The Death of Kalak, the Revolutionary Council, and the New Tyr
On the first day of the Year of the Priest’s Defiance, the sorceror-king Kalak of Tyr was assassinated during a gladiatorial match by the mul gladiator Rikus. The city-state could easily have slid into chaos and civil war. However, a Revolutionary Council was quickly formed and appointed Tithian of Mericles the new king of free Tyr. The Revolutionary Council consisted of representatives from the nobles (primarily Agis of Asticles, a powerful psionicist who organized the nobles against Kalak and convinced them to accept Tithian’s First Edict), the templars, the tradesmen, the merchants, the military, and the freed slaves (represented by Sadira, a powerful half-elf sorceress and former slave who many see as being an agent for the Veiled Alliance) as well as Rikus.
Tithian’s First Edict was to free the slaves and abolish slavery within the territory controlled by Tyr. This made him enormously popular with the people and allowed him (and the Revolutionary Council) great leeway in reshaping Tyrian society. The templars, formerly Kalak’s servitors, became the new civil servants and administrator class of the city. Having lost the magical power gained from Kalak, they turned to new forces, building observatories and looking to the stars. The Tyrian Guard reshuffled itself and began to professionalize, with experienced soldiers rising to positions of power to replace the templars who had previously dominated the command ranks. The gladiators, always popular in Tyr and a big part of the revolution, generally became highly-sought-after guards or joined the elite Crimson Legion in the military.
The Dragon’s levy
Now, a year has passed since Kalak’s death. Tyr’s iron mines are shipping ore again, and its economy is struggling through the process of reforming itself without the crutch of slavery. The season of the Dragon approaches, and some in Tyr wonder what Tithian intends to do about the Dragon’s levy. Since the beginning of time, Tyr (and the other city-states) have provided the Dragon with a sacrifice of a thousand slaves per year, marched off into the desert for an unknown purpose, never to return. Kalak’s assassination occurred on the first day of the season of the Dragon, and Tyr did not pay its levy that year in the chaos of revolution. The Dragon stalked the Wastes, collecting levies from the other city-states, but no wrath fell on Tyr for not upholding its traditional duty. This may have emboldened King Tithian to deny the Dragon again, a move that could both make him widely admired (standing up to the evil of the Dragon) but also widely reviled (endangering Tyr). In any case, without slaves, Tyr cannot pay the levy except with free citizens, and surely having the king’s army round up a thousand freemen to turn over to the Dragon would destroy Tithian’s popularity. The problems looms ever closer with no solution on the horizon, even as merchants begin to bring news that the silhouette of the Dragon has been seen in the distance, and the season is beginning.