Ghost of Kalidria
The Kingdom of Xephos is unlike any other kingdom in Kalidria. The kingdom is comprised of many islands that men and women of the sea have made cities upon. A vast majority of the islands make up the city that is the kingdom, many bridges go between the islands. Once they outgrew the land that was there docks were set up in and around the islands over the reef to serve as additional land masses.
The only exports that Xephos has is from the sea itself, or from those that have learned to live off the sea. To say that Xephos has a tight fisted government body to hold it all together would be a very incorrect statement. The laws of Xephos involve harming others, but stealing is not really a thing of concern. If one gets caught however the consequences can be quite severe.
In actuality there is a very prosperous Thieve’s Guild orchestrated by none other than King Vero Kas himself, an artifact of his more adventurous years. Much of the royal treasury is made from collecting insurance money from residents, to ensure they do not suffer from random thievery. Traditionally the price of being caught in the act of theft is a finger from the hand of the unfortunate thief, though for attempting to steal from certain individuals(who have paid their for their insurance), the hand may be taken altogether. For offences of greater depravity however, the King has little tolerance and metes out rewards to the offenders with a chilling enthusiasm.
If a soul is foolish enough to threaten the safety of Xephos or her inhabitants, they will be imprisoned and starved for at least a week. Once the King has grown bored toying with them, they are rowed out upon a platform in the surf where spectators watch from shaded barges piled high with bleachers. At this time the criminal is challenged to an “Arm Wrestling” contest by the King’s prized pet, a ravenous Kraken. For this reason; assault, arson, rape, and murder are infrequent to the point of nonexistence in Xephos. There are far easier ways to get by than to risk the King’s displeasure.
As a venue famous for strong commerce and progressive views, Xephos is now home to a thriving industry of gambling and chance houses. Individuals looking to indulge in wagers and risks may find their appetites catered to by a variety of pleasure barges and dice dens where all manner of games may be invested in. Of special note are the Phoenix Ships, a select number of massive vessels with carved phoenixes upon their bows. These ships are laden with exotic foods and heavy liquors, baccarat tables and hanging combat cages where gladiators may square off against all number of beastly foes. The motto of the phoenix barge is “Your night will be worth every platinum coin spent.”
In addition to Xephos’s more continental attractions, the islands are also home to the Great Council of Magic as well as the Oracles of Cryptice. The former holds court in their massive pyramid on Xephos’ s largest island, at the Crossroads of Kalidria. The latter remains sequestered in their volcanic shrine apart from the other islands.
Overall, the mood and tone of Xephos is one of sea fairing fun. Music is commonplace all around, and a good drink is never far away. The major commerce of Xephos lies with the trade. It is said that if you cannot find it in Xephos it simply does not exist. They trade with every kingdom in Kalidria so there are people that have been to any port that you would seek. The king, Vero Kaas is seen walking from place to place without worry concern or care.
A surprising fact of Xephos, a place centered on trade and where thieving is not looked down upon, no one goes hungry or thirsty in the city kingdom. The King’s table is always open for any and all that are hungry.