History[edit | edit source]
From the Wanderer's journal:
"The Sorcerer-King of Draj calls himself 'The Mighty and Omnipotent Tectuktitlay, Father of Life and Master of the Two Moons'. As you might guess from his appellation, Tectuktitlay claims to be a god. Lest you take him seriously, I'll point out that in my opinion, Tectuktitlay is not even one of the more powerful Sorcerer-Kings.
Be that as it may, Tectuktitlay rules Draj from a great walled compound in the center of the city. This compound contains several one-story buildings that serve as the barracks for his personal guard, templar quarters, a school for the children of the nobles, and a psionics academy that he personally supervises. In the center of this compound is a large gladiatorial arena. It is surrounded by tiers of stone seats, except where a steep stone pyramid. Tectuktitlay's home rises two hundred feet over it.
No one seems to know how long Tectuktitlay has ruled Draj, probably because he has forbidden this knowledge to be passed on from generation to generation in order to make himself seem completely immortal. His templars, called Moon Priests, claim that he raised the city from the dust and made the surrounding lands fertile.
This last claim no doubt arises from the fact that Draj sits on a huge mudflat located on the western edge of a large inland silt basin (see Geography of the Silt Sea in Chapter Three: Athasian Geography for an explanation of mudflats).
If I had to guess, and I have to, I would say that what really happened is this: A relatively young and weak defiler, Tectuktitlay, led a small band of followers to this island and founded his city. Given the natural fertility of mudflats, Draj prospered and Tectuktitlay eventually became a Sorcerer-King.
Because Draj and the surrounding lands are located on a mudflat, defending it is fairly simple. Any army that attempts to leave the road to it inevitably bogs down in a quagmire of thick mud. If the army stays on the stone paved road leading through Tectuktitlay's lands, all he needs do is send his warriors out to defend the narrow passage, then drive the enemy into the mud.
Nevertheless, Draj is almost constantly at war, sending its armies far and wide in search of captives. The warriors, which you will encounter nearly anywhere, are armed with obsidian-edged swords and short barbed spears attached to long ropes. They are trained to throw their harpoons into a target's thigh or seat and then drag him back to where they are standing.
Captives are returned to Draj itself, where they are forced to climb the great pyramid so that Tectuktitlay himself can tear out their hearts. The bodies are sent tumbling down the pyramid into the great arena below.
On a day following a particularly large number of sacrifices, the bodies are removed from the arena so that the Tectuktitlay's favorites -- the Moon Priests, the nobles, and weapon-makers -- can enjoy an afternoon of gladiatorial games.
Despite its warlike nature, Draj enjoys heavy commerce with the other cities of the Tyr Region (and some cities to the north, whose names I do not know). This is because Draj's fertile soil makes it rich in two essential resources: hemp, which is good for making both clothes and rope, and grain, which most other cities desperately need in order to feed their starving populations."
Locations[edit | edit source]
Draj is located in the northeast corner of the Tablelands far east of the Ringing Mountains and of Tyr. A number of villages formed by escaped slaves, thrive on the outer edges of Draj's territory. These villages include Cedrilte, Gedron, and Teaquetzl.