Metamor Keep Guidelines
Dates are in relation to CR, or Cristos Reckoning, after some unspecified time that would be very interesting to write about.
Ancient Past- Creation of Metamor Keep. Current theology holds that it was created by the Gods. Gods hold that something above them created it. In any case, it is accepted world-wide as both the finest example of architecture and defense in the world. The reason for its creation is still unknown.
-4000 CR- First known occupants of Metamor Keep. Afraid of the rooms, they sleep in the halls.
-2000 CR- First attack on Metamor Keep, by a rival tribe of humans seeking to overthrow the fledgling kingdom based there. Repulsed.
-1000 CR- Written records begin to appear. Metamor Keep kept as a home of culture.
-567 CR- Fall of Metamor Keep. Traitors within open the gates to the expansionist Suielman Empire, based in the deep south. Most inhabitants destroyed, those left enslaved and sent south.
-500 CR- Metamor Keep is largely forgotten. Up north the first vestiges of society are beginning among the lutins and the giants.
0 CR- Records left by the Suielman Empire record a bright light north near the northern pass to the Giantdowns. Historians posthumously record this as the beginning of the fall of the Suielman Empire.
75 CR- First invasion of the lutins and giants. Repelled with great cost of the Empire. Many invasions will come down the pass in the centuries to come, destroying the already decaying Suleiman Empire.
150 CR- Sulieman Empire collapses. Lutins and giants roam and loot the Midlands almost at will, humans hide from the invaders and attempt to eke out a living.
230 CR- Prince Ovid (Son of King Andrew) heads north to remove the Lutin and giant raiders from the Midlands.
235 CR- Prince Ovid's army fight the last battle at the Gate of what is known as Metamor Keep. The doors open at this touch, where magic had no effect at all.
236 CR- King Andrew breaks the kingdom into Two realms, Northern and Southern Midlands. King Andrew gives Prince Ovid the title of Duke of Northern Midlands, and tells him that he is to rule of the northern territories. Duke Ovid, along with many other settlers, start towards Metamor Keep
236-260 CR- Northern Realm grows, creating two major towns, and continues to create active trade with southern Midlands, as well as with the new empire growing in the Southern region called Sathmore Empire. Upon the death of King Andrew, newly crowned King Lyam states that it is Duke Ovid's kingdom to do with as he pleases
260 CR- Ovid marries at 47. Unknown assassins break into the wedding hall, kill the bride and seriously wound Ovid. Ovid finally dies in the arms of his best friend Thomas I. Thomas I is made king soon afterwards. (At the age of 43)
Late 260 CR- Southern Midland Realm state their choice to become independent states. War breaks out, and the Kingdom of the south starts to Fall. Duke Thomas I of Northern Midlands helps King Lyam in fighting the civil war. This causes the states to attack the Northern realms. War in the Midlands breaks out.
268 CR- War ends with the fall of the states, South Kingdom again takes over rule of the Midland Southern Realm. Thomas I and King Lyam finally make a peace treaty to show that the Northern and Southern realms are a standing force against anything like that.
290 CR- Thomas I dies at the age of 73. The throne of the northern realm is passed on to Lord Thomas II (Age 24)
400 CR- Southern Realm collapses into small feudal states. Northern Realm remains strong, but is occupied defending the pass and cannot guard the south. Territory nibbled away at until only the pass and some land south remains in the hands of the hereditary Metamorian Kings. Occasional battles to regain territory are never lasting.
699 CR- Battle of Three Gates. The Metamorians expel the invading forces of Nasoj, but at great personal cost. Their forms are altered beyond repair, into three main groups- Age Regression, TransGendering, transformation.
November 22nd, 705 CR- The stories in Metamor Keep begin
Mid 707 CR- Current story timeline. The dragon calendar reckons NC 982 to be the current date.
The premise behind the Metamor Keep transformations- During the Battle of the Three Gates, Nasoj and his wizards cast three spells down each of the gates. Spell 1 transformed its victims into incredibly buxom women or over proportioned men. Spell 2 made its victims full animals. Spell 3 infantilized its victims. The Keep wizards were able to partially reverse the spell, but not totally.
TG victims can change between a relatively normal person of their gender to a bombshell. While most don't find this of any use, some women take pride in extreme proportions. There are female to male transformations as well as male to female.
AR victims can shift between the ages of infancy and around 13 - 14. Since AR people find it easy to trick adults and are naturally adept at slipping into small places, they are usually found in diplomatic duty down south.
TF victims can shift between a fully animal example of their species and a sort of halfway morph. They are persecuted and hunted outside of Metamor and the closest surrounding lands. Some TF victims can also attain a taur shape.
The spells, due to their chaotic composition, had a permanent effect on the Keep as well. Any new arrivals not caught by the initial spell will begin to change if they stay at the Keep for a period of about a week to two weeks. The spell will not hold if the person leaves before they begin to change, but will if they are almost always in or near the Keep. Once changes have started, they are impossible to stop or reverse.
It is possible to be caught by more than one spell during the Battle, and subsequently have a mixture of the three spells. The results of such are unpredictable. People caught like that are rare. New arrivals almost never have a mixture of transformation. Anyone wanting to have a character who mixes 2 or 3 of the changes must get permission from the universe controller and have a reasonable idea to explain why it occurs.
Since this is a magical universe, it is possible to affect transformations other than the normal ones. But such magic can only be used in addition to the Keep transformation, and is unable to restore the original form or general species of the person. Extremely powerful transformations are forbidden.
The change is governed by a confusing mix of hormonal and psychological changes brought on by puberty. Therefore the change begins sometime at 14, and takes the normal two weeks to conclude. AR transformees show no visible effect of their transformation, but merely stop growing at a certain age. They are able to shift back and forth between toddler and 14 as usual. TG'ers and TF'ers continue to grow until they reach the end of puberty, even in their transformed bodies.
The children of transformed parents tend to express as their parents did. While this is by no means assured, the children of animal parents tend to express as the same species as their parents. If the parents are of two different species or transformee group, then the child may express as either one.
Furthermore, on a few rare occasions, the children are born already transformed. This happens mostly with TF parents of exactly the same breed (i.e. Lord and Lady Avery). In fact, when the parents are of the same breed, their children more often than not will be born the same species as they are. Children born already cursed do not undergo the curse when they reach puberty.
This being a fantasy universe, things such as stereos and walkmans are pretty much out of the question. Similar accomplishments through magic are technically possible but not really appropriate. Metamor Keep is supposed to be a fairly technologically advanced country, however, so any earthly invention that does not rely on electronics or fossil fuels is possible.
Thomas is Duke of the Northern Midlands, Earl of the Pearly Towers, King of the Pass, and whatever other titles are needed to cover the titles everyone is going to tack on him.
His domain covers two writs. The first is Metamor Keep itself, of which he is sole ruler. Thomas prefers to concern himself with it almost to the exclusion of all his other territory. However, after the Winter Assault, he is taking a wider view and is beginning to pull his vassals, both cursed and otherwise, to his way of thinking.
The second is a small amount of city-states south of the pass. These are governed under a feudal arrangement. They are associated with Thomas out of self-interest more than anything else. The nobles of this area intrigue against each other to their heart's content, secure in the knowledge that no southern city-state will willingly invoke the wrath of Metamor. Thomas in the past has asked little of these hereditary inheritances, and received it. He sought their help during Winter Assault and received some of it. Now he is paying them back, and seeking to unite them closer under his rule.
The government of Metamor is an odd cross between benevolent dictatorship and republic. Thomas has full powers as military guardian of Metamor to order whatever he wishes done. In times of crisis, this is unquestioned. In more peaceful times, his power can be challenged through several avenues. This is laid down in the Metamorian constitution. (Yet to be written.)
The first is to obtain the approval of three high ranking Keep members. For the moment this definition is left open, but it includes anyone who leads the Keep, militarily or in a civilian capacity.
The second is through the Justice system. The Keep has a fully-fledged court system. (patterned on the US model.) Rulings that apply to the Constitution can be challenged.
The third, never exercised, is a full fledged plebiscite. This would be used only in order to overthrow Thomas, which no one even considers, or to overhaul the current government in some other form.
The Keep is highly magical. As such, the geometry and layout of it is more or less a random thing. The Keep changes shape regularly, and accurate maps are impossible. However, thinking of where you want to go generally gets you there. Some claim that concentration can actually shape the Keep, but experiments are thus far inconclusive. Magic can shape the Keep and make it stick for awhile, but regular boosting spells must be applied.
In order for a Keeper to be banished, they must commit a terribly grievous offense, to the tone of murder or worse. Keep in mind that if you have Thomas banish a person who is really innocent, then Thomas would be cast as the shortsighted bad guy, probably not a great way to cast him. But if the crime is grievous enough, the offender would be banished to the Giantdowns or such. The Justice system would come into play here.
Continuity and Interactions
"Can I have a three headed dragon with the ability to morph into every form he can think of, level mountains with a thought, and teleport the entire Keep to Earth for a crossover story?"
Power characters are prohibited. My reasoning is that no one has any reason to be significantly more powerful than anyone else's character. If one character has to act under certain limitations, everyone else has to as well.
However, this is a magical universe. Therefore the power boundary is rather high. But these are the limits-
The idea is that well-trained but otherwise normal humans were transformed. This is a medium magic setting.
All those who have characters, or most of them, are listed in the MK character list. If your story involves minor interaction with their characters, it is polite but not necessary to request permission from them. If your story involves major interaction, but no lasting effect on the character, it is customary to request permission. If your story involves lasting effect on the character, it is necessary to request permission.
Examples- (Mike is the writer. John is another person's character.)
Minor Character Interaction-
Major Character Interaction-
Setting Interaction is a more uncommon problem, but even worse as far as continuity is concerned. It deals with making large, disruptive changes to the setting. While conflict is a part of every plot, other writers are writing in this small Keep as well. If your story has meteor strikes, large scale battle, etc, other stories written at the same time would expect to know about this. Having their characters run around blissfully while your epic rages around them makes no sense.
This is isn't to say don't plan on large scale battles. But permission should be gotten some time in advance, so other writers know of your plans. And if you do give three months advance notice, it won't be granted unless the story is both well-written and long. A huge epic battle encompassing the entire Keep will be immediately stricken if it's three pages long and filled with typos.
Christian O'Kane: Mr. O'Kane is the Metamor Keep universe maintainer. As controller, Christian holds veto power. Any story that doesn't fit into the MK timeline, for either problems of interaction, continuity, or physics, will be stricken. They can be re-entered if cleaned up so as to meet standards.
Charles Matthias: Charles Matthias is the most prolific MK writer, and wrote the current character synopsis. Matters dealing with the Ecclesia, rodents, the Southern Continent, or major appearances of his characters should be referenced to him.
Raven Blackmane: Raven's avatar is the head priestess of the Lightbringer religion. She created the Lightbringer pantheon and much of the Calendar. Questions with that should be referenced to her. Details on the Lightbringer pantheon can be found in the MK deity section. Religious holidays can be found in the Calendar.
Thaeus: Thaeus maintains the Metamor Keep archive.
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