Argantael is home to nearly 15,000 helias. Two hundred years ago it was a small town that quietly nestled within an ancient crater, but a drought in the region coupled with the discovery of both coal and copper nearby forged a completely new identity for the community in just a couple of years.
There is a wide disparity between the rich oligarchs and the poor majority. A struggling middle class keeps trying to get a foothold, but with little success.
Guilds have tight control over the day-to-day of the city wards in Argantael. Though there are elections, individuals are expected to vote with their guild, and woe to the traitor caught doing otherwise. It is widely known that seats on the Board of Governors are purchased rather than won. A tangle of often competing committees and offices see to the dispensation of resources and the application of law. Unfortunate are the poorer wards that get caught between two or more organizations seeking to exapnd their authority. The Lord Mayor resides in the Sinking Tower at the center of Crater Lake, which is also where a great deal of government business takes place.
Over the last fifty years, Argantael has seen a sharp increase in technical innovation. Publicly, the reason given is that they are no longer competing with the Lashe for the resources required for industry. Privately, whispers speculate that the remaining Lashe themselves must be given the real credit. Only a few know for certain that the refugees of Hamat'e now reside in the realm of the helias.
The lake at the center of the crater is the focal point of Argantael. Though its official name has changed several times over the past few centuries, locals just call it the Lake. The two major wards are Morningdark and Gloaming, named for their extended half-light in morning and evening respectively, due to the 60 meter walls of the crater. Beyond those walls are the Rundle Plains, full of scrub brush and dry grasses.
The copper and coal that built the foundations of Argantael have not yet played out.
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