The Valdutan People and Spirit
The Parisan have always, and will always, control Valdutan. It is the land they claimed after the fall of the Verin Empire, and it is the land they swear to hold until the stars burn out from the heavens. It spans from cold pines to warm plains, from the west edge of Aempis to the east edge of Kajh-Tai.
They are boxed in at all sides, without clear avenue to an ocean, and yet still boast one of the most stable economies of Jhoutai. For this they have to thank the solidarity of their culture, their prowess at defense, and their unshakeable sense of honor - without which their society would fall apart.
At the dead center of all things Parisan rests a sense of Honor that surpasses any system, even those of their own creation. Without honor, they believe, there is just savagery, chaos, pointlessness. Such is their dedication to it that they have devised a physical representation of it, a series of chains whose lengths and metals which reflect the depth of their honor and the level of their caste. Those with gold chains are the common citizen, the guard, the farmer. Those with carbitanium chain are those whose Honor exceeds that of the average, even the above-average Parisan; there is no particular occupation from which these heroes rise, they can come from the criminal as well as the Prince, and royalty is not itself a free pass to getting one.
Copper Chain is the chain of the State, it's Honor Currency. It works inversely to normal Honor. If the state has a lot of red chain, it can mean two things: It can either mean that the people aren't getting the help they need, or that the people don't need help. It is representative of the help given by the state: whether its asylum, prosthetics, or disciplinary action - all of which are expected to be repaid to the state. Repaying the chain can either be done with one's Honor, which is frowned upon as the easy way out, or by working off the capital amount spent on them to gain the red chain. If a chain goes unpaid for too long (too long as determined by the length of their gold chain - longer chain - longer time) then link by link, it is replaced with iron.
Iron Chain is the chain of Dishonor. It is as their Honor, and can grow tarnished. They are generally gained through acts that to us would constitute felonies, violent ones doubly so. They can also be gained through culturally sensitive laws, such as the use of firearms, ranged magic, and other such dishonorable non-skirmish weaponry. It is very difficult to work off, not only for the transfer amount of gold chain to iron chain, but also because many would not hire someone with iron chain.
This is the highest symbol of Honor. It cannot be lost, even when its wearer is laden with iron chain. It is indicative of a great deed done, something above and beyond the demands of honor, and which has impacted the lives of Valdutan and her people directly, benignly, and permanently.