Plesthepolis with its centuries’ old history and woeful royal line or the never-ending summer of Helicasteros’s colourful shores?
Take out your compass, adjust your sails and set your course to your heart’s desire.
“What should one remember and say first, though, about the Plesthean Land? About that land, which was born out of the toil of its children, adorned with the waves of Toxaris and bearing the name of the younger daughter of foremother Harmos… The land which grew up and spoke different words to the world, owing to the voice of people-loving Dranos and of those who found him to be right; even if that voice found her own, more hospitable country where Dranos had set foot on as a settler, there were still echoes of his teachings back in motherland Plesthepolis… No words can be enough for that place, which came of age receiving as a gift land that once belonged to Protomedousa Hydria, a land that had become useless to the sea-folk… Has anyone ever heard of such a ‘gift’? Yet the whole world––even the sister Khoan countries under the counsel of envy, which always tends to prevail among them––believed that Plesthepolis owes eternal gratitude for this. As if this ‘gift’ is the sole reason for her rise to grandeur…
Truth be told, of course, that former Halian land called Centryphalos became Drys, the great harbour, and there settled the capital city of Plesthepolis too. From the old Plesthean centre on Grand Isle only an ancient mansion remains now, along with a mysteriously silent forest… lying in the care of ‘lifeless’ Drys; of the Aesson of Silence, who during the battle against Olyon transformed herself into a tree, as did many other Aessons too, back then in the dawn of this world’s History… Such were the glorious origins of that country, whose growth attracted even more envy, if possible. And Plesthepolis, as if fed by it, just wouldn’t stop developing; and only blooming, never withering…
Crop farmers, geographers, merchants, sailors… Τhe Plestheans prosper on a land, before whose beauty the sun beams, sometimes even forgetting why. It loses track, one would say, along with the children playing carefree by the fertile banks of Campylos. And afterwards, that same sun winds down in the vast embrace of the valley of Minor Harpe, the source of life to the organism of the Polis.
And since I got as far as Harpe, the backbone supporting that land since forever… let me tell you that on those unmarred mountaintops, the Plestheans’ and––by tradition again––all Khoans’ hospitable vein has proved itself, and still does. Because, as it’s already known, self-governed Aerians dwell there… Centuries ago, some hundreds of that nation rebelled against their leading country’s xenophobic ways and were thus expelled, not only from its own mountains but from those of the other Aerian Poleis as well. And it was meant to be that only the Plestheans would give them shelter, by initiative of the then Aristos Pasilostos… Intermarriages took place, as to people from other nations too that have decided that life is better there; among the Plestheans, who, unable to live as long as a hundred and ten years old Hydrian might, love life so dearly…
Plesthepolis is harmonious. Plesthepolis is Harmony. It has whispered to its children right from their mothers’ wombs that only balance can and must be the plummet for anything they build throughout their lives, either spiritual or material. The Plestheans try. And if they get tired, they take long walks along the peaceful waters caressing the shores of that land; their land…”
(excerpt from Hydranos)
“[…]It was a sublime seashore; a magnificent, endless coast that faded along with the potential of the human eye somewhere far in the east. Green-clad mountains like real Nemonts at one end reached down to the shore to dip their foot there, while at the other end their peaks touched the sky. And the sky admired itself, mirrored more beautiful than ever in a sea looking nothing like its demented self of the night before. A sea putting even the clearest apatite to shame…[…]Helice is a city, about which few of one’s words do actual justice to the truths one’s eyes behold. And things back then were no different from today. The scents were the first to initiate the city’s visitors into its rhythms; flowers, thousands of flowers, voluntary offerings from the neighbouring Minys Nation of the Land of Iss… […]
The flowers of the Minyes of Iss always made the local or distinguished, wandering perfumers rich and intoxicated the alleys of Helicasteros; with the Market, of course, being the centre of all this, swarmed every day with all kinds of peddlers and artists. Stretching out along the harbour as far as the eye could see, the famous market always buzzed with life and was every now and then supplied with new arrivals, which sought to benefit from its unique cosmopolitan streak and often even ended up settling permanently in the Polis of the Arts. Being the meeting point of the four capitals of Cosmos, Helice had soon become the centre, primarily of arts. With the Festival of Nyphaos as its highlight, artists from every corner of the world streamed into the city and their masterpieces made her radiate even more[…]
Thus, the four friends had hardly turned around the first corner of a neighbourhood when they were attacked by colours, scents and music. Clad in their light and sometimes rather elaborate clothing, thus putting together a polychrome, flamboyant medley, the Helicasteriots were walking, chatting, trading, dancing, singing… In short, they waited for no specific festive occasion, their streets were flooded with music around the clock. Each house was painted in a different colour than the one next to it, the shutters and doors in a different shade than the walls, until there were no more rainbow hues left and it all started again from the beginning… Curtains of coloured beads or shells hang from the lintel of any open door; and the clothes hanging from the ropes, which were tied from one balcony to the one across it, were like true welcoming flags… […] And the alleys, looking more like corridors than streets in the way they suffocated between the tightly packed rows of houses, didn’t help; crowd came and went there, a dense and slow-moving crowd… Despite all this, after a relatively short time the young Plestheans reached almost at the cape’s end, near the edges of a small grove. There, they saw Adeimos approach one of the last houses and knock on the coral-hued wooden door […]”
(excerpt from Hydranos)
Click on Lands of ‘Hydranos’ for collages curated by Constantina Maud.
*Note: The Plesthepolis and Helicasteros maps are snippets from the world map of Cosmos found in the book. Maps copyright by Constantina Maud, All Rights Reserved