- Imagine, if you will, a fairytale landscape. Green, rolling hills, sunny meadows, enchanting forests, and you have Latya in a nut-shell. There are marshes and jungles to the south, forests sprinkled throughout the land and savannas to the north coming into Jungsan. Latya is well known for its fruitful terrain and has the best farmland on the continent.
- Latya shares a mountain chain in the eastern part of the country that stretches into Jungsan.
- Early Latyan history is hard to find as no one seemed to keep any sort of written record. Most 'history' was sung and passed down through songs and are too fantastic to be considered history. People mostly lived in peaceful tribes. Sometimes these tribes traveled, while others were more stationary. There were several great tribes of Latya that had claim to her beautiful land, but it was the eastern tribe that had started to develop an empire over the country. Thanks to their keen sense of commerce, and remarkable craftsmanship of the resources found in the mountains, the eastern tribe won over small villages with peaceful trade, gradually creating a name for themselves as far as the western coast. This reputation did not just stop at the Latyan borders, the eastern tribe traded with Jungsan (and sometimes Tidle). Once Jungsan theories of politics reached Latya, the eastern tribe assumed the position of the Royal tribe with little resistance.
- Latya and Jungsan have been allies since record was written. The border between the two is blurred and is often considered to be a common area between the countries, not belonging to either. Jungsan provides protection to Latya from Tidle, and Latya gives Jungsan its produce and agriculture. These countries have long since shared culture, but there is a stark difference in Jungsanyan culture than Latyan.
- Latyan people are nymphs. They love to party, love to be social and love to love. They have a good work ethic, and a pleasent disposition most of the time.
- Everyone is your neighbor in Latya. You're hard pressed to find someone who won't lend you a hand when in need. Towards the north, near Jungsan, there is a slightly different attitude, but still rather friendly.
- In towns and villages the crop and goods are divided evenly over its citizens and a portion goes to the Royal clan as well. Everyone who works gets their fair share, and those unable to work are taken care of by the village. There is not much need for money, just a trade system amongst tribes and sometimes the cities
- In cities it is a little different. There are competitive markets with money and taxes. This is more of a Jungsanyan influence. Cities allow for a more productive, creative environment since those living in it do not have to farm for their livelihood, but can take on other trades and arts.
- Latya had no qualm with crystal bearers until Jungsan thought it was a bad idea. Following in their brother countries footsteps, Latya allowed a select few from each official tribe to keep their crystals, but did not heavily enforce it as did Jungsan. 'Rebel' crystal-bearers are frowned upon and encouraged to submit to the law (really that just means don't let anyone find out, or we might have to do something about it.)
- Nymphs are always nymphs, with or without crystal. The only difference is that crystal bearers have a direct connection to the will of the land, or what Latyans call: Mother. This is what makes crystal bearing nymphs such good farmers. This doesn't mean they can 'control' what grows from the earth, but know what's good for it, how it feels, and the history of a certain spot.
- There are more traditions in Latya then you can shake a stick at. Most vary from tribe to tribe, and most tribes follow the traditions of the Royal tribe.
- A big thing in Latya are festivals. There's probably a festival for every moon phase, every leaf fall, and every stage of life. It's a wonder Latya gets any work down with so many festivals. Some major ones celebrated nationwide are
Imyquiten: The harvest festival. This festival signifies the ending of the major growing season, and the beginning of the wet season, and is the largest festival celebrated through all the land. The surplus of crops is brought out for all to enjoy. Dancing, theater, song and games are abundant through the next few weeks as everyone relaxes.
Liluyah Anya: A marriage festival. Marriage is a big deal in Latya even though marriage is a very different thing to different tribes, classes, or areas. Marriage in Latya can be between multiple nymphs, nymphs of the same sex, or just two nymphs, but no matter what or who, marriage is always a commitment of love and is celebrated at the most respected fanfare. A wedding scarf is tied around the wrists of the couple and is later woven into wedding bangles.
Coinage and Language:
- Jungsan and Latya share the same currency: the mita system. (Though most smaller villages usually trade instead of exchange money.
A silver mita will buy you a wagon wheel
A gold mita will buy you a lousy gayte steed
- The Latyan language is very pleasing to hear. Most non-speakers swear it's a song instead of actual speech. Latyan is also a tough language to grasp if it is not your native tongue, as many words have many different meanings depending on the context of the subject. The Latyan language is also riddled with sayings, some cryptic and their actual origin lost, and some metaphorical examples from simple life.
- It is fairly common, especially in smaller towns, to hear nymphs address each other in conversation as friend, or love, or daughter/son, whether they are stranger or family.
- Dress varies from tribe to town to family. Vests, pantaloons, skirts of soft fabric are common, as are hats and ponchos. Shoes are seldom seen and considered to be rather offensive. Though gold is rarely seen until upper class, jewelry is found even at the lowest class. The higher the class, the finer the dress gets. Silks, gold and precious stones are for those of a respected and high class.