The Summer Empire
Location: Upper reach
Capital: Golden Leane
Themesong: Snake Charmer
Characteristics: The Malakim are a hardy people. Malak is a barren island, full of sand-swept dunes and rocky plains where scrub grass clings fitfully to the soil, and they have few other possessions to provide them with further bounty. As such, they’ve adapted, clustering along the few rivers and using irrigation to water their crops and herding animals in the grasslands.
Like the Bannor, the Malakim are religious, though perhaps because of their harsh life in the pitiless sun they are less zealous about it. Their worship is quiet and mostly practiced either in the home or in solitary contemplation among the dunes, except for their festivals. At Midyear and Yearend, tens of thousands of pilgrims travel to Malak to participate in the celebrations that take place.
Most of Malak is uninhabited desert, filled with crumbling ruins of Noble palaces, recreation sites, and laboratories. Nobles who sought quiet or secrecy traveled from all over the Nations of the Night to Malak, and while the Nobles themselves are long gone, their legacy remains, as do their experiments and the traps they built to protect themselves. The Malakim discourage exploration, saying it is better for some things to be left buried, but every year hundreds or thousands travel into the desert seeking some long-lost Noble treasure trove. Most come back empty-handed, some never return at all, but just enough become fabulously rich after some marvelous discovery that the flood of adventure-seekers continues.