The Land of Magics
The Empire of Resnitsy is a place of magic. From the most desolate reaches of Yarakat to the bustling port cities of Vainmaa, miracles and power suffuse the very earth. In the wilds of Grazninik, travellers may find the stars mirrored on the sides of the mountains as wil-o-wisps gather in their thousands. In the capital of Tsvetkov, statues suspended hundreds of feet in the air boast of their creators’ skills in voices of silver and gold. Indeed, in Resnitsy, magic IS government; for over four hundred years, the country has been ruled by an assortment of Tsar- (and Tsarina-)mages, selected from one of eight noble houses. For the vast majority of the population, who lack the inborn capacity for magic, this has simply meant periodic shifts in the names on coinage, and little else.
In the past, the high magocracy was content to simply collect tribute from their subjects, whether in the form of gold or other precious materials; the lands of empire were seen as too varied, both culturally and geographically, to have any meaningful empire-wide policies. But in the last century, a series of losing wars against the city-state of Barca exposed the weakness of the mages of Resnitsy. And the assassination of three consecutive tsars-mages by the anti-magic Altasov Iirinich organization has made them fearful.
Although the tsar-mages obliterated Barca over a decade ago and successfully tracked down and destroyed every last member of the Altasov, the paranoia and repression has only increased. In the capital, rumors concerning the destruction of the Kurakin house and the ascension of Nestor IX Rurikof whip through the streets, while small uprisings in the provinces have begun popping up so quickly that even the shapeless, sleepless Seers cannot keep up with them.