The World of The Dragon's Run
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Many societies have some sort of ordeal or ritual to undergo before someone is identified as "adult". In the setting of the Dragon's Run, the ancient practice of leaders granting a vote to the warriors who proved their loyalty through risking their lives for their leader has remained. But now, there are no wars to fight and no enemies to slay - so the old custom has evolved - now, in order to become a Warrior, and to be allowed to vote, you must undergo the Dragon's Run.
The Lacerto and several other Dragonships transport Warrior candidates to Lamentera, at the northern end of the Run. Lamentera is populated by exiles who have been transported for their criminal past. These poor souls are forbidden from taking the Run themselves, though from time to time their children, as they enter adulthood, are tempted to do so.
The Dragonships sail from there to the end of the Run, at the town of Bareacres, and pick up any survivors of the Run, now fully qualified Warriors, to take them home in triumph.
That the Run is dangerous is proved by the fact that many do not complete it. But what those dangers are is a close-kept mystery - successful Warriors are not allowed to divulge what they have undergone. All that the rest of the world knows is that one of the greatest dangers is the mysterious Halfmen. There are many speculations about what the Halfmen really are, but only those who have made the Run really know.
Few care to risk the ordeal . Those that do are mainly, in Nagg's words, "muscle-brained clods", with no actual interest in governing things. The world is really run by the rich who can buy the votes of the Warriors.