From the farthest Southern regions to Vlachia in the North, from Vanor in the West to the Black Sea in the East a new order was established. The new government was built on one supreme principle: efficiency. We were, you see, considered rather inefficient.
All state structures were officially disbanded and Imperial Provinces were formed in their stead, bearing the names of our former states. Tenebran military governors were appointed to rule by edicts.
Massive population displacements between and within the provinces took place to “optimize labor force distribution”. Many families, friend and support circles were broken, as decisions on relocation were taken based solely on efficiency-related arguments. Furthermore, traveling between provinces was possible only through check points showing a permit, certified by the local governor’s office. Everyone was designated a “unique imperial identification number” (UIIN) to keep track of the paperwork.
The Special Imperial Police Force (SIPF), known for short as “The Operators”, took charge of the law enforcement and became prosecutor, jury, and executioner. There were basically two punishments – hanging with revoked resurrection privileges, and flogging. Hanging was reserved for crimes showing “disloyalty to the interest of the Empire”. Many people were hanged for being late for work – it was a crime against efficiency and as such was regarded as sabotage, hence disloyalty to the interest of the Empire. Almost all other crimes were punished by flogging, somewhat surprisingly including infringements such as insults to the state, as those were considered to not affect efficiency, as long as they did not happen during working hours.
If the actual offender was unknown to the force or had escaped, they did not bother to waste resources on a search. Two random people connected to them would be punished every day until results were achieved. Luckily, that did not apply to the former heads of states, who were continuously hunted by the new order. Officially, because they formally fled before the law was introduced and the Tenebrans did not like to break their own laws. Rumor is, they decided against it to avoid the potential risk of public failure that would encourage resistance.
Curfews were established and any unauthorized presence on the streets after curfew was punished. Prohibition was imposed as alcohol was found to be disruptive to work efficiency. Small amounts of alcohol were produced by a few certified breweries in central cities to be distributed per capita during officially permitted celebrations. The latter were considered beneficial for the recovery of the workers and therefore authorized on regular basis.
Former officials who did not flee, had a slightly different fate than the general population. They were offered a choice: either to stay on the job with lucrative salaries and benefits, or be relocated to other provinces and serve as low level clerks in agriculture. Those who chose the first option, were closely monitored and any disloyalty was severely punished, even only based on a suspicion. With time a social stratum of administrators of local origin more or less loyal to the new order was formed – if not loyal, at least bound to them.
Captured military were decimated and survivors were relocated and engaged in raw materials extraction.
International organizations were also disbanded, including The Mage Academy. In addition, more than three mages were forbidden to be together at any given place at any given time. A delegation of four mages officially went to ask for interpretation of the words “at any given place”. They were arrested, one of them got their spark broken to reduce their number to the legal one. All of them were flogged and warned that the rules were to be followed to the best of their common sense if any such existed. However, mages in general were allowed to do magic, as long as it was “individually” and “in the best public interest”.
The Order of the Seventh Path was disbanded as well. No special restrictions were imposed on the former members of the Order, but their devices were confiscated, each of them was invited to a stern talk at the respective governor’s office and warned they were to be treated as any other imperial subject in case of any infringement and not allowed to possess any devices.
The Alchemy Guild was disbanded; however, alchemists were allowed to do their professional work.
Over time the measures were somewhat loosened. Curfew was lifted and subjects were allowed to carry small weapons and even swords for utility and self-defense.
Resistance started to form timidly – by otherwise complying subjects. But this is a story for next time.
Help us create amazing stories by developing your own characters’ compelling arcs. There are three main guiding principles for that we would like to remind you:
- It’s been two years
- All your characters have at some point been registered and live some kind of а “front-end” life which is more or less convincing in the eyes of the authorities. It could be for example because they chose to lay low for a while, it was unclear if any resistance would start, or to gather intel and try and fight the invaders from the inside, or some other similar reason. More information about the resistance will come in the next setting update.
- Faction leaders are the only exception to the above. Being wanted by the authorities, they have been underground only, and have been living in hiding – either in friends’ safe houses, or in the forests, or both. Any other VIPs – such as mage academy and other guild leaders do NOT fall in that category. The Tenebrans don’t care about them that much.