Wyitlingka: Star-Coin/Six Coin
Mechanics & Inner Workings
The full wyi has the shape of a perfect hexagon and is perforated along its circumcircle diameters. The wyi can be divided along said perforated lines into wor, sixths; toor, thirds; or taur, halves; to pay for low-priced items. Vendors have different ways of collecting the value of their items from the wyi. Vendors who don't much care for their image, like butchers and farmers, use a hammer to punch out their triangles. Often the wyi, or at least the wor portion, is damaged in the process. While every part is still legal tender, said vendors must exchange the wyi for qood-quality wyi parts upon the request of the consumer, as mandated by royal law. Vendors with appearances to keep up, such as glassblowers or potters, use special tools to press down on the edges, making the metal much easier to tear off. Even still, they are bound to the same obligations as their more casual counterparts. Vendors of expensive products, such as jewelers and tailors, don't carry a wyi-splitting device as a matter of cultural pride. They simply charge their customers by full wyis, costing them petty change and additional profits in the long term.
Wyi-making furnaces are always on, fueled by peat when possible and lumber when impossible. Molybdenum is laid on a stone in equal amounts and, after the furnace heats it to thousands of degrees Kelvin, the molybdenum is pressed by a separate stone, into which six separate images of the Great Royal Seal of Wlitowa is chiseled. The molybdenum plates are slid down chutes to barrels of hot, sudsy water for cleaning purposes. The water is initially tepid, but the heat of the previous molybdenum wyi bring the water to boiling point. Staff work around the clock both to switch barrels and to add more water to them. After a day of soaking, the barrels are drained and the wyi are collected and wiped off. Oil protects the new wyi from corrosion, and the wyi is tossed onto a transport wagon. The wagon is protected by a hundred soldiers apiece during peacetime, by a dozen during wartime. Wyi are then distributed amongst government staff, selected registered businesses, and the treasury.
A single wyi, give or take, is the standard wage for a day's work. This means that, with one day's wages, an employee can buy from at most six vendors. In foreign economies with more flexible currencies, a market with perfect competition would adjust the prices of its goods to meet an equilibrium. However, in Wlitowa, perfect competition means that vendors improve the quality of their product to meet the standard price of the good. This quality approach has led to highly-skilled craftsmanship in almost every sector of industry, and thus a late adoption of industrialism. Even when mass production was implemented, it took decades for industries to turn a substantial profit. No one wanted pottery from a machine when, for the same price, they could have an artisan piece. Soon, however, factories began offering two of a product for the same price as an artisan one, leading to a swift and painful death blow to the artisan sector. Wlitowa's geography is very poor with regards to gold and silver but rich in most other metals. As a result, there wasn't enough gold and silver to go around, much less for common bartering. Wlitowa became the southern backwater economy that most merchants avoided. The royal treasury introduced the wyi as a possible solution to boost Wlitowa's economy, by isolating internal finances from external finances. While Wlitowa maintained last place in the foreign market, most analysts do not blame the change to fiat currency as the problem. The wyi supplemented Wlitowa's use of precious metals and gemstones. Because said valuables were hoarded by the royal treasury, the only merchants who could trade on the international market needed approval from the king. The king's financial advisors, chosen to maintain noble relations, soon made Wlitowa the most economically exploitable nation not directly under foreign control. The black market thrived under the barter system, though the extent of its success is still hotly contested to this day. During Wlitowa's Age of Revolution, the wyiai stored in the royal vault were distributed among the masses. This led to massive hyperinflation, and initially many chose not to work, believing that a day's wages were worth too little for their labor. This caused massive economic problems for the revolutionary administration which were only solved after the revolution's demise.
Currency & Deeds
The value of the wyi comes from its inability to be duplicated. The wyi is pure molybdenum, and the only furnaces on the continent which can melt or bend metal at such high temperatures are owned by the monarchy. So, while molybdenum mines are surprisingly common on Wlitowa, there is only one kind of wyi. No other alloys could be made or dyed to convincingly replicate the same hue, not that many haven't tried. This isn't even including the pristine royal seal imprinted on each wor, which is impossible to replicate without driving oneself insane. However, due to the significant amount of energy it takes to fuel the furnaces once cooled, wyiai have been in constant production, with economic surpluses stored in the palace treasury.
Raw materials & Components
A chunk of molybdenum, mined from the north and eastern realms of Wlitowa.
No technology exists on Wouraiya during the wyi's circulation that can melt it. However, molybdenum can be made soft and malleable exclusively from five locations in the world, three locations of which lie within the Authority. Of those in the Authority, a volcano on the island of Wlitowaru'u is the oldest and most crude. Navy vessels had to escort and transport the currency on and off the island. When accounting for insurance risk (i.e, transport ships capsizing in a storm), a wyi often cost more than a wyi to produce. From this lack of efficiency, the Authority proposed construction of two large forges, one to be the backup of the other, that could heat metal up to lava temperatures. Their locations bisected the routes from the primary mines to Ak'tawo. Few thought that the temperature required could even be produced by man, but great minds of engineering came together to produce what many consider to be, jointly, one of Wouraiya's world wonders, and by far its most practical.
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