History

Xiang

 

Valceem

 

A young slave girl named Valceem led a slave rebellion in Krudesh. To escape persecution, Valceem led her freed people down the Dragon River to the east, settling the city of Lavoth on the north side of the Dragon River, south of the Guanzhong River. The land was gripped in chaos and war. The Weili Wall was built around Lavoth to protect it from its neighboring warlords.

 

As Lavoth expanded, refugees and people from the warring states fled to the city, turning the city into a melting pot of diversity. As the city grew, Lavoth expanded to the south side of the Dragon River, and the Rongyu Wall was erected to protect it as well. Overtime, the locals referred to the north as Da’Lavoth and the south as Xiao’Lavoth.

 

Due to its placement on the Dragon River, Lavoth controlled trade on the river, and with its central placement, Lavoth soon became a trading hub for the region. While this boosted Lavoth’s economy and growth, it also made it a prime target for the warlords vying for control of the area.

 

As threats grew to the small city-state, the Chenqiang Wall was constructed around the ever expanding southern side of Lavoth. But as war in the region continued, more and more people flocked to Valceem, and the city soon expanded beyond its walls. As the city grew, the viscount of Lavoth renamed the city Valceem after its founder and declared himself the Emperor of Valceem. He declared that all previous viscounts were emperors, beginning with Valceem.  

 

He ordered the construction of the Cheng Wall and the massive Gua Wall to protect the city as well as the Huafen Wall to divide the southern section between the Chenqiang Wall and the Rongyu Wall into two sections. Each individual section was re-classed as individual cities within the empire: to the north of the Dragon River, Da’lavoth and Genyx; to the south, Ashyakko, Azeria, and Verzaku.

 

The massive Gua Wall proved to be impenetrable, and multiple attempts by various nations proved unsuccessful. However, Valceem was unable to expand beyond its walls.  

Unification

 

The Duke of Xiang set out to unify the land and proved to be a great conqueror. After nearly twenty years, most of the land was under his control, and so he set his sights on Valceem. He knew he had to capture Valceem in order to control trade in the area. But all attempts to besiege Valceem failed.

 

Knowing that he cannot control trade through military might, he switched strategies to a diplomatic one. An arrangement was made between Xiang and Valceem to allow Xiang free trade on the newly renamed Valceem River, in exchange Valceem was granted Xiang’s protection from outside invaders. They solidified their treaty with an arranged marriage between the Duke of Xiang’s daughter and the Emperor of Valceem’s son.  

 

As Xiang continued its unification of the region, both male heirs to Xiang died in combat. When the Duke of Xiang died, Xiang was left without an heir. His closest living relative was his granddaughter, the princess of Valceem. Due to the laws of Xiang, she could not ascend to the throne of Xiang. However, whoever she married would become the duke of Xiang.

 

When she came of age, she assumed the throne of Valceem, becoming Empress. A few years later, she married, and her husband is made the Duke of Xiang. Not wanting to be outranked by his wife, he declared himself the Emperor of Xiang. The newly weds, ruled two legally independent nations.

 

When their son came of age, he assumed the throne of both nations, unifying them into the nation of Xiang, and Valceem was re-classed as a single city. The new emperor, feeling as though the imperial lineage of Xiang was made up to appease his father’s ego, traced the official imperial lineage through his mother and Valceem’s imperial legacy. 

Political Structure

At the top of the political spectrum is the Emperor (Empress Regnant) who wields supreme power in Xiang. The Emperor can write, change, ignore, or override any law, decree, or decision in the land.

The political hierarchy is divided into four branches, the executive, the imperial court, the military, and the harem. Underneath the Emperor, the High Chancellor and the Grand General wield the most power and are the ones responsible for the day to day running of the nation. The High Chancellor oversees the executive branch and the courts. The Grand General oversees the military. 

 

The Executive Branch

 

The executive officials are responsible for managing and ruling of a specific area. Within their jurisdiction, they have supreme authority to set and enforce laws, barring that their laws comply with imperial decree and any laws set from a higher official.

  • At the top of the executive branch is the High Chancellor. The High Chancellor oversees the entire empire, only the Emperor has more authority.

  • Underneath the High Chancellor are the Four Dragon Governors. They each oversee one of the four states that comprise Xiang.

  • Each state is divided into Thirteen Provinces, each governed by a Governor.

  • Each Province is broken into smaller Commanderies. A Commandery is a small group of cities governed by an Administrator.

  • Each city and its surrounding area is labeled as a County and governed by a Prefect.

  • Each County consists of Divisions, governed by a Subprefect. There are two divisions per county, one for the rural areas and one for the urban areas, though larger Counties can comprise more Divisions.

  • Larger cities are further divided into Districts with a Magistrate serving as the chief executor.

 

The Imperial Courts

 

The courts provide four primary functions: 1) Serving as advisors to the Emperor, 2) Overseeing specific Ministries and bureaucracies, 3) Auditing and ensuring each level of the executive branch comply with imperial laws and decrees, and 4) Serving as judges and arbitrators in all legal matters, both criminal and civil. 

  • The High Chancellor is the highest ranking member of the imperial courts, and can perform every function of the court.

  • The Chancellors are the next highest ranking members of the court. They function as the Emperor’s advisors. The Emperor appoints the Chancellors to their position and there are 78 in total.

  • There are six ministries that control the bureaucracy of the empire. They oversee and set regulations at the federal level. These ministries are: the Ministry of Personnel, the Ministry of Revenue, the Ministry of Rites, the Ministry of Justice, the Ministry of Works, and the Ministry of War. Each ministry is headed by a Grand Secretary. Underneath the Grand Secretary, there are thirteen Secretaries that serve in each ministry.

  • The Censors audit and ensure legal compliance. There are three rankings of censor: Equerry Censor, Inspector Censor, and Censor. There are thirteen Equerry Censors. They stay at the capitol and track and trend compliance and disseminate decrees to the lessor censors and officials and serve on the High Court at the federal level. The fifty-two Inspector Censors serve as traveling auditors going to each jurisdiction to ensure legal compliance. Each jurisdiction is assigned a Censor who ensures daily compliance with applicable laws. Unless critical errors are found, the Inspector Censors do not audit the executive branch, only the jurisdiction’s assigned Censor.

  • Finally, there are the Ministers who serve as judges. Each jurisdiction is assigned a specific number of Minister of the corresponding rank: one Chief Minister for each State, four 1st Ministers for each Province, nine 2nd Ministers for Commandery, nine Ministers for each County, thirteen Lesser Ministers for each Division, and four District Ministers for each District. If a law if broken, court it held at the level for which the law is set (i.e., If a State law is broken, the trial is held at the State Court with the appropriate Chief Minister residing). The decisions of lower courts can be appealed to higher courts, with the Emperor serving as the supreme judge, though traditionally, the Emperor declines to hear appeal cases, leaving the High Chancellor as the acting supreme judge.

 

 

The Military

  

  • The Grand General serves as the head of the military. Xiang’s military strength sits at approximately 1,036,800 soldiers.

  • The 5 Tiger Generals each head an army or navy. There are three armies and two navies. Each army/navy is divided into two field armies or field navies (207,360 soldiers/sailors).

  • Each field army/navy is headed by a Deputy General and is divided into two Corps (103,680 soldiers/sailors).

  • A General oversees each Corps. Two Divisions comprise a Corp (51,840 soldiers/sailors).

  • Lieutenant Generals head each Division, with the Divisions further divided into two Brigades (25,920 soldiers/sailors).

  • Each Brigade is run by a Brigadier General and comprises three Battalions (12,960 soldiers/sailors).

  • A Colonel tops a Battalion. Each Battalion comprises three Companies (4,320 soldiers/sailors).

  • The Companies are headed by a Lieutenant Colonel and comprises two Troops (1,440 soldiers/sailors).

  • A Captain serves as the head of each Troop. Two Regiments make up a Troop (720 soldiers/sailors).

  • The Lieutenants oversee the Regiments, which comprise three Detachments (360 soldiers/sailors).

  • A Detachment Commander commands the Detachment which comprises three Garrisons (120 soldiers/sailors).

  • A Garrison Commander tops the Garrison, which has four Squads (40 soldiers/sailors).

  • A Squad Commander leads the Squad, which comprises 10 soldiers/sailors.

 

The Harem

The Imperial Harem has its own hierarchy and structure. The harem oversees the palace, Koryon, and raising the imperial heirs. 

  • At the top of the harem sits the Grand Empress Dowager. The Grand Empress Dowager is the grandmother(s) of the Emperor. She is given special recognition and honor, though has no responsibility to govern the palace. If there are great-grandmothers (or beyond), they would also be given this title and recognition.

  • The Empress Dowager is the mother of the Emperor, and is also given special recognition and honor. Like the Grand Empress Dowager, the Empress Dowager has no responsibilities, but can overrule decisions made by the Empress Consort.

  • The Empress Consort is the wife of the Emperor. By tradition and law, the Emperor is only allowed one wife, and she serves as the head of the harem and is considered the mother of all imperial children.

  • The Noble Consort is the next rank below Empress Consort. This is a special rank for a highly favored consort, and is only bestowed upon a consort when the Emperor lacks a wife. In the event there is no Empress Consort, the Noble Consort acts as head of the harem and is considered the mother to all imperial children.

  • The Noble Lady is equivalent to a Noble Consort with the exception that it is an Attendant chosen for the honor as opposed to a Consort. In the rare event that a Noble Consort and Noble Lady is selected, the Noble Consort would outrank the Noble Lady.

  • The highest ranking of Consort is the Pure Consort. This is a concubine which has given birth to a male heir. They are given a private residence within the Residential Quarter and are considered a member of the imperial family. It is their responsibility to help raise the imperial children, however, all imperial children, including the ones birthed by the Pure Consort, are legally the children of the Empress Consort.

  • A Consort shares the same responsibilities as the Pure Consorts. They are less than the Pure Consorts, however. The Consorts have given birth to a female heir, but have yet given birth to a male heir.

  • The Attendants make up the remainder of the concubines living in the palace. These are concubines that have not birthed an imperial heir. The highest ranking attendants are the Head Matrons. Every attendant is assigned to serve in one of three houses of Guanwa Hall, and each house has a Head Matron responsible for caring for, instructing, and leading the attendants assigned to her house.

     

  • Each house, in addition to the Head Matron, has two other Matrons assigned to assist in the Head Matron’s responsibility.

  • Outside of the Matrons, the highest ranking Attendant is the 1st Attendant. They are given a private residence in Guanwa Hall and have many servants assigned to them.

  • The 2nd Attendants are given a private room inside Guanwa Hall, and will have few, if any, servants.

  • The lowest ranking Attendants share their quarters with other Attendants and have no servants. As their loyalty to the Emperor and the harem is considered to still be in question, they may not leave Guanwa Hall without an escort of either a higher-ranking concubine or guard.

  • The final ranking of the harem is the Selected Lady. These are women chosen to audition for the harem. Some freely chose to do so, others do not. They are housed outside of the inner wall of the palace in a building known simply as the storehouse. The storehouse is considered the third house in Guanwa Hall. It is here where they learn palace etiquette and decorum and prepare for the audition. Selected Ladies may not leave the storehouse until after the audition.