The Tabaxi Regiment
Time and Space
The universe works in mysterious ways. The strange physics that move our world are as yet unknowable, although diviners, astrologists, and scientists have tried to make sense of the cosmos since time immemorial.
In one small pocket of infinity, there is a solar system with two suns – a Greater Sun ( enednárë ) and a Lesser Sun ( coronárë ). These two gas giants dance around each other, and many planets are caught in their wake, forced to dance with them.
The planets Athos and Oerth are located in this solar system, along with a gas giant with around twenty moons, and other planets…
BARA DRUU AND ITS MOONS
The most notable planet in this di-solar system is called Bara Druu. It features massive oceans and continents, with forests and deserts visible from its three moons: Peridot, Onyx and Tabaxi. It is too distant to see if any civilizations have survived the ancient Empire that brought the humanoid races to Tabaxi.
The blue moon of Bara Druu is also known as Bara Saerosse. Legend has it that Peridot was once colonized by the Empire of Bara Druu, but there is no evidence of life there now – it appears gaseous and blue, orbiting the planet twice every stellar revolution.
The yellow moon of Bara Druu. No one on Tabaxi has seen it since the War of the Empire. It was said to have been uninhabitable, even during ancient times. What has become of it baffles Tabaxian astrologers.
The farthest moon, Tabaxi has a diameter of roughly 7,000 miles. During the time of the Empire, there was an estimated 150 million square miles of surface. Today, most of the moon is covered in glacial ice, but there are several pockets of melt that feature lands and oceans. Presently, only 2 million square miles are known to have been uncovered near the equator. Impossibly, many races and creatures survived the unfreezing and life has flourished on the surface of the moon.
TIME ON TABAXI
Tabaxi’s calendars are defined by its position in relation to both Bara Druu and the two suns. There are variations, but it is generally agreed that each year begins and ends with the total eclipse of both suns, the Black Day, also known as the “Venida Oscuro” in Peñapesara.
There are four seasons on Tabaxi, affected by the placement of the moon in the twirling cosmos. Those who govern their lives by the seasons alone care little for dates, but, when counted, each season has exactly 74 days – with exception to winter, which has 75.
Phases of Bara Druu
Bara Druu outpaces the Greater Sun. After the Black Day, it pulls ahead, rising earlier than dawn throughout late Winter. It waxes to the halfway point by the end of Spring. When Summer begins, it rises just after dusk and remains in the sky throughout the night, mostly full, enormous enough to swallow most of the stars. Bara Druu already begins waning come Autumn, and rises in the afternoons. Come Winter, it is a thin arc and a black circle in the sky. A fortnight into winter, Bara Druu eclipses the Greater Sun, causing the cold wind and the snows to threaten even the tropical realms. This is known as the deep of winter.
THE BURNING AGE CALENDAR
Without known exception, the realms of Tabaxi follow the Burning Age’s ten-month calendar as described below. “Ember” is the common term for a year in the Burning Age, although “year” is used interchangeably and often. It is standard practice to follow any reference to the year-date with the letter E. To illustrate: it is currently the year 999E. There are ten months in an ember, each with thirty days. The Black Day falls after December 30th, and the new ember begins after the eclipse ends.
Months of the Ember
In Mudore, the ember is divided into thirty sets of tendays, which include a short week (3 days) followed by an ohnan (a day of rest) then a long week (4 days) concluding with a two-day dihnan. The Black Day exists outside of this calendar as an additional rest at the end of December’s last tenday.
A SEVEN-YEAR CYCLE
The placement of the Lesser Sun follows a seven-ember pattern, representing Bara Druu’s complete orbit around the Greater Sun. The humans have named the seven embers of this cycle after the Avalonic Gods.
Light’s Fire. The Year of Light (Avalon’s purest shade) was the first year of the Burning Age and has occurred every seven years since. This ember always begins in the coldest winter in the star cycle. The sudden appearance of conjoined suns after the Black Day is blinding. Throughout the ember, the Lesser Sun pulls ahead of the Greater, appearing earlier in the morning. The dark nights yield bright stars. Travel during this year is so common that there is hardly an agreed upon constellation.
Feydria’s Fire. During the Year of the Lover, the Lesser Sun rises consistently earlier than the Greater. Despite this early brightness, “dawn” is still considered as the rising of the Greater Sun. It is said people born in this ember are early risers.
Thrhihim’s Fire. The Year of Storms begins with the Lesser Sun entering its evening phase. The constellation of Thrhihim is a lute: three large stars and two small ones. The lute is outshined by the Lesser Sun towards the end of the ember.
Carsathix’s Fire. The Lesser Sun rises at night during the Year of the Trickster. At the height of summer, Bara Druu eclipses the Lesser Sun. This event, known as the Hex, is always significant, although whether it is a good omen or a portent of doom varies from ember to ember. “Gambling on the Hex” is a common expression to describe a reckless person. Strange events occur even among the common folk. This ember is the brightest in the cycle but its harvests are unpredictable.
Michelis’ Fire. The Lesser Sun rises consistently earlier throughout the Year of the Warrior, but still in the latter half of the day, lengthening the daylight beyond dusk. The constellation of Michelis is a winged sword, made by nine bright stars which become clearer as the ember continues.
Vatic’s Fire. During the Year of the Scholar, three bright stars border a bright blue and orange nebula called Vatic’s Urn, which can be seen during spring and winter. The Lesser Sun appears half a day after the Greater, and sets at midnight. As the year progresses, the Lesser Sun moves into the mornings.
Aylewend’s Fire. In the last ember in the Star Cycle, the Lesser Sun rises after the Greater, but it gets closer throughout, appearing earlier in the morning. In the winter, all of the suns and moons appear in a cluster in the midday sky – occasionally, both suns are eclipsed throughout the last month of the year. The cold is immediate and deadly, and whole villages are said to freeze to death. The stars are many and bright; however, so few people travel during the winter that no constellation has been popularized.