The Jewel of the Sulah, Peacock City, Sapphire of the South, Mayhim’s Gift, God’s Teeth, or simply The City. All are names for Melach, the largest and most powerful member of the Concordance, a collection of city-states not under the sway of the colossal Vez empire. Situated on the shores of the Sulah sea, the people of Melach have taken full advantage of the city’s location, constructing the largest and most advanced harbor and naval fleet in the known world. Be it militarily or economically, Melach commands the southern seas, having secured trade routes to the Grand Kingdom of Kasan, Azure, the Twin Cities, and even the Vez empire itself. The wealth and power of Melach allows the Concordance to stand up to the Vez empire.
The vibrant, multicolored tents of the Grand Bazaar and the light pastels of many of its seaside buildings lend Melach the name of Peacock City. Three and four-story apartments, constructed from the pink and blue coral of the Sulah sea lean drunkenly against each other, perpetually on the verge of apparent collapse. Ships of myriad designs from across the continent fill Melach harbor, keeping a constant stream of people, art, ideas, and money flowing into and out of the city. If something, or someone, is for sale it’s said that it can be found in the Grand Bazaar.
The brothels and bodegas which dot the city are the best in the world. The two most famous of these dens of inequity are the Jewel Box and The Void. Though the two brothels are equally famous throughout the world, few people actually admit to having visited The Void. Rumors have it that any thirst can be slaked, any hunger sated, any desire fulfilled, and any fantasy realized at The Void. There are even whispers that Queen Dido herself makes appearances at The Void, though none whisper loud enough for the Queen’s Hand to overhear.
Birds of every imaginable color perch among the palm, date, cypress, and olive trees, filling the warm air with their songs. Monkeys steal food from the Bazaar and pickpocket the unwary traveler. Giant black spiders spin their webs between the ancient obsidian obelisks, known colloquially as God’s Teeth, of the Temple district. Camels, horses, and donkeys vie for space on the crowded city streets, while massive grey pachyderms transport lumber and construction materials throughout Melach.
Melach’s 175,000 residents predominantly reside around the Harbor district, the Bazaar district or the Temple district. The wealthiest members of Melach’s non-ruling caste live in the Gold district, while the poorest and most destitute live in the Warrens. At night, the streets of each district are lit by arcane lamps of differing hues. These lamps work both to illuminate the streets and denote the borders of each district. Red lamps for the Harbor, green for the Bazaar, blue light for the Temple district, golden lamps for the Gold district, and a deep purple for the Warrens. Scholars and mystics don’t know how the lamps were made, what keeps them lit, or why the colors were chosen. The citizens of Melach divided themselves according to the preexisting color scheme, placing their own values and mores on what the lamps might mean.
Ostensibly, the city is ruled by Queen Dido from her seat upon the Sawtooth Throne. In reality, however, much of the city is controlled by the Saba’a, a collection of seven self-titled merchant captains. Merchant captains or crime lords, the Saba’a are some of the wealthiest individuals in Melach.