Scattered across the north west of the Centric Sea, the multitude of islands and reefs that make up the Province of Pelenar have been producing hardy, seagoing folk, who have been the backbone of the Empire of Turelion's maritime trade and navies for centuries. The province is the heart of an enormous fishing and whaling industry, but despite this, many of its inhabitants scrape out a life of subsistence farming, without ever seeing the profits of this. Pelenar is also plagued more than any other than the Kelrik Pirates, but despite the official line on the illegality of the pirate’s activities, a huge proportion of the Province’s residents benefit from the undercutting on the prices of goods and the associated smuggling, and happily support and cover for the Scourge of Pelenar.
Like all provinces with the Empire of Turelion, the administration of the Province is overseen by a Satrap, who is theoretically responsible for management of all areas of Pelenar. To aid them in this, the Satrap of Pelenar Province has a staff of provincial officials and administrators who oversee the bureaucracy of all things, from the state of the road network to the taxes levied on fish imported to the province. The administration of Pelenar Province differs slightly from the other provinces in that the Satrap has had any responsibility or decision making over military matters removed from their remit. This is because the fact that the Kelrik Pirates have continued to thrive throughout the Kelrik Isles has persuaded Emperors past to place military responsibility for the province in the hands of an Admiral in the Imperial Navy. It is thought that giving military oversight to a ‘professional’ would lead to a lessening of the piratical activities, with the Admiral of the Kelrik Isles being able to bring their tactical knowledge to bear to crush the outlaws, this plan has yet to be realised though. Stress is always placed upon the fact that this situation is temporary, but it has temporarily been in place for the last two hundred years.
Demography and Population
As the poorest province in the Empire of Turelion, Pelenar has the lowest percentage of upper and middle class citizens. Most of the population of Pelenar either work as subsistence farmers, or as sailors on one of the many crews that sail in and around the Kelrik Isles for licit and illicit purposes. It is unknown exactly what percentage of the population is either directly or indirectly affiliated to the Kelrik Pirates, but it is thought to be a large percentage. The middle and upper classes of the province tend to be associated with the ownership or administration of the many fleets of fishing, whaling and trading ships that ply the waters of the Centric Sea, or the secondary processing plants that turn the raw material into final or secondary products. In terms of the Ethnic background of the population, Pelenar Province is more mixed than the other provinces. There is a large population of people who identify as Palawchoian, who are thought to have originated on the island of Jamilez and spread out into the rest of the isles, however, the islands that near close to the shores of Langstrom and Greltor Provinces have populations linked to the ethnic groups native to the other two provinces, the Jotun and Yaltharmians respectively.
Pelenar Province’s jurisdiction stretches over all of the island bodies within the area of the Centric Sea, even though many of them are much closer to the shores of Greltor Province or Langstrom Province than they are to Port Salaz the provincial capital. The islands that make up the province vary vastly in size from being the equivalent of small continents, in the case of Jamilez, to little more than a few metres of sand bar sticking up above the waves.
Like all Imperial Provinces, Pelenar has access to its own standing army of Provincial troops, who are dispersed across the province in garrisons, ready to be called upon as needs be. For the most part, these troops act as town and city guards and police forces for the areas they are stationed to. The only difference to other provinces is that the Provincial Army and Navy of Pelenar are under the command of the Admiral of the Kelrik Isles, not the Satrap. In times of crisis, the Admiral of the Kelrik Isles can mobilise units in the Provincial Army from their garrisoned stations to become mobile units that can be deployed were necessary. The Provincial Army has units of infantry, cavalry, artillery and Firewings at its disposal, as well as a dedicated naval force to protect its coasts. The Command Headquarters for Pelenar’s Provincial army is in the Provincial Capital Port Salaz. Out of all of the provinces, Pelenar has the largest navy, with the Provincial Navy being bolstered with ships from the Emperor’s own fleet, who still sail under the colours of the Imperial Navy. This concentration of naval power is present in the province to combat the scourge that is the Kelrik Pirates, though success in this area has been very limited.
Because of its strong links to the sea, the majority of Pelenar Province’s inhabitants are adherent of the maritime deity Posmellion, or of his father Lasimar, after whom the ocean of Lasimar is named. A not insignificant number of people, particularly on the island of Jamilez, in particular in and around the provincial capital Port Salaz are members of the The Imperial Church of Canthartism, but beyond the shores of the Province’s largest island the sway of the Imperial Church is greatly lessened.
Agriculture & Industry
With no mineral resources and barely enough forest cover or agricultural land to satisfy their own needs, Pelenar Province relies on two industries to sustain itself, fishing and whaling. An enormous amount of boats are based out of the Kelrik Isles that ply the abundant waters of the Centric Sea and though many of these boats are operated as independent ventures fronted by an enterprising sailor who can produce the capital to buy and crew their own vessel. Most, however are parts of large fleets owned by the richest of Pelenar’s citizens, with the ships themselves being owned by the business owners and crewed by salaried sailors. The fish that are caught and brought back to the Kelrik Isles for processing are turned into a variety of products, from stock fish, to fish oil, to fresh fish that is frozen using Ice Elemental Cores and shipped out to the grace tables across the Empire. Whales caught by the whaling vessels have their fat rendered down into oil for use in lamps, and their flesh is either dried or frozen for export outside the province, or kept for more immediate consumption within. Some whales produce ambergris, which is used to make perfumes in other parts of the Empire. A secondary industry has also arisen from whaling, which turns the bones of the beasts into either functional or decorative objects, much as one would do with ivory. Arable and pastoral agriculture does take place across the province, but it is almost all geared towards the production of food for local consumption. The island of Jamilez, with the largest amount of available agricultural land does always produce a surplus of produce, even though the Provincial Capital is based there, but this surplus is transported and traded internally within the Province to meet local demands rather than being exported further afield. In addition, because the inhabitants Kelrik Isles are known for being such experienced sailors, the Province is also able to benefit from a labour providing industry, with crews from the province sailing all across the world, contracting to providing transport services on behalf of clients who reside in other Provinces.
Trade & Transport
Pelenar Provinces’ position in the world of Kelbonnar means that it is well plugged into the maritime trade of the rest of the Empire. As many materials and items are not available in Pelenar, it is common practice for trade ships that set out to ship fish and whale products to the other provinces to take a less direct route back so that they can pick up materials to be sold on again once they return to the Kelrik Isles. Obviously, as a province comprised entirely of islands, there are no direct road routes into Pelenar, but there are a few Firewing routes, almost all of which stretch from the Continent of Hunar to Jamilez and the provincial capital Port Salaz.
Of all the Provinces, Pelenar has perhaps the least access to education for its inhabitants. Though there are formal schools that people can pay to send their children to in the provincial capital Port Salaz and in some of the bigger settlements scattered throughout the Kelrik Isles, there are many island populations who have no easy access to a school, even if they could afford to take their children there to be educated. There are also no further education establishments within the Province. The ever present threat of the Kelrik Pirates means that no Imperial establishments have been set up in Pelenar, for fear that they will become targets, and the Province holds the dubious accolade of being the only Province in the whole of the Empire of Turelion that does not have a House of Learning based within it. Children of wealthy families, or those who are older and wish for more education must take themselves to either the provinces of Langstrom, Greltor or Norgantho or further afield still to access further education beyond their basic schooling.
The Jewels of the Centric Sea, The Lawless Isles (derogatory)
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