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Heilagur

Often referred to as the ‘Blessed City’, Heilagur is the home city and centre of the Pantheon of the North, from which the religion’s activities are directed and coordinated across the north of Turoza and beyond. The city is a centre of pilgrimage with tens of thousands of people flocking there every year to worship and leave offerings at the central temple, the Basilica of the North, and to be near the temporal heart of their faith.

Demographics

There are a disproportionately high number of well-educated people residing in Heilagur, compared with other cities in Turoza, thanks almost entirely to the fact that the city is the focus of the administration and governance of the Pantheon of the North. In terms of the distribution of wealth, however,  there is also a disproportionately high number of very low income individuals, and those with no form of income whatsoever. The religious significance of Heilagur means that it attracts a large amount of destitute and homeless people from across the north of Turoza, attracted by the potential to receive alms from clergy of the Pantheon, and to potential have their lives turned around thanks to divine intervention, something that has been recorded as happening, but is very rare. In terms of the species make up of Heilagur, representatives from all sapient species can be found in the city, either living and working there permanently, or visiting the city as one of the many pilgrims that pass through each year.

Defences

Heilagur is protected by a sturdy curtain wall that has been built all around the foot of the hill on which the city is based. This wall has four gates, one at each of the compass’ cardinal points, all of which are given additional protection from flanking towers. As well as this, there is a secondary defensive wall, again with four fortified gates, that loops around the summit of the city’s hill, and protects the major infrastructure of the Pantheon of the North. Within this secondary ring of defences is the Fortress of Thorfur, a castle that is the headquarters and main garrison of the Pantheon of the North’s military force, The Anointed. Smaller garrisons of The Anointed are scattered throughout the city at strategic and important points, and to provide extra barracks space for the Pantheon’s military. There is a fortified barracks of The Anointed placed near each of the main gates to the city, to provide additional support and defence to the gates in the event of a siege.

Industry

There are numerous workshops scattered throughout the city that manufacture items related to the deities that make up the Pantheon of the North such as tokens, touchstones and other items representative of the faith that are likely to be bought to decorate the houses of the faithful, and to be worn or carried as good luck charms. There are also some much more specialist, and highly regulated workshops, that are overseen directly by officials and clergy from the Basilica of the North which create the holy symbols that are worn by Lectors of the Pantheon’s various gods and goddesses. These workshops are very protective of their processes, which not only involve working with precious materials, but also involve elaborate rituals to imbue them with the power and blessing of their requisite deity. There is also a thriving industry printing and binding books and other documents such as holy texts, official proclamations from the Grand Lector and approved texts on philosophy and theology. Finally, there is a much more bespoke crafting industry that focuses on the repairing, mounting and authenticating of holy relics that are claimed to have been bestowed or blessed by one deity or another, so that they can be officially recorded in the Pantheon’s archives, made as stable and secure as possible and then returned to their owners, sold on to private buyers, or sent as a gift from the Pantheon to worthy individuals, temples or nations.   In addition, there is a whole raft of services that have emerged into a hospitality industry to cater for the large amount of pilgrims from all over the north of Turoza, who make the journey to the city throughout the year to show their penitence and faith. These sector includes entertainment buildings such as taverns and inns, pilgrim’s hostels and numerous catering outlets to feed and water the faithful.

Infrastructure

Heilagur is well connected to the rest of Turoza’s north thanks to a very well maintained network of roads that enter the city through its north, south, east and west gates, and this facilitates the easy moving of pilgrims from across the area to visit the Blessed City.   Within its walls, Heilagur is well equipped with communal, craft and entertaining areas to support the production of the goods related to the Pantheon of the North's activities, and also to cater for the continuous influx of pilgrims into the city. There is also a large network of storehouses spread across the city, which house all of the food and agricultural produce that is imported into the city, as either bought produce or offerings to support the activities of the Pantheon. Only those with special licenses, granted by officials from the Pantheon are permitted to sell food stuffs from these warehouses. This is because the city authorities want to ensure that prices remain consistent, and that as a city that relies almost entirely on the import of food, rather than producing it themselves, it makes it easier to assess stocks.   At the summit of the hill on which the city is based, behind the secondary wall is located the main religious and administrative buildings of the Pantheon of the North. This includes the Grand Lector's Palace, the headquarters of the Pantheon’s military force, The Anointed in the Fortress of Thorfur and the large central temple, the Basilica of the North which is the central point of the entire city, and houses shrines dedicated to all of the Pantheon’s constituent deities.

Geography

The city itself is set on the top and slopes of a large hill, that rises out of the surrounding coniferous forests at a place where the Kingdom of Dazscor and Aramore, the Kingdom of Kjörnsholm and the Mountain Principalities meet in the wooded flatland that lies before the foothills of the Felsspitze Mountains. The hill itself on which the city is based is not extremely tall, it is most decidedly a hill, not a mountain, but it does provide a good, panoramic view of the surrounding area, above the tree-line of the surrounding forest. The city’s hinterland barely extends beyond the defensive wall that has been built at the foot of the hill, and there is no surrounding farmland to speak of, as the Pantheon of the North are confident that they will be able to sustain the city’s populace with food imports and offerings.
Alternative Name(s)
The Blessed City
Type
City
Population
c.23,000
Inhabitant Demonym
Heilagi
Location under
Felsspitze Mountains
Included Locations
Basilica of the North
Owning Organization
Pantheon of the North

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Cover image: by Chris Pyrah

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