Sunday, May 13, 2007


The Order of the Axe Chapterhouse located near Ao-Manasa is known as Pental, which was the former, pre-Diamond Throne name for Ao-Manasa. Pental is not just a Chapterhouse, but a small, self-sufficient town of about 650, including the inhabitants of the Chapterhouse itself. Though the town is literally focused around the Chapterhouse, there are quite a few residents in town that are not Order members. There is also a small minority of Order-sympathetic giants who call Pental home.

The Chapterhouse itself is a castle. It houses about 100 Squires at any given time, at various stages of training. Only about 3-4 of every ten Squires will become Knights; the rest will either remain Squires until their deaths, or will choose to leave the Order. It takes a minimum of seven years as a Squire before a Lord or Lady can bestow Knighthood. Most Knights spend an average of nine years as a Squire. Some spend many more. Squires who have had at least five years of training at the Chapterhouse are often assigned to individual Knights for more specific, in depth training.

At the current time, there are 27 Knights based on Pental, though up to half of them are away on field work all or most of the time. The number of Knights fluctuates from year to year, but it has remained between 15 and 30 for the past decade. There are also 5 Knight Masters living at the Pental Chapterhouse. One of them, Knight Master Sylsevyn, is Lord Morek's right hand man, the other four are primarily responsible for the training of the Squires. They enlist the help of the other Knights in the Chapterhouse to accomplish this.

The Pental Chapterhouse is currently run Lord Morek Gorran. He has been the Lord of Pental for nearly ten years and is very well liked and respected, by both Order members and civilian citzens of Pental. He once served under Lord Aniton Golhia and is a follower of his ideas for a peaceful resolution with the Diamond Throne. Though his ultimate goal is self-rule for all races, as it is for all Order members, his main focus has been at improving the life of non-giants (and giants for that matter) in the Ao-Manasa area. There have even been rumours of he and Gri-Taresh occasionally working together to solve local problems for the common good, but they are simply rumours. One thing is known: Gri-Taresh tolerates Pental and the Order's presence, so long as they do not directly interfere with his affairs in Ao-Manasa.

Pental itself is very well fortified. Approach by boat is difficult in most places; the waters around the island are shallow and filled with rocks, and most of the shores are high cliffs. This made it an ideal place to build a Chapterhouse and a town, as the seas in these parts are filled with pirates. The docks are at the south point of the island, where the land slopes down to meet the sea. The water around the docks has been deepened, and the rocks have been cleared. There are several buildings around the docks, but the town itself and the Chapterhouse are uphill.

The island is small; it has an area of about three and a half square miles and a circumference of about eight miles. The town itself takes up about one quarter of the island's land, though there are some homes and other buildings scattered across the island outside of the town. The island is mostly flat, with grasses, flowers and scattered trees. The soil itself was pretty rocky at one point, but through Greenbond attention, it has become fertile enough to support agriculture.

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