(original, no longer in use)
Castle Realm was known as Plainhill until the forging of the elemental jewels and the subsequent building of castles to house them: the Stone Citadel for the Sapphire, the Oaken Keep for the Emerald, the Glass Tower for the Diamond and the Iron Fortress for the Ruby. The last king of Plainhill had four sons, each of whom became Highest Lord of one of the castles. In those early days, Castle Realm was a united land, its royal families working together to control the elements for the benefit of the entire continent. However, after the Ruby was lost in the war that bears its name, the remaining three castles became increasingly insular and distrustful of one another. This has culminated in recent years with the division of the country into sectors, making Castle Realm into what are essentially three separate states.
The Highest Lord or Lady of a castle is responsible for law, justice, foreign policy and public relations. Essentially s/he is the ultimate authority, but in some things s/he must defer to the Keeper, who oversees the running of the castle through the use of its elemental jewel. The balance of power between these two figureheads is a fine one; yet although in certain areas of procedure it is possible for the Keeper to commit treason against the Highest Lord/Lady, the situation is never reversed.
The Castellian hiluthis (plural hiluthi), a flat silver ring. This is accepted throughout Castle Realm and most of the Westlands, and can be changed with some degree of success elsewhere (although rates vary considerably). One hundred hiluthi make up one maronal (plural marona), a larger golden ring; these are rarely found outside the castle treasuries and the premises of moneylenders and moneychangers.
The common tongue is widely spoken. The official Castellian language, Soramié, is spoken only in its castles – and then only for certain specific purposes, such as religious services or other lessons.