The Plutocracy of Brume is composed of seven, formerly eight, floating islands ranging in size from the massive Abundance, about 1/6th the size of the Blessed Isle itself, to Opulence Isle. The other isles, Luxury, Cornucopia, Lucre, Pelf, and Bounty, range in size from about half as large as Abundance to four times the size of Opulence. There was an eighth island of Brume, Affluence, but recent events lead to the destruction of Affluence.
The total land area of Brume is about that of Argentina, though spread across seven islands. Affluence has about the land area of Ethiopia. Luxury is as large as the Ukraine. Cornucopia, Lucre and Pelf are about the same size, correlating to Germany, Iraq and Texas. Bounty is only the size of South Carolina and Opulence is about as large as Maryland.
The islands of Brume orbit around the Blessed Isle, making a circuit around the Inner Sea and swinging out close to Coral. It takes exactly two years for Brume to complete an orbit around the Isle. Because of Brume’s mobility and the regularity of its travels it became a vital economic center for all Creation. Everything can be found in Brume and everything in Brume is for sale.
Because of its location, floating serenely eight thousand feet in the air, Brume has never been invaded and fears no nation seriously. Its rulers, the Plutarchs, are aware the Realm’s Defenses could devastate their islands but because if Brume’s economic clout and their policy of friendly appeasement to all major nations, the Empress never threatened to turn the Defenses against Brume.
The rulers of Brume are not necessarily hereditary, but for the most part the Plutarchs are chosen from the same families. Wealth, being the driving force behind Brumian ideology, is the best factor for deciding who leads. Any single adult who’s personal wealth comprises a double-digit fraction of the total wealth of their home island is a Plutarch. Each island has a Plutocracy, the wealthiest member of which is the Grand Plutarch of that isle. All the Grand Plutarchs meet twice a year on Abundance to debate matters of policy. Every five meetings (or ten years) a new Supreme Plutarch, the wealthiest adult in all Brume, is selected. There is no term limit. The current Supreme Plutarch, a thrice-great grandmother named Lydia, has ruled for 50 years.
Because of geographic considerations, Brume’s criminal policy is fairly lax. Anyone found guilty of a crime, of which theft is one of the worst, is simply exiled from Brume and never allowed to return.
Despite the presence of Terrestrial bloodlines amongst some of the Wealthy Houses of Brume the general policy of the island-nation towards Exalted of other persuasions is happy tolerance and wary vigilance. Exalted are watched closely but treated as possible resources by the wealthy merchants. At least two of the Plutarchs of Brume are Exalted and another is suspected of using Charms to conceal his nature. The Wyld Hunt is allowed in Brume only if they pay a hefty permit fee and is liable for all damage incurred to Brumian property by their actions or those of the Exalted they hunt while the Hunt is on-going. This policy has lead to a very low number of Hunts being called on Brume itself.
Recently the island of Affluence was torn from its long-appointed path through the sky and sent crashing into the Inner Sea. All inhabitants of Affluence and hundreds of coastal dwellers on both the Isle and in the Scavenger Lands were killed by the impact and the resulting tidal waves. A formerly unknown group known as the Black Viper Cult has claimed responsibility and send messages to the Plutarchs of Brume as well as all other major rulers in Creation, demanding a heavy ransom in the name of their favored divinity: the Serpent of Shadows.
Native Brumians are often examples of both the pros and cons of racial mixing. Some Brumians have the best features of the myriad of peoples who come to the flying islands to trade, others have the worst of all worlds. The aboriginal Brumians, an amazingly tiny minority amongst the multi-ethnic folk that make up most of the population, are tall and slender with red or blonde hair and dark eyes. The middle and upper classes of Brume tend towards heavy builds as they age though the fashionableness of a fit body keeps many from sliding into morbid obesity.
Though most natives of Brume grow up speaking Low Realm or Riverspeak, Low Realm being more common on Bounty, Pelf, Luxury, Lucre and Opulence, all languages are fairly wide-spread in the Brume Islands. There is an aboriginal Brumian language, Cloud Tongue, which is no longer spoken on the islands and has not been in common use since before the Contagion. Cloud Tongue is known to high government officals, scholars and a few others but it is considered a dead language. Guild Cant is based heavily on Cloud Tongue, owing to the fact that the Guild was originally founded on Brume and has its headquarters on Pelf. The Guild was originally formed during an early schism between the Plutarchs of Pelf and the rest of the Brume leadership. Though Pelf itself was repatriated into the greater Plutocracy, its schismatic leaders left the government to found the Guild. The basis for the dispute between the Guild's founders and the rest of the Plutocrats is unknown, but many speculate it was somehow related to money.