Demonym: Sorana; of Sorairo. Soratami; a person who is Sorana
Climate/biome: Sorairo is a temperate island with one great mountain, Which experiences an unusually cold climate due to its altitude.
Area: Very small
Population density: Very high
Common Inhabitants: Soratami, drow
Rare Inhabitants: Jotun
The ancestral seat of the soratami nation, Sorairo is an island rich with Escarnum deposits—so rich, it permanently floats over the sea around Alm.
Isolated and aloof, Sorairo is politically neutral toward all the surface nations, while also being overtly socially hostile to outsiders.
As a rule, Sorairo is the most straightforward feudal system to be found in Alm. It is ruled by a hereditary Emperor who presides over a intense hierarchy of noble families with their ancestral territories, and a rigid caste system beneath them. The Emperor is an absolute authority and a godlike figure, officially considered to be without flaw or vice; beneath him, lords and magistrates and family heads all inherit lesser amounts of this status.
Since ancient times, the Soratami Imperial families have ruled by virtue of a divine artefact, the Gyousei. Though rarely used, this relic of some forgotten god-beast could call down the fire of the heavens, giving its wielder a decisive edge in any battle. Its last recorded use was during the unrest that led to Calanshae’s creation, where the Emperor used its might to obliterate the uprising and cast out those who had fomented it.
Sorairo boasts the oldest written histories in Alm, establishing that they have lived on their floating island for millennia. The earliest Soratami seem to have been unaware of the surface world, suggesting that if they originally descended from surface dwellers, it was long before they began keeping records. Early mentions of the world below express surprise and curiosity, as if observing newly-discovered animals. However, this quickly turns to disgust and despair at the primitive races that held sway on the surface world.
With such in-depth recordings of their own existence, informed Soratami are well aware that their history is one of countless factions and infighting. To the common folk, however, this is always characterised as a thing of the past—yes, there used to be many arguments, but not since the divine Emperor showed them the way. Outside of those in authority, few even remember that the Imperial family has maintained its power by exiling entire bloodlines to the surface world, and to the sinister Aganai prison.
Soratami society has a complex written language using as many as seven alphabets, depending on the writer and the audience, the origin and purpose of the words, and other factors. This highly structured system has the advantage of conveying much tonal and contextual information that is not immediately obvious top outsiders; however, it has also been used as a tool to maintain Sorairo’s rigid hierarchy over the years.
In recorded history, Sorairo has done everything it can to avoid involving itself with the surface world—apart from exiling those who would become the eladrin, of course, which in itself provided the fuel for a centuries-long war. It is officially neutral toward all the surface nations, though privately it has never considered Calanshae anything less than a hostile power.
The drow, imprisoned in the labyrinth within Sorairo, are a matter of state secret. It is much easier to escape through the Shadowfell than to breach the gate back to Sorairo’s surface, so few soratami ever have any reason to know of the drow. Those who do are high-ranking members of the Imperial family, or its advisers.
Sorairo does not attack outsiders on sight, but it does treat them with absolute disregard; few citizens will do business with them, and fewer still will help them with their goals. They must be made to understand they do not belong here.