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PostSubject: Organizations of Note   Thu Aug 21, 2008 11:43 am

The Preservation Alliance seeks to preserve the port’s historic architecture. They seem, however, strangely interested in ancient relics as well as in new discoveries and inventions.

The Oceanographic Guild attempts to chart the whole of the Aster Sea, which is the most dangerous pursuit in the world. It’s made up of mystics and suicides.

The Geographic Society attempts to map the Interior, which is the second most dangerous pursuit in the world. It’s made up of mystics and suicides that are afraid of water but like camping.

The Guild of Revelry controls most of the “entertainers” operating out of the artist’s district known as the Quadrille. Rumor says its masters seek a monopoly on the very concept of pleasure.

Residents of the port think of Petitioners Hall as a kind of church. They write petitions – but only the nasty ones; may so-and-so lose their beauty or fall ill or suffer a fatal accident – on small pieces of paper, place them in boxes full of sums of money, and then hand them to the Petitioners, who ask no questions. They believe the Petitioners then voice their petitions to the powers Beyond-the-Sea. A surprisingly large number of petitions do come true. Perhaps not so surprisingly, there seems to be some correlation with the amount of accompanying money.

The Agents of Fate, also called Fateful, or the Army of the Fateful, do the bidding of a wholly unknown master. They perform various acts, great and small, in order to prevent a great disaster and/or make something wonderful come about...none seem entirely sure. Their actions seem to be entirely random stuff – kill him, save her, drop this coin at that intersection, say this name aloud in this bar at precisely that time – with no apparent rhyme or reason. The problem comes from other Agents of an apparently different Fate, who are working at cross purposes. Save him, kill her, pick up that coin, have a loud coughing fit at 3:07 EXACTLY, and so on. This can lead to some very bizarre conflicts, which can easily be mistaken for a form of performance art.

The Port is home to the Aero-Nautical Corps, an organization of aviation enthusiasts that uses tamed Aster Starfish as lift sources. Resembling enormous versions of the mundane puffer fish (leading to their nickname ‘Awesome Blowfish’), Aster Starfish are lighter than air because they’re filled with the void and infinitely-remote stars. Few of the beasts have been successfully tamed, but the site of one of these fish swimming slowly and majestically through the sky, a ship dangling beneath it, is a common one in the Port. A few aeronauts have discovered how to make their Starfish project black bolts of the void from their dorsal spines, leading to spectacular aerial battles, collateral property damage, and, unfortunately, a rise in airship piracy.

The Grand Armada is the port’s navy. The Governor has sole access to a ritual that allows ships made of mundane wood to sail the Aster and survive the experience – under normal circumstances, the planking is all too likely to mutate and start putting forth new roots – and he uses this magic to keep the Armada afloat. And under his thumb. He also sells it to private merchantmen, for a hefty fee. The captain and crew need to vacate the ship while it is being performed, but the results are good for a year and a day. However, the Armada's flagship, The Delicate Needle of Inquisitive Purpose, isn’t wood at all. It’s a recovered Black Ship that had been split in two by the Kraken.
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