LORE: The Five Cities
Five Cities did the Leur folk raise, One of Sun and One of Moon…
Readers of the Triempery series have seen the Five Cities brought up often enough to have figured out a few things and maybe want to know more.
Raised by Leur during the Golden Age of the Aryati Hegeistate, when the god-race worked in harmony with their creations, the Aryati, the Five Cities are unique in the Triempery universe: eternal, living, and beautiful.
As the series progresses, these Cities begin to feature prominently in different ways. Here is a little background on the Five. Eventually each City will hyperlink to its own entry with more detail about things current to the story; right now only Mulsor does so because it popped up memorably in The Kheld King.
The first City, Îs, is nearly as old as the Creation itself. Îs stood at the center of Öerma, a vast marsh at the edge of the Great Sea of the Beginning and the egress of the Great River. That river, by the time of the novels, would be called the Dazun. In that early age, the Great River met the sea at its own level and the ships of many peoples could view shining Îs from afar.
The Leur god-race multiplied over millenniums to fill the ethereal towers of their City, which was unmatched in the Creation for beauty. Light-filled, it defied the night. Not all of Leur lived in Îs; some dwelt in other parts of the Creation, as creators of rivers, forests, and air.
It is unknown whether the Devastation of the First Creation destroyed Îs. Amynas and the Leur (last survivor of the god-race) saw only Sordan and then the Leur perished during the Slaying of the Devaryati. After the Return, Amynas tried to find Îs and was unable to do more than wander the endless marshes where once the City had stood. The Three, the sons of Amynas and Leur, were also unsuccessful.
Îs and the lost egress of the Dazun River have never been found, though they have been seen. Sailors far from shore on the Northern Sea of the Second Creation occasionally claim to see a shining City surrounded by waterfalls high upon cliffs near where Îs once stood. But no one who has attempted to do so by land or river has ever seen either the City or the place where the mighty Dazun's waters now go.
Raised by Leur in partnership with the Outer Creation-born Aryati Hegemon Panartos, Mulsor was the largest of the Cities in dimension and population. Five towers surrounded a central Citadel that rose to a height only mountains surpassed. From a distance, the City looked like a crown. Among the structures of the City were the Hegemon’s Palace, the Grand Congress of the Hegeistate, the pinnacle of the Star Alliance, and the Halls of the Everborn. Mulsor was known as the Queen of Cities.
The Devastation that destroyed the First Creation was ignited in Mulsor. The Aryati Hegemon Pankratos, driven mad by the Undying Crown, used the Creators’ Blade once wielded against the god Vllyr to unbind Mulsor’s ring of core arrays, releasing the energy of captive stars. Mulsor’s Leur Citadel and the surrounding city were swallowed in the subsequent fracturing of land and sea.
As an immortal creation, Mulsor did not completely vanish. It is present in all Three Worlds and in the Second Creation its ghostly essence persists in the Rift zone of Sansordan and the Kolpos where the City once stood.
Beloved by the Aryati clone-prince Amynas, who was born there, Sordan was created as a center of science and learning. The ceremonial and public spaces of the Citadel at the heart of the City are open, grand, and blessed with water features. Raised on an island at the center of a vast and deep freshwater lake, Sordan’s natural advantages made it an optimal location for the ring of massive core arrays the Aryati needed for the joint Aryati-Leur Rill creation. Sordan also housed Aryati labs for clone engineering and other bio-manipulative sciences. Because of these uses, many towers and floors of Sordan’s Citadel were designed to be used as human residences.
The Devastation that destroyed the First Creation did not damage Sordan’s Citadel or its Leur-integrated Rill core arrays. When Amynas and the Leur came to the Second Creation looking to see what remained of the First, they were heartened to discover Sordan’s Citadel standing in full glory. Filled with hope, they went back to the First Creation survivors who had taken refuge in a doomed past and began the war to bring their people home.
Much of the Rill’s superstructure in Sordan was rendered non-operational; operations were later restored by Derlon’s transformation, which imparted the Rill with both regenerative abilities and immortality. The City’s research facilities were mostly forgotten and their technology lost. Amynas and the Leur may have used both Aryati technology and Leur magic when they conceived The Three in Sordan.
Sordan continues to function as a human city. It is the seat of government for the Sordaneon Hierarchate, with parts of its Citadel also serving as housing for its royal family.
Mormantalorus and Sordan are sister Cities, raised at the same time and of similar shaping. Where Sordan’s Citadel served as a center of education and science, that of Mormantalorus was from the beginning a center for the creation and development of arcane technologies to harness the Creation’s native energies. Built on the side of a volcano atop an active tectonic rupture, Mormantalorus possesses both core arrays and a series of deep wells into the Creation’s geothermal forges. The City is protected by an omnipresent bio-shield against the toxic fumes and thermal eruptions of the volcano.
As in Sordan, the Devastation left Mormantalorus’ Leur structures intact. The City is habitable but Mormantalorus has a smaller population because its human inhabitants must live within the bio-shield. Elites and mages involved in the manufacture of arcane crystals and devices live in the Citadel’s towers.
Last of the Five Cities to be raised, Permephedon was completed shortly before the ravages of the Devastation. Leur agreed to build the Aryati Cities—Mulsor, Sordan, and Mormantalorus—only if they could build this one. Connection to the quasi-Leur Rill system was the sole Aryati element included in the design.
Permephedon is the only City not located at a water’s edge. Its three towers were raised far inland, and the core tower penetrated the Creation as a whole, so that Permephedon accessed the entire matrix. Leur dwelt at Permephedon according to their interest in the Creation and used the tower to fashion many wondrous things.
The Sacrifice of Leur which separated the Creation into its current state was performed using Permephedon, its most stable element, as anchor point of the separation. Thus, the Second Creation is formed with Permephedon at its core and the remaining two Leur Cities comprising the corridor of the Creation’s ongoing reconstruction. The archived pasts of the First Creation are attached via Permephedon’s unique subspaces. The Daln Barrier which contains the moment of Devastation in a permanent temporal pocket may be tethered to Permephedon's ultimate survival.
With the departure of Leur from the World, Permephedon’s ability to interact with the Creation is little understood. Evidence that it can do so exists in the Vault of Incorruption, where nothing interred within—including corpses—can undergo Change... even though Change is the cardinal trait of Leur’s Creation.
Marenthro, who has long inhabited Permephedon and is known as its wizard, is established as having unusual influence with the Entities, both of which are offspring of Leur. His interactions include traveling to archived pasts, perhaps calling upon the talents of Ergeiron, and altering Sordaneon commands to the Rill by communicating directly with Derlon.
Besides being located in the Triempery—which was formed by the Three using the three remaining Cities as its foundation—Permephedon serves as the Highborn Triemperate’s seat. The Triemperal Archhalia meets there. The Malyrdeons (descendants of Ergeiron) and Sordaneons (descendants of Derlon) each have a tower and the City’s neutrality is encoded in Triemperal Law.
The race of Leur is long-vanished, but three of the Five Cities they gifted to us remain. Though these cities were built for mortalkind and serve us well, they yield little in the way of answers. For thousands of years, they have existed in splendid stasis, maintaining pure air, perfect temperature, water hot and cold according to need, lights glowing into the night and dimming by day, lighthouses to a dark Creation.
Patroculos, Journeys to Many Lands