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Tu Pe was a city in Koryo in northeast Kara-Tur.[1][2][3] It was nicknamed the city of the birds for its plentiful birdlife.[1]

HistoryEdit

Around the year 1200 by Koryoan reckoning, a great many refugees fled the nearby city of Karak by junks, journeying down the coast to Tu Pe. They moored their ships at the Long Pier, creating a neverending traffic jam that trapped still more rafts, boats, and even ships, while some chose to join the floating community voluntarily. This steadily grew and evolved into a veritable "floating city".[1][note 1]

In 1356 DR, a "cuddlefish" from the deep sea swam into the floating city. It killed four men before being captured.[1]

GovernmentEdit

The governor of Tu Pe had the honorary title "Lord of the South Wind". Around 1357 DR, Tu Pe was governed by Sanuk Doyo, with the wu jen Xithiaz Jui as his chief advisor.[1]

DefensesEdit

Tu Pe stood at the frontline of the defense of Koryo, particularly against Kozakura, and so it was very well defended. The city was girded by 16-foot-high (4.8 meters), 2-foot-thick (0.6 meters) walls with five towers (two where the walls met the coast, three facing the land); the battlements were designed for defense by archery.[1][2][3] It had a standing army of 2500 soldiers, and a further 4800 foot-soldiers could be mustered without conscription if required. There was also a mounted regiment whose duty was to patrol the coast as far as Karak to watch out for Kozakuran landings.[1]

Off the coast stood the fortress-island of Quelpart, which was the staging area for the kingdom's entire armada. Both fortress and armada depended on daily barges via the Tenasu Ferry from Tu Pe for supplies. The navy stationed three ships in Tu Pe Bay on a permanent basis.[1]

A freshwater spring inside the city and stores of supplies enabled Tu Pe to withstand a siege for up to four months, but only two if it had to support Quelpart as well.[1]

Thus the ferry route (and behind it, Tu Pe's floating city) was guarded by massive stone bastions or bulwarks. [1]

Law & OrderEdit

Seen as a wild place by some (at least by folk of stately Xai Chung),[1] Tu Pe had a reputation as one of the few troublespots of Koryo, so the city was infiltrated with spies serving King Wanang Sun.[4] It was rumored to be the hub for all smuggling to and from Kozakura, the enemy of Koryo. There were even stories of travelers being robbed and even sold into slavery whilst visiting the city (as happened to Meo Cha) and so some lords declined to let family members journey there.[1]

However, it was the floating city that was the true hub of crime in Tu Pe. Honest and honorable people generally avoided the place. Sailors of the naval vessels stationed in the bay were sometimes employed to quell unrest in the floating city. It was reputed that some families in the floating city were so influential and powerful that their patriarchs were practically kings in their domains,[1] such as the Diyantu family.[2][3]

TradeEdit

Tu Pe was an important trade port in Koryo. Ships from Wa and Shou Lung often docked there, but Kozakuran ships visited hardly ever, owing to conflicts with Koryo. Nevertheless, Tu Pe was widely rumored to be the center of illicit trade with Kozakura.[1]

DescriptionEdit

The city was walled by land with five defensive towers, but some construction went on outside.[1][2][3] The city's garrison and military stables stood close inside the eastern wall. Permitting entry to the city the northeast was the High Gate and to the south was the Nokani Gate.[2][3]

Each section of the city was named for a breed of bird, hence its nickname. Hundreds of birds nested atop the great stone bastions than marked the Tenasu Ferry route.[1]

In the north of the city were stockyards and the yards for various merchants and industries such as potters.[2][3]

The southeastern corner of the city was given over to very large walled, green area that contained upper-class homes, including the governor's residence, called the Palace of the South Wind, as well as the mansions of his wu jen, Xithiaz Jui, and the hero Jio Zung.[2][3]

In the harbor, a number of large docks bearing whole buildings extended into the water. Protected among these were the Royal Docks and the city's boatyards. Warehouses and fisheries also stood close to the docks. Among them was the famous Long Pier, which connecting the mainland city with the floating city, which caused much congestion in the bay.[1][2][3]

The floating city was a massive agglomeration of boats, rafts, and ships jammed together into a permanent structure, drifting safely behind the ferry bastions.[1][2][3] The decks of ships were treated as roads and two- and even three-story buildings were constructed atop some ships and platforms, though they bobbed on the waves. The population of the floating city equaled that on shore, and it was considered wholly a part of Tu Pe, albeit its seedy and disreputable district. However, much of it was rotten beneath the decks and with the high tide came leaks. Sharks and cuddlefish sometimes came in from the deep sea and lurked in the shallow waters beneath the floating city, attacking people.[1]

The Tenasu Ferry linked Tu Pe with Quelpart, with barges coming and going from the docks daily. The route was protected by the line of stone bastions that dominated the harbor.

Notable LocationsEdit

Tu Pe

A numbered map of Tu Pe.

A spring supplied fresh water to the city, such as through the Fountain of Anumka.[2][3]

In a walled compound in the north of the city stood the Renuki Do Jang,[2][3] which was among the most famous martial arts schools in Koryo. Many boys were sent to the school to be tested for admission.[1]

Markets
The BazaarThe Menori Trading Compound
Inns
The Evening Mist InnNorth Watch InnThe Sailfish InnThe Southwatch Dock and Inn
Taverns
The Dolphin's RestThe Smiling DragonSwonaku Kung's Tavern
Temples
The Hashanii Temple
Other
The Vix Festival HallThe Fountain of AnumkaPalace of the South WindRenuki Do JangTenasu Ferry

SocietyEdit

Tu Pe was a place of fashion for the upper classes. Some of the most talented designers and clothiers in Koryo worked there. A few of them were even wu jen, who weaved magic into cloth to create beautiful and hypnotic displays in their masterpieces. Around 1357 DR, the current general fashion was high-shouldered linen gowns adorned with silk belts and scarves and revealing the neck, which was in contrast to more conservative fashion elsewhere in the kingdom.[1]

Rumors & LegendsEdit

Local legend had it that tiny people called the Yio dwelt in hives beneath the floating city. Supposedly they rode rats and brought good luck but also stole shiny things, and even murdered those who disturbed them or kidnapped babies.[1]

AppendixEdit

NotesEdit

  1. The year 1200 in the Koryoan reckoning is unknown in familiar calendar systems.

ReferencesEdit

  1. 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 1.13 1.14 1.15 1.16 1.17 1.18 1.19 1.20 1.21 1.22 1.23 Mike Pondsmith, Jay Batista, Rick Swan, John Nephew, Deborah Christian (1988). Kara-Tur: The Eastern Realms (Volume II). (TSR, Inc), p. 118. ISBN 0-88038-608-8.
  2. 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 Mike Pondsmith, Jay Batista, Rick Swan, John Nephew, Deborah Christian (1988). Kara-Tur: The Eastern Realms (Maps). (TSR, Inc). ISBN 0-88038-608-8.
  3. 3.00 3.01 3.02 3.03 3.04 3.05 3.06 3.07 3.08 3.09 3.10  (1989). Kara-Tur Trail Map. (TSR, Inc). ISBN 0-88038-783-7.
  4. Mike Pondsmith, Jay Batista, Rick Swan, John Nephew, Deborah Christian (1988). Kara-Tur: The Eastern Realms (Volume II). (TSR, Inc), p. 122. ISBN 0-88038-608-8.

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