19 May 2009

Shadow Gates: North America pt. II

In which we take a closer look at the CSA.

The heart of the Confederation resides in the the rich breadbasket lands that lie between the Mississippi and Missouri Rivers; areas once known as Minnesota, Iowa, Missouri, and Arkansas. The Confed also claims the southern portions of Wisconsin and Michigan as well as the northern parts of Illinois, Indiana, and Ohio.

The Confederacy is both more and less than meets the eye. The Confed State, and its ruler, Emperor Karl Rothschild (President for life of the Americans, Governor of Iowa, Overlord of the Marches, Rex Mundi, by grace of God Emperor of Man) claims universal sovereignty as a successor state to the vanished Imperium. In reality the Confederation is a loose patchwork of City-States, Chartered Cities, Feudal Baronies, and Client Kingdoms. The Title of Emperor is technically elective, with each Elector in the College having a vote (the Electoral College being composed of great lords, city mayors, important clergy, and various guild masters) but practically only members of the Rothschild family have been elected, considering that the Rothschild heir is also ruler of the largest and Capital city, D-town, and the largest single polity, the Provisional Republic of Iowa. Karl is also the feudal overlord of a large majority of the Confederation's land holders, and they are honour bound to support and defend their liege-lord.

The structure of the Confederacy follows these rough lines.

The States: These are the largest organizational polities within the Confed, and are more or less (un)controlled by their technically elective State Governors. The only real power State Governors usually have is to regulate commerce within their State and to call out the Guard. Governors also formally have the power to assign Vaki (serf, short for evacuee) labor to the Farmers or Ranchers (hereditary land holders), although doing so arbitrarily is a good way to get replaced (usually after a fatal accident). Governors also serve at the Emperor's pleasure and after being confirmed by Imperial Decree, may be replace at any time.

Baronies: The Barons represent the wealthiest land-holders of the Confed, and their holdings form large portions of the States. The Barons are themselves feudal overlords and receive the fealty of...

Knights, Sheriffs, Farmers, and Ranchers: The smallest landholder to be Imperial Citizens, these lower nobles form the base of the feudal pyramid from which Emperor Rothschild derives his power and authority. Landholders lord it over...

Vakis: Evacuees, effectively serfs, these descendants of displaced and fled city dwellers were organized as brute labor during the Fall and have been mostly bound to land ever since. Vakis flee to pass themselves off as...

Freeholders: The effervescent yeomanry of the Confed, the successful eventually become Landholders and the failures die or run off to the cities to become...

Charted Citizens: The citizens of the various Chartered, Imperial, Free, of State Cities owe their citizenship directly to the Emperor as represented by the mayor. They may be drafted at any time and must pay taxes or be Evacuated as excess and unproductive.

States and Territories
Provisional Republic of Iowa: The very heart and core of the Confederacy, from D-Town emanates the word and will of Emperor Rothschild. The city is built upon amongst the runs of ancient Des Moines, and is the center of a network of canals and railroads, knitting together the Confederacy. The corn harvest of Iowa is the single largest economic fact of the Confederacy, and perhaps North America. This fact underlies the source of Iowa's strength, the largest pure human population in North America. The size and impressivness of her soldiery has led to the saying 'as big and fierce as a cornfed Iowan'. Capital: D-Town

Le' Estat du Nord: Minnesota, the State of the North is the most northern State of the Confederacy. Only the unorganized Territory of Ontario and Dominion of Winnipeg (independent, client of Britannia) provides a buffer for the Confed proper against the icy winds of Ithaqua and his Gnoph-keh God-Kings in their ice-ziggurats. Minnesota also shows the softer side of the Confed. Here the populace is mostly literate, and actually does voes vote for their Sheriffs and other county officials. This State is also the cradle of the official 'Humanity first, including demi-humans' policy; when Minnesota and xenophobic Iowa (and others) first merged to create the Confederacy in the first years after the fall, the Dvergar of the Iron Range were the pride of the State and very valued members of the community. No less than the First Emperor himself gave the Dvergar his blessing and oath of protection in exchange for the fealty of the Dver-lords in their halls of stone. Capital: Cloud City

Kingdom of Ishpeming: A nominally independent client state of the Confederacy, the Kingdom is useful a transhipment point for trade with the Great Lakes region and a manufacturer of low(er) quality weapons (usually heavier and less accurate) that can be guided to supply other polities without tracing back to official Confed policy. Capital: Ishpeming Court

Missouri: Another founding member of the Confederacy, also known as 'Little Dixie' this State is even more xenophobic and human supremacist than the Iowans, if that is even possible. This is, of course, not without good reason. Little Dixie borders on the St. Louis Hell Gate, a permanent gate that spews forth horrible monstrosities with terrible appetites. Most land-holders, including Governor Hannibal Simpson are initiated knights of the White American Nationalist Klan (or Wankers for short) an ardently racist and militaristic military order that forms the backbone of the State Guard. Missouri also mainly provides the para-military 'bushwackers' who mount 'filibusters' into non-Confed territories. Capital: Fort Jefferson

Arkansaw: An unincorporated territory of the Confederacy, Arkansaw has Four main portions. Firstly there is Fort Mountain Home, in the Boston Mountains. Here the First Airlord oversees the First Air Corps 'Ozark Airlords' with the twin missions of making air strikes on the St Louis Hell Gate and providing support for the Southron Marcher Lords in their fight against the vile Barracuda in the swamplands. Next is Fort Smith headquarters of the Lord of the Indian Marches. Next, there is Fort El Dorado headquarters of the Lord of the Southron Marches. Finally, Texarkana is a fully Chartered Imperial City, and center of the Confederacy's efforts to draw Lonestar into full confederacy. The ancient capitol of Little Rock is little more than a Necropolis, inhabited only by mutants, gate-spawn, and ghouls.

Wisconsin: The Cheeseheads of Wisconsin are proud members of the Confederacy, and joined shortly after Iowa, Missouri, and Minnesota signed the original Articles of Confederation. From the cities of New Wausau Governor Richards rules with an iron fist over the second most populous State of the Confed.

Chiopolis: Located in the unorganized, unincorporated Illinois territory, Chiopolis is D-Town's only competitor as first city of the Confederacy. Consisting largely of the rebuilt, fortified, and resettled corporate Arcology that once housed workers and formed a hub on the old Chicago-Dallas Mag-Lev line, located at Chillicothe Illinois, Chiopolis is a wonder to behold. Home of an advanced research lab from Before the Fall, Chiopolis is the the main source for the Confederations advanced technology. Deep underground in the SubUrbs manufactories and robotic forges run by teknomancers churn out hyper-advanced materiel for the Confed War Campaign.

Fort Wayne: A Confed outpost on the flank of the vile Federation of Sorcery in the Ohio river valley. Territorial capital for Indiana.

Michigan: Arsenal of humanity, the newly created state of Michigan is rapidly becoming an industrial powerhouse. The ancient factories left by General Products Inc. in Mo-Town (Old Detroit) were found to have been underground in hardened bunkers. Apparently one of the Emperors of the Old Imperium was paranoid about protecting industrial centers. General Dynamics tanks, planes, cyborgs, trucks, and other materiel are finding their way into Confed war stocks. Most settlers in Michigan are from Iowa or Wisconsin.