The Twelve Walls of Agnusse Diah
The Five Holy Mothers
The Five Holy Mothers are five women, made immortal by the Patron, who are the ultimate authority in Agnusse-Diah. They are the only people who have the ability to communicate directly with the Patron, and spread her wishes throughout the city. Only the Speaker is allowed to see and speak with the Five Holy Mothers. The Mothers were chosen by the Patron immediately after the revolution from an exclusive group of the most revered priestesses in Agnusse-Diah. Considered too holy to be looked upon by the non-ordained, they attend council meetings seated behind five curtains of different colors (one to represent each Holy Mother), which are layered over one another to create a thick barrier it’s impossible to see through.
The Speaker is second only to the Five Holy Mothers in terms of her rank and status. If the Five Holy Mothers are the Pope, the Speaker is the rest of the Vatican. She is still considered holy, but unlike the Holy Mothers she’s approachable. Speakers do exactly what it sounds like they do—speak for the Mothers at meetings of the Twelve Voices, announce the Mothers’ decisions to the city, etc. She’s essentially a middlewoman between the Mothers and the city. Each new Speaker is chosen by the Mothers when the current Speaker is on her deathbed. It is a tradition that every Speaker’s last words from the Mothers are the announcement of who has been chosen as the next Speaker.
The Twelve Voices
This is a council of eleven elected representatives, one from each ring of Agnusse-Diah. There are only eleven because the twelfth ring of the city has been considered uninhabitable for about the last 250 years and is illegal to travel to. However, the council still keeps the name of the Twelve Voices because of tradition and such. Voices don’t necessarily need to be magic users, although many of them are, and the council is surprisingly racially diverse. After the Mothers and the Speaker, Voices have the most power in the government. There’s some rumors of ulterior motives and corruption among some of the Voices, but it’s probably nothing.
Politics in each Ring
Because the rings of the city are so vast, each ring has a governing system in place. These systems all follow the same original model, but are interpreted vastly differently in different rings—the second ring is well-organized and heavily regulated and governed, for example, while the tenth and eleventh rings are close to anarchy with the people in charge’s titles meaning little to nothing. The basis of the system is as follows.
Each ring has a Central Judge, who is an elected mage who has the authority to pass laws within her ring. She also presides over court cases. The Central Judge has an unspecified number of handpicked Advisors, usually representative of the ring’s diversity (if the ring is 10% dwarves, for example, 10% of the Advisors would ideally be dwarves) who spend their time researching the needs of people in the ring and reporting back to the Judge on what decisions might be smart to make. The Central Judge also has the authority to appoint a Head of Wall (almost always a Raptoran, who is in charge of security for the rings outermost wall), a Head of Law (essentially a police chief), a Head of Commerce (in charge of making sure business regulations are followed, enough food is being grown, trade between rings is fair, etc.), and a Head of Ring Relations (works with other heads of Ring Relations to try and maintain good ground and keep the peace).
Each ring also has an elected Voice, as mentioned above. The Voice lives in the innermost ring and relies on a system of cameras and an interpretive computer program called Eyes to keep them informed as to what’s going on in their home ring. Keep in mind that Voices’ loyalty is typically to their city before their ring, and Eyes catches almost everything that isn’t explicitly hidden. Things go straight to the top faster than you’d think. People who ask too many questions or show signs of civil unrest oftentimes find that Eyes leads to a quick undoing…