture that it bridges the cultural divide.

Getting very wasted is considered unseemly here. What would be considered 'ready to party' in Zhlindu is considered 'done with the party' here. In spite of that yaag of all colors, hundreds of distilled spirits and gallons of ale are readily available. It's a matter of honor to hold one's drink well and you'll find many of them are very honorable indeed about that. Don't be surprised if someone you think is perfectly straight suddenly slumps to the floor.

While this is going on and the music is playing and the girls are negotiating who they'll sleep with for what, it is often hard to remember that you are on church property at a church function. The church buildings are called 'village houses' in the countryside and some of them also have rooms. They will provide nothing but the space. Private inns have comfortable rooms, food, and drink, but very little entertainment. Sometimes the kegman will tell jokes.

One thing not to miss is seeing the Mountains of the Gods from the sea. You need to sail about 500 miles northwest to do so, but it will be comfortable and you'll be in a cohort that is mainly upper middle class. There are love boats where everyone cabin-swaps all the way up and back. You will see mountains looming above the sky when you get there. Only in the Tduun is there a sight anything like it. If you leave the ship and take a coach up into the Valley of the Gods where you can see mountains above the sky on both sides of you. That is another trip of several weeks, you'll need a different ship for the return.


The City of Lbront Nevn

The city is a technicality. Because so many people buy their staples which are grown on big church farms, a lot of land covered by smallholders who almost never take city work is shown on the map as urban and is counted as part of the city's population. The number of people in the city living a true urban lifestyle is probably less than ten million, still a large city to be sure, but nowhere near the fifty two million the math works out to.

The old sections of the city are interesting. In the time of the empire it was probably twice the size of ancient Rome and had a lot of the same style. It was on the seacoast, which was about forty feet higher than today's harbor, so it is a mile inland beyond the current center of the city. Most of it has been preserved, the great temple is still in use.

The temple is still the center of the church, the emperor still calls it home and still holds ceremonies on the plaza in front. The spring fertility rites are fun to watch if you like to watch pretty naked women run around trailing long ribbons. In ancient times they had to be virgins and they were all offered to the emperor. He still usually chooses one or two, but they are not bound to him forever any more and not required to give him children. Many still do. Those remaining usually pick someone from the audience.

There are some inns still functional in the old city. They are built of stone and have low ceilings. Other than Borlunth, they are probably the oldest buildings you'll ever get to enter, as much as seven thousand years old.

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The Karedarzin Basin

This basin is one of the most often overlooked, and in some ways it shouldn't be. It doesn't have the cultural might of the major basins, but it is pleasant and romantic and in the southern half the scenery is spellbinding. People who know of it sometimes call it the Basin of Flowers.

This is one of the smaller basins. Even so, nearly half a billion people live here and the farmland is thickly settled and intensively cultivated.


Climate and Topography

The basin is rather dry today, and was even drier in the past. Over thousands of years irrigation has retained enough moisture in the basin today that there is some rainfall. In the distant past only the river supplied any water to the area.

At the northern end there is an equatorial highland climate with frost possible any time of the year. It is usually light and happens only occasionally. During Afternoonday the heat can be bothersome but not dangerous. At the southern end of the basin the seasons are noticeable, but the land is deeper into the atmosphere so that frost is only possible in the winter. Afternoondays are pleasantly warm, and Dawnsleep is a little chilly unless one is out in the desert or at altitude, in which case it is cold.

There are many pressure ridges as is common in equatorial regions but the basin is relatively flat except for the Hiconnah mountains in the southern part. They are some of the most spectacular anywhere, rising abruptly four miles from the basin floor. They are jagged peaks completely out of character with the gentle basin floor. The foothills are narrow, rugged and dry.

Beyond the mountains the land is a little higher and some open forests are found. There are only a few passes in the thousand mile length of the range and the area beyond them is very isolated from the remainder of the basin. The region is inhabited mainly by Trolls and the culture is more like theirs than the remainder of the basin.

The Karedarzin shield at the northern end of the basin is part of the same complex that created the shield rocks in the Yclel-vi basin. There are more of them in the Fmekala Waste. They are about three billion years old and the eruptions that created them were probably the cause of a mass extinction.


History

The area was settled by the Fmak in very ancient times, and traces of their influence can still be seen. Also in prehistoric times people from the Trenst Basin migrated into the area and the racial types blended. Later still, Trolls moved into the area and were largely incorporated into the population, but some remained separate in the foothills beyond the Hiconnah.

History begins in this basin a century before the Energy Age. The earliest explorers found villages at regular intervals along the river. They found the region relatively free of strife. Most villages were run by a council of elders, very few had a single man in charge. Agriculture was only possible in the basin along the river, there was not enough rainfall at the time for crops without irrigation. Irrigation was fairly small scale, much of it hand-pumped.

The area became literate and cultured as the Energy Age progressed. A glideway was built following the river and the area became known as something of a vacation spot for people willing to travel this far. Some Elves settled in the area and also became incorporated into the population. This was the stepping off point for exploration of the immense Trenst basin. During the Energy Age there was a large city in the basin, but it was abandoned and it's stones re-used. No one is sure where it's site was today.

The area received no direct damage during The Fall, but there were crop failures for several years in a row because of the dust cloud. The region is pretty free of game animals and starvation was bad for a time. In that dark time there was more strife than there has ever been in the basin. By the time crops were possible again, the population had fallen by at least a third.

During the Troubled Times the Fmak emperor at Histhooga attempted to annex the area. There was no effective resistence at first and the emperor's forces advanced far down the river. Taking the area proved to be much easier than keeping it. The basin had no effective military means to throw off the Fmak, but the easygoing life style and lovely women soon corrupted any occupation forces sent into the area. When the returning troops began corrupting the people of the homeland, contact with the area was cut off.

During the late Troubled Times and early modern times the long irrigation canals to the east were built. They each require great windwheels to lift the water out of the Karedarzin. By 500ad there was just enough water left in the river for navigation and there was some sabotage of the windwheels by shipping interests.

Eternal youth came to the area a few generations later than some areas because there are very few who are very wealthy, so it wasn't until most people could afford it that it arrived here. The people adapted to modern times easily, but without making many changes in their way of life.


Culture

The culture of the basin is fairly unique, but not troublesome. People of Centorin find it a little easier to adapt to than many others on the planet. It is not much more different than Novo Grosso of Naiho.

The river is still the main highway of the region. There are no locks on the Karedarzin thru the whole basin. Today the whole western shore of the river is very nearly urban, but there are no large city centers. The area is not quite urban so instead of a long linear city, there are thousands of towns. The towns are dense in their centers, but small, few are over a hundred thousand, but over half the population lives in the towns.

The grown housing is possible today and there is some of it, but the region has a unique architectural style using elaborate and fanciful brickwork. Bricks are in many sizes, shapes and colors and are assembled into structures that are light, airy and fanciful. Flowering plants are used all over everything. Vines, plantings and landscaping are highly regarded and well tended.

The people tend to be small, young looking, and fairly dark. They usually have dark hair and eyes, fine features and large eyes. They wear garments very reminiscent of a sari most of the time. They are light and very colorful. Dimorphism is low so males are not that muscular, women tend to have understated but cute figures. Some think these are the most beautiful women on the planet.

People often live with a sibling, but there are quite a few couples. Even those who live as couples go out for encounters with others very often. Romance is a way of life here and most people engage in it nearly every noon. Most homes have room for all residents to bring someone home for Noonsleep. They are quite polite and cultured about it, you don't hear the rowdy teasing that you will in the Highlands.

This basin is one of the nicest for a native of Centorin to find companionship. Part of the reason is it's a little more like Centorin or Earth. Women here wait for the male to make the first move, they won't do anything more than smile and look really cute until you do. They laugh a lot when they flirt, and they don't get directly to the point like people do in the Highlands.

The places where people meet are very nice. They are flower gardens but the flowers are high like hedges so the area is divided up. There are some food and drink tables under elaborately woven tents. There is a whole tradition of what flowers and colors go with what preferences. Women will either stand near the ones that tell their preference or put them in their hair. They stand in one place or move slowly, you approach them, you can start with saying something like, "I see you're standing near the Purple Witchblossom," and go from there. She'll talk about the flower while she's really talking about the acts it represents.

There are plenty of books on the subject of 'love gardens,' it's really too much to cover the details here. If you get here, pick up a book and study those flowers aligned with your interests. Let her tell you the fine details of the customs. Once you are together, the customs in public are more like you're used to. They don't undress or get into heavy petting in public. You'll walk arm in arm and have your arms around each other. If she's good her explanation of the pollination of that flower will have your gonads throbbing from the double-entendres alone, and just the use of double entendre is refreshing after so many local years of 'So, you wanna fuck before dinner or after?'

The gardens have plenty of little private bowers that have lavishly fancy curtains that can close their entryway. You're looking for one with the curtain open, meaning it's unoccupied. Inside you'll find more flowers and some comfortable lounges. Often they're adjustable. They're very plush for something outdoors, but since it hasn't rained during daylight in recorded history, they aren't worried. In general only after you've had a very nice time there, will she discuss the whole sleep.

The average residence in the basin is nothing you need fear. It is likely to be small and cluttered. It may be in an ornate brick building or it may be constructed of rattan and vines and floored with rough planks with ornate carpets over them, but everything probably works. The plumbing may be old but it will be functional. The cooking area will probably be on the balcony. There are beautiful and subtly scented candles for light.

No one has data service in the home but it is available in most towns along the river. There are no screens at public taps as a first order approximation, so to hear news you will have to go to an 'Eye room.' There is no 'pocket eye' service in the basin, if you want to stay in touch on the go you will have to bring a Centorin comm that is satellite capable.

The biggest cultural events here are live theater and they aren't very big, but there are lots of them. The plays are often romances. They do not include live sex, like on Centorin, the act itself is private in this basin. Most of the live music you'll hear is the band playing the background score for the play.

The cuisine is complex and subtle. Lots of prep is done and the flavors are delicate. Restaurants are pretty familiar, with table service and printed menus, but open-air during the light. The staff will not provide sexual favors as a rule, but they are not as uptight about it as on Centorin. This is the only basin where a reasonable approximation of wine is popular, and often it is the only liquid available in the restaurant. Bands that are approximately what we would call 'chamber music' are popular with dinner. Quite often there are only recordings.

People frequent restaurants a lot, maybe a third of the meals in the towns. When doing so it is often a long process and many people expect to keep the table for the evening. Large groups get together often. This is where extended families keep in touch. Keeping in touch with relatives is important to the people of this basin, it is not unusual for people to know all their relatives for ten generations in each direction.

One thing you almost never hear in this basin are raised voices. There are some shouts back and forth to boats approaching docks, but that is about all you'll hear. Kassidor is quiet by our standards and this basin is quiet by Kassidorian standards. Even in the largest towns, the birds and lumins make most of the noise.

Many people have little flat bottomed boats with a single sail that they use on the river. There are thousands of them for rent everywhere. Many people like to spend a lazy Afternoonday drifting on the river with a bottle and a companion, looking at the pretty towns and the soaring mountains beyond. It is common that one will serenade the other, sometimes they even sing together. Their music is sweet and acoustic, there may not be an amplifier in the basin.

Most Centorins who have returned from this basin say they've found it boring, however, only about one in three Centorins who have reached this basin have returned. One who did not return sent a message back to his House saying he would not be returning because he had died and gone to heaven.


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