In this post, we look more specifically at the city of Respite itself.
Life inside the walled city
Respite is one of the few remaining strongholds in the Elemental Titans’ fight against Alessandra and her forces. The city has long stood against the dark goddess’s oppression, though its resolve has faltered in recent years as the war continues to rage on.
The city is favored by Ignis, the Titan of Fire and home to his personal military faction, the Blazing Battalion, though they are primarily involved in fighting in the reaches beyond the city.
Respite is organized into three concentric rings that increase in security and opulence as one travels inward. There are a few settlements along the outer wall of the city, but this area remains dangerous after the purging by Braemorn’s forces ten years earlier.
The most impoverished area in the city of Respite is home to several small farms and markets as well as some of the more difficult or dangerous trades. Many families and travelers settle here in their first years in Respite, finding their way to the city when their homes are no longer safe, or when they are displaced by the war elsewhere. Many who work in the inner part of the city also reside in the outer ring. The area contains a lively tavern district, La Taverna, often frequented by the Guard of the Gate after completing their watches.
The middle ring of the city contains many merchants and traders as well as the lower nobility. The city’s blacksmiths and bakers work in this area alongside fine jewelers and many of the city’s clergy. A large stone wall separates the middle ring from the outer ring, and the City Watch post patrols at the gates between them when the city is under threat.
The inner ring is the exclusive residence of the city’s militia, high-ranking government officials, and nobility. The City Watch maintains a constant patrol around the iron gates that surround the Inner Ring, and they only allow entry to those with a writ of passage. A few favored artisans and clerics work in this region as well and, unlike the rest of the crowded city, there’s plenty of space to be had on the wide, well-kept streets of the Inner Ring.
Council of Four—The Council of Four contains one representative of each of the four branches of the city-state’s government: the Senate, the Keepers of Peace, the Consulate of Nobles, and the Militia.
After a great deal of effort by Respite’s people, the city finally instated a quasi-representative body to speak on the people’s behalf in the city-state’s government. Each of the provinces beyond the city’s borders sends a delegate, and the various traders and service guilds of the city appoint delegates as well. The senate elects one representative to speak before the Council of Four, and a selection of ten delegates attend council meetings with the representative. At the moment, the speaker of the Senate is a popular tavern owner, Devan Stanbury, who fought for the Outer Ring’s protection following the massacre outside the city walls ten years prior.
Keepers of Peace
The Keepers of Peace functions as the overarching organization for all of the city’s internal security: all aspects of the City Watch, the Guild Protectorate, and the Order of Clerics and Mages serve as part of the Keepers of Peace alongside a vast spy network that runs through all aspects of the city and the world of Eldura. Traditionally, the head of the Nightwatch, called the Raven, serves as the Keepers’ representative in the Council of Four.
Consulate of Nobles
One of the oldest governing bodies in all of Eldura, the Consulate of Nobles maintains a firm hand on the leadership of Respite, careful to ensure the city’s future unfolds along a beneficial and profitable trajectory. One member from each family is appointed to serve on the Consulate, and they select from among themselves who will speak to the Council. This honor is primarily occupied by one of the three wealthiest families in Eldura: the lines of Reese, Arnet, and Seymour. Eliza Seymour, the self surviving daughter of a powerful military general and wealthy nobleman, has maintained this position for the last several decades. Rumors of a part-elven bloodline from her youth seem to have proven true as, despite being well into her sixties, Eliza shows few signs of age and no signs of desiring to turn over her powerful position to another.
The city’s militia represents the various military branches, the training academy, the Blazing Battalion, and liasons to other city-states across Eldura. The military commander appointed to the Council is a sharp-eyed half-orc named Fabius Drexel who has amazed his few superiors in the Militia with his tact and insight, an equally powerful combination to his cleverness and creativity on the battlefield. Fabius saw what many of his predecessors had missed—that a close alliance between the populace of Respite, forged through the Senate, would pave a clear path forward to mainitaining the public’s trust in their armed protectors during a long-standing war that shows few signs of abating.
The City Watch is responsible for enforcing the law inside the walls of Respite.
Guard of the Gate
Elite guard responsible for keeping outside threats from entering the city. They’re the final line of defense should the war raging across Eldura make its way to Respite’s gates.
A secret part of the City Watch who have their eye on the larger picture protections needed in the city. They’ve noticed an uptick in fiendish activity and a rebirth of cults thought long extinguished and are looking for some help with bringing these organizations to heel without causing a public panic.
Group of elite fighters, knights, guards, and secret agents hired by the city’s nobles to protect themselves and their interests
Order of Clerics and Mages
Officially sanctioned magic users trained in the academies and hired out to serve the various parts of the city as well as see to its protection. They serve for one week a month shielding the city from outside magical influences
Evelyne’s organization, based out of the Faerie Door Inn and Tavern in the lower third of the city near the outer wall. Evelyn’s been tracking a certain noble engaged in hoarding medical supplies for elite doctors in the upper city, and she’d like to reallocate those goods to those in need.
Guild of the Glove
union of craftpersons who agree to a set amount of pay for goods of certified quality across the city, which protects both buyers and makers
Collective of Nine
One of many related organizations spanning the war-torn world of Eldura, the Collective represents nine different factions with extra-judicial interests in the city of Respite. Some of the groups are part of thieves’ guilds, others revolutionary bands, others spy organizations. They represent a variety of aims for the future of Respite and the world of Eldura, from a vision of rule by the people to an anarchic free-for-all in a world without deities or titans. Spies for both sides of the conflict and many of those who attempt to straddle the oppositions in the War of the Titans have infiltrated all nine organizations.
We spent the first several sessions of Tales of Eldura inside the walls of Respite, and we hope that this overview helps spark some cool ideas for your own worldbuilding and setup for urban environments!
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