Melatarin

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The homeworld of the Shyedarians is Melatarin, and it is not a welcoming sight, due both to the climate of the planet itself, and the people who live there. It is a hot, mostly arid world, with a few small oceans and lakes with water toxic to non-Melatariners. The local wildlife, similarly, has adapted both to the harsh climate and the deadly company of the Shyedarians, and tend to be only the strongest, fastest, and toughest (as well as the ugliest) of the animals that may once have roamed the world. Even the sky of Melatarin is a poisonous looking orange-red color, matching its sun.

The largest inhabited area of Melatarin is the Imperial City, which is the home not only of the Shyedarian Emperor, but of the Shyedarian Military as well. It is also an industrial and commercial center, the best place for trade on Melatarin. Other cities exist on Melatarin, but mostly they are based around military installations or heavy industrial complexes. Housing is varied, from mere caves for the poorest Shyedarians, to grand apartments for those of sufficient social standing and wealth.

[edit] Geography

Melatarin is a mainly tropical world, with temperatures varying between 10 degrees Celsius at the poles to 45 degrees Celsius at the equator. About 60% of its surface is covered with water, and it has an active weather system, with heavy rains and occasional hurricanes. There are only a few old mountain ranges on Melatarin, and almost no tectonic activity. There is only one deep ocean, while the rest of the oceans are quite shallow.

The land of Melatarin is divided into numerous small continents. Most of the land is desert, although it tends to become rockier and swampier toward the poles. Melatarin has no native woody plants and no large forests.

[edit] Imperial City

There is only one major city on Melatarin: Imperial City. It serves as the seat of the Shyedarian government, location of the Crag where the Imperial Palace stands. It is also the planet's main trade center, having the only civilian spaceport, as well as all privately owned industries.

The city itself sprawls across most of the continent it is built on, covering over 10,000 square kilometers. Its mass transit system is among the best in the Zulu sector, with underground high-speed maglev trains for trips between the city and its suburbs, and bus-like antigrav sleds on fixed routes for intratown travel. Most surface roads are restricted to public transports only, while the airspace above the roads are for personal antigrav vehicles, for the small percentage who are wealthy enough to own them.

The heart of the city is dominated by the government, both municipal and planetary, with the Crag in the center overlooking everything. The Crag also serves as the Shyedarian military's headquarters, although their administrative offices are dispersed across the city and the other industrial complexes around the planet. Surrounding the government sector are the commercial sectors, where private companies and services operate, and where most of the city's recreational activities are found as well. Some upscale residential towers can be found in the government and commercial sectors, but most are found in the residential sector that surrounds the commercial, consisting of more modest residential towers and smaller dwellings, dotted with businesses and services that support everyday life such as restaurants, hospitals, and so on.

The Imperial City Guard is the city's main police force, headquartered on the edge of the government sector. Its' main responsibility is the security of the commercial and government sectors, where it maintains a heavy presence. The Imperial City Guard also sends occasional patrols through residential areas, but local law enforcement is usually left to neighborhood leaders who organize their own watch organizations with the approval and funding of the central government.

[edit] Outer Territories

The areas outside of the Imperial City and the other industrial and military complexes around the planet are sparsely populated, but there are some communities that live outside the direct influence of the government. Because there are no woody plants for construction, these communities are usually centered around mountainous areas with natural or artificial caves used by their founders for shelter. However, over time, they tend to expand with structures made of stone, metal and/or plastic, built by their inhabitants.

Communities in the outer territories are completely self-governing, with their own laws and their own systems for determining leadership. Most often, they center around willful individuals who are able to prove their ability to lead and provide for their people, as well as organize defense to protect what they have.

Nothing is provided to the outside communities by the government, so they must survive by their own means. Some communities get by mainly on trade with other communities or with whatever city-dwellers are willing to accept them, providing local goods they can gather from the land, or providing whatever personal services they are qualified for, such as security or entertainment. Other communities mainly scavenge, living off of what the city, industrial complexes and other communities throw away or lose. Some of the more remote communities take a more aggressive approach: they either steal from other communities or the outskirts of the city and industrial centers, or they form raiding parties to take what they need by force. Since the government also provides no protection to the outside communities, they are each responsible for their own security. The complex web of alliances and rivalries between the communities keeps them all in a state of heightened alert, and they tend to be very distrusting, especially of outsiders.

In addition to each other, the communities also have to worry about people from the city. Although the prevailing opinion among city-dwellers is that people from the outside territories are mentally and genetically inferior (otherwise they would find jobs in the city and industrial complexes and live better lives), the Shyedarian military will occasionally seek recruits from them, and when it cannot get enough volunteers, it will take them by force and press them into service. It is also politically popular to take a tough stance on the outer territory communities, as city-dwellers near the borders often must deal with the raiding bands from the more aggressive groups. It is not unheard of for neighborhood and municipal leaders to arrange strikes against the outer communities merely to boost their image with their constituencies. While the more peaceful communities are usually avoided, mistakes are sometimes made, either due to bad intelligence gathering, or deliberate frame-jobs by the raiding and scavenging communities hoping for easy pickings after an attack.

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