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The City of the Saved was a metropolis the size of a spiral galaxy located between the end of the universe and the beginning of the next. The City was actually the interior of Compassion, (PROSE: Of the City of the Saved...) a Type 102 TARDIS. (PROSE: The Shadows of Avalon) The City was inhabited by every single human being that ever existed, resurrected after death in an immortal, invulnerable body. Those that were partially human were treated as second class citizens known as "collaterals" who were also forbidden from holding public office.

Many believed the City itself was a goddess that they worshiped under the name Civitata; in reality, it was constructed by two mysterious "Secret Architects" (actually the Universal Machine and Compassion V). (PROSE: Of the City of the Saved...)

Protocols of the City Edit

The City had a number of protocols governing its operation, some of which were natural to all timeships, not exclusive to the City. The most obvious were the invulnerability protocols, which kept Citizens from being physically harmed. They were still affected by force, but it could never cause external or internal breakage — even a gun could only disorientate at best. Citizens could still be killed if they left the City, but they would just be re-reconstituted on Resurrection Day. (PROSE: The Book of the War, Of the City of the Saved...)

Time travel was also impossible in the City. (PROSE: A Hundred Words from a Civil War) However, natural precognitives retained their abilities. (PROSE: Of the City of the Saved... Prologue)

All Citizens could communicate with each other, regardless of the language of their original culture, in the Civil Tongue. Variants such as Gestural Civil and Radiant Civil existed for those who communicated non-verbally, and had equal universal intelligibility.

The History Protocols stated that changes to the history of the Universe affected the City only by adding to it, never by taking away. Whenever history was rewritten by the War between the Great Houses and their enemy, the City's history was retroactively rewritten with it to include any new human beings or versions of them that were brought into existence by the change, but individuals removed from time continued to exist unaffected in the City. (PROSE: Of the City of the Saved...)

History Edit

Founding Edit

After she was cut off from the caldera, the 102-form timeship Compassion instead derived energy from human biodata. She had a scheme to generate power using two women with witchblood and a time loop, but she had to find another source when the loop broke down. (PROSE: Warring States)

Compassion made contact with the Universal Machine, and together, they meticulously built the City of the Saved within Compassion's interior dimensions. On the day which became known as Resurrection Day, Compassion simultaneously reanimated every human, protohuman, posthuman, and part-human ever to have lived. (PROSE: Of the City of the Saved..., Salutation)

Diplomatic contact with Mictlan Edit

In the AF 240s, (PROSE: A Hundred Words from a Civil War) the City exchanged ambassadors with Mictlan: Amanda Legend Lefcourt went to represent the City's interests, while the Celestis sent Lord Foaming Sky to the City. Foaming Sky brought with him a worldofme device, which he used to create an army of duplicate Foaming Skies. He intended to personally drive all the citizens out of Spinegrove District, declare it a Celestis protectorate, and have his people begin filling it with Investigators. From there, the Celestis planned to attack the Ghetto of the Damned, capture its inhabitants, and take them back to Mictlan for interrogation. However, Spinegrove District was the seat of the Rump Parliament, who had the Order of the Iron Soul slaughter the extra Foaming Skies. Their originator returned to Mictlan in disgrace. (PROSE: The Book of the War)

The Timebeast Assault Edit

In AF 262, Lord Mayor Verrifant betrayed the City to the Great Houses by opening the Uptime Gate to Lady Mantissa's fleet of timeships. The timeships appeared in Snakefell District, and began devouring citizens whole. Inside the timeships, the citizens were no longer protected by the City's invulnerability protocols, and were killed.

Some person or group — presumably Compassion herself — took control of all of the City's (normally useless) weapons stockpiles, and used them all on the timeships simultaneously, turning the City's state of grace off momentarily during the impact. This only stunned the timeships, while killing twenty-million citizens, but Compassion then completely excised the section of Snakefell District from her interior, and threw it into the universe immediately before the Big Crunch. All but eleven of the timeship pilots were able to escape alive, and the citizens who had been killed were promptly resurrected again. (PROSE: The Book of the War)

Civil War Edit

Compassion's first timeship child, Antipathy, harboured an enormous amount of resentment against his mother not only for giving birth to him in the first place, but also for letting every human except him and his siblings into her interior. He created the Manfolk as an Oedipus-complex-made-flesh, and since they were created from humans they were resurrected inside her. He lodged himself between Compassion and the next universe, so that when UniMac helped dissatisfied Citizens establish a colony apparently in the next universe, accessed through the Downtime Gate inside the "Lost Planet of Erath" in RealSpace, they were actually entering his interior.

In AF 291, Czn Lon Shel returned from the colony with part of Antipathy inside her mind. He steered her to Manfold, where he emerged and began infecting the City with his mass. His influence acted as a wavefront, disabling the invulnerability protocols wherever it spread. Although Godfather Avatar was able to kill Antipathy's conscious mind (leaving the "next universe" colony a brain-dead shell), the invulnerability protocols were still disabled. A Civil War erupted: Gnas Gortine destroyed the Timebeast Assault Memorial, Manfolk resumed their violence-focused lifestyle, Lucius Cassius Ignotus imposed martial law everywhere he could reach, Melicia Clutterbuck led a rebel army against him, and every possible difference of opinion, rivalry, or vendetta established in the Universe or after was given a new dimension in which to play out: violence. (PROSE: Of the City of the Saved...)

Lord Mayor Ignotus began arresting Roman emperors in AF 291, targeted those who had been considered deities. He also tasked Resident Akhenaten with arresting Remakes of gods, claiming that the Egyptian deities could be used as personality uploads for the House-allied Osirians upon whom they were based. After Pope Beatrix II and the Sons of Tepes sent agents to infiltrate the Villa Ignota, the Mayor's Blemmye was converted into a mal'akh and, in turn, converted the Mayor into one. In retaliation, Ignotus had a pseudosun crashed into the headquarters of the Sons, but found that the Sons were killed by the heat rather than their weakness to the sun. Ignotus was destroyed when Akhenaten brought him to a Remake of the Aten.

UniMac gave blueprints for a new Downtime Gate to Cousin Edward. A Citizen made contact with the Rump Parliament. Cousin Rahman used a worldofme left by Lord Foaming Sky to create a paraspherical pocket universe. Cousin Darren tattooed the blueprints onto the Citizen. Inside the parasphere, the Citizen travelled back in time to Resurrection Day. They were killed in transit, but their remains were found by the residents of Bonehall District, who used the plans to begin building the Metalith. Keth Marrane placed the final stone, and a new Downtime Gate was created, but it opened too far into the next universe, and what came through was the ultimate, singular descendant of humanity. (PROSE: A Hundred Words from a Civil War)

This Anonymity began consuming City and Citizens, hoping to finally become all of its ancestors. It consumed until there was nothing left but Compassion V, in the form of Civitata. She informed the Anonymity that, without her timeship children, it was no more a compendium of humanity than her watch. And, though her children were never inside her City, she had still resurrected them, as thousands of backups for the City. Compassion disappeared and the Anonymity consumed her watch, but humanity was again resurrected, this time in a far stranger City, surrounded by a sky of stars. (PROSE: God Encompasses)

Inhabitants Edit

Although the City of the Saved was limited to the human species, it was still far from homogeneous. It contained hominid predecessors of humanity like Australopithecenes and "cousins" of Homo sapiens like Neanderthals. There were innumerable types of posthuman, including cyborgs like the Order of the Iron Soul and the final living species of human. The majority of Citizens were resurrected, but there were also many City-born, who never lived in the Universe unless they visited through the Uptime Gate. Those of only partial human ancestry were the City's only consistent underclass, derogatorily referred to as "collaterals." Collaterals were not allowed to hold public office, regardless of the customs of their home district.

There were some non-human visitors to the City, such as Handramit, and there were a variety of pets, clones, and androids brought in through the Uptime Gate, but the only sapient non-human native was UniMac. As the embodiment of all human inventions, UniMac included every sapient robot ever made, and it built bodies for them where necessary or wanted. (PROSE: The Book of the War, Of the City of the Saved...)

Aa was widely regarded as the person from the earliest point in human history to be resurrected in the City. (PROSE: The Long-Distance Somnambulist)

Humans from parallel universes - such as Roma I - were not resurrected in the City. (PROSE: Warlords of Utopia Prologue)

Direct human lineage was not a requirement for resurrection in the City; Boston Xialanthi was reborn in the City simply due to a few gene enhancements she received which made her 0.0037% human. (PROSE: The Smallest Spark)

Major factions Edit

The City's diverse heritage and diverse set of connections to the Universe — in particular the War-time powers — led to a number of major interest groups.

The Piltdown Mob was a political and criminal organisation which represented pre-human interests in the City. Its acts of vandalism made it somewhat disreputable, as did its founder: Arr Ri, a Neanderthal known in his first life for masquerading as a shaman to obtain art, food, and sex. The Mob claimed to be motivated by a culture which predated the idea of personal and private property and a religious dedication to ancestors. (PROSE: The Book of the War)

The Sons of Tepes were the main organisation of human mal'akh. Unable to satisfy their natural bloodlust, they redirected their inherently subversive nature and became a criminal cartel. Their namesake, Vlad III, was not in fact a vampire, and had been actively opposed to the mal'akh during his lifetime, so after his resurrection, he became a recluse and had nothing to do with "his" Sons. (PROSE: The Book of the War)

House Halfling was founded in Godsdice District by Grandfather Halfling to combat the systematic marginalisation of the partially-human. Its ultimate goal was the complete equality for those with alien heritage. Its membership was open to the fully-human as well as part-humans, and Amanda Legend Lefcourt represented its interests in the Chamber of Residents. In AF 84, House Halfling successfully lifted the ban on part-humans competing in the City Olympiads. Although its opponents spuriously accused the House of aims ranging from the combination of all humanity into a single individual to resurrecting all aliens, it was a more respected faction than either the Piltdown Mob or the Ghetto of the Damned. (PROSE: The Book of the War, Of the City of the Saved...)

The Order of the Iron Soul was a quasi-religious group dedicated to the superiority of machines, composed of Citizens who had been converted (often by force) into cyborgs by pre-resurrection groups. Not all such Citizens were resurrected in machine form, so it may have been dependent on personal preference. The Order was used as a proxy force by the Rump Parliament, seemingly because of links to Cousin (later Godfather) Pinocchio. (PROSE: The Book of the War)

Due to their penchant for recruiting members of the lesser species, Faction Paradox was the only major War power to have a significant direct influence on City life. The resurrected-Faction was named the Rump Parliament, in relation to the Parliament of the Eleven-Day Empire. Unable to use the Faction's two primary tools, time travel and death, the Rump Parliament instead perfected subtlety and propaganda. he Rump Parliament (in particular its Acting Speaker, Godmother Jezebel) deliberately built mystique by spreading rumours of lurid blood sacrifices and secret violations of the time travel protocols, amplified by obscure and ambiguous statements. (PROSE: The Book of the War, Of the City of the Saved...)

The Ghetto of the Damned was originally a District composed of the human servants of the Celestis, apparently beyond the effects of their Marks of Indenture and re-resurrected after their recorporation in Mictlan. The implication that Mictlan would someday fall was partially responsible for originally attracting the attention of Lord Foaming Sky to the City. The Ghetto's first leader, Gargil Krymtorpor, advocated direct action against the Celestis (or at least, their agents outside Mictlan), but his successor Nathaniel Wain steered the Ghetto toward diplomacy and politics, accepting all humans "royally shafted" by the War-time powers, like regen-inf soldiers and the Remote. (PROSE: The Book of the War)

Geography Edit

Gates Edit

The City had four Gates in the cardinal directions, immense structures through which entire stars could have been transported into the City. However, they were entirely ornamental, serving only to define arbitrary compass points. Behind them was only an empty void.

The South Gate was a tourist attraction for attempted suicide, even though the void beyond was no more lethal than anything else. The City Council eventually had to install a net over it, to save the money that was being spent retrieving suicidees.

The West Gate was associated with explorers, who built precarious structures reaching out into the void. Entire cultures grew up around it.

The North Gate was a place for ascetics and hermits. It had monasteries built into its structure, recreations like sitting on poles for extraordinary lengths of time and gazing into the abyss were elevated to art forms.

The City Council designated the East Gate a Civil Architectural Preservation Area. The entire area became Eastgate District, and the allowed visitation was through remote drones and astral projection. (PROSE: God Encompasses)

The fifth, most important Gate was the Uptime Gate. It was the City's only link with the Universe, a time corridor stretching back to the frontier in time, where a civilization called Ascension sprung up. Its location meant that it was only barely accessible to the War-time powers, keeping the City insular with respect to the Universe and its powers. At Ascension, there existed almost a state of truce between even the Great Houses and their enemy, partially due to fear of reprisals if any aggressive action were taken in the vicinity of the Universe-terminus of the Gate. The Uptime Gate was closed, apparently permanently, when the Civil War began. (PROSE: The Book of the War, Of the City of the Saved...)

The sixth and last gate was the mythical Downtime Gate, the Uptime Gate's counterpart leading into the next universe. When a real Downtime Gate was constructed on the "Lost Planet of Erath", it led to the interior of Antipathy rather than the true next universe. (PROSE: Of the City of the Saved...) A new Downtime Gate was constructed, and it let in humanity's ultimate descendant — the Anonymity. (PROSE: God Encompasses)

Districts Edit

The City was divided into many Districts, each of which had its own cultural and architectural theme. Districts included the Central District, the site of the City's government; the Watchtower, a pillar one astronomical unit high, which actually composed three distinct Districts; Teletopia District, a Hollywood-like media-focused District populated with Remote and Remakes; the Romuline District, a politically influential District modelled on the Roman Republic; Manfold, a secessionist District which was turned into a free-for-all battle site during the Civil War; Kempes District, an often-rainy seaside town, but on City scale; Paynesdown District, a film noir where every Citizen carried a useless gun; and Godsdice District, the only place where collaterals were treated as equal Citizens.

Every District chose a single Resident — through means ranging from hereditary matriarchy to gestalt consensus — to represent it in the Chamber of Residents. One thousand Residents made up the City Council, and every decade they chose one of their number as Lady or Lord Mayor. (PROSE: Of the City of the Saved...)

The City's relationship with outsiders Edit

The only entrance to the City was the Uptime Gate. (PROSE: The Book of the War) During the Civil War, the Uptime Gate was cut off, preventing travel in or out of the City. (PROSE: A Hundred Words from a Civil War)

Many time travellers made visits to the City, (PROSE: The Book of the War) including Iris Wildthyme (PROSE: A Hundred Words from a Civil War, The Book of the War) Marcus Americanius Scriptor, (PROSE: Warlords of Utopia Prologue) and Theo Possible. (PROSE: Happily Ever After Is a High-Risk Strategy)

The City tried to remain neutral during the War. (PROSE: The Book of the War, Of the City of the Saved...) Lord Mayor Verrifant became universally hated by the City's inhabitants after he attempted to ally the City with the Great Houses. (PROSE: The Book of the War)

Lord Mayor Lucius Cassius Ignotus claimed that the Osirians tried to influence the City through Remakes of the ancient Egyptian gods. (PROSE: A Hundred Words from a Civil War)

Knowledge of the City Edit

Because of its protocols involving changes to history, the population of the City was much larger than anyone on the outside suspected. (PROSE: Of the City of the Saved...)

Due to the City's location beyond the end of time, the Great Houses had little reliable information on it. (PROSE: The Book of the War) Robert Scarratt believed that the Houses only discovered the City during the War; he was not aware of it at the age of 19, but considered it a possibility that the Houses may have just neglected to inform their soldiers of the City's existence. (PROSE: The Brakespeare Voyage)

A large number of the time travellers who made trips to the City were secretive or "fantastically unreliable" on their visits. (PROSE: The Book of the War)

The Shopkeeper hinted at the City's existence to Michael Drake when the War came to Samhain in 1643, he said that whether or not Drake had reason to worry about the War depended "very much on [Drake's] view of the afterlife". (PROSE: Michael Drake)

The Book of the War had information on the City, but noted that it may not have been entirely accurate. (PROSE: The Book of the War) Indeed, the Book was ignorant towards the Civil War which had started in the City two years before the book's publication. (PROSE: Of the City of the Saved...)

The Thousand and Second Night contained a mention of "Civitata, who was a city and woman both and the embodiment of Allah's mercy". (PROSE: Head of State)

Behind the scenes Edit

The City was originally created by Philip Purser-Hallard for his proposed 2001 novel Iris Wildthyme and the City of the Saved. Many of the major concepts in the City of the Saved stories can be seen in the outline for this novel. The novel remained unproduced because Big Finish Productions decided that a series of Iris Wildthyme novels would not sell well.

The short story A Hundred Words from a Civil War payed tribute to Iris Wildthyme and the City of the Saved by including a cameo from Iris as well as Rex Halidom, who would have been a main character in the novel. [1]

Over a decade later, the City once again almost appeared in the Iris Wildthyme series. Paul Dale Smith considered writing a short story for The Perennial Miss Wildthyme which would involve Iris Wildthyme encountering a dead companion in the City of the Saved. When Smith received enough short story submissions to fill the anthology, plans for the City of the Saved story were scrapped. [2]

Footnotes Edit

  1. Purser-Hallard, Phillip (2005). Iris Wildthyme in the City of the Saved - rejected novel proposal. Infinitarian. Retrieved on 28 May, 2017.
  2. Smith, Dale (2015). The Perennial Miss Wildthyme. dalesmithonline. Retrieved on 28 May, 2017.

External links Edit

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