High Walls for the high floods and to protect deep secrets, the gateway city to Esplorzeni.
The exotics have few great cities to their name, but Izala is the cream of the crop. With her high walls and the grand mansions of the merchant families standing stark above the city like the crowns they all wear, the city is different enough from the cities of the mainland to get a special mention. You see, even though the Izalans have imported airships, and the mainland has had airships for a while now, I can't approach Izala by an airship, indeed, they say things about distances, tailwinds and errant squalls that wreck traverse between Izala and the rest of the civilized worlds, but this means that you have to approach the city via a boat. Do try to book the best of the batch, as only a few captains make the pre-summer run to Izala. When you do get there, however, the great wall and it's set of gates are a beauty to be seen, along with the stark dome of the Seacrest Temple as you slowly make out the chaos of the storm so amazingly detailed on the outsides. I recommend attempting a visitation with one of the families for the sole purpose of seeing the mural from it's most complete view, right on the edge of the great ledge.
GovernmentRuled by a council formed of representatives of the 6 merchant families of Izala. Each mercantile house trades in magic items, shipping contracts, natural resources, and most importantly knowledge. Some hold secrets that could change Ithungsida as we know it, but they are too valuable to share. The merchant families are:
The Goa house
The Kain house
The Winthrop house
The Salma house
The Raim house
The Tetra house
Upon a ledge hundreds of feet above the city stands 6 mansions equal in size, worth, and spacing. The Houses stand in a row against the cliffside and in the middle is a tower 6 stories high. Atop this tower is a landing that serves as the council’s meeting ground. To reach the houses one must take an Airship or other means of flight.
Seen from the ledge above, the gargantuan dome of the Temple is adorned with a stunning mosaic of storms and lightning striking the metal parapet at various angles. This dome dominates the center of the city and serves as the temple to MeyGana, The Roar of the Sea. A wide majority of Izalans worship MeyGana, daily services are held in this massive dome.
The Wall and Drydock:
A great wall of stone spans the valley, splitting the docks from the rest of the city, and protecting it against the floods. A massive gate stands in the center, rails lead from a section of the port where boats can be put on carts through the gate to a drydock on the other side of the city. Every year before the floods the entire Izalan fleet is brought inland this way.
The Grand Bazaar:
Atop The Library is a open market for any who want to sell goods. A 10 foot by 10 foot grid system is engraved on the ground. At the start of each day there are 4 auctions simultaneously selling grids to merchants in each quarter of the bazar, it has evolved into a complex puzzle over the years.
Outside the valley’s reach is a dock system that spans miles down the coastline. Large rail systems connect and lead inland through the gate. Massive cranes load small trains along these rails. A mercenary guild stands beside the gate across from the Garbled Seas tavern/inn; both buildings stand 5 stories tall, with the first story being open air as the buildings are on stilts to endure the floods.
Beneath the ledge containing the merchant houses is a underground entrance large enough for a fire giant to walk through. Inside are grids of tunnels across multiple stories, each branching at 90 degree angles to maintain structure while searching every square foot for adamantine. The mine is closed with a stone door since a powerful explosion nearly collapsed the whole mountain, so the merchant families shut it down to preserve their ledge.
Unlike many libraries where books can be read inside or borrowed, the Library in Izala is a trading post of knowledge, magical and mundane. A greater Androsphinx known as “The Keeper” lies before an underground vault of books the size of a hamlet (roughly 100k square feet). He refers to all who seek to purchase or sell books as “truth seekers.” Before the vault is a marketplace of books, scrolls, and secrets. It is rumored that inside the vault are Illithids bred to protect the vault at all costs. Each Merchant family has a smaller vault of their own on the perimeter of the marketplace; they have a family member there at all times.
AssetsThe Izalan markets trade in knowledge, books, and secrets, as well as precious metals, gems, master crafted items and artisans tools, exotic reptilian hides, meats and body parts, honey and wine artisans practice their crafts in the fertile mountaintops high above the city.
Guilds and Factions
Truth Seekers: A faction who prefers to stay in the shadows but is well known for their outspoken displays against the library. They view knowledge as free for all to obtain and share. The Merchant Families view them as terrorists and treat them as such, often conducting raids on Truth Seeker hideouts. They adopted this name from what the Keeper calls those who speak to him.
The Merchant Families: Collectors of secrets and knowledge, run the city as a council. They each hold secrets and knowledge and horde these. They each have different trades they have nearly monopolized in the area. They demand respect and those who treat them without proper etiquette may find themselves dead without question at any point in the future.
ArchitectureA mix of Indian and Persian style architecture of stone and clay buildings typically outfitted with stained glass windows. Most buildings have courtyards in the center similar to Roman structures.
GeographyIzala is nestled within a valley carved by a river long gone and flattened by the floods. One slope of the valley is shallow with terraces holding neighborhoods.
- Human (Izalans): 35%
- Tritons: 20%
- Goliaths: 20%
- Lizardfolk: 10%
- Yuan-ti Pureblood: 5%
- Other: 10%
- Alternative Name(s)
- The gateway city
- Inhabitant Demonym