Explorers from Aldart
The Patan Desert
The city of Lishdurk is built into the side of a mountain, part of the Vougar mountain range, which forms the southern border of the Republic. South of the Vougar Peaks lies the Patan desert, a vast wasteland of immense size. Lishdurk is the only passage from the District of Aldart proper into the Patan. Some elderly citizens refer to the Patan desert as “the District of Patan”, which is likely due to its influence on Aldart since the beginning of the Republic.
In ancient times, the Patan desert consisted of small mining villages, extracting rare and valuable gems and minerals from the desert sands. The sands of the Patan are slightly magical in nature, and so the gems refined from it contain trace elements of magic.
Usually this magic is related to simple things, such as cosmetic changes, or enhanced intelligence, or enhanced luck. However, certain jewels created more powerful effects. The first super-magical jewel crafted from the sands of the Patan is the Crown Jewel, which serves as a symbol of authority over the Republic of Aldart and grants the bearer the respect, wisdom, and authority of a monarch over the region. The Crown Jewel was discovered by Aldart in the year -2, and subsequently caused him to establish the Kingdom of Aldart in the year 0, which slowly transformed into the Republic of Aldart once the citizens decided to petition the Crown for a written promise of equality and justice in the year 43. The Constitution of Aldart dates to 217, after two provisional government structures failed.
Some other jewels mined from the sands of the Patan have granted bearers enhanced wisdom, supernatural strength, bodies made of stone, the ability to transform into dragons at will, and the ability to control other people mentally. These super-magical jewels, known as “Patan jewels”, are incredibly rare, and only are constructed by the most skilled miners and artisans on average once every 650 years; currently five exist in the Republic.