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The Tidal Empire was founded by Rhea the Merfolk and her mother Ronda to provide a safe place for aquatic races to gather and to form a peaceful civilization under the depths. The Tidal Empire is a Magocracy, with most of its powerful leaders being practitioners of magic. Though the Tidal Empire strives for peace and seeks to coexist with other kingdoms, they are willing to use force when necessary, with many of their leaders being willing to enter the battle alongside or separately from their troops. In addition to being aquatic, the people of Tidal are also very connected to other planes and often form pacts with such beings to expand their knowledge and power.

History

The Tidal Empire was initially founded on the newly discovered Continent of Siacros. Though the empire's founders were willing to cooperate with the Inevitability when it came to the idea of founding a new empire, they did not accept their founding, and instead provided the funding themselves.

The royal family leading Babel is that the Azureleaf family, including Ronda, Rhea, Clara, and Iselia. The royal family was initially formed in another world, separate to but resembling this one. According to Ronda, their family had initially founded an empire in this previous world, but since its destruction, have sought to recreate their empire.

As a new arrival to this world, Ronda's powers have yet to return. However, it was agreed that Rhea would serve as the country's ruler. Though the Time Knight was initially reluctant to play this role, with her mother acting as an unofficial advisor, and the support of her lover Trish, she agreed to do so...at least, for the time being. It is expected that once her mother's powers return, she may step aside or play a different role within the kingdom so she can continue to pursue other interests. For now, the charismatic Time Knight and her celebrity engagement have attracted the adoration of her people.

The Awakening

In an event that would become known as "The Awakening," Ronda's powers returned, and her daughter relinquished the throne to her. The 23rd of Arodus would become a national holiday within the Empire. The former empress Rhea delivered the following speech on that day.

Quite unexpectedly for her people, Rhea, the Empress of the Tidal Empire, would call for a conference. At the front of her family's mansion, the young Empress would take a deep breath, wearing a white dress as she looked out at the gathered aquatic people before her. They had all come to hear her speak. Though she was far from shy, the occasion, and the fact that she was entirely too sober, made it more difficult. However, as the Time knights had taught her, she decided to face her challenges head on as she stepped up to the podium.

"To the people of the Tidal Empire, I wanted to gather you here today for multiple reasons. The first is to celebrate! We have turned what was once our small slice of the ocean into a beautiful city, and the Academia Aquatica has already begun to attract students from the world over! What we have built here...is an accomplishment we can all take pride in."

The crowd would applaud, and Rhea could see a few outsiders accompanying some of the students in the crowd. The Academy specialized in summoning after all. "However, I also wish to inform you of a change that will be occurring within our kingdom. And change can sometimes be frightening, though I view it as a positive."

"I want to thank all of you for your support. I never wanted to the ruler of this land. However, the woman who I feel is most suited to the task...she was unable to use her powers. And so, like a good soldier, and a good daughter, I felt duty bound to do my part." She explained. "But there are still many experiences that I want to have. I want to raise my own family. I want to continue protecting the timeline. And I can't do those things and be the ruler you all need."

"The woman I have lined up to replace me is familiar to all of you. She has already been teaching classes at the Academy, advising me, and filling in when I needed her assistance. She is a passionate visionary...and the Tidal Empire is part of that vision." She smiled to the crowd. "I am very pleased to introduce my successor, and my mother, Ronda, the Mistress of the Tide!"

Rhea would step aside and hug her mom as she made her way up to the podium. The pair would embrace to uproarious applause as Ronda took the stage, confident and relaxed. A few familiar faces stood beside her, her companions keeping an eye on things. "To the people of the Tidal Empire...there comes a time in every mother's life where she must accept that her daughter does not always follow the same path as her. I am so proud of Rhea...and it is the fact that she was hesitant to accept this position in the first place that reassured me in my choosing of her. She understands the power and the weight of leadership better than anyone. When I first came here to find here, she was a young girl...and she has grown into a proud and powerful woman. I love you Rhea, with all my heart."

"And I can only hope that I am able to follow in your wake." She held up her arms. "People of the Tidal Empire...the ocean is our oyster, and we shall make a kingdom here that will be the envy of those on the surface!" The crowd would cheer and applaud as one of Ronda's companions placed the crown on her head.

Invasion of the Horsemen

Under Ronda's leadership, the Empire of Tidal would prosper, expanding its influence across the continent. The Empire would form alliances with other kingdoms and begin to form its own military presence. However, tragedy would befall Tidal in the wake of its expansion. During a mission where Ronda destroyed an entire plane, her kingdom was ransacked of its food, her people left starving, many of them even drained of their blood. Ronda suspected that this was the work of Famine, one of the Horsemen tormenting Babel, but at this time this suspicion is unconfirmed. Thankfully, with the aid of adventurers and other kingdom, this starvation threat would quickly be dealt with. On the 20th of Kuthona, Ronda would deliver the following speech.

Ronda, the Empress of Tidal, would appear before her citizens with a crown upon her head and her full royal garb to deliver a statement. "We gather here today to discuss recent events...during my brief absence, our adversaries decided to take advantage of the situation, and rob us and our people of food. Worse yet, they have literally robbed some of you of your lifeblood..."

"This is the not the first tragedy that has befallen our people. We have already prove our strength and resiliency. However, we had made the assumption based on War's recent attack that the Four Horsemen were focused on the city of Babel. Clearly, that is no longer the case." Ronda would explain as the crowd looked on. "I want to thank some of our allies, particularly the Starlight Union, and the wizard known as Elorin, for going above and beyond to aid us in these times of need. I hope that someday I will be able to return their kindness..."

"We will recover. That much is certain. However...it is time that we took the fight back to our enemy." She would raise her scepter. "I will use every ounce of power at my disposal to destroy those who did this to us. However, I will need aid. As such, I am setting a bounty. One hundred thousand hold from my personal funds to anyone who provides me with information leading to the capture or death of those who have committed this atrocity on my people. If you have the means, please, assist us in our hour of need!"

The Unstoppable Storm

The Storm over Tidal

After working for what felt like months, Ronda had completed a Spellzone called the "Eye of the Storm." A crystal has been embedded in the throne room of Sirenea's castle, and as a result of its powerful magic, a powerful and endless storm has been formed above the water over Tidal. Ronda has grown wary of other kingdoms sailing over what she viewed as her seas, and viewed the spellzone as a way to prevent such things from occurring in the future.

The kingdom would also seek ways to expand, particularly eyeing the Kingdom of Rushari Vastri. Ronda viewed conquering the land that once was known as Erebus as a way to acquire more territory under the guise of liberating the people.

Cities

Big Blue, a mobile underwater city for Tidal.

Sirenea - Sirenea was the initial settlement of the Tidal Empire. Currently, Sirenea is a mightly metropolis, and the home of the Empire's elite. It is also a destination for academia due to the presence of the Tidal Royal Guard.

Big Blue - A mobile city, capable of swimming through the depths like a submarine. A representative of the Empire's military capabilities.

Big Red - A second mobile city, also designed to show Tidal's military dominance.

Places of Interest

The Azureleaf Mansion

The Azureleaf Mansion - The mansion of the royal family of Tidal located in Sirenea. The mansion itself is built into the surrounding terrain rather than being separated from it, with coral and other plants having been used in its construction. The result is that the mansion has a very natural appearance, as though it were a natural extension of the ocean rather than a building that had been constructed from scratch. Outsiders and servants mingle throughout the mansion, predominantly female, all offering their hospitality to any visitors.

Palace of the Siren - The leadership within the Tidal Empire generally conducts its business within the Palace of the Siren, at the center of the city of Sirenea. A towering monolith, the Palace is a well guarded representation of Tidal's wealth and military might. The Palace is always guarded by guards and powerful outsiders.

Academia Aquatica - The Academia Aquatica is a school focused on the arts and magic. Their speciality, given the culture of their kingdom, is summoning, though all forms of magic are taught to some degree. All students are accompanied in their lessons by an outsider of some kind, viewing the relationship as an opportunity to educate and share information about their cultures with those they view as honored guests. Ronda serves as the academy's headmaster.

Fish Markets - Tidal is famous for its fish markets, which their aquatic denizens have easy access to. It is said that many fish are available here that cannot be found anywhere else except by those who live under the sea.

Military

The Tidal Empire's leaders often take to the battlefield alongside their armies. Their forces are generally supplemented with powerful outsiders who have agreed to provide their services.

Tidal Royal Guard - Joining the Tidal Royal Guard is considered to be an honor by those Merfolk lucky enough to be selected for the privilege. Personally commanded by Empress Ronda herself, the Royal Guard uses outsiders to supplement their numbers, and specializes in ranged combat. In addition to their presence on the battlefield, the Royal guards also helps to protect the palace. Though the army is capable of battling on land, it is far more comfortable and maneuverable underwater.

Society

Palace of the Siren

The Tidal Empire's citizens believe in the power of magic and display deep reverence and respect for outsiders. It is traditional, that at the age of ten, children are taught how to bind an outsider to serve as a companion. Whereas many people view outsiders as little more than slaves or weapons to do their bidding, the children of Tidal are taught to regard them as esteemed visitors who must be paid the utmost respect. Forming a bond with this outsider is seen as a vital part of the upbringing of children within the Empire, teaching them the reality of other worlds, how to form relationships with others, resolve conflicts, and many other skills they deem essential.

The Tidal Empire is very welcoming of visitors, viewing their presence as an opportunity to show the wonders of the world under the sea. They have established multiple foreign quarters to establish trade routes with the likes of Alzak Regar and Karakol. Their theater also serves as a place of celebration for the forms of art and artistic expression that take place under the sea.

Religion

God Empress Ronda, otherwise known as the Mistress of the Tide, is by far the most prevalent religion inside the Tidal Empire, their numbers in the hundreds of thousands. This is not the exclusive religion of the Tidal Empire, however, as Ronda's own daughter and High Priest is a devoted follower of Sarenrae.

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