Kxesh

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The empire of Kxesh has had many names throughout its history, as it has had many languages.

The native tribespeople were dark-skinned and similar in appearance to the Stars; the Kxels and the Stars nevertheless agreed where their tribal boundaries were, and there were no mixed groups; everyone was either a Star or a Kxel (in some contexts the Kxels were called Swords).

Language

There has never been a single official language in Kxesh. Languages are distantly related to those of Baeba, but when united as an empire, the Kxeshians tended to use foreign languages rather than those of their own homelands.

In 3141, Lenians of the Subumpamese tribes settled Kxesh and smothered all of the aboriginal languages, making FILTER the official language of all of Kxesh.

Geography and climate

Kxesh today stretches from about 12°N to 22°N, with the population density being greatest in the central area. In the south, the climate is a tropical rainforest, and rainfall decreases moving north, soon becoming a true desert. Even so, most of the population lives in the desert because rivers flowing from the mountains supply them with water and the land is most free of obstructions here.

Demographics

Kxesh is racially mixed but adheres to strict tribal boundaries, so there are no individuals identifying as mixed-race. All Kxels are either Swords (traditionally dark-skinned) or FILTER (traditionally blonde and fair-skinned ("Lenians")). The groups are allies, so there is frequent intermarriage; each mixed couple decides which group to raise their children in. The Swords outnumber the FILTERs by about 3 to 1.

Contact with Dreamland

Many Swords moved to Dreamland to get away from the conservative politics of their host empire. They moved mostly into the Sessi zone, which was geographically closest.

History

In 2057, a feminist organization calling itself FILTER declared war on Kxesh, even though they shared a common enemy, Nama. FILTER considered Nama a potential future ally because in Nama, women had many rights that men did not. By contrast, the feminists in FILTER claimed that Kxesh was a male-dominated empire and that its men needed to be broken.

However, some Swords supported FILTER and tried to get the women to listen to them so they could stop the war. The war slowed down as FILTER signed an alliance with the Crystals and Kava, but this alliance also meant that Kxesh could no longer call on surrounding nations for help against FILTER.

Treaty with FILTER

After more than a thousand years, FILTER signed a peace treaty with Kxesh in which all of the lands controlled by both tribes were united into a single empire, and the Swords were given the right to violate certain laws. Since the Swords outnumbered FILTER, it could also be said that there were laws that only applied to FILTER members. But most of these laws affected men, and men were not usually allowed to join FILTER.

Even though the Swords outnumbered the FILTERs, they learned FILTER's language, because by this time Kxesh was just one part of the empire, and the remainder of the empire was entirely run by FILTER.


Contact with TCT

In the winter of 4191, a troop of 476 children arrived from Paba, in the war-torn empire of Anzan. They were mostly orphans fleeing conscription, as their army had begun to run out of adults. Yet they owned slaves, and these slaves agreed to sail to Kxesh with them and build them a luxury resort on a leeward mountain slope with plenty of sun all year long.

Once the luxury resort was complete, the children moved in, glad that they had been brave enough to disobey their military. However, they soon realized food was difficult to come by, and that the mountain slope they had chosen had been unsettled for that very reason. There were locals in a nearby river valley, but few of these were interested in adopting the children, and the children had no labor skills which they could trade for food.

A group of adults calling themselves the River People soon arrived in the children's fort, having heard of their plight shortly after they had left. The River People promised to protect the children from potential abusers, and also to provide them all the food and other supplies they needed to live safely. Yet the River People had their own needs as well, and the children never fully agreed on whether they were better off with the River People or without them.

As the children aged, many moved out of the resort and joined mainstream Kxel society. Those who stayed found that, with a smaller population, the resort was livable after all, and therefore their private town became permanent as they raised new families within its walls.

Notes