City Settings – A City of Two Scales

When they are asked where they came from, the humans have a story of the end of their old world. They say fire rained from the sky and the land ripped open. In the cracks riven into mountains, they found gateways. After a day’s travel through what seemed like a dream, they ended up in Ranthas.

Six Cities in 2018

The third in a series of posts exploring cities as the focal point for RPG world building. This city explores a society divided by the different scales of its citizens.

The master theurge of the Tower of Suhina surmises that the humans came to Ranthas via a powerful spell, though they don’t know if the gateways were sent to rescue these tiny people or was the cause of their worlds ruin. Either way, the theurges of the the tower have not found a way to send the humans back, no matter the pleading of some. For not every titan has been welcoming to these tiny people. To some the idea of having their home infested with the creatures is highly distasteful. The human’s detractors at first did not think much of their arrival, reasoning that creatures a hundredth the size of a normal titan would not survive long. Instead, the humans at first recovered from their evacuation, then adapted and are now prospering in their new home.

And what a home it is. Through the work of a kindly old mage into whose home the first group of refugees arrived, the humans learnt that they had arrived in the city of Ranthas, an independent city state in a land called Sidoth, built around the wizard towers at its centre and run by the master theurge. Once their shock at a world one hundred times larger than theirs had dissipated, they found themselves in a society that seemed very backwards to them, with technology from several centuries ago. Though the houses may be a familiar stone and wood, the flora and fauna native to Sidoth differ greatly from the human’s old world thanks to the presence of magic. The titans use magic to solve their problems the way the humans would use engineering. Nearly all the titans can cast simple spells. Many humans believe that magic has made the titans lazy and that it has stunted the growth and progress of their society. The humans describe the titans as being mostly long limbs with eyes far too wide for their short heads.

In turn, the titans wonder greatly at how the humans seem to be able to survive without even a basic understanding of magic and its benefits. They instead seem to rely on an almost barbarous use of manual labour. Reports that some humans habitations have found a way to turn steam into locomotion are regarded as fanciful. It is more likely that the humans have adapted one of the many discarded magical items that they like to collect. For a titan, tolerance of the humans stems from their usefulness. A titan with a house with a colony of humans will find their abode is free of pests and always in a clean and tidy state. The price of this is a that humans like to take over the roof space and will repurposes any containers they find into small farms. Crops will be seeded in the oddest of places and little holes will appear in doors.

The humans greatly dislike noise at night, but this will only drive them to minor mischief. Their ire is reserved for those that damage their crops or threaten their homes. Several titans have been badly injured by volleys of small stones fired at the eyes or had teeth chipped by speeding balls of metal. The centre of human activity is the abandoned Vrovurett mansion on the edge of the mage’s tower. A small town’s worth of humans have converted the mansion into a fortress and turned the large garden into a massive farm. The humans haven’t been able to learn the titan’s language, instead relying on titans using language spells for communication. There are a few titans who’ve set up a porefessional mediation service to help other titans deal with humans in their homes.

Plot Hooks

  • The titan Terataaabliliayti is looking for a squad of humans to help remove the vermin from their house.
  • It’s time for the election of a new master theurge and the humans of Vrovurett mansion have decided they want a vote.
  • Despite the best efforts of titan mediators, the humans have split into two warring nations.

Image Credit – 186 Under Hill by Ariel Dovas – CC-BY-NC-2.0