Turuk and the Rebel Aqueduct
At the mouth of the Linelle stands the ruins of Port Linlin, an old Empire
town. During the time of rebellion, when Llaza and the Anhuine states were seceding from the Empire, Linlin had a particularly difficult time. The Empire originally occupied the Oksan nation to settle a civil war, and had been invited in at the behest of a Poeni-Linlin alliance. When the local trouble had been sorted, the Empire left behind a garrison of troops "to keep the peace", but in reality to enforce Imperial rule.
Once settled, the Empire could not be shifted easily, and hung onto its Oksan holdings with an iron fist. It is unknown how much knowledge the Emperor had of the atrocities committed by General Vandrupanash (or "Bloody Vandru" as he became known to Oksans), but a general hatred of the Empire grew in the hearts of the Linlinese.
The other Oksan nations refused to help. For one thing, they didn't want the same thing visited upon them. For another, they blamed the Linlinese for bringing the Empire to Oksa. Furthermore, a lot of Linlinese had married into Imperial families. (So had members of the other nations, and had adopted Imperial ways just as readily, but such truths never factor into these matters).
The Turuk project was devised by three powerful Merchant Clans, those who would later form the beginnings of the Merchant's League. In an move famed for its audaciousness, they undertook the construction of an entire purpose-built city upriver on the Linelle, using Imperial military contracts to cover their movements. Over the course of just one year, the city of Turuk was built in the guarded highlands of Oksa. For nearly a mile along the river, craftsmen reinforced the river banks with mortar and stone and soil, building walls suitable for a castle. But these walls were not intended for defense. A dam was constructed that held back a small bit of water. And then clay, soil, rock, and sand were poured into the river as it ran between these walls. So much so that the riverbed was filled, and the dam's reserve was filled. The engineers made sure that the wall tops were level although the river descended more than sixty feet in that mile. The riverbed was filled so that the river would run level until it poured over the top of what had been a dam, as a great waterfall in the middle of the Linell.
The next step was to populate the city. The Imperial garrison didn't notice the few craftsmen who left the city of Port Linlin to begin with, nor did they mind the steady stream of refugees the trickled into Uuksam. However, the Merchant Clans organised the mass movement of the entire population, or at least, those willing to go which turned out to be a sizeable majority.
The Night of Flame was what happened once "Bloody" Vandru discovered what was happening. The careful escape became a desperate flight for the last few stragglers, and a vengeful Vandru put the city of Port Linlin to the fire. Even today, the charred remains of Port Linlin have never been re-settled. Pursuit into the interior came to the mighty walls of Turuk, and Vandru's forces were thwarted. Shortly thereafter it was deemed to costly to attempt an assault on the city, and Oksa was abandoned by the Empire.
The Oksan Council of Kings decided that they needed an Oksan capital, neutral ground, at which to meet and deal with affairs that concern the whole island, and Turuk was chosen. The Merchant Clans had made a good job, but the city still needed money to get started, time for the surrounding farms to begin producing enough food, and many of the buildings were half-finished or simple pre-fabricated dwellings.
In return for investment, the five nations of Oksa were granted a share in Turuk, which is currently divided into enclaves, walled off from one another, one for each nation plus a sixth neutral zone. It is useful as a diplomatic meeting place, but also troublesome in that each nation accuses the other of not paying their fair share in the upkeep of Turuk, of violating territory arrangements and so on. Linlin bears the brunt of this, since they are seen as trying to dominate the situation by the fact that Turuk lies in their country and is their capital. The Linlinese, on their part, claim Turuk as theirs by right, due to its history.
The Empire of Splendour
Places of Interest