Rivermouth is one of the six cities, and is located on Motunui's southern coast, built around Splint River where it meets the sea. The large swamp that Rivermouth lies in is named for the city. It is the smallest of the six cities, with an economy based largely on fishing, the export of pearls, paua, and ships, and whaling.
It is also an important port for lands west and south of Motunui, but the amount of trade coming through the city is largely dwarfed by the port city of Whangatawhito. The sailors of Rivermouth are widely considered to be the best in Motunui, thanks to the long journeys over rough seas that it takes to get to the lands that Rivermouth trades with. A common insult in Rivermouth is 'as skilled as a cove sailor', referring to Whangatawhito and the calm seas that underlie their trade routes.
Before the Empire Edit
Rivermouth existed prior to the conquering of Motunui by the empire of Yalan, although it was a small and rather insignificant town, one of many dotted across Splint River. Its people were mostly fishers, simply living off of their catches day to day.
Under the Empire of Yalan. Edit
The empire of Yalan conquered Motunui for two reasons: its strategic value, and its abundant resources. Rivermouth was a perfect place to capitalise on both of these. Its location made it a useful platform for expanding their reach further south, and the potential for large scale harvesting of pearls and whales made it a valuable addition to the empire's expanding economy.
After the empire firmly established its dominance in Motunui, Rivermouth found itself flooded by Yalan immigrants and military. Hulking fortifications and sprawling shipyards sprung up in and around the small town, the empire preparing it to be a major port of military and industry.
The sudden expansion and diversification of Rivermouth's economy was not as much of a boon for the locals as one might think. Only interested in the location and not the town itself, the empire walked all over the natives of Rivermouth. The new industries were almost entirely operated by Yalan immigrants, and the flood of restrictions and laws that came with the empire severely reduced the ability of many to fish for their livelihoods.
For those who had come to Rivermouth from Yalan, however, The swelling settlement offered many opportunities. Whether building ships or sailing them, there was great profit to be made, with the empire sinking immense resources into what would become their biggest military port outside of Yalan itself.
During the empire's aggressive expansion into the southern continent of Cheyata, traffic through Rivermouth grew to enormous levels. Although the number of permanent residents was around that of a small city, the number of people within its boundaries at any given time could rival Whangatawhito.
When the empire's various war efforts started to become desperate, life in Rivermouth became frantic. No ship was allowed to leave alone, and often departures would wait for days or weeks before military escorts became available. Inbound traffic suffered incredible amounts of scrutiny as the government became paranoid about their enemies taking Motunui, their only real foothold into the wider world. Those forced to wait on the empire's bureaucracy often grew impatient, and restless. Drunken brawls were commonplace throughout the city, with some boldly inebriated individuals assaulting patrolling guards or outposts.
The situation only became worse when whispers of the Rotonui rebellion reached Rivermouth. With the empire's men pushing harder and harder to maintain order over all of Motunui, many were finally pushed so far that they had no option but to push back, and the people of Rivermouth were among the first to do so. When the fledgling army of the Kingihou came to Rivermouth, they found the empire already losing the city to rebellion and anarchy.
The Years of the Kingihou Edit
Tua Kingihou's plans for Rivermouth initially included the deportation of the vast majority of the city's Yalan immigrants. However, this proved problematic. Most of the people of Yalan descent had been born in Rivermouth or elsewhere in Motunui; those who called Yalan home had mostly fled while the empire crumbled. There were also many instances of individuals of mixed race, and people of Yalan descent who were pillars of the city's industry or community. After much confusion, protests, and deliberation, the deportation plans were completely scrapped, although the government continued to favor 'locals' over the 'Yalan immigrants' in many ways.
Rivermouth continued to be an important shipyard and center of whaling during the reign of the Kingihou, although without an international empire to fuel, both industries dropped dramatically.
Modern Rivermouth is heavily influenced by the high level of immigration from Yalan it experienced during the time of colonial Motunui. Many of its people are tall and fair haired, traits often associated with the northern continent. The art and architecture of the city show definite traits of Yalan culture, and the sailors of Rivermouth hold many superstitions alien to the rest of Motunui.
Rivermouth generally accepts and respects all of the common deities of Motunui, with a strong focus on those deities related to fishing and sailing. Tangaroa, god of the seas, Tawhirimatea, god of the weather, and their children are the most important gods to the people of Rivermouth, as the sailors that dominate the city's culture are essentially at their mercy. Also important to them are Rehua, god of stars, and Tamanuitera, the sun, due to their importance in navigation.
Rivermouth is run jointly by duchess Erin Fairchild and warden Melissa Shipwright. The former handles administration and operation of taxes, infrastructure, diplomatic relations, etc., while the latter is in charge of keeping order, making and enforcing laws, and protecting the city. The state of Rivermouth encompasses several towns and a few dozen villages, but many independent settlements exist within its territories.
The permanent military force of Rivermouth is quite small. It consists of the guards of the city of Rivermouth itself, and a small unit dedicated to patrolling the major roads, and staffing the few forts of the region. The towns and villages under the city's jurisdiction all have independent guard forces, if they exist at all, and the swamps surrounding the city are a natural deterrent to tribal raiders.
However, Rivermouth is far from weak; many of its citizens are skilled combatants, and in times of need the city can call upon its reserve to create a substantial fighting force. Citizens are expected to undergo combat training upon reaching adulthood, both to be ready to serve in the reserves and as a matter of practicality; the swamps are home to powerful and deadly creatures.
The main fighting style used by the Rivermouth military is called 'River Pike'. The style focuses on range and maneuverability, forgoing heavy, constricting armours and bulky shields. The main weapon is a longspear, allowing soldiers to outrange most foes in melee. If an enemy should close, the style trains in the use of short swords as a secondary weapon. For long ranges, soldiers are equipped with slings, favoured for their extreme portability. In addition to using each of their weapons, soldiers trained in this style learn to move rapidly and stay on their feet, allowing them to evade attacks instead of relying on a shield to stop them.