Where did Ashwick City get its name?
Founder’s name was Lucian Ashwick, who funded the cities first buildings and infrastructure.
Founded during a civil war fought between a dictatorial government and a group of revolutionary dissidents determined to overthrow them. The revolutionaries that realised that they were losing mounted an expedition to the island now known as Ashwick in order to found a small nation of their own. A settlement was founded roughly in the centre of the island and steadily grew as people sympathetic to the revolutionaries began to flee their home country. A fort was built on a smaller island to watch out for retaliatory forces.
The Sovereign War
Ashwick’ home country sent an invasion force across the sea. A naval battle ensued, where Ashwick’s navy fought to delay the invasion long enough for Ashwick’s army to prepare for the landing. The invading army landed and met fierce resistance from Ashwick’s defence force. Despite fighting hard, the invaders could not gain any ground and retreated after a long and bloody battle.
The Great Disaster
Caused by the accidental detonation of a natural gas deposit beneath the city docks. Simultaneously created a fire in the docks and blocked the sewer system by caving in its only exit. The fire spread across the city while the sewers flooded out, sending sewage and rats into the city streets and creating a hotbed for plague to spread. The government building, being close to the gas deposit, was swiftly consumed by the fire, which killed most of the government. The people were evacuated from the city, and mud walls were built around it to stop the fire spreading, with stone walls constructed behind these as a permanent fixture. Temporary constructions were built to house the city’s people, and the plague swiftly spread among them due to squalid living conditions within these makeshift settlements. The plague’s spread was eventually halted by a combination of the practice of burning the dead and makeshift quarantines that separated the infected from the healthy.
Formation of the decentralised government
The power vacuum created by the death of the majority of Ashwick’s government created an opportunity to overhaul the government model. A series of political parties were formed from the most influential people that survived the Great Disaster – The Artisan guilds that made up the old merchant class. These guilds took over responsibility for the areas surrounding their guildhalls, eventually formalising the process in the election of Ashwick city’s first Mayor.
Ashwick City’s re-opening
When the city was deemed safe to enter once again, the government initiated a three-stage scheme to repopulate the city. The first people to migrate back into the new city were people chosen randomly from amongst the poorest demographics. Two years later, the government held auctions for some of the more expensive properties within the city, attended by the descendants of the former aristocracy. The final stage comprised an elaborate ceremony involving the opening of the gates and the presenting of the keys to the city’s Mayor.
The Failed Coup (and the Establishment of the Criminal Guild)
A plot was discovered, whereby one of the Guilds planned to seize power in a violent coup and topple the democratic government model in favour of the old dictatorial government style. The guild’s leader was swiftly tried and sentenced to execution. The execution was carried out on what was to be later discovered as a lookalike, and the guild leader was never found.
Present-day Ashwick City
To be completed.
Ashwick City uses a decentralised government model, consisting of a number of ‘guilds’, or political parties responsible for the various districts. A Mayor is democratically elected from the leaders of these guilds and appointed to make major decisions regarding the city and its laws.
Ashwick Isle is relatively flat, with a low mountainous region in the north western-most portion of the island. The island features a natural harbour on its eastern coastline and several smaller islands to the southeast.
Ashwick Isle is situated within a temperate climate, with warm summers and relatively cold winters.
Ashwick City is divided into three major portions. The inner city is made up of the areas constructed after the Great Disaster, and can be easily distinguished due to its modernised environment. The outer city, informally referred to as ‘Uptown’ by its inhabitants, encompasses most of the rest of the city, with the slums of so-called ‘Downtown’ making up the rest of the urbanised area. The city is further subdivided into several districts, with the districts of the inner city divided again into blocks.
Ashwick City plays host to a number of different architectural styles, distinguished by age and proximity to the city centre. The oldest surviving buildings stand in Uptown, where the city was reconstructed around the walls built during the Great Disaster. These buildings are the most decorative, made of stone with embellishments typical of the period they were constructed in. Some of these buildings still bear the old guild iconography in the form of stone reliefs set into prominent places within the stonework, or else permanent metal-wrought signs hanging over doorways. The buildings of Downtown are far more basic in design, having been hastily constructed, and are more likely to be built from bricks or even wood. The inner city, being the most modernised part of the city due to its reconstruction after the Great Disaster, has a more contemporary architectural style, its buildings formed from concrete and glass.
No racial majority, no margin minorities, all ethnicities have roughly equal demographic representation.
Roughly 55% of Ashwick’s citizens practise Auzrielism. Of that 55%, 35% are Traditionalists and 20% are Progressionalists. Of the remaining 45% of the population, 10% are Atheist and 35% belong to other religions.
Ethnic and religious tolerance
Racial tolerance is a non-issue in Ashwick; there are no hate groups based on skin colour or ethnicity. Religious tolerance is a current issue, with a shift in the prevalent trend moving towards becoming more tolerant on the whole. There is a minority supremacist subset of the Traditionalist called the “Order of the Dragon”, who are well known for their hatred of everyone that isn’t a heterosexual Traditionalist.
Ashwick City has a pronounced rich/poor divide; though many of its citizens fall somewhere between, a large portion of the city’s wealth and resources lies in the inner city. Citizens of Ashwick find it very difficult to move between the informal ‘wealth bands’, especially if that move entails relocating to the inner city.
Imports and Exports
Ashwick City’s main exports are Oil, Wine, Meats and Vegetables, Pharmaceuticals, Aeronautical Equipment, Railway Construction Materials, Building Materials, Military Equipment and Heavy Construction Equipment.
Ashwick City’s imports are Metals, Precious and Industrial Gems and Stones, Coffee, Sugar, Rice and Fabrics.
Ashwick’s Currency is the Ashwick Dollar (AD – A$). Ashwick’s Dollar has a highly competitive value on the global market.
Ashwick’s military is formed of six different divisions. There are Army, Navy and Air Force divisions, as well as an elite Special Forces group called the Ashwick Special Tactics Unit (ASTU). In addition to these groups, a secret police force exists. Known as Wraithwatch, they have far-reaching powers and a mysterious agenda. Finally, there is the Traditionalist military arm, a leftover force from the historical days of establishmentarianism when the Traditionalist Church had a much greater hold on Ashwick’s politics.
Buses and trams
There is a wide-reaching bus service throughout Ashwick City, and a well-maintained tram network that runs through the city centre.
The inner city roads are arranged into neat square blocks and intersections, with very little curvature. These roads have tarmac surfacing and are maintained on a regular basis. By contrast, the outer city roads are characteristically winding, with many a roundabout and patchy maintenance that differs by area and worsens as you reach further out into the Downtown slums. The inner city is separated by tollbooths across all points where the two different road systems meet.
The majority of Ashwick City’s rail network exists underground, with aboveground trains taking travellers from the major travel hubs to the outlying settlements and farms.
There are three airports in Ashwick City. Ashwick North Airport lies on the boundary between the outer city and the Downtown slums. Ashwick East and Ashwick West both lie within the city’s centre.
There is a ferry service running from Ashwick Port to the mainland.
Ashwick City has two major higher education centres: Ashwick University (AU), and the North Ashwick Academy of Performing Arts (NAAPA). Ashwick University is central to the cities higher academic education, specialising in the sciences, mathematics and humanities. NAAPA, in addition to being Ashwick’s sole performing arts academy, also tailors to the fine arts and music. Both institutions govern their own curricula and awards.
A specially appointed government committee regulates Ashwick City’s education curriculum, and very little leeway is given to deviate from these curricula. Ashwick’s education budget is relatively high, giving rise to a large number of state and public schools. Private schooling does exist, but is heavily regulated by the government committee.
Crime and Punishment
Ashwick’s Firearm laws are very strict, with ownership governed by licence and restricted to the inner city and outlying areas of the island. Capital Punishment is used in Ashwick’s Judicial System, and is used to punish severe crimes like multiple murder (at minimum, 3 people), treason and ‘grand theft’ (with a very high minimum value). A landowner cannot be tried for the killing of a trespasser granted that valid visible signing is placed, and at least one warning is given on sight.
Ashwick’s police force is numerous, highly trained and well equipped, with every officer carrying a personal firearm. Discipline within the force is relatively lax, leading to a ‘shoot first, ask questions later’ mentality among its officers. Because of this, petty crime rates tend to be lower than the average for a city of Ashwick’s size.
Ashwick Penitentiary is situated in the north-western part of Uptown, and houses all of Ashwick’s inmates. The criminally insane and those deemed especially dangerous are instead sent to Ashwick Asylum, located in the old fort.
Work in Progress