Blood and Thunder
Faberterra was the heart of the Iron Empire, the place where the destinies of very far countries were decided. Today, Faberterra is only a shadow of its former glory. The rich countryside, full of large estates and prosperous farms, is slowing decaying, because the landowners spend more time indulging in personal pleasure than looking after their properties. Commerce is still prosperous, but only because Faberterra is at the center of the world. The tide is turning and more and more ships choose Askerios to dock.
“Life is short and the Empire is fading. We are doomed. So, let’s enjoy ourselves”.
This is the common way of thinking in Faberterra. So far, the state has never been invaded, but no one can forget that the barbarian hordes were recently stopped at Felantium, which isn’t that far. So many Imperials have decided to spend their last days indulging in orgies, feasts and other exotic entertainments, while others regularly visit the temple of the Divine Couple and pray for the Empire and their own soul.
Yet, their prayers seem to go unanswered. Certainly, Faberterra is still the capital of the Empire and its people are haughty, but it is nothing more than a habit. The mighty Phalanxes are reduced to a few units, and their loyalty isn’t always certain. The Emperor protects his palace with a force of mercenaries, while the Phalanxes are assigned to patrol the borders. Many believe that sooner or later a Phalanx commander will try to overthrow the Emperor and seize the crown.
Faberterra City is the biggest settlement of the known world: almost a million people live there — and the situation is growing tenser by the day. Bad news from the north, less commerce and a stagnating economy cause turmoil among the people, whom the Emperor tries to appease by distributing free food and organizing great shows of gladiators in the arena.
Today the Arena of Faberterra is greater than the one in the City of Princes in Tricarnia and its gladiators are real celebrities — all of which has been achieved by almost depleting the Emperor’s coffers. Many wonder how much longer the situation can hold out.
Umberto Pignatelli. (2011). Beasts & Barbarians, pp. 24-25. Studio 2 Publishing.ISBN 978-8393179657