Gift of the Dwindling Star
Similar to the Steel Fist, the Gift of the Dwindling Star does not precisely exist within the Empire at all. The offices that deal with the Gift are located in the isolated community of Void, in Brez, but they consist of little more than three rooms above an inn (previously the Red Lamb, although it has now changed its name to the Red Lantern). One room is set aside for Thule visitors, one for the Varushkan who oversees the Gift, and one between them that is used to actually pass the ilium that the Gift provides from orc to human. Regardless, custodianship of the Gift of the Dwindling Star grants an Imperial title; a seat on the Imperial Bourse; and a seasonal bounty of valuable ilium to the one who controls it.
The opportunity to create the Gift of the Dwindling Star began in Winter 379YE with the appearance of an anomalous red star in the sky. Over the next several months, the star grew in size and exerted a peculiar influence over the people of the Empire until in Summar 380YE it became clear that the star was set on a collision course with the territory of Miekarova. With a potentially catastrophic starfall imminent, the Thule orcs made contact with the Varushkans to discuss a potential solution. In return for ensuring that the star struck the (apparently) largely unpopulated territory of Sküld in eastern Otkodov, they would provide a share of the ilium they were confident the star represented with the Varushkans. The Empire used a powerful ritual to shift the trajectory of the star north, and during the Autumn Equinox 380YE it struck the Thule territory.
In the wake of the starfall, the Thule contacted the Empire, and made arrangements for a share of the ilium to be given to the Varushkans. The Imperial Senate agreed to the arrangement, and the Gift of the Dwindling Star came into being. Every season, a Thule warlock and a small entourage spend three days visiting the cabalists of Void, and deliver four rings of ilium which are passed to the custodian.
The Gift of the Dwindling star is reliant on the current detente between the Empire and the orcs of Otkodov continuing. In the event that the Thule and the Empire go to war, it is likely this Bourse seat will be one of the first casualties.
The Bourse Seat
The Seat has no particular responsibilities; they simply receive a bounty of ilium which is theirs to do with as they will. If Gift of the Dwindling Star were to be threatened in any way, it would be the responsibility of the Seat to deal with those threats. Likewise, if any particular opportunity were to arise related to Gift of the Dwindling Star, the Seat would expect to be consulted as to how that opportunity might be resolved.
Seat on the Bourse
Custodianship of Gift of the Dwindling Star comes with a seat on the Imperial Bourse. For the most part, this Seat comes with no additional responsibilities. It is an Imperial title that grants the right to participate on the rare occasion when the Imperial Bourse as a body is required to make a decision.
Bounty of ilium
The Seat has control of a source of ilium which they receive directly. They can dispense this resource as they choose. Production is 4 rings of ilium every season.
As with all ilium Bourse seats, the holder of the title is determined during the Spring Equinox. Control of the Gift of the Dwindling Star is assigned to whichever Varushkan candidate receives the most support from Varushkan owners of mines and forests. Votes are recorded in private in conjunction with the civil servants who support the Bourse.
|Spring Equinox 383YE||Pavel Novak|
|Winter Solstice 383YE||Pavel Novak|
|Spring Equinox 382YE||Jarek the Peaceful|
|Spring Equinox 381YE||Jarek the Peaceful|
The title is currently held by Pavel Novak; it will be reelected Spring. The table to the right shows the citizens who have been elected to hold this title in the years since Empress Britta died.