Your guide has led you for days along the winding jungle road—across unsteady rope-bridges and up and down winding dirt paths. At last, as your thirst and exhaustion reach their apogee, the dense trees and vines peel away; towering walls of red stone loom above you, and a cool sea breeze buffets your face. You have reached the heart of Fharas… the heart of the world’s most ancient empire.
Taifun’s streets are ancient.
When you walk through the city’s palm tree-lined streets, buildings which have stood for millennia loom overhead, and wherever you go, countless millions have tread before.
A visitor to Taifun will be struck by its red color: its streets and buildings alike are built of bright red brick. Taifun’s tall buildings house its large population or serve as workshops to the city’s many artisans—tailors, rug-weavers, goldsmiths, silversmiths and apothecaries being the largest industries.
Taifun is nominally under the control of the crown prince, the eldest son of the King of Kings. In practice, the city is governed by an emir and a supreme council consisting of trade guild masters, magi, and nobles.
A tall mountain can be seen, wherever you go, in the city. This towering, dormant volcano—Mount Agni—is home to the ancient Grand Fire Temple, where the archmagus presides. As the center of the magi order, it holds special reverence in Fharese religion.
The city of Taifun is built along an island within Taifun Bay, connected to the mainland by a shallow stream. At the center of Taifun is Firebird Palace and Peacock Square. Bazaars are held weekly in Peacock Square, where goods from across the known world can be found.
Settlers from the High Plain were said to have founded Taifun in the early years of history. Before the Fharese arrived, the indigenous people of Shush lived off the land. The indigenous tribes, once introduced to agriculture, began to settle in the area and became Fharese subjects.
As the Fharese Empire grew, so did Taifun. Taifun benefited from the riches of empire, especially when the King of Kings built Firebird Palace in the city.
The royal family officially owns everything in Taifun—including its people. Each man and woman dwelling within a Taifun home pays a monthly sum to the royal treasury, in addition to yearly taxes. The crown prince may seize any private property at his discretion.
- Bazaars are held weekly in Peacock Square, offering pepper, cinnamon, and sugar; aloes and myrrh; carpets and reams of silk; exotic pets such as monkeys and dracos; fresh dates, lemons and oranges; cattle and pigs; and any other good which is sold under the sun.
- Firebird Palace is the home of the crown prince. However, he and his entourage are absent more often than not.