Maintained by Edward Keyes
At the present time, the way it works is that someone will lay claim to an aspect of the world -- or be nominated against their will -- and be designated an authority on it. The current authorities I know of are: Josh, on the inn's immediate environment and overall laws of the world, Jamie, on the country of Kedmall to the north, Lily-mun, on religions of the world and the meld-elves, Kevin, on the Order of the Crucible, someone-whose-name-I've-forgotten, on the community of naga-like creatures to the east, and myself (Ed), on the Kingdom of Irellion.
For the rest of this page, I'll lay out my own area of authority and try to touch only briefly on others', since of course what I say is not definitive in those cases. The whole point of this exercise is to get other patrons to get involved in the affairs of Iroch. So let's just jump in.
There is a pass through the mountains to the east, and on the other side is the small town of Inconahe. No one knows much about it, and someone should volunteer to be the authority on it since it will obviously be important in the future.
To the north is the country of Kedmall, a corrupt land ruled by a council of wizards. The signature of its citizens is a green sash. Ask Jamie about it.
To the south is the Kingdom of Irellion, which is what this page is about.
Immediately below him is the Circle, a council of advisors who in practice wield considerable power in their own right. They are not appointed by the king but by themselves, so there is a constant uneasy balance maintained of temporary alliances among their number. At present there are eleven members: three wizards, five aristocrats, a priest, and two spymasters. Technically they only advise the king, but in practice it would lead to assassinations and/or civil war for the king to veto a measure they overwhelmingly approve.
Below them are the Seats, the equivalent of a parliament. One can become a Sitter either by inheriting your Seat as a member of the aristocracy, or by popular election. Needless to say, this mix of lords and commoners is quite contentious, and thus essentially accomplishes nothing more than keeping both the gentry and the townsfolk occupied while real power is wielded at higher levels. A Sitter may have considerable local influence, however, particularly since tax money flows through the Seats.
The government of Irellion is quite corrupt, and bribery is the order of the day. It puts great stock in contracts and treaties, but almost always disregards them when convenient, inventing some technicality for why the treaty is invalid. A favorite tactic is to send out a diplomat "empowered to negotiate on behalf of the king", but when the treaty becomes inconvenient, the diplomat has "overstepped his authority and will be disciplined appropriately while we negotiate a new treaty".
Another, more subtle characteristic is their prejudice. Irellion is overwhelmingly a human kingdom, and a sizeable minority of citizens have a measure of distrust or even hatred for other races. This prejudice has been institutionalized in many cases, such as in citizenship tests for government posts. Irellion patrols are notorious for harassing nonhuman settlements on the outskirts of the kingdom.
Besides that, the people are quite similar to the Generic Fantasy World(TM) population. Most are not nearly so corrupt as the higher level of government. One group deserving special attention is the Order of the Crucible, a society of paladins serving the Generic God of Good(TM). Although they are a wide-ranging society, their headquarters is based in Irellion, and they do what they can to ameliorate the more gross injustices they run across.
Irellion is currently at war with Kedmall. The technical reason is a border dispute to the east, but really both countries just hate each other, and Irellians need little excuse to go after the "greenies". There is a subtext to this war, however, as both countries have gotten hints of a vastly powerful magical artifact of some kind in the mountains and area surrounding the Inn.
Recently, an Irellion patrol butchered a settlement of meld-elves in the mountains, leaving Lily the sole survivor. Their original mission was to interrogate the village elders for information on the artifact, but the patrol commander was a real evil bastard and the elders were very uncooperative and it all just spun way out of control. Dram killed them all when he happened across the slaughter.
Who are these agents? What are they like? How will they deal with the Inn patrons? I have no idea. So create a character and roleplay an Irellian!