Topic: The Belial Universe
I am currently working on a reworked pdf describing the Belial setting. I intend to try and make a few illustrations and make it a bit more fancy than just a mere text-file. Since its quite time consuming, I decided to start uploading at least the text so far in here. Its not all done yet and a few sections are still missing, so please bear with me.
Belial is the name of this blue planet. It is the only world its inhabitants know and orbits a yellow sun with no name. Two moons journey across the sky, named after their hue, the Silvermoon and the Rubymoon. Usually the latter is barely visible, though, even at the best of times, and thus considered an omen of great or terrible things in many of the world's cultures on the rare occasions when it shines brightly.
There are four known continents set around the globe – Atziluth, Beriah, Yetzirah and Assiah. To the people of Assiah the other three continents are no more than ancient myths. No expedition has ever returned, for the continent is surrounded by a impossible wall made of unseen powers that nothing can cross. The origin or nature of this barrier is not known but it sucks the life out of any man made device that comes too close. The energies released also create a form of localized storm. Named the Everstorm, it is a literal wall of black clouds, marking the outline of the barrier which isolates the continent.
Assiah itself is a fertile continent in the northern hemisphere according to some ancient maps, south-west of Beriah and north of Yetzirah. Malchut, the major landmass of the continent, is primarily covered by fertile farmlands, grasslands and forests. Two major mountain ranges can be found in the east and the west. The landscape becomes more harsh towards the north, lush mixed forest replaced by pinewoods and grasslands replaced by moors.
Yesod, the eastern landmass, has always been considered wastes and wild lands, a hostile place with very little to offer. Even nowadays it is still the least densely populated part of Assiah. Most of it is covered in dense forests, full of exotic but dangerous creatures and plants. Although a few settlements manage to survive in this unfriendly environment, the largest cities in Yesod exist along the coastline or at the edges of the woodlands. North of the forests is the infamous Akashesa Desert.
Once the mighty city of Eden stood here, now all that is left is a flat wasteland made of fine, powdery sand and vitreous rocks. It is devout of any life, as if even animals avoid this cursed place. There are legends of a black tower, miraculously standing in the middle of the desert and there are a few photos that support its existence but so far no expedition was able to locate this structure which the locals have named the Demon-Tower.
The smallest landmass of Assiah is the island of Tiferet which is the home of Freya's Realm. Its the most fertile and peaceful of the continent's lands. Natural disasters are rare, while the weather tends to be the most balanced on all of Assiah.
Since the downfall of Eden, which once reigned over the entire continent and maybe even more, there had been many human kingdoms and petty empires. But nowadays only two sovereign nations remain – The Empyrian Empire and Freya's Realm.
One cannot talk about the history or lands of Assiah without first telling the story of Eden or what little is still known about it. In ages past the world was ruled not by man but by elves. Not only are they blessed with inherent magical talents that only few human magicians can match but they were also brilliant scientists. Their technology was so much advanced that it was a form of magic itself, harnessing the power of mana to create wonders. There used to be many powerful city-nations but Assiah was the domain of the mightiest of them – Eden. The city itself spanned all of what is now the grand Akashesa Desert, a vast metropolis the size of a nation itself. The records that survived and the tales of today's elves, describe a landscape of gargantuan towers made of crystal, steel and glass, connected by a networks of bridges and pathways on multiple levels and decorated with exotic gardens and artificial waterways.
The rest of the continent was only home to small settlements and outpost, most of them agricultural complexes, factories and mines. Despite its advanced technology, Eden's wealth and might was built on the labour of millions of slaves, human slaves. In those days the entirety of the human race was servant to their elven masters, some even say that it was created for that role.
This all ended almost 2500 years ago. It is known that Eden was at war with other of its fellow city-nations. Almost nothing is known about the reasons for this conflict or even its scale, for almost no records of this time have survived the millennia. Either way, Eden stopped existing from one moment to the next. It was taken by a cataclysmic disaster, an explosion so bright and massive that it was seen all over the continent and left nothing more of the city than a glassy wasteland, not even leaving any ruins behind. It is still a mystery what exactly destroyed Eden, what weapon could have been so destructive that it could turn a city of that scope to nothing. There are many rumours and speculations, ranging from secret weapons of the other elven nations to the involvement of the Great Demons but there is no evidence for any. There is not even any evidence that there is a connection between the war and Eden's fall even if it seems likely.
When Eden was wiped out, it left the few supervisors and enforcers in the labour camps and farms on the continent cut off from any support. The slaves quickly realized their chance for independence and uprisings erupted all over Assiah. The conflicts lasted only a short time, the few enforcers left overrun immediately. Many elves didn't even try to fight and fled into the forests before they could be taken by what had once been their inferiors. Releasing their pent up rage over their oppressors, the freed slaves burnt almost all of the elven settlements down to the ground, leaving nothing behind to remind them of their former masters. Eden's reign was over and the age of mankind on Assiah begun.
The Empyrian Empire
The Empire is possible the largest and most powerful nation to exist on the continent since the Fall of Eden.
It started with the small city-state of Empyres which for much of its history only barely managed to defend itself against the larger nations around it. Nonetheless the city managed to expand its military force and experienced a sudden growth in wealth and science after gaining possession of many samples of Edeni technology. Eventually Empyres had grown powerful enough to openly attack its neighbours. The following wars lasted for more than a century, for the Empyrian kings where too ambitious to just stop with the annexation of their direct neighbours. Only when all of Malchut and Yesod was theirs, did the leaders of Empyres stop their campaign of conquest and proclaim the Empyrian Empire about a millennium ago.
The kingdoms and nations that had been conquered were reformed into the 24 provinces that form the Empire today. They vary strongly in size and importance, also do they vary a lot in culture and customs. The two most important and influential ones are the province of Empyres, of course, the political heart of the Empire and home to the capital of the same name, and the province of Ondora, considered the economic centre of the Empire and home to the largest city in all of Assiah. Other provinces with considerable influence are Grave, Waoi, Chennor and Heron, due to their political history and economic strength.
To this day the head of the nation is the Emperor and his family, their bloodline reaching back to the first kings of the Empyrian city-state. However its no longer an absolute rulership. For the last 900 years the nation has been a constitutional monarchy, governed by a democratically elected parliament. Although the Emperor's position as head of state possesses much power, only few have actually made use of it during the last centuries, preferring to take a more symbolic role. Each province is also lead by a democratically elected council and governor at its head. Only a few provinces show any deference to their own nobles and former royal families, Grave being the most prominent case.
There are several cities that deserve special mention, either due to their wealth and power, their unique culture or recent events that have gotten attention all across the Empire:
Empyres, Capital of the Province Empyres
Also known as "Neo Eden", Empyres is the technologically most advanced and most grandiose city of the Empire. It is also the fourth largest city in Assiah. While the suburbs and outer districts are no different than in any other imperial city, the old core of Empyres has long been transformed into a symbol of its status and might. Embellished skyscrapers stand amidst lush garden-complexes and wide avenues, while memorials, sculptures and other grand structures are everywhere. At the heart of the inner city is the imperial palace. A bombastic building, which does not only include the royal families residence but also the parliament and several administrative bureaus.
Ondora, Capital of the Province Ondora
Ondora is the largest and possibly richest city in all of Assiah. Once the heart if a mighty empire itself, the city, like its province, has become an economic hub. Positioned at the centre of the Empire's most important trade-routes, the city has made itself indispensable as largest and most important place for commerce. The city also possesses large industrial areas on its edges but its lifeblood is trade.
The inner city has a reputation for its large and varied establishments. Amidst the colourful signs and neon lights one can find shops, restaurants, pubs and other places of all size and nature. There is no item or service one cannot buy in Ondora. This is also true for the city's impressive red-light district. In fact, one part of it is solely dictated to transformation-related services, called the Purple Corner. In general Ondora always had a very positive attitude towards the transformed, ever since the days of the Mad Kings long before the formation of the Empire. No other imperial city has as large a population of transformees, except for such special cases as Suto and Jizza. Similarly there are many transformation-related establishments and services even outside the red-lights district. Not surprisingly there is also a surprisingly large presence of alchemists in Ondora and its guilt is considered the most influential of all.
Kaidalon, Capital of the Province Aischitar
Known as the City of Wizards, Kaidalon is the Empire's administrative centre for anything related to the use of magic. The city's history goes back to its founding by the precursor of the Magicians Guilt, 666 years after the Fall of Eden. These mages were outcasts and refugees from all over the continent, either persecuted for their talents or tired of being used like slaves by their masters, and lead by a core of Ondorian archwizards. For centuries the remote city remained independent, the powers of its inhabitants too much for any invading army to overcome. Not even Empyres dared to overwhelm the city by force, instead Kaidalon became part of the Empire in form of a truce.
Kaidalon is most famous for the Great Academy of Magical Arts. Every single magic user within the Empire has to be licensed here in order to legally make use of their skills. So even though there are lesser schools for magic all over the continent, the vast majority of imperial magicians had been students of the Academy at one point or another. As such its is a place of immense size and variation that only few other universities can compare to.
Obviously the large number of students have left their mark on the city, especially the town centre which has long since adapted to catering to such a young customer base. However Kaidalon has also kept is old tradition of the Wizard Market, a collection of small, private shops that sell all manner of magical trinkets and alchemical products.
Grave-Town, Capital of the Province Grave
Grave-Town is one of Assiah's oldest and its people are proud of their traditions and culture. Often very martial in nature, these customs are the result of the harsh, dangerous lands that make up most of the province. The weather is harsh and many species of monsters, like the ferocious Tarrasque, live in the mountains. As such the so called Grave-Guard has a reputation as most skilled but also savage regiment of beast hunters in the empire. Since the reformation of Karma's Realm the city has been on high alert, fearing that the Great Demon might try to expand his sphere of influence.
There is also another incident which has made the news a few years ago. The remote suburb of Downhill was struck by a new, mutated virus, named the B-Virus. Half magical in nature, it transforms the infected into a human-animal hybrid of the opposite sex. The animal-features seem to be random, although most of the infected have turned into vertebrate species so far. The transformation process is very slow, taking several months to complete and normally happens in two stages. The so called Shemale-Phase ends with the full forming of the animal aspect and some formation of the opposite sex' features, thus the same, as most end up with with female breasts but male genitalia at this stage. In the second phase the new sex of the infected fully adjusts, breasts shrinking away or genitals turning female. The B-virus is rather unstable in nature, though, and there is a large list of odd cases where the sex didn't change as expected, e.g. getting stuck in the first phase or not changing gender at all, or more extreme mutations occurred. There are even cases of conjoinments and other forms of mergers.
Downhill had been put under quarantine, which has been lifted a year ago, though. A vaccine had been successfully developed which stops the infected from spreading the virus.
Suto, Capital of the Province Chennor
Suto is possibly the most productive city in the Empire. It possesses the largest industrial sectors, especially in the production of steel, coal and chemistry.
The city is more famous, however, for its unique and bizarre set of laws resolving around alchemical modification of its women. Every single female citizen of Suto has to undergo a specific transformation either before marriage or at the 25th birthday. The resulting form resembles a small, monkey-like creature which seem physically fully male and ridiculously well endowed. In truth these Sutonian Women, as they are often called, are still entirely female, their genitalia a facsimile that is large enough to be penetrated and give birth. There are also a number of other similar and more extreme transformations listed, many of them a form of punishment for not adhering to the proper traditions as written down. The original reasons for these insane laws had most likely been to remove sexual attraction as a distraction form the citizen's duties. Today this is not the case, and possibly never worked in the first place, but the city still stubbornly enforces these ancient set of rules. Technically these laws violate the imperial constitution but during the early years of the Empire, the city was given special permission to continue its traditions, in exchange for economic favours.
Jizza, Town in the Province Heron
The city of Jizza is by itself not noteworthy at all. It is of average size, with a healthy enough economy and a little bit of industry, especially farming and timber. What made the town famous all across the Empire was the sudden wave of self-inflicted transformations, that started a few years ago and which technically still last till today. The reasons for this phenomenon are yet unknown but the most common theory is some sort of pollution of the local water, although no such contamination could be identified.
Whatever the cause, since it began women living in Jizza sooner or later begin to get obsessed with the idea getting transformed until they cannot bear it any longer and go through with it by any mean available. Some have concrete end results in mind, others prefer it random. The only trend is that the vast majority of women eventually decide to become fully male. That's why Jizza has gotten a reputation as city of man-lovers. Men, more precisely unmodified men, seem to be affected differently by the phenomenon. Instead of wanting to be changed, they start to develop a sexual desire for the transformed, their preferences shifting to the point where some might go even so far to forcefully transform their loved ones if they want to or not.
Authorities decided not to put Jizza under quarantine, since in the end almost all transformations so far have been self-inflicted and voluntary. Nonetheless people are advised not to enter the town. Not surprisingly many do not heed the warning, either because they underestimate the risk of being affected themselves or because they welcome it.
Freya was the first of the four Great Demons to appear. Only a few years after the Fall of Eden she travelled
across the continent, helped those in need, blessed those she liked with her sexual gifts and taught talented humans how to use magic. When she reached the island of Tiferet many people had already begun to worship her, not as a goddess but as a protector and benefactor of great power. Freya herself disliked the idea of ruling over anybody, she had no ambitions to be a leader, but in the end relented under the condition that she was just a patron not a queen. She would teach them her philosophy of peace and love and help them in their need.
In the year 145 after Eden's Fall she settled down and built her palace, not just her home but also a place for people to meet and enjoy themselves. A few centuries later her worshippers finally joined together and formed the nation known as Freya's Realm. Although the demoness is considered the supreme authority of the realm, nearly all political decision are in the hands of local councils, one for each of the realm's ten provinces. So far there has been not a single recorded case of Freya intervening with the political affairs of her realm, staying true to her decision not to rule.
Similar to the Great Demoness herself, her avatars take on similar roles as patrons. Almost every community is protected by at least one demon. Often they also serve as advisor for the local councils and are the highest medical authorities. They are beloved by the locals and often considered living symbols of Freya's connection to her people.
These are a cheerful and carefree folk. Often regarded a bit simple by the people of the Empire, they are less driven by ambitions and more focused on enjoying their lives to the fullest. Freya's Realm has many holidays and its jolly, almost orgy-like celebrations are famous all over the continent. The demons' blessings in form of extreme sexual transformations had always been popular especially among the female part of the population. The men of the realm are very pragmatic and rarely desire changes for themselves. These attitudes later lead to the “Day of the Great Change”, three years ago.
The national council decided a wide-reaching and unique way to celebrate what was considered the Great Demoness 2500th birthday, one of the nation's most important holidays. They announced that all women of the realm should be transformed into living symbols of pure sexuality and arranged for the construction of unique machines just for that purpose. Designed by Kaidaloni alchemists, magicians and engineers, these machines were meant to quickly and reliably transform a person in a specific way. Of course no woman was forced to transform herself but the unique nature of the realm's people, their amazingly positive attitude towards extreme transformations and their love for the Great Demoness meant that almost the entire female population whole-heartily embraced the idea and made use of the newly introduced devices. Today nearly all of the realm's adult women are transformed, including those who were changed in a different way, either by choice or because they were already transformed before. There are four majors types of machines that had been introduced, each one creating a form mostly reduced to a certain bodypart – penis, vagina, butt and breasts. The penis-form is the most common one, where usually the entire upper body of the woman is replaced with with a large, erect penis and suitable balls, while the legs and neither-regions are left unchanged. These cockwomen have become almost synonymous with the term „Freyan Women“. The transformation of basically half the population into walking genitalia, has caused quite dramatic social and economic changes, which the people of the Realm took in stride, though.
The influence and support of the Great Demoness caused the realm to stagnate however. For centuries there have neither been military, political nor scientific ambitions. All technological devices and modern comforts have been imported from the Empire. While the few towns of the realm are quite modern and don't seem to look much different from their imperial counterparts, most settlements are small farming communities, which have barely changed over the centuries. While the realm's economy primarily lives from farming and tourism, a growing number of communities is making use of the body-fluids of their changed women, e.g. breast-milk and cum. The realm is also the greatest exporter of unrefined demon-cum, since Freya's avatars are all too willing to share.
What people call Karma's Realm today is technically its second incarnation. In both cases it encompasses the Northern Wastelands or locally called the Silent Valley. It is the region north of the mountains which Grave-Town is set upon. The first time Karma's Realm came about was just after the Fall of Eden. The Great Demon built himself a twisted, labyrinthine palace and terrorized the surrounding lands. Eventually the region became known as his Realm, a bizarre wilderness inhabited by sexual monsters made from humans and beasts alike. People avoided the region whenever possible but the Great Demon was expanded his influence.
About 250 years after Eden's Fall the little fiefdom which would eventually grow into the Kingdom of Grave fought back against Karma's encroachment. The ruling lord swore not only to protect his lands but to push back and take the Silent Valley for themselves. Not matter how brave their armies were, it would have been a hopeless battle, had not the Great Demoness Freya decided to help the people of Grave. Accompanied by a dozen of her own demons, she joined the battle, protecting the human soldiers from the magic of Karma's brood. Eventually Karma agreed to a truce with Freya. The details of their meeting are not known but the Great Demon retreated into his palace, taking the majority of his monstrous creations with him, and dispersed his avatars, leaving them free to go wherever they want. The people of Grave were free to settle in the valley.
Apparently the Great Demon no longer considers the old truce with Freya binding or there was a condition in it which now gives him the allowance to take back what had once been his realm. It all began about a hundred years ago without any warning. The region was suddenly flooded with a variety of magical disasters and attacks. Some villages were hit by rain made of transformative demon-cum, others were hit by transformative plagues. Karma's avatars were seen all over the valley, attacking random victims or mutating entire settlements together, while some villages were overrun by sexual beasts with their own transformative abilities. In a few cases people just transformed with not detectable cause. In all cases, though, the Karma himself was strangely absent, though, apparently content to let his avatars roam free and release his powers only in wide-spread forms.
What can only be described as an invasion, spread from the settlements closest to Karma's palace outwards over the course of months, until finally reaching the mountains to the south. Like an unseen border, no incidents happened beyond this point. It seems the Great Demon has chosen to just keep the Silent Valley for himself and not expand his Realm any further. All attempts by Grave to stop the attacks were fruitless. Without demonic support, there was nothing that could oppose the might of a Great Demon. While most inhabitants of the region fell victim one of the many transformative hazards unleashed, a few were left alone and allowed to flee the valley unharassed. Most of these refugees were children, but also a handful of adults to accompany them.
Nowadays Karma's Realm is back to were it had been more than 2000 years ago. It is a wasteland, empty of people but roaming with all manner of sexual monsters. On top of that there are reports of unnatural phenomena, like magical storms and lakes entirely made of what seems like demon-cum. It also seems that many of Karma's demon have made the region their home, living among the monsters there. While many of these creatures are unique creations, there are a few stable species that have been born from the whole event. Most of them are little more than animals but there are reports of sentient creatures that have formed their own primitive cultures.