Campaign of the Month: November 2011
Avatar: Conquest of the Imperial Order
The White Mantel is one of the worlds major factions and controls most of the western region of The Land of Earth. The Mantel was originally an organization from the ancient Endris City durring the Age of Darkness when most of the known world was ruled under the tyrannical Saarebas of the Exalted Emporium. The White Mantel, a group known for the white robes they wore, was one of the main factions pushing towards revolution during the time when Avatar Fow Rung united the people of the world to revolt and overthrow the capitol of Endris. The White Mantel was a very active political group during the revolution, and were adept at political maneuvers. They would eventually ensure that they would be chosen to lead the new government after the fall of the Emporium, and have ruled from the fallen Emporium capitol ever since.
The White Mantel has a very rigid law system that has grown steadily more strict since their formation 5 centuries ago. Very little else dramatic has changed in the Mantle even after so many years, being one of the very first nations to stabilize after the fall of the Emporium. From its beginnings the Mantel has been extremely economically active, taking advantage of the early lack in competition to become a major world-wide supplier of goods of all kinds. Their main export, wheat, grows extremely well in the valleys surrounding Endris and it is sometimes referred to as the Breadbasket of the world. Many cultures are reluctant to trade with the Mantel, as they are extremely adept at sly economic strategies that always leave them in a better position then those trading with them, but do to their massive supply most countries don’t have a choice. This has led to much of the Mantel territory being gained through the calling in of debts or the blatant purchase of territory. The Mantel is infamous for its absolute Laissez-faire policies, and as such its captiol is one of the most successful trading hubs in the world.
Members of the Mantel favor the colors of white, gold, and red. Citizens are expected to dress well and reflect the economic status of the nation. Fine silks and jewelry are common. Members of the military and government don either elegant White armor or fine white and red robes. The population is split between a medium complexion with black or brown hair that is common to the land of earth, and a much lighter complexion. During the times of the Emporium slaves were shipped regularly to the city of Endris. Near the decline of their empire, ships were suddenly bringing in huge shipments of new slaves from across the seas. These new slaves were said to have spoke an unknown language and had fair skin with blonde hair and blue or green eyes. Others of these foreign people with the ability to bend one or another of the elements were brought over, raised to be citizens of the Emporium which was ruled exclusively by benders. Now their is still a noticeable population of these peoples descendants in the known world today.
The massive city of Endris, once the capitol of the Exalted Emporium was named after Endrin, the man who started and ruled over the Emporium during the Age of Darkness. The city is built up against a mountain. On the other side of the rock wall was a huge valley surrounded by towering cliffs, making access to it all but impossible. Endrin had his benders tunnel through the mountain from inside the city that was nestled against it, creating a tunnel road through to the valley where the massive heart of the metropolis was built. Walls now stand atop the cliffs all around the city center. Once a place of terror and fear, the city is now the capitol of the White Mantel, and has become the largest economic center in the world, gathering massive amounts of income from trading as well as exports across the globe. Endris also has the largest agricultural revenue in the world, making it a worldwide source of wheat and other crops. Despite its new rule, the cities many statues depicting Saarebas overlords and dark walls and architecture leave a reminder of the past evil that ruled here.
The White Mantel preaches that their benders must be under constant supervision to ensure they use their powers for good. This seems to be an effect of the Emporium, however most information regarding the Saarebas has been destroyed to prevent the knowledge of the Blood Rituals from spreading again. Each year on the Summer Solstice, 30 Earthbenders over the age of 15 are gathered and taken to the Grand Masters in the Temple of the Unseen, in the tall mountains west of the capitol. This is regarded as an honor for an earthbender and his parents, as the benders are referred to as the Chosen Ones. They are taken into the mountains, never seen again, where it is said they are tutored in how to use their talents for good. It is said they learn to make the infamous Red Golems of the White Mantel, giant stone constructs resembling men that use abilities similar to Earthbending, and are used to defend the Mantel. It is rumored the Golems are made at the Bloodstone, a famous location within the temple that is forbidden from any but the masters and the chosen to enter. Punishment for violation of this rule is death. Earthbenders from other provinces in the White Mantel, or who are never chosen from Endris City, are required to attend special classes all their life run by the government to teach them the proper way to use their abilities for the state.
The government is lead by one called the Sovereign, which is much like a king who handles politics. Under him are six Magisters, known as the inner council, who see to the economics of the nation. Equal with the Magisters is the Grand Masters, the religious authority of the nation and composed exclusively of Earthbenders.
The Stone Golems of the White Mantel are the primary military force, as well as a massive army of extremely well trained and heavily armed non-bender warriors known as the White Knights. The military and law enforcement is overseen by the Knight Justicar. Beneath him are the inquisitors who handle law legislation and “Interrogation”, as well as internal affairs of the political or legal nature. The Justicars are the keepers of the law in the cities and are in charge of arrests and peace keeping. The Knight Justicar oversees all of these positions associated with military force and answers directly to the Sovereign.
The Mantel is in public a neutral nation, claiming no sides. However, recently some of the farthest western provinces have been occupied by the Imperial Order with no opposition, in fact it appears the Mantel was more than glad to co-operate and welcomed their presence. What this implies is up for interpretation as no official statements have been made on the matter.