Wasp-kinden

  Art by David Mumford   The Wasp Empire is scarcely three generations old, born when the chieftain of one hill-tribe grew strong enough to force all his neighbours to bow the knee. The Wasps have flown from strength to strength since then, embracing new ways of war, conquering cities and enslaving entire kinden. Now, […]

Dragonfly-kinden

  Art by David Mumford The great and insular Dragonfly Commonweal, the Lowlands’ northern neighbour, has been declining for centuries, unable to sustain order and peace across its many principalities. A state already tottering has been left in ruins after a twelve-year campaign by the Wasp Empire. With thousands dead in battle and thousands more […]

At the Gates of Myna- Empire in Black and Gold Chapter 1

After Stenwold picked up the telescope for the ninth time, Marius said, “You will know first from the sound.” The burly man stopped and peered down at him, telescope still half-poised. From their third-storey retreat the city walls were a mass of black and red, the defenders hurrying into place atop the ramparts and about […]

The Ants Go Marching…

Warfare amongst the Kinden changed irrevocably after the Apt revolution, and continues to change with each artificer’s refinements. In the Lowlands the main model for an army is that of the Ant-kinden, who hold themselves supreme in the field of mass combat ;(1). The other major Apt model is that of the Wasp Empire’s many […]

Meet the Neighbours Part 3 – Black and Gold

It might seem that the Beetle-kinden of the Lowlands are the only force for progress and Aptitude in the world, set against a tapestry of the ignorant and the superstitious: Moths, Dragonflies, Mantids and Spiders being dragged kicking and screaming into the world post-revolution. If only. The Lowlanders are not alone. Although the overthrow of […]

Meet the Neighbours part 2: The Spiderlands

The Spiderlands’ relationship to its Lowlander neighbours has always been a complicated one. For a start, few Lowlanders really understand either the extent of the Spiderlands or how it works. To the Lowlanders, the Spiderlands is exemplified in the cities of Seldies, Everis and, further south, Siennis, that sit at the south-east corner of the […]

Meet the Neighbours part 1 – the Commonweal

So we have the Lowlands, not a political unity but a geographical area containing four feuding Ant city-states and a couple of Beetle cities, not to mention the detritus left over from the Days of Lore, Moth-kinden and Mantis-kinden clinging on in forests and on mountaintops.   The Lowlands is sandwiched between two traditional neighbours, […]

Cradle of Civilisation

The dominion of the Moth-kinden before the revolution was mostly referred to by its masters as “ours”, but by the other old Inapt powers as the Shadowlands or the Darklands after the Moths’ nocturnal habits. After their fall, and the rise of the Beetle and Ant-kinden free city-states, the term “the Lowlands” began to be […]

Hammer and Sickle

Some more Empire backstory The slaves found their voice. This was five hundred and thirty-seven years before the main action in Empire (1), and we know this because the main action in Empire takes place in the year 537. The slaves had never had a calendar, while they lived under the boot of their masters. […]

Dark Days

All this was prehistory. The unspoken pact with the monster insects that ensured humanity’s survival, and the subsequent development of the Art, is all lost to the mists of time. Not even the longest memories, not even the most complete records, bear witness. What is certain is that, having chosen a side, mankind collaborated in […]