Archive for the ‘Tahari’ Category

Teehra, Fayeen river

Saturday, August 6th, 2016

teehrateehra

Approaching Teehra, near the Fayeen river and the ruins of old Kasra.

The Tahari region is located southeast of Ar, below the eastern foothills of the Voltai Mountians. This area is shaped like an enormous, lengthy trapezoid with eastward leaning sides. At the northwest corner of this region is the opulent city of Tor. Further west of Tor, on the Lower Fayeen River, is the city of Kasra. The desert area in the middle is known as the Wastes or the Emptiness. This area is hundreds, or even thousands, of pasangs wide. It is mostly rocky and hilly except for the dune country area. A hot wind blows nearly constantly there and water is very scarce. There are some oases that are fed from underground rivers, tributaries that flow from the Voltai.

Oase der Zwei Scimitare

Saturday, August 6th, 2016

oase der zwei scimitare

Oasis of Two Scimitars (german Oase der zwei Scimitare), the crowded tavern, musicians playing.

Little is mentioned about this oasis. We do know that it is an isolated and obscure oasis, far from the established trade routes, that is under the control of the Bakahs who were once a vassal tribe of the Kavars.

City of Tor and its outskirts

Saturday, August 6th, 2016

city of torcity of tor

Negotiating with Doc Grun, Vizier, former High Pasha of the Oasis of Nine Wells, in the City of Tor.

Much of the city, of course, was organized to support the caravan trade. There were many walled, guarded warehouses, requiring their staffs of scribes and guards, and, in hundreds of hovels, lived kaiila tenders, drovers, and such, who would, at the caravan tables, when their moneys had been exhausted, apply, if accepted, making their mark on the roster, once more for a post with some new caravan. Guards for these caravans, incidentally, were usually known by, and retained by, caravan merchants between caravans. They were known men. Tenders and drovers, on the whole, came and went. Elaborate random selection devices, utilizing coins and sticks, and formulas, were sometimes used by merchants to assure that applying tenders and drovers were selected, if they were not known, by chance. Tenders and drovers were assured that this was to insure fairness. Actually, of course, as was well known, this was a precaution against the danger of hiring, en bloc, unwittingly, an organized group of men, who might, prior to their hiring, have formed a plan to slay the guards and merchants and make off with the caravan. Tenders and drovers, however, like men generally, were an honest sort.

Tor, rather similarly, (to the oasis) though few crops were grown within its walls, was built high, about its water, several wells in the deepest area in the city. The architecture of Tor, in concentric circles, broken by numerous, narrow, crooked streets, was a function of the radius from its wells. An advantage of this municipal organization, of course, though it is scarcely a matter of intentional design, is that the water is in the most protected portion of the city, its center.

These buildings, on the outside smooth and bleak, save for occasional narrow windows, high, not wide enough to admit a body, abut directly on the streets, making the streets like deep, walled alleys. In the center of the street is a gutter. It seldom rains in Tor, but the gutter serves to collect waste, which is often thrown into it, through open doors, by slaves. Within these walls, however, so pressing upon the street, I knew there were often gardens, walled, well-watered, beautiful, and cool, dark rooms, shielded from the heat and sun, many with superb appointments.

The buildings of Tor are of mud brick, covered with colored, often flaking, plasters. But now, in the sun, and the dust, raised by the people in the streets, everything seemed drained of color.

Tor was, as Gorean cities went, rich, trading city. It was headquarters for thousands of caravan merchants. In it, too, were housed many craftsmen, practicing their industries, carvers, varnishers, table makers, gem cutters, jewelers, carders, dyers of cloth, weavers of rugs, tanners, makers of slippers, toolers of leather, potters, glaziers, makers of cups and kettles, weapon smiths, and many others. Much of the city, of course, was organized to support the caravan trade.

Tor, lying at the northwest corner of the Tahari, is the principal supplying point for the scattered oasis communities of that dry vastness, almost a continent of rock, and heat, and wind and sand.
(from “Tribesmen of Gor”)

Oasis of Sand Sleen, revisited

Saturday, August 6th, 2016

Oasis of Sand SleenOasis of Sand Sleen

The Kavar Oasis of Sand Sleen and the First Girl Devilssabre.

The Kavar is the other major tribe of the Tahari and is often at odds with the Aretai. Their vassal tribes are the Ta’Kara, Bakahs, Cha,r and Kashani. Their war cry is ‘Kavars Supreme!’. Their mark is a blue scimitar facing outward from the body on the right forearm. Weapons include the Weapons sleeve dagger and scimitar.

The major tribes were ruled by Pashas. The Pasha often resided in a Kasbah, the fortress.

Men also wear the kaffiyeh and the agal. The kaffiyeh is a squarish scarf, folded over into a triangle, and placed over the head. Two points of it are placed at the side of the shoulders. One is placed in the back to protect the back of the neck. It is bound to the head by the agal, several loops of cord. The cording indicates a person’s tribe and district in the Tahari region. Some men, generally in the cities, may wear a head scarf, a wrapped turban of rep cloth. This protects the head from the sun and does not permit sweat to escape. Among lower-caste men, it can also provide a soft cushion for boxes and other burdens. You simply steady the burden with your right hand. In doors, men commonly wear soft, heel-less slippers with extended, curling toes.

Slave girls in the Tahari often wear chalwars. These are baggy pants of diaphanous silk, gathered in closely at the ankles. They are worn low on the hips, several inches below the belly button. They are similar to the harem trousers of the middle east region of Earth. They may also wear a silk vest with the chalwars.

Mirage Oasis

Monday, July 11th, 2016

mirage oasismirage oasismirage oasis

Mirage Oasis, Tahari Desert

Ada Kaleh – Tashid Oasis – Tahari Desert

Saturday, May 14th, 2016

ada kaledada kaled

Ada Kaleh – Karawanserei, Oase, Clan der Tashid

In the Glowing Heat of the Tahari

Friday, April 8th, 2016

Oasis of Sand sleenkassar

THE RETURN OF THE OASIS!

by AdriaRickman Resident (Adria), High scribe of Ianda on the Isle of landa

Word has returned of massive sandstorms that decimated the cities of Oasis of Sand Sleen and Oasis of Nine Wells! They lay in ruins, it’s said, the wells all dried of water, ruins found on the outskirts of the cities, the caravans turned back to the City of Tor and Oasis of Two Scimitars.

On the return road they heard many rumours, one being a massive Kurii ship had crashed, destroying everything in its wake and one other that the Bazi plague had hit and the citizens of the two Oasis had sealed off the cities to stop it spreading.

But not to be deterred they found cartographers, mapmakers and other merchants and made plans to start again for the Oasis cities, and good news! They did indeed find a new route!

The merchants of the southern trade alliance discovered the new route, they blazed new trails and fought through new lands to find they Oasis again. When they arrived, cautiously looking round, they found no evidence of Kurii, or Bazi plague! The people told of a huge sandstorm, and although some lives were lost and buildings damaged, they still had water and the wells were unaffected.

They are in the process of rebuilding now and so trade remains with an additional route.

(The Oasis of Sand Sleen is co-founder of the Southern Trade Alliance]

Oasis of Khalida

Saturday, February 27th, 2016

khalidakhalida

500 pasangs east of Tor deep in the desert sands of the Tahari the Oasis of Khalida sits like a dazzling emerald in a sand colored setting. Located in the farthest reaches of the desert nestled against the foothills of the southern Voltai range the people of Khalida work hard to survive but enjoy the pleasures of life fully. Welcome to the land where the only thing that burns hotter than the sand is the bellies of our kajira, where the wine flows hot and black and the passionate hospitality of our people is legendary.

Khalida is ruled by the Kenzai tribe and led by the High Pasha Arda. Known for its medicinal (and recreational) kanda, salt, date bricks and the most beautiful and passionate dancers in the Tahari the oasis is a popular stop on the eastern caravan routes. Khalida its market, traders, kanda tents, tavern, dance pits and water is open and available to all.

I was there recently, but beware of the fierce sandstorms of the Tahari desert!

WHERE DOES THE GLORIUS EMPIRE OF AR EXIST?

Tuesday, November 18th, 2014

Klima

The House of Yuroki Caravan approaching the Oasis of Klima

WHERE DOES THE GLORIUS EMPIRE OF AR EXIST? ~ 400 Years in the Future
By Teal Razor

In Port Olni, for the most part, the dwellers go about their tasks in a placid but cautious manner. Well, for the most part, except when sex starved slaves obtain a construction crew to erect an impromptu dance pit in the dead center of the commons. This was the scene last week in the commons of Port Olni.

Passersby were taken aback by this construction zone. Curiously though, the passersby did not report this behavior to a warrior, a magistrate, or the Ubarate. I speculated that those who passed by did not inform the authorities because they thought it was another project by the architectural firm, Buildem & Pray. After all it had all the earmarks of one of their construction sites; rubble, cement dust, and puddles of water everywhere.

So, no one suspected that a slave was actually the contractor. The pit, though, was fabricated so shoddily that there was a hole in the sand of the pit near the perimeter. When the slave/construction manager hopped in the pit to show a visiting physician some new moves she had learned, the hole proved to be a hindrance to her footfalls. At a couple of points in the dance she fell face first into the hole. I had never seen such a movement in any Gorean dance I had learned at the Gorean Dance Academy.

That no punishment was accorded the slave for causing this architectural flaw in the commons is the biggest puzzle of all. After the dance, the slave just walked away casually. Later a warrior saw the mess in the commons and ordered it cleared immediately. He asked around to see if he could learn who was responsible for this monstrosity of a dance pit. Funny, no one was able to identify the “perp” since no one thought a slave would do such a thing and chalked it up to the architectural firm of Buildem & Pray. No one would question THEIR doings in the commons. I think if anyone passing would have stopped to ascertain what was going on, the slave would have been apprehended quickly with a public whipping to follow.

This unquestioning of a questionable act was the forerunner of further aberrant behavior of the Citizens of Port Olni. I tried to figure out why last week, all the citizens believed that the Glorious Empire of Ar raided Port Olni.

The citizens even went so far as to claim injury and capture from the raiders who swooped down from the Glorious Empire of Ar. The peculiar thing about this raid was that it did not take place.

But, you could not reassure the citizens of this fact. The citizens brandished their swords and whacked away at invisible raiders before them.

And yet, for a raid that did not take place, the citizens thought it was real. Women hid, babies cried, alarms were sounded and the bridge raised. Warriors were seen tying themselves in binds, shouting to the thin air that they would kill the sleen from the Glorious Empire of Ar.

I came upon the aftermath of this raid to see people actually standing around discussing it. I felt like I was in a time warp because the Glorious Empire of Ar … does not exist. If it exists somewhere in the future we do not know. I mean, when was the last time a haruspex gazed into the entrails of a giani and said… “By golly, the Glorious Empire of Ar exists in the future. In fact, 400 years in the future.” No one has done this to anyone’s knowledge and yet Port Olni was deluded into thinking the Glorious Empire of Ar existed and they were in fact being raided by The Glorious Empire of Ar.

If the Glorious Empire of Ar does not exist and if by chance it will exist in the future, then in order to raid Port Olni, the raiders from that Glorious Empire would have had to use a time machine. Time machines do not exist, therefore the Glorious Empire of Ar was not in Olni.

I pondered this mass hysteria and decided to check the water supply to see if someone had infused a mind altering drug in the cisterns. I drank it, as a test, hoping I could see things that were not there. It did not happen. I was as sober as a magistrate after drinking a bota full of the stuff. I sniffed the air for some malicious gas that could be floating around. Gas has been known to cause ill effects on the sniffee’s. No gas was detected by me. Just the plain ole clean air of Port Olni.

I then had a bright idea that maybe the city had ingested Sa tarna grains contaminated with ergot. I rushed to the bakery and ate some mouthfuls of the grain hoping for a psychedelic effect. The only thing I received was a stomach ache.

This is a puzzle that one cannot solve. It did leave collateral damage in Olni with cuts, bruises, and headaches. They are still talking about it and all I can think of is…why?

southern trade alliance

Meeting of the Southern Trade Alliance – Brundisium

ASK TEAL ~ Dubious Advice to Goreans
By Teal Razor

DEAR TEAL:
I am a warrior and in my city I have noticed a steady increase in gambling. I myself like to throw an ostrakan into a basket to judge the way a game will go or not but I am not talking of this casual type of gambling. I have been seeing a more pervasive and insidious game being played where two men are drinking in the tavern. One brings out a pair of dice and tells the other…”I want to cut your head off. I want you to roll the dice and if you roll a number higher than mine, I will not cut your head off. But, if the number you roll is lower than the one I throw, you lose your head. So lets do that to pass the time.” I have seen men agree to this, the dice are thrown and inevitably a head will roll onto the tavern floor accompanied by much blood.

Three of my brother warriors were involved in such nonsense last week. One of them wound up without a right arm, which makes him useless to his caste, another had a dagger stuck in his belly and may not make it, the last was carved up like a vulo on a spit and died. This vice is spreading even to the kennels. Slaves are starting to throw dice to see who will clean up the bosk pens and they even throw the dice to find out how many lashes with a quirt that the first girl will administer.

Free women in the commons have stopped conversing so that they can roll dice on the table. They prearrange with another free woman that if they roll a higher number, that person can kill the slave of the other. If the other woman rolls higher, she gets to impale the other woman’s slave.

How can this madness go on and what can I do to stop it.

DEAR LEAVING LAS VEGAS:
Madness is an apt word for what you are experiencing. What you relate is a chilling tale of life being determined by a role of the dice. I mean what does that say for the participants, that they are at a loss for words to work out their differences, that they are so bored out of their minds that they chose not to speak but grunt to one another? I think you are right to rant about this “unspeakable” behavior. I am wondering what you really can do about this. It is a risky business to get between a person and his vice, especially of the vice of gambling.

If you think about it, you could become the object of their wrath and instead of their betting on one another, they could bet who could be next to run you through with a sword. This would be bad for your health.

I really believe that you should look for another city to make your Home Stone. Find a city where the citizens are articulate and have developed the habit of reading. It is doubtful that you will find “dice rollers” in your new city. The sound of soft chatter will be heard instead of the blood curdling screams of those who lose their limbs to a bet.

From the VOICE OF GOR v.4 Issue 182

PAGA, PAGA, PAGA ~ Festival in Sulport

Tuesday, May 13th, 2014

Klima

Picture: Oasis of Klima, Tahari desert

By Teal Razor, slave of Captain Siri Emerald Jr., Sulport

PAGA, PAGA, PAGA ~ Festival in Sulport

This weekend, merrymaking was at its best in Sulport. I am still recovering from the copious bowls of paga my Master fed me. I try to stay away from paga drinking. It seems one bowl is enough to cause me to shed what little clothing I have on and dance on table tops. One could say slaves should be doing these actions on a daily basis, well the dancing on tables part at least.

Sulport was awash not only in paga barrels, but revelers of all types willing to quaff the brew that was offered in tents set up around the city. Sulport was built with the word “par-tay” in mind. To be sure the buildings are neoclassical in fabrication but the arrangement of broad stone set plazas that surround them offer perfect places to set up festive booths and rides. Sulport took on the air of an earth carnival.

I was taken by my Master to one plaza that contained many venues. The first that attracted my attention was a kissing booth. I was quick to stand behind its counter and pucker up for the lips of my Master. I also looked around for any stray lips that wanted kissing but only free women were in the vicinity. After the smooching was over, he walked around to each tented and gaily decorated booth and examined them closely. I was especially taken with the candy booth. As luck would have it I was the recipient of a large honey candy which I commenced eating. Once my head is in candy, nothing much matters. A point that is well taken with my Master and he used the occasion of my zombie-like behavior to feed me the first of the paga bowls.

With my head reeling from the alcohol I continued to follow my Master around the fair. Our next stop was the snake charming basket. I looked in it to see an ugly ost. My Master picked up a flute and started playing and thumping the ground in front of the disgusting, wriggling, scaly thing. It popped its head out and started hissing at which point I backed off. I went to the revolving swings nearby and hopped on. Sucking on the candy was the only thing that saved me from displaying the contents of my stomach since the paga made me woozy and the action of the merry-go-round swings intensified the paga’s effect. After a while the feeling passed and my Master hopped on the swings also. He shoved his sandal up my butt from behind which caused us both to laugh.

Our next venue was the puppet show booth which was not manned at that moment. I called over to a kajira I have made acquaintance with by the name of Kayla. I was told she was going to put on a puppet show, which would have been highly amusing but, her Master, impatient with the slowness of the preparations, dragged her off so that he could swill from the flowing spigot of the paga barrel. This fact annoyed me but her Master got his comeuppance of a sort when he volunteered to be the dunkee in the dunk tank. I begged my Master to purchase me some projectiles to hurl at the bull’s eye target. He obliged me and I stood on the marker with stone in hand ready to pitch it at the destination which would cause Kayla’s Master to fall into the tank. The Priest-Kings were with me as I hit the mark on the first try and into the tank went Master Lorr Tren. I walked away smirking, satisfied that if I could not be privileged to see his girl’s puppet show, at least he was cold and wet because of my accurate throw.

After another ahn, my Master left to take a nap after he had downed a few bowls of paga himself. He bought me a honey pop and a nice piece of spiced and dried bosk meat. I was in tarsk heaven. Kneeling in the plaza, eating, and observing the free and slaves at their festivities was a pleasant pass time.

I was startled when a tarn and rider landed rather abruptly in the middle of this paga fest. The rider was hooded. His eyes scowling. He inquired about a dance competition that he was sure would be taking place at the Paga Festival. I informed him rather brightly that it would be starting in 2 ahn. A nearby slave got rather close to the tarn’s beak and was warned off by the cantankerous man who rode it. I was far enough away and called out to see if it would be permissible to throw a piece of candy to the tarn. The rider let fly a series of epithets which I countered with the supposition that he had arisen on the wrong side of the furs that morning.

Not wanting to be inhospitable, I asked him if it would not be more pleasant for him to come down off his high tarn and let me serve him paga and sweet meats while he was waiting for the dancers. This lead to further malevolent and inflammatory language from the tarnsman. He threatened in a loud voice to kill all the inhabitants of Sulport, raze the city, and bind all the slaves and sell them at auction in Port Kar. This ridiculous bellowing was heard by a free woman who was passing by. She demanded to know if the tarn rider was wanting to start a war.

Without warning the one man army atop the tarn instructed his bird to kill and devour me. I was alert for this one. After he called me a smart mouth slave I knew he was not to be cajoled in any way shape or form and arose to my feet and started backing away. It was a good thing I did. The tarn grazed my buttocks with it’s massive beak causing a nasty bruise. I ran for the apartments of my Master, the idiot on tarnback in pursuit. I reached safety and ventured out after a few ehn to see if he was still around. I glanced up to see if I could see the bird and noticed in the distance the tarn and its obnoxious rider sitting on the roof of the inn. They seemed to be awaiting the return of the prey, namely me.

I went back in and started cooking for my Master and vowed not to venture out for the rest of the day. My Master thought the bruise on my ass was from an overzealous paga drinker and I did not elaborate on its origins. Let sleeping sleens lie is a motto that has saved my bruised ass on many an occasion.

From the NEW VOICE OF GOR v.4 Issue 158