People known as Mahlonians.

Major Cities and Holds
Baylay – capital

Rulers and Their Stories
updates to come

Heroic Figures and Their Stories
updates to come

Social Classes
Royalty – king, queen, and their children
Dukes – any princes other than the crown prince become Dukes
Earls – landowners by blood
Barons – appointed by the royal family to oversee a former duke’s/earl’s holding if needed; if a child takes over the child becomes an earl
Commoners – everyone else

Standard military units of army and navy exist, but there is an elite unit known as the Shield Brothers.

Details of the Shield Brothers:
The Shield Brothers are an elite unit of the military, made of several pairs of fighters. Each pair is composed of a warrior and mage. The majority of the Shield Brothers are male, but some females do exist.

Those who wish to become Shield Brothers may start training to be warriors or mages as young as fifteen. Pairs are matched at the age of eighteen, and twenty pairs are chosen each year. After the Pairing, pairs spend one year living and training together before embarking on two years of Wandering. During those two years, pairs ensure that they are well-known to the people of the country and to older Shield Brothers pairs. In this way, they gain experience and learn how well they truly work together.

After the Wandering years, each pair is assigned to a village, town, or city to watch over and protect. They oversee the training of local fighters and help defend their towns from invaders. They also help citizens work out problems and concerns without bothering the local lord, and approach those lords with serious issues themselves as representatives of the people. Younger pairs are often assigned to the same holdings as older pairs, and both pairs work together to do the best for their holding.

The order of pairing is an important factor in how well pairs work together. Those who are matched first are so well matched that they often fall deeply in love. Pairs that are matched twentieth are more likely to argue over how best to work out issues in their towns, but will eventually come to an agreement. This is why only twenty pairs are matched each year.

Holiday Traditions
Cafk’s Day: On the first day of the Second Month of Winter, all of Mahlon celebrates the new year by giving gifts to friends and family. Markets are closed and most people don’t work, aside from some guards and servants. Many wealthy people host or attend parties and the royal family holds a ball.

Durasyan’s Day: On the fourteenth day of the Third Month of Winter, all of Mahlon honors the God of Love by giving gifts to lovers. Balls are held by the royal family, though there aren’t many parties across the country. It is also a popular night for intimacy among lovers, and Nymbs, the God of the Night, is also worshiped as a guardian of lovers.

Tysy’s Day: One the twenty-first day of the First Month of Summer, all of Mahlon celebrates the summer solstice by worshiping the god Tysy to ask for good growing weather. Prayers are led asking for rain in times of drought, or for less rain if needed. If the weather has been almost ideal, the prayers are ones of thanks. Family dinners are held across the country and the royal family hosts a feast of summer game.

Lozk’s Day: On the twenty-first day of the First Month of Autumn, all of Mahlon worships the God of the Harvest. Festivals are held throughout the country and feasts are held before food is preserved for the winter.

Treatment of Women
There are no restrictions on what women can or cannot do in society. Women can own land and businesses, can choose whether or not to marry, and to raise concerns over anything they consider to be issues. Women are also allowed to join the military, including the Shield Brothers, though it is still more common for men to join than women.

There are few expectations about relationships in Mahlon, unless someone holds authority. In those cases, it is expected that the person will marry and have children. Because of the interactions with the Shield Brothers, many people aren’t concerned by couples who may not be of the opposite sex, as the sooner a pair was matched, the more helpful they are to the people they oversee. So same-sex relationships are not frowned upon in Mahlonian society, and neither are couples who never marry, as some Shield Brothers are opposite-sex partners, but marriage is not acceptable in the Shield Brothers. This is because dedication to the work and to each other as working partners is more important than dedication to a spouse.

A person’s given name is their name and where they were born. So someone could be Name of Town. This helps people like the Shield Brothers remember the family and place where they came from, despite years of Wandering and living in a new location.