|Government||Concord of Mutual Disdain|
|Tech Level||Started at TL2 now TL4|
|Population||Started as an Outpost now Millions|
|Biosphere||Started as Immiscible now Hybrid|
|Planet Tag 1||Bubble Cities|
|Planet Tag 2||Sectarians|
The history of Jääaika is one of initial promise followed by squandered expectations and petty rivalry. Whilst the majority of the population of the Concord of Mutual Disdain have willingly followed the royalty of the Lacuvia and Mobu’nacar, a few discontents have over the centuries elected to make their own way among the stars. One such group made their way to Jääaika. The settlers of Jääaika had always been an an artistic sort. Feeling stifled by the rules and regulations laid out by the royals, they sought artistic freedom and Jääaika was the result. Despite only numbering a few thousand individuals, they hoped Jääaika could blossom into a second home for the emancipated species of Kardakouk, but the number of inhabitants has remained stagnant. There are few record keepings of when the colonists first arrived on Jääika, the settlers were more concerned with living out their artistic dreams than being shackled by bureaucracy. Similarly, without any real effort to stay in contact with Kardakouk their departure date is not known either. The presence of both Tar’et and Queltl on the planet mean it was certainly an operation conducted post Concord. The majority of the small population consists of Queltl with a much smaller number of Tar’et, numbering only in the double digits before the planets rediscovery, which is not overly surprising giving the Tar’ets much slower reproductive rate than the Queltl. Whilst there were no human inhabitants when the Concord re-established contact with the planet there is evidence of their presence during the initial colonisation of the planet.
The colonisation of Jääaika was conducted with several cities planned out quite close to each other, with the hope that they would be able to support each other as the population grew. Originally the whole population was situated in the original ‘city’ of Művéstkvés. It was sparsely populated to say the least, the settlers had vastly overestimated the number of people who were actually willing to leave the homely oceans of Kardakouk. But the Művéstkvés was only one of seven cities planned for Jääaika and the others would see inhabitants far quicker than expected, but not in the form of immigration from Kardakouk.
In the early years of the colony there was a ceremony held to commemorate the various art pieces created in the year. It is said that during one fateful art exhibition, a few comments about the superiority of one art style over another sparked a massive brawl. Dozens of people were banished from Művéstkvés and made their way to Teremtés, in the mountainous region overlooking the flat valley that Művéstkvés was settled in. There they formed the first of the phrontisteries on the planet. Driven by their scorn they commemorated their exile throughout the years and developed into the Gothic Phrontistery. The people of Művéstkvés instead revelled in the exile of their rivals in style and developed the Romanticism Phrontistery. Shortly thereafter outcasts from both cities came together in the planned location of the city of Szabajezés where they formed the Abstract Phrontistery.
These three ‘cities’ form the largest settlements on Jääaika and are the closest together. Despite being designed to hold thousands of people there are only a few hundred in each. All three cities are relatively close and have a clear view of one another, each having one side of its settlement connected to the Remnéy Valley.. Typical of their hostility each has erected an artistic piece facing the other cities across the valley in a proverbial ‘middle finger’ to the other settlers. The Gothic Phrontistery erected a large statue, a vigil to commemorate their exile and to shame the people who exiled them. The Romanticism Phrontistery used their bubble to paint a picturesque scene of their citizens wandering the plains of Jääaika with a freedom that only their citizens possess. As for the Abstract Phrontistery they utilised some of the local fauna to craft a unique paper and sticky adhesive to create what they call a ‘post-it note’ and have used these to erect a mural on their own bubble. They claim it is an image of mockery to debase the other Phrontisteries and their nonsensical ways for their calling in the abstract is the purest state of being. They also claim that the fact that it looks exactly like a hand extending a middle finger is purely coincidental.
In spite of the nature of Jääaika’s initial colonisation the Concord diplomats found a fairly receptive audience in their attempts to reintegrate the planet under their banner. Over time the initial settlers' disdain for the Concords rules had made way to fresh animosity, almost religious in fervour, against the artistic styles of the other settlements. The arrival of the Concord brought about two great benefits for the people of Jääaika which made them quite receptive to the diplomats representing the royals of Kardakouk.
Firstly new people meant a new and potentially attentive audience for the art to be displayed to and win over to their cause. The potential of the much larger population of Kardakouk offered the potential for the expansion of each artistic style that had never been seen since they began to spring up. Secondly was the Concords' more materialistic focus. While the native population of Jääaika were focused on artistic expression they still needed to do the basics of growing food and maintaining buildings if they wanted to survive. The Concords' arrival would mean that there were other people who could do these materialistic tasks and allow the native population to focus on their artistic endeavors. The consequences would of course be to open the planet and its resources to exploitation towards the Concords greater purposes but to the natives of Jääaika so long as their artist equipment was freely obtainable that was a sacrifice they were willing to make.
As such the Concord diplomats established a new agreement with each of the separate settlements to arrange a state of affairs that was acceptable to all parties. The agreement, titled ‘The Concord of Constrained Disdain’ which sets up a set of rules between the various sects for when disagreements arise. The Concord has taken the position of steward of the planet's material affairs while the native population have been allowed to focus their attention on art with preferential appointments should they desire to work in a materialistic position. In return Concord officials serve as arbitrators in the various artistic competitions held both for pride and to settle disputes. Whilst there has been some internal opposition to allowing the very small native population to retain a high level of autonomy instead of simply integrating them wholesale, the artwork of the planet captured the attention of the Lacuvia who became personally invested in ensuring that the artistic works of the planet continue to be made. In addition the Council introduced the new permanent title of Minister of Jääaika which is excluded from the 2/3rds count for human participants due to the lack of any humans native to Jääaika.
The environment of Jääaika varies but is generally fairly cold in most regions. Whilst the planet lacks the huge oceans of Kardakouk there is still plenty of water, situated mostly in rivers, wetlands, swamps and vast lakes. The water cycle of the planet is very active with frequent rainfalls, fogs and mists. On rare occasions there has been foggy weather every day for up to 6 months, such is the frequency of precipitation on the planet.
There are four main categories of environment on Jääaika that form the majority of the planet. The huge mountain ranges form the boundaries between different sections of the planet, the tallest of which, as far as recent Concord explorers are concerned, serve as the dividers between continents. These highest peaks are often snow capped but some manage to pierce even above the cloud layer. The lack of manufacturing on the planet means that the native population have never truly explored past any of these mountain ranges, leaving most of the planet unexplored. Tapering out at the end of these ranges are long stretches of smaller mountains that are much easier to climb and often lack permanent snowfall, with Teremtés being situated where one such range meets the Remény Valley.
Often bordering these lower mountain ranges are the wetlands and swamplands. Most of the wood used by the native population is sourced from the numerous trees that grow in these regions. It is also the source for the various hallucinogenic plants the natives are known to partake in. These are the most dangerous places to be lost in the fog, not necessarily because of the wildlife but more due to the risk of getting lost coupled with the poor water quality. It can be very easy to lose your way in the waterways of the wetlands, and the landmarks that do exist are so convoluted and abstract that it is difficult to make sense of them. Concord explorers have since ascertained that some of these landmarks are even deliberate attempts to sabotage settlers from rival Phrontisteries. The waters of the swamps are especially muddy and sometimes laced with the byproducts of hallucinogenic plants. It can only be estimated how many have been lost to some combination of beginning to hallucinate, getting lost, getting trapped in mud and drowning in dirty waters.
The third main environment of Jääaika are the vast plains and steppes of the planet. Covered in vast swathes of pastel minty blue-green grass, these areas comprise the largest part of the planet. They are expansive and vast, it is entirely possible to walk for miles in a straight line and hardly see a change in the environment at all. Whilst it is also very possible to get lost in these plains the chances of survival are also much larger since the rapid precipitation means water is still plentiful, though that doesn’t solve the issue of food in the immiscible environment. Given the aquatic nature of the natives they mostly stick to the rivers that cross these plains anyway which greatly reduces the chances of getting lost. A subtype of the main steppe lands are the flower fields. These are areas, often near smaller streams, where great fields of flowers bloom and are the source of many of the pigments used in the paints of the Phontisteries and a rare break from the mostly green and blue grasses.
The final main area on Jääaika are the great lakes. Not large enough to be proper seas or oceans the largest bodies of water on the planet are lakes. Most of the lakes are situated in the plains but are frequent enough that they are considered their own category. Whilst they are not the widest they are incredibly deep with the very depths being some of the coldest places on the planet. This coldness is in fact one of the biggest factors that make the native population reluctant to live fully underwater like on Kardakouk. Compared to the warm oceans these lakes are much less comfortable. But to those who have travelled further in the sector, the presence of large bodies of water at all is enough to consider them a gift.
The native population of Jääaika in their time away from Kardakouk have made several adaptations to adjust to life on Jääaika. Some of them are practical; Bombolong flowers on Jääaika have a protective bubble that filters the gasses in the atmosphere resulting in a much more comfortable airstream within the bubble of said flower. When applied with an additional garnish composed of other native plants the tensile strength of these bubbles is increased manifold. As such the bubbles can be expanded to envelop the settlements and protect them from the various mists and fogs common to the planet. In order to get the bubbles to such a size they are first coated in the garnish mixture and then blown up using enormous hand pumps made from local wood. These huge devices require at least 4 Queltl to operate but local Tar’et sometimes try to show off by attempting to operate them by themselves.
Some practical adjustments have been made from a lack of the aquatic nature of Kardakouk. The Tar’et have suffered especially in this respect as they not only have a much more restricted aquatic means of transport they also lack the technology and equipment needed to manufacture the enormous and complicated mechanical legs available to their cousins on Kardakouk. This has added to their slower reproductive rate in leading to their relative rarity among the native population. Limited to mostly the deep, cold lakes and larger rivers to live comfortably and stuck with only wooden equipment to aid their land movement which is far less versatile or even capable of bearing their weight compared to the mechanical version.
Other adaptations are more consequential than deliberate. The notable effect of this is in the colouration of the native population. Whilst Kardakouk is flush with a wide variety of colouration among the Tar’et and the Queltl on Jääaika there is a much smaller general palette of colours. Matching the local flora most of the inhabitants exhibit some form of muted blue or green colouration with a rare purple or yellow also possible. Other colourations are possible but are often unique to individuals and are quite rare. It has been speculated that it is a result of the fogs and mists of the planet, the much colder general temperature both in air and under water than on Kardakouk, or perhaps a mixture of both components.
Flora and Fauna
There is a thriving biosphere on Jääaika but most of the animals and plants are not edible for sustenance by any of the species in the Concord of Mutual Disdain. As such most of the agriculture on the planet has been introduced from Kardakouk rather than being native species. Whilst food is not abundant on the planet the biosphere does provide a unique source for both hallucinogens and ingredients for paints, inks and other artistic materials.
Given their isolation from their Kardakoukian cousins the people of Jääaika have developed their own myths and legends around the planet they found themselves marooned on. The thick fogs and hallucinogenic properties of much of the native biosphere have resulted in a rich environment of storytelling and oral tradition on the planet. This combined with the artistic interpretations, sectarian divides, and lack of much written history mean that it can be very difficult to discern what is potentially true, what is an artistic embellishment, what is a local myth, and what is the result of a bad trip.
Two legends in particular however occur with such frequency, embellished or not, and across even the community divides, that the Concord diplomats believe they may have at least some elements of truth in them.
The more widespread and potentially real legend is of sightings of a sort of flightless bird shimmering in the mists. Precise details are difficult to pin down but these birds seem to be distinct in both their colour and appearance that don’t seem to match the typical local fauna. Seemingly reaching up to around 3 feet tall they have never been observed flying, only apparently dashing across the ground, but far too fast then what seems possible. What makes verifying these birds so difficult is that they have never appeared before more than an individual person at a time. The locals have taken to calling them Alloacante birds. Supposedly they appear through the fog or mists and have golden or silvery feathers, long tail feathers that double the length of its body and a mane of equally regal feathers around its neck. Supposedly these birds have become seen as a sign of good luck as when followed they have either led to fortune, whether an undiscovered flower field or corpse of a lost traveller, or lead people back to safety after getting lost. The frequency of younglings seeing these birds compared to adults has led to the belief that they only show themselves to those who are pure of heart, or at least well intentioned.
The second legend began to appear after the disappearance of the humans on the planet. It's not clear exactly when or how it happened, and if any of the natives know what happened they have yet to disclose anything to the Concord diplomats or explorers. In fact the only thing that has managed to be gleaned from the natives is that there were once humans and at some point they disappeared. As far as can be discovered there was nothing particularly remarkable about these humans, but since their disappearance the sightings of strange shadows in the fogs, particularly among the hills and mountains have been observed. Strange humanoid figures, far more similar to humans than Queltl or Tar’et yet strangely large. Indeed some reports even state that these shadows could rival the size of a full grown Tar’et, a size that no normal human would ever be able to even come close to. What is most peculiar is that these reports have never stopped, every now and then someone will spot another shadowy figure looking from beyond out in the fog but no attempts to make contact or identify them have ever been successful.
Seeking a new and neutral capital from which to govern from the Concord authorities turned their attention to the planned location of Chrintranne. Situated down river from Remény Valley Chrintranne was the city furthest into the steppes. As such it was the only location on Jääaika that did not develop its own phrontistery. This made it a suitable neutral location to have the new capital and for new settlements to not disturb the native population, whilst the river connection still kept travel to the city relatively convenient.
It was in this fledgling capital that The Matron first appeared. Little is known about her origin, and she is reticent to elaborate. Adorned in one of the local specialties, an incredibly effective form of body paint, her skin is a deep midnight blue. In addition she is constantly seen with a smoking pipe, containing some combination of local drugs that have turned her eyes completely red. Another shade of blue dye leaves her hair a lighter shade than her skin. But the combination of these features leaves her looking incredibly distinctive but barely human at all. The enigmatic Elaria Van Der Lorne has become a rising star in the political landscape of Jääaika. One of the few people who are popular among all the phrontisteries she has become the de facto leader of Jääaika despite not holding an official position herself.
Instead the Tar'et Pa'tte Ti'eis serves as the arbitrator among the council of free cities. Each phrontistery represents their city at the council which meets to discuss matters that concern the entire planet. Whilst also serving as the local government of each city when it comes to the day to day activities (usually by employing Kardakian citizens to run things for them). In spite of the constant bickering and arguments between the phrontisteries there has been a proven track record that no matter the vote it always seems to end with the result desired by The Matron. Whilst this has raised concern on Kardakouk it has been deemed that her ability to get the differing phrontisteries to work together, even briefly, is valuable enough to not interfere with her politicking too often.
Accompanying The Matron often is her similarly mysterious bodyguard. Known only as Valiyo, she is completely bald and also covered with body paint. In her case an ashen white, which serves to contrast her many black tattoos. With a plethora of guns on her at all times she is seemingly only ever seen at the side of The Matron. Though often she is not seen, yet whenever The Matron calls to her she seems to almost materialise nearby. As such it is speculated that she never actually leaves her side, simply turns invisible or hides nearby.
Coinciding with The Matrons arrival on Jääaika the planet has seen a greatly increased trade in art both on planet and out to the rest of the sector. Kardakouk in particular has become a massive market for the phrontisteries. Paintings, sculptures and the like head to the Concords homeworld whilst prospective artists, merchants and tourists head the other way. The increased opulence has helped make the Matron very popular among the phrontisteries but the increased traffic has also led to an increase in more illicit trades. In an entirely separate and not at all related way the Matrons' arrival saw the creation of a true black market on Jääaika for the art itself, psychedelic drugs and native species as well as forgeries.
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