A Day in Byria
Byria is a small, loud town. Not because of any visitors, the place is hard to find, but the people, we are loud! We would be happy but alas, we’re always working! Half of us risk our lives in the deep mines and the other half slave away in the factory. Our children go to the small schoolhouse and the wives, well they work in the factory with their husbands. All the little delicate operations, golem making is hard work. Takes lots of hands to get it done as quick as we do. Even the uppity nobles have their tasks to do. Then again that might because they don’t trust us common folk with the important jobs. They’re picky, if something ain’t perfect, it’s thrown out.
I work as a house servant for the noble in command. The name’s Caitlin. Lots of folk seem to think I’m rather pretty, so I guess I’m a nice little thing to tend to their hearths. I overhear lots workin’ here. Did ya know Ambrosio, he’s the guy in charge ‘round here, is the son of the Vasilias? Eternal they call him. Real scary man. he rides through here every once in a while. Makes Ambrosio get all up in a fuss! He gets so nervous, screams at everything that moves, don’ think he sleeps a wink! When the Vasilias comes-a-callin’, ‘im and Eternal will lock the factory off from everyone and we get the day off. When they come out all the golems are alive! Guess they can’t have anyone knowin’ the secrets of how to make a golem come to life. When he leaves I’m pretty sure Ambrosio sleeps for a day straight! The brand new golems go with Eternal to Salina.
Salina is the big city right by us. I have only been there once. Beautiful place it was! Stunning! There’s a big castle in the center, bigger than anything I ever saw! And so shiny! And the docs are just as awe-inspiring. Ships the size of monsters! And the water was just beautiful. I got to meet a sweet young lass from Basiluzzo. She was a soldier. I ain’t never seen no woman guarding Byria before but I’m sure we’d be a lot safer with a woman like her around.
Byria has a problem with wolves. They don’t get into the town too often, but a few months back one got to the children. Poor little Faidon Romanides. We sure do have much too large a cemetery for such a little place, lots of accidents in the mine and the factory.
I’ve only been to the factory a few times. Pappa worked on makin’ the big stomachs of the beasts. Mamma tends to the pumpkin farms. It’s an important assignment, cause golem heads are made from the gourds. My little brother just got a job clearin’ out the insides of the seeds and other gunk. The nobles do all the really important stuff like makin’ the faces n’ carvin’ out the symbols on the golems.
Despite us workin’ so hard on ‘em, Byria only has two golems. We nicknamed em Tall boy and Thick boy. They belong to Ambrosio, helping him build n’ things. They’re real strong, once I saw ‘em pick up a tree. Right out of the ground! Plucked the mighty oak just like you would dandelion!
Lots o’ folk don’t like the golems much. They spend their whole lives buildin’ ‘em and never get to see the fruits of their labors. But I love um! There weren’t that many in Salina either but I saw a few on the docs. Once I overheard Ambrosio complaining about a story, that all the work just for a golem to get too old before it was sold. The sailors had to throw it off the edge of the boat cause it started makin’ a fuss. When golems get to about seven years old they go crazy. I fear the day our golems get that old, I don’t know how our town could stop the two beasts.
Byria’s a small but important town. Before Eternal came round we were a pumpkin farming village. Now thanks to Ambrosio, we are one of the main suppliers of Aiolian golems. We’re the quickest too! We make about one clay golem a month. Sometimes Ambrosio will get an order to make another kind. He gets even more stressed when that happens. Our golems, tall boy and thick boy, are made out of metal. The hardest to make is glass golems, we only built one. It took us three months and it looked so ugly Eternal made us destroy it. Guess those require a more tactile approach than we can give.
Lots o’ folks think Ambrosio is a lazy good fer nothin’, but I think he works harder than anyone else. He is the only one allowed to carve the runes, since its such an important step. His detail in those markings give the beasts their power. Ambrosio is also the only noble who’ll go down to the workshop. He goes every Friday to make sure everything is going perfect.
The people of Byria like tellin’ tall tales, fantastical stories about dragons and railways stretchin’ across the plains of hell. ‘Specially old Barabal, she lives on the edge ah town. The lady keeps wolves as pets! But she has the best stories, once she told me of a warrior wearing diamond armor traveling through an ancient portal to the end of the world to slay a massive evil dragon! We’re also all quite religious, as are most Aiolians. We have a big shrine to Ridelga and Sapllim in the center of town. A smaller shrine to Piolligo and Dolorpe lies off to the side. Prayer is every week, even Ambrosio prays with us.
Once I even overheard Ambrosio retell one of old Barabals stories to some fancy men passing through. Even with his aloof nature, he’s still a part of our people. While we may be small, we’re a proud and close village.