The World of Three Suns and Three Planes
On its own, Ajjamah has little to differentiate it from a hundred other worlds. It has three suns, to be sure, but only one is bright enough to provide enough light to keep the planet alive, and is dimmer than our own ever so slightly (although slightly larger). It has one moon–and tides that reach four times the height of those on Earth, with an average of 2.0 metres up and down instead of 0.5–but because of the respective sizes of the moon and sun a total solar eclipse is never possible (the moon, Tana–Salvian Tanā–has an angular diameter of 0.45º compared to Suran’s 0.625º). The planet itself is 87% the size of Earth, and has 95% of the radius; objects fall at 9.43 m/s2, very close to that of Earth proper. Ajjamah is composed primarily of iron and silicates, like Earth, and has a radioactive core that hopefully won’t go out for a good long while yet.
One rather subtle difference is that because of a slightly less stable solar system, Ajjamah’s axial tilt varies a great deal more than Earth’s. It has ranged from 21º to around 28º over the past 40,000 years (compared to Earth’s 22º to 24.5º), leading to some rather exciting changes every so often for the planet; the current axial tilt is 24.5º, still quite a dramatic chance from the 25º it was 500 years ago. (Here it is portrayed at about 15º, a good deal of the way through the northern winter.)
Currently there are five broad landmasses, each bearing its own name:
- Pelia, the continent to the left, ranging from the Qutosbegek Mountains in the west to the Salvian Peninsula to the east, and from the Sealander Coast in the north to the Malehi Archipelago to the south. Ethnicities of note: the Sorcerers, the Telepaths, the Swoopers, the Botanists, the Cannibals, the Recollectors, the Divers, the Finders, and the Keepers.
- Borealia, the northernmost continent, largely covered by ice and inhabited by an eclectic mix of mammals and birds. Ethnicities of note: the Trancers, the Vampires, and the Statues.
- Meniscia: the smallest of the continents out in the Eastern Ocean, with a fairly large desert in the western portion and several smaller islands to the north. Ethnicities of note: the Normal People.
- Hemeraea: the largest of the continents (even discounting Akwa), ranging from Hercua in the west to the High Plateau to the Whirlwind Plains to the Inclement Shores in the far east. Ethnicities of note: the Crusaders, the Berserkers, the Eternals, the Performers, the Size-Changers, the Hunters, the Shifters, and the Sane People.
- Akwa: the northwestern portion of the continent shared with Hemeraea, divided by the High Plateau, and largely known for its two river basins: the Omiri to the west (running through the Ochu Desert), and the Acúraçõ to the east (the largest river basin on the planet). Ethnicities of note: the Zombies, the Reincarnators, the Changers, the Shifters, the Impaled People, the Bouncers, and the Pathfinders.
Thanks to Deep analysis and geological study, we can roughly map the world of Ajjamah over a period of 200 million years. As below:
- 200-160mya: the entire world is one large supercontinent, formally called Metrogaea or “mother earth”. Around 260 million years ago, the continents start to split up. Also around this time, the first lactiles evolve.
- 160-120mya: there are now two massive continents, Eusia to the south and Boreopelia to the north.
- 120-75mya: By 100 million years ago, Eusia had split into the mainland of Somaea to the east and the island chain of Odontia to the west, where Hercua is today. The continent of Meniscia split off from Boreopelia 115 years ago, and 80 million years ago the split between Borealopotamia and Pelia was complete.
- 75mya-35mya: thanks to continental drift going a little haywire, Somaea drifted north to catch part of Odontia (forming the modern continent of Hemeraea in almost complete form) by 50 million years ago, but another part drifted further northwest towards Pelia. Borealopotamia broke into Borealia (covering the Arctic Circle) and Potamia (initially a large clump of land in the temperate zone) 60 million years ago, leaving it isolated.
- 35-15mya: the planet is in a nearly-recognizable form. Potamia rammed into Hemeraea around 20 million years ago, creating the High Plateau and making possible the enormous rivers that give the subcontinent its name. The clump of land that broke forth from Odontia fastened itself to the easternmost edge of Pelia–the Salvian Peninsula–a mere 16 million years ago, and occasionally forms a land bridge with Potamia (for which the politically correct term is now Akwa). The world is undergoing a warming period, drowning most of the south of Pelia and closing over the southern tip of Meniscia.
- 15mya-Present: Salvi has settled down, as has the High Plateau. There is an island chain, not very large but definitely present, between Hemeraea and Meniscia, and a few small species have made it across the gap. Borealia is mostly frozen over, an icecap larger than Antarctica, but there’s still the Ayuvarai Peninsula left untouched. Akwa’s land animals have spread across the continent of Hemeraea and even into Pelia through the on again-off again land bridge with Salvi–including a number of ape species…
Areas of Note
- The Malehi Archipelago: the largest archipelago in the world, stretching across the southern portion of the Central Sea. Dragons abound, as do people who never forget and worship emotions.
- The Qutosbegek Mountains: one of the higher mountain ranges in the world, pushed up by the westward movement of Pelia. Its dominant inhabitants are the Winged People, who point and laugh at gravity, often from a great height.
- Salvi: a peninsula on the eastern edge of Pelia, with volcanoes across the northern edge. The inhabitants, the Sorcerers, are more closely linked to their Thinking Souls, and can manipulate objects in the Dream. The spiced hot chocolate is excellent if you like that sort of thing.
- The Sealander Coast: a thick strip of temperate rainforest stretching across northwestern Pelia. The inhabitants, naturally, have much to do with the trees; the Botanists cultivate them, and the Dryads become them.
- Zàhn Kwēn: a peninsula about halfway across Hemeraea on the northern coast, home to the Berserkers and Illusionists. Be sure to try the wide selection of teas available, made from nine different plants.
TO BE CONTINUED
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