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The Nation of Jechran

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The Nation of Jechran

PostAuthor: Orleron » Wed Apr 23, 2003 6:33 pm

The nation of Jechran is a conglomerate of small tribes that recognize a central leader and area as a focal point. This country borders Galdos on its western side and the Wastelands to the south. Eastward is the great ocean. This arrangement has given the country a high degree of isolation, which accounts for its peculiar society.

Jechran's western neighbor of Galdos is very mountainous, which causes a lot of rain to fall in the area. Moist air is lifted up high by the mountains of Galdos where it cools and loses its water as it sinks and passes over Jechran. This weather pattern is fueled further by the country's proximity to the sea. Thus Jechran can be quite rainy at times, and as a result, it is a lush and foggy land of forests, though not quite warm enough to support jungle life.

Long before the Fairy War, Jechran was part of the original orcish nation of Dobrekan. During this time period, the major inhabitants were orcs, however, they were largely at peace with the humans and elves of the surrounding nations. A brisk trade made all sides prosper, and huge communities of humans and elves sprang up in the forests of the orcish nation with the complete permission of the orcs.

Dwelling in the forest were small populations of fairies as well, both of the O'Ma and Titanian variety. When the Fairy War started, there were quite a few small skirmishes fought on the soils of Dobrekan, though it was never as devastating as elsewhere on Avlis, such as in the forests of T'Nanshi. Still, as the old stories relate, the orcs decided to capitalize on the Fairy War by attempting to wipe out both fairy races at once in an effort to shift the tides of good and evil on Avlis more towards their liking. Some however, will relate that the orcs did not like the fairies fighting on their soil, and when the Fairy War grew too large and became harder to contain, the orcs rallied to defend themselves by attempting to expel both fairy races from their land.

Whichever side was correct, the orcish fray into the Fairy War was what started the great war. When the nations began to attack Dobrekan, the orcs immediately started persecuting the elven and human settlers within their lands, even though the humans' home nation of M'Chek was not yet involved.

The Great War was the most devastating event ever to befall the world to date. Human and elven males living within the nation of Dobrekan rallied to defend their homes and their families by joining with the other nations attacking the orcs. This was considered to be a very large reason why the orcs were forced to flee Dobrekan alltogether. Halfway through the Great War, Dobrekan ceased to exist. The orcs were driven from the east coast all the way to the west coast where they were split into two groups that eventually became the orcish nations of Brekon and Dubunat.

The great carnage that went on throughout the great war depleted the abandoned nation of both orcs and males. Only the wives and mothers were left behind.... by the end of the war, they were mostly widows.

Distraught, and living in an abandoned land with almost no guidance, the women were rallied by a young goddess who took pity on them. Her name was Dre'Ana, daughter of O'Ma. Dre'Ana taught the women how to hunt and care for themselves and each other. She taught them the ways of the forest that she learned from her father. She taught them of bows and swords, and self-defense. She taught them of life and organization.

The human and elven women developed their society into a system of tribes. The few men that were left helped out as best they could, though as the tribes slowly developed, their power waned as their numbers increased slightly. Males soon became irrelevant to survival among the tribes, now known collectively as Jechran.

The name Jechran was taken from a lizard in the area known as a Jechira. They are small and fast in their early life, but soon become great and powerful as they age.

The nation of Jechran largely keeps to its own. Tribes will manage their own affairs and sometimes fight among themselves. Many tribes have a lesser queen, or an elder council of women. It generally varies from place to place, though most tribes hold the interests of the many before the few. Each tribe recognizes two things that hold them togethor. 1) Dre'Ana is the supreme leader of Jechran to whom they owe everything. 2) The mortal center of Jechran where all tribes send their representation is in the settlement of Myleah. Dre'Ana's mortal agent presides their as the nominal leader of all the tribes of Jechran. Through independence, they remain unified.

Males in Jechran:
Jechran is a nation of female dominance, and thus males are relegated to a lesser role in society. From an early age they are trained to be subservient and keep out of the way of women's affairs. This is done for the good of the tribe, for Dre'Ana taught them how to survive and their skills are important.

Each tribe only keeps a limited amount of males. The number varies by tribe, but most males are allowed to live in small communal man quarters somewhere in the village from age 15 to age 35 (humans) or age 70 to 200 (elves). After this age, the males are usually casted out into the Wilderness. Unfortunately, since their lives are mostly spent indoors or doing village labor, they never learn how to survive in the wild forests of Jechran and they often become food for big prey like lions or Jechiras.

Women who become pregnant are afforded care by the tribe. They have developed many different kinds of teas and ointments that supposedly increase the chances of female births. These remedies are employed during times when there are sufficient males in the tribes. If a woman gives birth to a male child after the tribal limit has been reached, the tribe will often take the baby and seek to trade it to another tribe who happens to be low on males at the moment. The baby is given to the new tribe in return for whatever other goods the tribe wishes to trade for... food, livestock, clothing. In rare cases, the baby will have to be abandoned if another tribe is not found, but this does not occurr too often.

A male baby spends its early life with its mother learning the ways of its tribe. It does this until it is old enough to stay with the other males in the tribe and do its duty of reproduction. There is no marriage in Jechran society. Women who are intent on having a child will choose a male of their liking and procreate.

Almost no consideration is given to human and elven distinctions. There are tribes that are largely human, and tribes that are largely elven, however they all follow the same precepts of femal dominance and faith in Dre'Ana, who is herself a half-elf. Human babies are often traded to elven tribes, and vice versa. Consequently, Jechran has the highest concentration of hybrid human-elves in the whole world. Many tribes consist totally of half-elven women who have slowly mixed their blood over the past two millenia. This is not considered a bad thing among the tribes, because the most important concept is survival, not race. Race generally does not matter among the tribes of Jechran.

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PostAuthor: Orleron » Thu Aug 21, 2003 2:57 pm

Inter-personal relationships within Jechran

Jechran is a collection of tribes that are nominally independent. This sets the backdrop for a lot of varied cultures and social structures within the country. The following information may be used as a template for player-made tribes in Jechran. You do not HAVE to follow this scheme, but it makes a lot of sense if you do.

I would like to thank Khaelindra for authoring this piece.

If anyone has a player-made tribe that they would like to get posted here, write it up and PM it to me. Try to use a similar template to the player-made tribes from Tyedu.

Social Structure Template for Jechran
by Khaelindra

* Each tribe only keeps a limited amount of males.
* There is no marriage in Jechran society

This means that there are, in general, no commitments made to each other between a male and a female. Following this, and given the females genetically coded need for closeness and intimacy, it stands to reason that the women form some kind of bond with each other. This need not be a sexual relationship, as sexual preference is gene-coded, rather then culture-based, but can be of course. Also, as shown in many R/L societies, the preference one shows needs not be the true preference one has, as one seeks to minimize conflict with and rejection by peer members of the society one lives in. However, the framework of what one considers 'normal' is very much nurture-driven, and the drive to comply is usually strong.

In most bondings (i use the generic term here), there is a clear role defined for each of the participants. Often there is a dominant role and a 'submissive' role involved, and the amount of diffrence in influence often dictates the extent to which each partner has the freedom to expand on the bond and the role involved. For example in real life: the more the male is considered to have the dominant role, the more freedom he has to act independently of the female and even to form relationships with other females. In many muslim societies where the male's position is profoundly dominant, the male also has the right to take more then one wife, while the other way around would be punishable by death if even found to have other contact happened once.

To project this to Jechran, where survival skills are of prominant importance, those women who have shown themselves to be able to protect/ fend for their tribes best, would have a dominant role over those who have not shown this. Martial quality would often be a measure for one's importance and standing, and it's in the best interest of the tribe that the strongest members have the best options to reproduce. It would also mean that powerful women would play a dominant role in inter-personal relationships with other women. This is a reflection of the R/L example of for instance zulu-tribes where the strongest warriors get the first pick from a group of eligible females in a mass 'wedding'-ceremony.

Enter the concept of the two roles in woman-woman relationship in Jechran: those of PROTECTOR and SUPPORTER (i'm sure these should be replaced by better-fitting local terms, but i don't know how their language works so i'll use these words for the elaboration).
The protector is the strong, dominant female who has high standing in the tribe, who is (very/more) valuable for it's continued existance and hence gets to place herself in a position of 'control'.
The supporter is the woman in the relationship that 'supports' the protector in her life, is there to take care of her when she returns from battle or the hunt, that runs the household and generally acts as the strength behind the protector.
The best R/L example would be the relationship between the 17th and 18th century kings of Ireland and their queens. The queens acted as councelor, adviser, sounding board and emotional backbone of the king and were respected on the basis of the prestige and standing of the him. It is NOT anything like the supporter being the possession of the protector, or anything as strongly deviating as that (like in same era muslim societies), for such strong distinctions could only be brought about by strong religious influence that distinguished between the partners. In Jechran this plays no part in this aspect of life as ALL women are the focus of Dre'Ana's goodwilling attention.

Within their relationship, the protector and supporter ar fairly equal as respect and love are the two cornerstones of the relationship, and in most cases their dealings with the rest of society is based on their common standing and expertise. The supporter can have her protector do her dealings with the rest of society, but she can also do so herself, keeping in mind that her actions reflect on the status of her protector as well as her own, and vice versa for the protector.
However, there are two major differences that are both based on the perceived difference in merit to the tribe between them:
* a protector is allowed to have more then one supporter. In most cases, the exact implementation of this will be handled in good agreement, and the supporter has every right to make her feelings about other candidates known, but ultimately it is the decision of the protector. As supporters derive much of their standing from their protector, the stronger protectors will be able to attract, and sustain, more supporters. In turn, the number of supporters reflects the outsiders the standing of the protector in the community. Essentially this makes for 'families' that are more or less built like those in medieval arab societies: the 'common' protectors are such in no more then name and will have a single supporter, while the highest, most important ones will have up to half a dozen, maybe more.
* The protector has the freedom to choose any male she wants, but supporters will have to get the protector's accordance to choose a mate. This not only ensures that the strongest members will have the most possibilities to procreate (a sound survival tool) but also shows the dedication of the supporter to her protector. Also here, all is normally done in good agreement and mutual respect, but the protector has the final word.

The bondings between protector and supporter are usually done by ways of a mutual oath, where the two agree to love, care for and respect each other and accept their mutual responsibilities. If the protector already has one or more supporters, the newly bonding supporter also promises to respect and care for the other supporters, as they all are symbol to the standing of the protector and thereby to her own.

As said before, the protector usually takes on more supporters in good consideration of the feelings of the supporters she already has, but at times concensus will not be reached. This is the only moment where a supporter can 'retract' her support for the protector: by not accepting the coming of a new supporter. Essentially, this means that the protector gives up the bond with the former supporter in favor of the new one.

A 'family' in Jechranian terms, following this concept, would therefor consist of one protector, her supporter(s) and their children. The supporters are expected to organize and run the household, often having a 'senior' supporter to coordinate this, and the protector is responsible for their upkeep, their protection and settling domestic disputes.
"Truth has no form."
--Idries Shah

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