Life Is Transient
The African Realm
The Crook and Flail
Pharaoh Iahotep H'Naddar
Queen Hatshepsut H'Naddar
Unborn child of Queen Hatshepsut
Ra, God of the Sun
Ptah, God of Creation
Hathor, Goddess of Fertility
— The Creed
— Pinterest Board
— Spotify Playlist
— Spotify Playlist (Instrumental)
— Trailer (Youtube)
Egypt is the very heart of our African realm. Dead centre between the kingdoms of Judea and Bedoa, Egypt occupies the northeastern corner of the African continent, directly south of the Aegean and to the north and west of the Red Sea. Dividing the land vertically down its middle, creating an eastern and western bank of Egypt is the river Nile, thousands of miles long and smooth in its waters for travel and fishing. Egypt's climate is, during the day, hot and dry and at night hot and sweltering, with little relief from the sun with mild winds and limited rainfall. There is so little precipitation in Egypt, in fact, that the water required for crop growth is irrigated from the Nile itself, greenery and crops bleeding outwards from the waterways before fading into rocky terrain in the northeast and heavy sand-dunes in the west. Besides the rolling, shallow hills of these sand dunes, Egypt is mostly flat. There are a few mountainous areas to the east of the Red Sea, including the highest peak Mount Sinai and the southern plains of the kingdom are a slightly higher altitude than that of the north, allowing the Nile to run down to the Mediterranean. Despite a gradient change in the level of heat, there is little change in the weather across seasons barring summer days being exceptionally hot and winter nights dropping almost to cool levels of atmosphere.
When it comes to trade between kingdoms, Egypt is in a profitable and powerful position, directly between the two other kingdoms of the realm. While they trade food and livestock with the people of the Bedoan; tribes who deal only in like and goods, they can also profit from selling resources such as clay and reed to the Judeans for gold coin. With careful trade laws and high taxes, Egypt is easily the richest kingdom in the African realm, their main treasury holding hundreds of times more gold than their neighbours and several times more than that of the Greek northerners. Egyptians have the best of both worlds in trade and are skilled crafters in pottery, glassware and luxury goods, but also have the water and resources (such as clay and alabaster) so desperately sought by their neighbours.
As a people, the Egyptians are hedonistic. They believe in enjoying life to the fullest and care far less for image, consequences or ideals than other kingdoms or realms. Some consider them to be a selfish race of people, while Egyptians would consider others to be far too uptight; you have only one life to live after all. Egyptians love change; they love excitement, they love gossip. If you want to know what is happening in an Egyptian's life, speak to their next door neighbour. They'll tell you everything you might need or want to know. As such, an Egyptian - when in full gossip-monger mode - is unlikely to be taken seriously and just like how they enjoy their food, everything that comes out of an Egyptian's mouth is to be taken with a pinch of salt.
Politics in Egypt are cut-throat and conducted for all the world to see. Deceit and manipulation are considered weak and snivelling. If determined to make an enemy of someone you simply tell them. So long as it's done in a manner that doesn't immediately have your head removed from your shoulders, an Egyptian will enjoy the challenge and fight right back. Egyptians are a militant people and meritocratic in nature, meaning that bluster, rumour and political skill will not get you very far. Military skill and tangible victory on the battlefield gets you far further, meaning there is no real need for deception or the discrediting of your enemies. It gets you no further to being a war hero and respected as such.
Egyptians do not believe in the sanctity or privacy of the human body. Their mummification process after death is a means of preparing the soul, not the body - for that is the immortal essence of a human being. The body is just the vessel, with human needs and desires that should not be restricted. As such, the Egyptians are a liberal people that some would consider scandalous. They are often naked or wear very little; they have no social qualms about public sex, the use of alcohol and opiates or behaving and painting themselves in provocative manners. While all natural desires of the flesh are to be catered to and not denied, the Egyptians are however very judgemental towards anything they considered to be unnatural; anything other than heterosexuality is a deviation of sin and disorders, or physical differences are often seen as diseases. Harsh punishments are often meted out upon those seen to be abominations or deviants.
The Egyptian way of life boils down to enjoying life within its moment, listening to your natural desires, living in the greatest decadence your wealth can accommodate and achieving ambitious victories wherever you can. The people of Egypt are proud of their heritage, culture and belief in the Egyptian Gods, but they are not shackled to these traditions and rituals as others are to theirs - they enjoy them and luxuriate in them. Egyptians are impulsive and thrive on the challenges of life.
Located in the north of Egypt, where the Nile splits into dozens of tributaries running down into the Mediterranean, Cairo is home to the royal family and many of the highest ranks of family in Egypt. Within the sight and shadow of the pyramids of Giza, Cairo is an impressive sight to behold by both native Egyptians and foreign visitors. Having only been the capital city of Egypt for the last fifty years, Cairo is still new in its appearance. Build as a small-to-medium but tightly packed metropolis of sandy block buildings made from alabaster and granite, the city has taken on the new designs and inspirations of other cultures and introduced second storeys to many of its structures. Wooden joists protrude from half way up each structure, supporting the next floor above. Such joists support cloth and curtains in bright coloured or the climbing activities of small children. Another element of Arabic inspiration is the towers and columns that have been added to the homes and palaces within Cairo's borders. With pinnacle, pointed tops and undulating designs along their lengths, the towers and spires of Cairo have the city noticeable from miles around. Such buildings are decorated inside and out with brightly coloured tiles and glass pieces. Pottery and scilla vases are used both for storage and decoration and the tapestries and embroidery that cover windows and doorways are an amalgamation of the entire African region. The Egyptians favour gold over any other colour and use it in almost everything they can. Carving it into walls or sewing it into their clothes. The city of Cairo reflects this level of weather and is a busy and bustling centre of trade and communion for many, situated on the eastern bank of the Nile and open to all forms of trade down the river from Alexandria and up the river from Thebes. Cairo takes its share of every trade and business in Egypt and flourishes in its own wealth, the underbelly of the city supported on the backs of thousands upon thousands of slaves.
The Great City
Once the capital of all of Egypt, Thebes is a testament to traditional Egyptian design. A sprawling city three times the size of Cairo but on a single level, with building dozens of feet high but only for one massive storey, the only breaks in the city's skyline are the massive pillars and podiums of sphinxes and kings of old. These huge works of stone art have stood the test of time, declaring Egypt's heritage proudly both at the gates of Thebes and before each of its temples. Here, space is of no issue. Unlike Cairo, built like the cities of the north, Thebes has an abundance of space with each of its streets offering passage wide enough for four chariots abreast and buildings offering rooms as large as halls - even for some of the middle classes. Also located on the eastern bank of the Nile, Thebes takes the luxurious and creme of the northern trade before the mass of it is sent down to Cairo making Thebes a quality and high-class place to live, but not an excessively rich one. The high powered families that reside in Thebes will often make the day's trip by boat to attend to Cairo for Court or to liaise with the Royals.
The provinces of Egypt are vast with some being exceptionally profitable and others being nothing but sand, depending on their natural and geographical gifts. All provinces and parcels of land within the kingdom belong unequivocally to the Pharaoh and are not permitted to be owned by anyone else. However, if a family please the Pharaoh greatly, they are awarded noble status. If they are awarded still future through military victory, they are given precedence and priority over certain lands; the exclusive investments within a particular province's businesses and the rights to conscript men from that province into their militia. They become logistically in charge of the people and trade within that province, allowing them the right to skim the profits of the taxes upon the land before handing the rest back to the Pharaoh. Such gifts of land are not rare but also not common and the more land and trade these families have access to the more they can grow their armies, their successes and therefore their influences within the Council.
The Provinces of Egypt
Description: Famed for the Karnak Temple right on the edge of the province and the souk on the bank of the river, many visit this province to spend time purchasing spices and gold from the vibrant souk which forms the heart of the province. Rich and flourishing, the buildings of Aksum reflect the province's great flow of income, sporting brick buildings instead of mud.
Main Export: Spices
Sub-Exports: Gold, herbs, medicines, poultices.
Description: In the northernmost reaches of Egypt, Alexandria is the hub of Greek connection and trade in the region. Near the coast, it offers great sea livestock and is famed for its democratic and political minded people. Most of its crafters built and create with the sea in mind, creating ship work or trade most tempting to the eyes of foreigners.
Main Export: Tourist trade
Sub-Exports: Shipbuilding, fabrics, textiles, fish.
Description: A province that borders the desert, the people of Anum have made it a habit of riding camels instead of horses, for the hump-backed beasts provide a greater form of transport across the dry, arid terrain of the desert. Anum itself is a bustling little province that warriors to artisans alike call home; most often because of several wells of fresh water available in the centre of its settlements. As a result, it is a great favourite of many foreigners to visit Anum to gain necessary wares before their return.
Main Export: Water
Sub-Exports: Pots, hide sacks, camels.
Description: An easy-going province on the edge of the desert, the people of Benin encompass the very meaning of enjoying life. Every evening would see the people of the province gather around the main square at its centre where people will share stories and meals and children are introduced to the predatory falcons that the people of Benin are familiar with, using them in their day to day life for hunting rabbits and hares for meals. The women of the settlement focus on textile work that can be sold in markets in other provinces, while the men focus on raising livestock and are mostly shepherds.
Main Export: Sheep
Sub-Exports: Textiles, rugs, tapestries.
Description: Home to the temple of the Lioness Goddess Bastet, her temple is an anomaly in that it is split into two - one to worship Bastet, the gentle and benign cat and the other to praise Sekhmet, the dangerous and war-hardy side of the goddess. The temple is further surrounded on three out of four sides by water - a man-made lake, built to offer the goddess protection and supplied by rainfall. Worshippers pray to whichever side they need the benevolence of most at any one time, and many women make the travel to Bubastis to bow at the temple for safe pregnancy and childbirth, making the province home to many midwives and healers. Interestingly enough, the temple is also home to many cats, who are welcomed as divine beings within the province.
Main Export: Healing services
Sub-Exports: Medicines, poultices, cat faeces, tourist trade.
Description: A place rampant with crime and death, Edwa is a province many avoid when it comes to visiting or even just passing through. Somehow falling through the cracks of law, the vast amounts of bribery and cheating happening in this province mean that many either think themselves above the law or are royal officials who do not deserve their seat and are merely in place for the gold they can line their pockets with. Trying to find a way out of the province proves difficult too, for its situation far from the main capital and surrounded three out of four sides by deserts, mean that without the right finances to produce the needed supplies, fighting the surrounding environment becomes impossible. And the officials see to it that such gold is never in the hands of those who wish to leave...
Main Export: Taxes
Sub-Exports: Rope, daily wares, cotton.
Description: A large, time-telling temple stands as the main attraction in El Daihab. Built along the axis of the sun, twice a year, light will flood the innermost sanctum of the temple, illuminating three of the four statues of Gods worshipped within this temple - Ra, Amun and Ramses himself. The last god left in the shadows would be Ptah - which befits the mysterious creator god. Built by the Nubian tribes of Egypt, the people of El Daihab are of darker skin tone and sharper features as compared to other Egyptians, descendants of the native tribes of the more southern lands, their appearance now a mix of the two, favouring the Egyptian dominant features. The people of El Daihab are scholars and mathematicians, crafters and merchants. They believe in the application of skill and that time is precious.
Main Export: Papyrus
Sub-Exports: Ink, tomes, books, bread.
Description: Neighbouring the old capital of Egypt, Elminya's entrance is marked by a large gate entitled the Bab Zuewila, which is in itself a sight to behold. Tiny workshops are scattered throughout the province, where coppersmiths and artisans make and sell their wares. The smell of melting copper and smoke is prevalent throughout the air in the province, with many residents can often be seen sporting leatherwear to prevent burns as they work.
Main Export: Coins
Sub-Exports: Arrow heads, jewellery, decorative work upon armour.
Description: Famed for its great pyramids, Giza is the province closest to the capitol of Cairo and is the sacred home of the ancient necropoles of the pharaohs of old dynasties. Giza is one of the sandiest and most desert-like of the provinces of Egypt, and there is little there besides religious monks, smugglers and camel traders. Giza is not a place where people live but where they reach or pilgrimage from when crossing out into the deserts of the west.
Main Export: None
Description: A small coastal town on the edge of the sea, Itsmalia is known for being rich in fish and sea produce. The docks and quays of the province are always bustling with ships and boats. However, in recent years, Itsmalia began gaining traction in the eyes of those aiming for riches, when a mine brimming with semi-precious gems was found on the edge of the province.
Main Export: Fish
Sub-Exports: Shellfish, rope, trade taxes, previous stones.
Description: Set upon the winding curves of the Nile river, Kabwe is backed by orange-hued dunes and a peaceful province where most people visit to take a few days off of the hustle and bustle of the main city. The dry atmosphere makes it perfect for growing and cultivating tea plantations, especially with the river providing the irrigation that enables the flourishing greenery.
Main Export: Tea
Sub-Exports: Rice, souvenirs and trinkets.
Description: Housing one of the biggest souk's in Egypt, Kafr El Ibsa's heart is its daily market where people from all surrounding provinces are able to bring their wares to sell. The souk supports wooden sticks holding up colourful textiles to block the searing sun as people shop. Everything from glassware to spices, fruits to cotton is sold here, and it helps that the coastal province is the first stop for many visitors on their arrival to Egypt.
Main Export: Trade taxes
Description: Known for the Souq-al-Gimmal, otherwise known as a camel market, visitors to this province can see many camels being sold, originating from other provinces like Giza. Other livestock can also be found in the souk, but most visit Kilwa to gain good quality camels, be it for their travels or to add to their livestock. A heavy, musky scent hangs perpetually in the air of Kilwa thanks to the large amounts of livestock available here, and much of the province is made of vast, flat land in order to upkeep the animals.
Main Export: Camels
Sub-Exports: Horses, goats, sheeps, leather-work, saddles.
Description: A tranquil oasis amongst dry and sandy deserts, Kudos is a tonic to the regular Egyptian weather. With numerous freshwater springs and date palm plantations worked by farmers, the residents of the province stay, however, within the mud-brick citadel that dominates most of the view in Kudos. While the province may not be the busiest nor the most lucrative but it is considered a gem to the economy of the kingdom.
Main Export: Dates
Sub-Exports: Dried fruits, water, tonics, crushed smoking leaves.
Description: A rough, hardy province that houses more loud-mouthed and rugged males than it does anything else, Kumaan is now mainly a mining province rich in resources such as marble and alabaster - a main component for the statues the kingdom builds in praise to its Gods and Pharaohs. Despite it being a busy province, many owners of mines in the area still wish they would strike gold one day - the greatest and easiest way to achieve the richness they so desire.
Main Export: Marble
Sub-Exports: Alabaster stone, granite, mason-work.
Description: A province that is near to other famous provinces, Kumut is a mix and a beautiful blend of tradition and relative modernity. A mix of vibrant colours and hardworking farmers, the province displays what is truly meant by a peaceful existence between people of different backgrounds. The buildings contrast each other, an eclectic mix of hieroglyphs and colours and many different dialects seem to meld together to perfect harmony in the evenings when people would roam the province after a long day.
Main Export: Textiles
Sub-Exports: Clothing, jewellery, needlework, pottery.
Description: A province built over the waters of the Nile river, many of the people living in this province are experts at using water vehicles such as riverboats and the occasional abydos, as it is their main form of transportation across the province. The end of the town opens up to the sea itself, which means Lungwa has a nice coastal breeze year round, making it quite a laid back province - if not for the fact that learning to swim is a very handy skill should you wish to visit.
Main Export: Boats
Sub-Exports: Cotton, rope, fish, reeds.
Description: The people of Luxfar are apparently as foolhardy as they are brave, for they are perhaps the only ones within the kingdom who are unafraid to perform the intricate art of beekeeping. Using hives out of clay or Nile mud, anyone visiting the province of Luxfar would see miles and miles of the human-made hives, which are moved up and down along the banks of the Nile depending on the time of the year, to allow the bees to pollinate flowers which are in season. This also means that Luxfar has beautiful blooms year long and is perhaps also why the flowers of Obsor - their neighbouring province - bloom so spectacularly.
Main Export: Honey
Sub-Exports: Bees, flowers, fabric dyes.
Description: A neighbour to Kudos, it is no surprise that Malimasi shares much of its neighbour's temperate climate. An oasis brimming with palm trees with donkey carts roaming the streets, the province houses one of the only natural-spring pools of Egypt, where many people go for its supposed medicinal properties. Locals also use the palm trees native to Malimasi to make wicker furniture and hats.
Main Export: Wicker
Sub-Exports: Woven goods, water, rice.
Description: A small fishing village that has no claim to fame, Manopotapa however, boasts a spectacular view on both sides of the province. On the one side, one would be able to set eyes on the mighty Mount Sinai, a particularly magnificent sight at sunset. On the other side of the small village, the beautiful azure sea would provide a soothing respite to tired eyes.
Main Export: Fish
Sub-Exports: Rice, papyrus, reed.
Description: Mansa's waters have long since been regarded as magical - purely because the ladies that originate from this province are far more beautiful and fairer then anywhere else in the kingdom of Egypt. With large eyes, long legs and a charm that exudes confidence, it is no surprise then that Mansa is also home to the largest number of pleasure houses - the largest of them being Lupanare, a building constructed solely for those seeking the pleasures of the flesh provided by the most beautiful women in the kingdom. Mansa is a province of distinct difference, beautiful, noble women, untouched and kept such for the nobility they aim to marry into and the most beautiful but lowest born of whores.
Main Export: Leisure taxes
Sub-Exports: Silks, jewellery, ceramics.
Description: Mendes would be an otherwise quiet and unassuming town, if not for the incredible temple for Banemdjedet right in the heart of the city. Chunky columns and walls covered in painstakingly carved hieroglyphics and paintings, Mendes see plenty of devout worshippers flocking to them monthly, especially in the drier months where they wish for the god of the river Nile to watch over their crops and plantations.
Main Export: Tourist taxes
Sub-Exports: Souvenirs and trinkets, wicker and woven wares, reed.
Description: Making its money from the various gold mines found in the heart of the province, Mirsa El Nasr is often known for being the choice smithies for the making of the royal nemes for the Kings and Queens of the kingdom. A province where the rich make their home, the buildings and manors of the province stand tall, proud and an extravagant display of wealth and this extends to the people that roam the street of this province.
Main Export: Gold
Sub-Exports: Luxury goods, silks, jewellery and gems.
Description: A dangerous province situated far from the province, Momborah was picked to house the most dangerous criminals in Egypt, with the largest fortress built right on the edge of the province. Surrounded by either water or a wall too high and smooth to scale by themselves, the citizens so unfortunate to stay in Momborah they steer clear away from the fortress, from where screams and whips could be heard on a daily basis. It is also the place where the most dangerous of criminals are sent for exile, never allowed to return to life as a regular citizen. The flipside of this means that Momborah has one of the more effective labour forces of slaves in the land and produces rock and mason work in volumes others can only dream.
Main Export: Stone
Sub-Exports: Rock, mason-work, ceramics, silver.
Description: At the foot of Mount Sinai, Nabdorah has benefited greatly from the resources they excavate from the mountain and have earned a name for themselves by producing beautiful glass-blown items. Either used for decoration or actual daily usage, either which way, glassware from Nabdorah was known to be of the highest quality and highly sought after by many.
Main Export: Glassware
Sub-Exports: Silver, precious gems.
Description: Slightly further away from Kudos lies Naqmis, a province which seemed to have taken a different form of activity - training monkeys. Specifically, attacking monkeys. With many of the creatures roaming, the people of Naqmis has come up with a unique way of using the creatures to help in their daily life. With a high rate of petty crime, it was only in recent years that the people of Naqmis have started engaging the help of the primates to assist guards in their duties. Another bonus to the strange choice of pet? Monkey brains are delicious and monkey faeces fantastic for smoking.
Main Export: Wheat
Sub-Exports: Reeds, rice, monkey faeces, monkey brains.
Description: Perhaps one of the most beautiful yet small provinces near the old capital with little fruit orchards and vegetable gardens irrigated from Nile river water, Obsor is easily considered one of the most fertile provinces in the kingdom, especially when the province provides the most beautiful blooms year round. Many would come to Obsor for the choicest of flowers as offerings to the Gods or the dead, as well as to make ankhs for victorious kings and warriors. The people of Obsor have also been hired to tend to everything from palace gardens to temple gardens and everything in between.
Main Export: Fruit
Sub-Exports: Vegetables, rice, flowers.
Description: A musically and artistically inclined province in recent years, it shows in the nightly music that one would be able to hear from various establishments or houses if one took a stroll down the main street of the province. Qalha's shops mostly sell varying arrays of artistic materials, be it paints or musical instruments alike. Many of the best dancers from Qalha also end up being hired to be entertainers within the palace.
Main Export: Wood
Sub-Exports: Canvases, instruments, paints, inks, dyes.
Description: Located on the Eastern Tip of the kingdom, Quesetta is another province perfect for a vacation destination. One of the few coastal cities that Egypt has, the province has a sort of peace and tranquillity otherwise not found in the kingdom and a beach that many visit to enjoy its salty breeze. Local shops often sell knick-knacks and accessories to entice tourists.
Main Export: Trinkets
Sub-Exports: Tourist taxes, souvenirs, bone-work, beads.
Description: A quiet and sombre town, Ras Sufaga is home to a large temple which houses many deities and a main temple where many go to pray. As such, many priests have also moved to the province to call it home and are the ones summoned by the royal family to perform any process of embalming required to mummify the body of any royal who has passed on to the afterlife. Much of the province are also experts at pottery and specialise in creating the canopic jars which are widely used in the process of mummification. The province itself seems largely uniform and serious in tone and colour, reflecting the mood of the people in the province itself.
Main Export: Pottery
Sub-Exports: Textiles, glassware, clay.
Description: Not many stay in this bankside province of Rofah, largely because the province had recently been inundated by a moving band of hippopotamuses which has decided to make their home right at the edge of the province. As such, many houses sit abandoned from what was previously the western portion of their flourishing province of farmland and camaraderie. The remaining residents of Rofah situate their homes further away from the fierce, lumbering beasts and are always on the lookout for an angry hippo whenever they are out. Prior to the animal encroachment, Rofah is one of the largest provinces on the riverbank and the home of expansive clay and mud pits (hence the creatures' interest in it) and provides the majority of clay required for building in the cities.
Main Export: Clay
Sub-Exports: Mud, straw, ceramics, hippo hide.
Description: A province which built a great deal of its identity on their patron goddess, children in Sais would play with small bows and arrows even at the age of five, and all were brought up to be adept hunters and trackers. The people of Sais are devout to their patron goddess, and many yet were experts at making tools for the hunters their province was so famous for, making the province famous for its highly skilled archers.
Main Export: Bows and Arrows
Sub-Exports: Animal hide and fur, game meat, ivory, tooth and bone.
Description: Mainly relying on farming and crops, Shedet grows much produce from cotton to rice. While the people of Shedet are humble and kind, they are hard workers who see the value of putting their full effort into ensuring their prosperous future. They do not mind the small mudbrick huts they live in and greet everyone they see with the same friendly warmth.
Main Export: Rice
Sub-Exports: Cotton, straw, reed, papyrus.
Description: Sotte plays an important role in ensuring the safety and longevity of the kingdom, as the residents of this province are all well trained in the operations of the dam this province is built around. The dam played an important role especially during the rainy season, where it would redivert the waters of the Nile river to protect the main cities and the areas surrounding it from flooding. The people of Sotte are well versed with stone-masonry and are all deft with their fingers and hands, as well as being hard workers who think quick on their feet. Sotte is a large province that uses the redirected waters from the dam to irrigate large fields of rice and other much-needed crops for the kingdom.
Main Export: Grain
Sub-Exports: Wheat, bread, rice, reed, cotton.
Description: Carved into the edges of Mount Sinai, the people of Talutt are hardy and tough from their daily climbs up and down the side of the mountain just to get daily necessities like water and resources. Used to colder weathers, Talutt's terrain makes it highly unsuitable for growing crops and as such, the people of Talutt have grown to be smart and intelligent when it came to ways to earn income; including their major trade in hillside animals like sheep and goats.
Main Export: Goat Milk
Sub-Exports: Sheep and goat meat, wool, hide, rock.
Description: A province split by two by the Nile river, the Eastern Bank is a vibrant place with bright textiles and a bustling souk, while the Western Bank has vast plantations of sugarcane, a main export of the province. The farmers of the plantations work their farms over the week, before taking a boat to head over to the souk that opens on weekends to sell their wares.
Main Export: Sugarcane
Sub-Exports: Clay, textiles, rice.
Description: A large necropolis located on the west bank of the Nile river, Zanzibar took over from Giza as the resting place of the fallen several generations ago and houses the royal tomb of the Egyptian rulers. The royal tomb makes for a highly imposing picture from the way it looms up to a large pyramid and the royal family posts guards at its entrance year-round to ensure the safety of their dead and departed. The terrain of this area is sandy but arable, and livestock is the most common thing grown on the lands, producing materials from which clothing and fabrics are made. Zanzibar is a small province and houses only the caretakers of the dead and their families, but the wives of such men are said to be some of the finest weavers and fabric-makers in Egypt. A Zanzibar shawl, for example, is an expensive and luxurious thing to own.
Main Export: Textiles
Sub-Exports: Clothing, jewellery and attachments for clothing.
Description: Positioned right on the edge of a gorge, Zefa has become a province culturally isolated from the rest of the kingdom, especially as they have, until recent years, only one way in and out of their landlocked province. The people of Zefta eventually developed their very own lifestyle and culture, especially as many foreigners choose to settle in Zefta to stay away from the wary eyes of the Egyptians. The unique culture developed and surfaced in their pottery and basketry making and in recent years, a pot or basket from Zefta is considered to be a unique gift indeed.
Main Export: Ceramics
Sub-Exports: Pottery, baskets, woven goods, reed, rock.
The Great Houses
Birth House: Abaddi
Face Claim: Omar Metwally
Having risen through the ranks of the military, from a common soldier that amounted to nothing, all the way to General. And then to achieve victory against barbarian hordes on the western border of Egypt and secure the Pharaoh's favouritism enough to win nobility for his family, one would expect Sethtah to be a man of great pride and arrogance. Instead, he is a man who works by keeping his head down and feet trudging forwards and his gaze never over his own shoulder. He looks to the future and nothing more, rarely stopping to notice how far he's come and never to admire it. As far as he is concerned, life is exactly as it is on the battlefield; you move forward or you die.
Birth House: Abaddi
Face Claim: Lydia Asghedom
A woman of no breeding or nobility, but great beauty, Ressiah fell in love with the young military Captain Sethtah when he was making camp in her town in the province of Qalha. The feeling grew to be progressively mutual and Sethtah assured Ressiah he would return for her hand in marriage after his expeditions to the south. He kept his promise, returning for her after months of fighting, married her and brought her to his home in Cairo. As Ressiah was without parents, she begged her new husband to take in her younger sister Rubiah, her care and love for her sister greater than her fear of the man she cared for refusing her request and her in the process. As with all great loves, however, Sethtah's was generous and opened his doors to both sisters. Ressiah is not a strong-willed woman but she is strong of heart. Caring and compassionate she admires her husband not for his military prowess but for his commitment to a promise made in the heat of a bedroom moment to a common serving girl in a tavern...
Birth House: Abaddi
Face Claim: Zoe Kravitz
Rubiah is cut from a very different cloth to her sister. Truth be told, neither of the girls know if they are truly related. Told they were so by a mother who claimed to be both of theirs, but told they were sired by different fathers, no-one has ever been able to provide rhyme or reason for their appearance being slightly Bedoan (for their "mother" was Egyptian) nor any differences in personality between the two of them. While Ressiah learnt, from a childhood of poverty, the importance of human kindness, Rubiah learnt the significance of looking out for oneself. She forged a strong connection with Ressiah because it suited her to be taken from the poverty stricken streets to a fine manor in Cairo. Since then, Rubiah has travelled here and there, going on her own adventures and returning to Ressiah whenever needed. Now, however, years later, Rubiah is ready to settle down and find a family of her own. And she has her sights set on something else that she feels would suit her very well... Sethtah.
Birth House: Abaddi
Face Claim: Moran Atias
Sister of Sethtah and caretaker of his home for many years, Osiria, her brother and their younger sister Fumisa were left to fend for themselves when a poor harvest in their province led to mass starvation. Many died - including their parents - who loved them enough to give any food available to the three children before themselves. Since then, the three have been inseparable and Sethtah has them in his household where he can look after them now that they are a noble family. Osiria has played the role of wife alongside Ressiah in harmonious cordiality, despite an initial great distrust for any new woman in her brother's life. Practical, pragmatic and calm of mind, Osiria's lack of ostentation and sensuality makes her a woman that every man should want but not one they necessarily do.
Birth House: Abaddi
Face Claim: Shani Atias
The protected younger sister to Sethtah and Osiria, Fumisa is softly spoken, shy with strangers but has a heart of gold. Always willing to help, always eager to learn, always excited to make new friends, she is a little naive and overtly innocent for her age and is often kept a watch of by her sister Osiria. Not because she might run into trouble but because her desire to experience life has the tendency to put her feelings in the way of harm.
Birth House: Fakhouri
Face Claim: Shohreh Aghdashloo
TakenThe wife of the late Pharaoh and therefore a member of the Hei of Naddar she may be but Isetheperu is also the last living relative to have borne the name of Fakhouri. Still a prosperous and infinitely rich family with more reputation and political clout than a leaderless Hei has any right to be, Isetheperu is the sole exception to the rule of gender in the Council of Egypt and rules her old family's Hei and estate with a rod of iron. It is her intention for the Hei to be taken up again by one of the many sons she hopes her daughter to produce, thereby securing its future once more.
Birth House: Haikaddad
Face Claim: Rami Malek
TakenThe younger brother of the late Head of the Hei, Narmer is a recently promoted General attempting to spin many plates and juggle many elements of family life. While he supports his sister-in-law, his nieces and his young nephew, he is also expected to handle the Hei that will one day follow down his own line (which means attaining a wife at some point) and must master his new position within his military unit if he is to gain the support and finances that the Haikaddad family has been so desperately lacking. In the gap between his brother's passing and Narmer coming of age, Na'meeah was given the impossible task of handling a Hei in a world of men and her stewards failed her on more than one occasion. Now, the Hei is desperate for money, on the brink of its once golden reputation and all such issues are now squarely on the shoulders of Narmer.
Face Claim: Thandie Newton
Sister to the Leier of the tribe of Somalu, Na'meeah is a woman who married for love no matter the differences between race. While this is rare between common families straddling the border between Bedoa and Egypt, it is even more so between members of the nobility and, as if to punish Na'meeah and her love Narutt, the man was claimed by the Underworld after a short and sudden illness a few years after the birth of their son. Since then, Narutt's younger brother has led the Hei of Haikaddad and, in deference to the love he bore his brother, Narmer has continued to support Na'meeah and her three children. A strong-willed woman with much love in her heart for her children, Na'meeah behaves in a manner that is subservient to Narmer, despite their age difference, in gratitude for such magnanimity - a habit that does little but embarrass her brother-in-law.
Birth House: Haikaddad
Face Claim: Zendaya Coleman
TakenBold and opinionated, Safiya charged into the world, beating her sister to the punch by little more than an hour and hasn’t seemed to ever look back since. She is intelligent, book-smart and has ideas of great lives and stories beyond her own. With a heart buried in the old world; in the tales of epic loves and romances, Safiya easily falls in and out of love. Her fickleness extends not from a lack of depth in her feelings but from such things being too deep. Nervous when emotions become too strong and easily heartbroken, Safiya (subconsciously or not) keeps her deeper emotions locked away as her romantic spirit seeks constant investment. To add tragedy to her desired epic love, Safiya's most recent - and apparently deepest - attachment has begun to be formed with a man her mother would never permit her to have...
Birth House: Haikaddad
Face Claim: Zendaya Coleman
Younger than her sister by no more than an hour, Sameera feels as if she has played a supporting role to Safiya for the majority of her life. With great similarities between the two - least of all their appearance - both sisters love stories. And while Safiya goes out to partake in creating her own, Sameera has a quieter nature and can often be found with her nose in parchment and her fingers covered in ink, for she is constantly writing down ideas for the stories she tells and the poetry she weaves together. A little more patient than her sister, she has just as kind a heart, yet is softer spoken when interacting with others.
Birth House: Haikaddad
Face Claim: Charlie Bennett
A son who has never known his father and a brother to sisters who were not old enough to teach and support him, Kissan grew up particularly close to his mother. In recent years the attachment has changed and moved towards his uncle Narmer as he becomes an adult and wishes to know more regarding how to become a man. Kissan has pestered his uncle Narmer for the past two years regarding joining his military unit as a soldier. Only time can tell whether such attentions are about to bear fruit.
Birth House: Isazari
Face Claim: Ali Saam
The father of three women widely considered to be the most beautiful women in Egypt, Amon'ra is a man with many political cards to play, in hand. Each of his daughters would make a fine catch for a man of any breeding within the highest social ranks of Egypt and while he cares for his children as much as he should, he also considers that it would be stupid not to make use of the hand the Gods have given him in the form of such powerful pieces to place out on the gameboard. Three queens, all his own.
Birth House: Isazari
Face Claim: Hana Nitsche
TakenBerenike is the eldest of three girls and runs her father's home with a will of iron. Whilst Amon'ra is a man who believes squarely that a woman's place is second to a man, he has never contended that a woman's place is below servants. As such, he gives Berenike full control over his housestaff and allows his daughter to handle the domestic tasks around him. Berenike rises to this responsibility with grace and a powerful will that is almost scary at times. She is a force of dominance that many a slave quake in fear of and not a single task is ever left uncompleted or done to a sub-standard level in the Isazari household.
Birth House: Isazari
Face Claim: Nicole Meyer
Whilst her sister manages their father's estate, Chione has her sights set elsewhere. A sexual woman with a hungry appetite, Chione prefers to delight men than she does control them. Though perhaps there's a little of both in there somewhere. With a light gaze that some have whispered hints at a case for illegitimacy, Chione has never liked her eyes and has never given credence to either them or the rumours (neither has her father for that matter), seeking to prove them all wrong that she is the least desirable of her three sisters (due to her birth) by proving exactly how desirable she is to all who come across her and show her interest.
Birth House: Isazari
Face Claim: Cindy Mello
Determined to be as strong as her sister Berenike and as fatally seductive as her sister Chione, Mandisa succeeds in being defiantly neither of these. While her posture is always strong and her looks always alluring, Mandisa is a virgin who will never admit to being thusly who is nervous around men and, while can mimic her sister Chione's actions to a fine point and find herself alone with a man should she want to, would have neither the bravery nor knowledge to know what to do with him once she had him. Embarrassed to admit her ignorance and therefore unable to correct it, Mandisa continues the charade that she is as powerful and experienced as her elder siblings, hoping and praying that she not be caught out before she's married.
Birth House: Isazari
Face Claim: Asser Yassin
Younger brother to Amon'ra through a second marriage for their father, Yamanu is little more than an annoyance to Amon'ra - hardly a brother - but a convenient one nonetheless. For, to have him in place, now that his wife has passed without male offspring, means that anything Amon'ra does to secure the family's wealth and standing does not go to waste the second he passes. It goes to Yamanu. Yamanu is in no way unfamiliar with this being how he's viewed and, instead of taking it personally, simply luxuriates in the fact that he will have little to do for many years as Amon'ra is in fine health. Instead, he enjoys his role as Captain in the Isazari military unit and secretly finding comfort where he can from members of his own gender.
Face Claim: Omar Sharif
A General with the likes of wisdom, tactical skill and courage to grace the pages of epic stories, Osorsen was the third General to serve under the noble name of Moghadam but he is generally considered to be the most famous. Now, however, age has taken its toll and while he is still the same brave man he was years passed, sometimes Osorsen begins to forget that fact. With a faulty memory, moments of confusion and a propensity to repeat himself, Osorsen is generally kept in the Moghadam manor and no longer attends the Council or Courtly events for fear of his aged mind damaging his golden reputation as a hero of Egypt.
Face Claim: Ramin Karimloo
TakenIn his grandfather's place, Osorsen the younger - named for the man - operates as head of the Moghadam Hei, attends the Courtly events and sits upon the Council. Facing an Egyptian nobility silently hoping for the competition he presents to dwindle away with him - one of only two still living members of the family since the death of his parents - the Moghadam name is one of great repute and pride and Osorsen is an ambitious man who seeks to make use of that fact at every turn possible. A courageous and respected General in his own right, he is one of the highest ranking military men who also serves as his head of house on the Council in current time. He is also the man to have led most of the campaigns against Greece ten years ago and is now considered enemy number one in the southern Greek isles. A fearsome fighter and a terror on the back of a chariot, some say he's possessed by the spirit of war. Others, if it were known to the public, might have said he fights with the anger of a slighted man. Once (possibly still) in love with the young Queen Hatshepsut, Osorsen, as Deputy General at the time was unable to reach for her hand in marriage when the General Iahotep claimed glory for their shared victories and secured the young girl's hand himself, becoming Pharaoh. It is Osorsen's greatest wish to rise himself and family to a station where nothing can ever be taken from their outstretched hands again.
Birth House: Fakhouri
Face Claim: Shohreh Aghdashloo
TakenWidowed by the late Pharaoh Imopehatsuma, Isetheperu is a woman of great conviction, high intellect and cunning for days. She is a rare thing in the Council of Egypt - a woman who holds power. As the only living relative of Fakhouri and as the mother to the current Queen of Egypt and as a politician a dozen times more cunning than the Pharaoh himself, many consider the Queen Dowager to be the true ruler of Egypt - a shadow queen behind her daughter and her husband's thrones. Her only failing in decades of political ambition and mind-games was her ill-talent for reproducing. After giving the late Pharaoh nearly a dozen still births or miscarriages, Isetheperu was finally able to produce a single, live child. A daughter. Besides this singular, yet significant, failure as Queen of Egypt, Isetheperu is a force to be reckoned with. One does not, and should not, underestimate the power of a woman who has been raised, trained, married and birthed some of the most powerful people in the kingdom over the last fifty years.
Birth House: Naddar
Face Claim: Aiysha Hart
TakenHatshepsut is a young girl in the middle of a political circumstance she has no control of. As the only offspring of the late Pharaoh Imopehatsuma, Hatshepsut inherited the crown of Egypt, as was her birth right, at the age of six. Since then, her mother has ruled over Egypt in her guardianship as Queen Dowager, until she achieved the age of fifteen and was able to marry. By this time, Hatshepsut had fallen helplessly in love - as many girls do in their teenage years, for the very first time - with the honourable and courageous Deputy-General Osorsen of the Hei of Moghadam. Sadly such a union was not to be and after General Iahotep presented his case of military victories to the Council it was decided that he would be fitting as Pharaoh of all Egypt. Whether Hatshepsut had any personal feelings on the matter was never considered. But, as a quiet girl, who loves and trusts her mother, Hatshepsut followed through with the match, performed her duties in a manner that was less than satisfactory for her new husband but enough so for her biology and is now with child. This entire process that has turned her life from that of a child to that of a married mother has happened in the pace of six months and, so far, Hatshepsut has yet to breathe in order to work out her own feelings on this chaotic turn of events that has become her life.
Birth House: None
Face Claim: Amir Karara
TakenA military man who has worked up from nothing more than a wealthy merchant's son, Iahotep is a man of conviction always and a man of conscience only when it suits him. Taking credit for other people's victories and achievements is not a permissible action. Unless the results are worth the deception. With a moral guideline entirely based on whether the ends justify the means, Iahotep has just achieved the dream of every man in Egypt. He is Pharaoh. King of Kings. And married to a young nubile twenty-six years his junior that already grows with his young. The fact that she is a quiet thing with no sense or natural instinct for seduction is only a small irritation that can be borne if it means being king of all Egypt. So long as she performs her duties as his wife and stays quiet in his Council, he cares not for whether she has the seduction or temptations of a table.
Sheifa / Naddar
Face Claim: Elyes Gabel
Sutekh is a young man who has recently had an entire family ripped from his life and another stitch into its place. Born of Iaheru H'Sheifa and raised, for the first 24 years of his life, as the son of her husband Onuphrious, months of arguments and heated discussions between his parents have finally revealed that Sutekh was not sired by his mother's husband - that his father is not the man he has called such his entire life. Finally revealing that the Pharaoh of Egypt had taken Iaheru for a night - a night of passion she had not solicited but been unable to turn down - for he was Pharaoh. After said night had been Sutekh's advent, making him the half brother of the current Queen of Egypt. As an illegitimate child, Sutekh has no claim or rights to the throne and is entirely unable to become Pharaoh himself but he does now have the permission to call himself Prince Sutekh of Egypt. Thrown from the house of Sheifa by an enraged man Sutekh no longer recognised as his father, Sutekh has been taken in by his half sister and given rooms at the royal palace while all involved try to come to terms with the new state of their family trees.
Birth House: Sheifa
Face Claim: Khaled Nabawy
The leader of the Hei of Sheifa, Onuphrious is a man who thinks in trade. Before his time, his uncle was a famous and wealthy merchant who expanded the family's financial and trade reach further than any other family in Egypt. His brother - Onuphrious' father - went into the military with a singular goal in mind. To reach the rank of General and secure political might along with their financial success. And achieve it he did. Despite being the son of the militant, not the trader, Onuphrious has always thought in the ways of a merchant; trade and exchange, value and worth. He is a man dedicated to hard work and harmonious business and enjoys expanding the reach of his family - more to see how far they can go, than because he's trying to outstrip his father's shadow.
Birth House: Sheifa
Face Claim: Hanan Turk
TakenIaheru is generally considered to be the hidden jewel of the Egyptian Court. Once a retainer to the Hei of Fakhouri, Iaheru has been to Courtly events far longer than she's been married to the Sheifa family. However, a demure and quiet woman she would often wear covered headdresses and wore garments that concealed rather than showed off her womanly wiles. Her face, however, had always retained the nubile look that she has since passed on to her daughters. As such, she became known the hidden pearl - the beautiful jewel that every man was curious of but none were permitted to touch. It has recently been revealed, however, that one man did indeed touch - the late Pharaoh laid his hands upon Iaheru since her marriage to her husband and she has only recently admitted that the young man Onuphrious had thought to be his eldest son is actually the offspring of that single touch, damaging the genuine and compassionate relationship she once had with her husband and leading to the exile of her son from the Sheifa manor.
Birth House: Sheifa
Face Claim: Emmanuelle Chriqui
Nefertaari is a woman who thinks much like her father; in terms of value and trade. And she likes to put herself and her inherited beauty on the higher end of that value scale. She has known a few men, she has flirted with many but she has always held herself to such a high value that she has rarely committed to any one in particular. Fairly soft spoken but with a will and mind of her own, Nefertaari is graceful and beautiful and just a little bit wily.
Birth House: Sheifa
Face Claim: Nina Dobrev
TakenMuch more free with her attentions than her elder sister, Neithotep is widely considered to be a little too free with her affections and is often looking for love in all the wrong places. Drawn to the bad boys and the commoners who would never be acceptable specimens for marriage, she seems to be a woman on a mission and looking for something that just never seems to show up. Most believe she is seeking attention from a workaholic father and a disapproving mother. Others say she's just looking for love. Neithotep would say, to please mind your own business, with the sweetest smile upon her face.
Birth House: Sheifa
Face Claim: Alice Greczyn
Nenet is the total opposite of her sisters. Where they have confidence and grace, she has nervousness, a bit of clumsiness and a stutter. The person in the family she felt closest to was her brother Sutkeh who has been recently exiled from their home and has been moved all the way down the Nile to Cairo. Such a disruption to her life has sent Nenet into a flatspin and she can now hardly string a sentence together. Desperate to overcome her speech impediment but her desperation only making it worse, Nenet hates social events and prefers to shut herself up with a book or spend time in the stables talking with the horses. With whom she rarely stumbles over her words...
Birth House: Sheifa
Face Claim: Avan Jogia
As the youngest son with a lot of sisters and an older brother to provide heirdom, Akhenaten has been living the good life. Enjoying the luxuries that his family's money can afford him - gambling, drinking, brothel girls - he has been having far too much fun to actually notice that things in his home were progressing to a boiling point. It was only on the night on which his brother Sutkeh was kicked from their home that the reality of events dawned on Akhenaten... He was now heir to the Sheifa Hei.