Welcome to Nakivi

J.L. Weinmeister

Our boat reaches Burnis Island, and we hike a short stretch to the portal. Our transporter awaits. We load up our gear, and I power up the vehicle. We’ve spent a long time here on Linea, but now it’s time for us to leave. Say your farewells, and prepare for some culture shock.

We drive through the portal and return to Bursna. We have to travel across the southern continent until we reach the lake that is home to another portal. The transporter submerges, and everything goes dark. Then we emerge from a crevice in the mountains.

The first thing you notice is the sprawling city that curves to the north and west of the portal. There are stone buildings everywhere. While they aren’t any taller than three or four stories, they’re significantly larger than anything else you’ve seen on this trip. There aren’t any other planets with such extensive development.

To the south and east of the portal are grasslands and mountains. I park the transporter behind a hill, and you all excitedly disembark.

Welcome to Nakivi, the most unique and diverse of all the planets in this universe. What you see here isn’t present on any other planet. We have but a brief amount of time to spend here before moving on, but we will make the most of it.

Before we reach the city, I give each of you a bag of currency. It is only usable on this continent, so you have about two weeks to spend it all. You’re all surprised the bag is full of cut and polished gemstones.

We wander into town, which is bustling with people, draft animals, carts, and wagons. You have to pay close attention to where you walk and stand to avoid getting crushed by the fast-paced vehicles.

Right now we’re in the Suria District, which is one of the larger territories on the continent of Mersavi. It is primarily savannah, making it an agricultural hub, but it has a lot of fresh water resources as well.

I quickly lose track of all of you as you spread out to explore the city. The amount of trade and commerce going on in the town center is beyond anything you’ve seen on this trip. And this is only the beginning. The other continents have even nicer wares than this one.

But what you notice most—and this is unique to Mersavi—is the amount of technological advancement compared to the planets we’ve been to previously. The lights are all enclosed lamps rather than candles. There’s basic plumbing and running water. The engineering of infrastructure like buildings and roads is far more impressive. The whole city reminds you of the Industrial Revolution Era on Earth.

When we meet in our inn that night, you’re all chattering about the exciting adventures you went on. Tomorrow will be even more adventurous.

* * * * *

The next morning we eat our meal and prepare to leave the city of Grialla. But we won’t be taking the transporter. I have a far more interesting mode of transportation lined up for us.

On the west side of the city is a platform, and in front of the platform is a train. We have a nice passenger car all to ourselves. While it isn’t elaborately decorated, it’s comfortable, and there are large windows for you to see the scenery.

The train is powered by a steam engine, and typically a vilsnia with the ability to manipulate fire or water creates the steam. The train lurches, and we begin our journey west.

We pass countless agricultural fields, occasionally spotting a grazing pasture for livestock. This area is so thoroughly developed that there isn’t much wildlife. That is one of the downsides of Nakivi: it’s a little too developed and overpopulated.

Our train stops at another city, though this one is slightly smaller. While Grialla is right by the portal to Bursna, making it the center of interplanetary trade, Frezel’s main export is fresh water resources because it sits on the edge of Suria Lake.

You have about half a day—the days here are twenty-eight hours long—to explore Frezel. Many of you walk along the lakeshore, watching the boats bring fish and other supplies to the city. Young children play in the shallow waters.

Frezel has an active theater scene, so many of you choose to watch at least one performance while we’re here.

The next day we board another train that takes us into the mountains. These ones are green, gently sloping mountains that are a far cry from the steep monsters that dominated central Linea. Just on the other side is the Unavi District, which is entirely composed of hot desert. There aren’t very many resources here other than stones from the mountains.

There are also far less people here. Many of them are craftsmen. A few are artists. The citizens of Dibalo rely heavily on trade from the other districts.

Rather than boarding a train to take us to our next stop, we find an aquatic vehicle. The steamboat is a nice change to the rafts and small boats you’ve been accustomed to these past few months. We follow the river south to the Mavis District.

There’s more savannah here. Most of Mersavi is grassland. Naturally, there’s more agriculture here as well, though you notice it’s primarily crops and virtually no livestock.

The next day we board the steamboat once again and follow it even farther south. You stand on the deck and look out onto the water. At first, we travel through more agricultural fields and a few stretches of undeveloped savannah. Then you notice more trees growing. They’re broad-leafed, and the air feels warmer and more humid than you remember it feeling yesterday.

We enter the Ina District, which is a forested area. The main city is Krevalis, and it sits next to the confluence of two rivers. The buildings here are more wooden than stone, as lumber is one of the area’s primary exports. They also grow a lot of fruits that they preserve and then ship to other parts of the continent.

Here, music and dance are the popular forms of entertainment. Some of you listen to the musicians who play on the street corners. Others learn a local dance and join in with the performers.

You can’t help but notice how much happier people are here on Nakivi. Not having a centuries-long war makes a huge difference in how people behave. Vilsnia are more relaxed than the elvira and mellowmira are.

But don’t be fooled. Nakivi has its fair share of hardships too.

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