Laterano

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Laterano, formally known as Lateran City (Civitatis Lateranense), is a Terran country which borders Iberia, Rim Billiton, Siracusa, and Victoria. It is a small, theocratic city-state and the homeland of the Sankta race with a decent population of Liberi who are descendants of Iberian immigrants. The nation is ruled by the Pope, the leader of the Lateran Church, with a constitution that guarantees thirteen rights to its citizens.

As the "discoverer" of firearms, Laterano is notably the leading manufacturer of firearms that holds a monopoly over the industry in Terra. Laterano is also the only country with liberal gun laws in which all Laterans are mandated to own a "patron firearm" for self-defense, whether they are military personnel, law enforcement officers or civilians.[1] However, a Lateran is required to get a permit before being allowed to use it. Until then, they can opt to use bows or crossbows as replacements.[2] After one's passing away, the firearm must be retrieved by the Church officials before it will handed to someone else, especially younger generations. The usage of firearms in Laterano is so prevalent and advanced that the Apostolic Knights form the backbone of Laterano's military force.[3]

Despite being a theocracy, the Laterans are actually cheerful and open-minded with a unique yet bizarre culture. They are allowed to do anything, including demolishing buildings using their firearms as long as it is not in conflict with the constitution.[4] Sankta funerals are usually hopeful ones where friends of the deceased gather to celebrate their soul's ascension.[5] Even the current Pope has a laid-back attitude. Aside from these, Laterano is also known for their dessert culture such as gelato and their unique tarts. As for Infected citizens, once found to be Infected, they are forbidden to step foot inside the nation again (barring exceptional circumstances), but they still retain their rights of citizenship.[6]

The Lateran language is similar to Latin (specifically the Church Latin) in our world. But somehow, both have distinct grammars and accents even though both are mutually intelligible enough with each other.

Background

"During the day, the Sankta looked up at the sky to find darkness shrouding even the sun. At night, the devil's army came and slaughtered countless Sankta. The Sankta lost much of their radiance.
"The saints said: follow me. Thus they rose. The saints said: listen to me. Thus, the bells began to ring.
"The bells echoed throughout the wilderness, uniting all the Sankta.
"This is a revelation. This is an exhortation.
"There will be light throughout the day, and it shall never be shrouded again.
"The saints said: build a city. It will be the Sankta's paradise.
"The saints said: this city shall be called Lateran."
—The first chapter of the Lateran Scripture

For millennia, the Sankta and the Sarkaz/Teekaz have a seemingly unbreakable racial feud caused by their shared common origin. The Sarkaz sees the Sankta as "betrayers" of their sibling race, whereas the Sankta have been fending off themselves from the Sarkaz's harassment.[7] This feud marks an everlasting memory into the Sankta's genes despite being long forgotten. To defend themselves from the Sarkaz's harassment, according to the Lateran Scripture, the first Saints united the entire Sankta community under one banner a few thousand years ago. Together, they built a belfry, known as the Tower of Revelations by later generations, and rang the bell to pacify the Sankta. Later, the Saints proclaimed to build a city around the tower, laying the foundation of Lateran City.[8]

Since then, Laterano has become a beacon of peace and stability. The nation has survived many worldwide conflicts throughout history, giving it a neutral status in Terra's unstable geopolitics. In turn, the Church uses their Legati as peacekeepers to communicate between countries, hoping that they can unite the Terrans against common threats to their civilizations.[4] Despite this, there are minor tensions within the country such as dissatisfaction from its Liberi citizens for being perceived as second-rate citizens and objections of the Church's partial isolationist policy by other parties.

In March 1099, in order to commemorate the thirtieth anniversary of the institutionalization of the Legati system, the first Summit of Nations, an international conference held to discuss worldwide safety, is held at the Basilica by the current Pope Yvangelista XI. Although some conspiracies happened prior to its opening ceremony, the Summit was nevertheless a success. The Pope's speech in the opening ceremony is later known as the Lateran Declaration, a historical moment in Terra's history.[9]

Notable people


Expatriate

Émigré
  • Luciana Giallo
  • Marcello Giallo
  • Gunject: An expatriate Sankta R.I. Operator specialized in weapon-smithing. Despite being a firearm user, he does not like them as much as other weapons, and prefers to craft anything that isn´t related to them. His apathy towards firearms is what lead to a conflict with his family, which led to him being unable to legally return to Laterano.[6]
  • Paul Landen: The founder of the Landen Monastery[10]
  • "The First Saints": Described in the Lateran Scirptures as the figureheads who unified the Sankta and guided them to build the Tower of Revelations, thus pacifying them.[8] In reality, they were orginally the first Sarkaz to be "enlightened" by the Law.[11]

Places

Pagi/Avenues

  • Pagus Stevonus
  • Pagus Ambrosius
  • Pagus Faber
  • Via Thervatius
  • Via Theodoros
  • Pagus Theodosius
  • Pagus Michaelion
  • Pagus Griffin

Churches

  • Sanctilaminium Ambrosii
  • The Basilica: The main church of Laterano where the Pope resides; the headquarters of the Lateran Church.
  • Landen Monastery: A famous monastery where Hildegard hails from. Once a training ground for the Apostolic Knights, it is now facing bankruptcy as the monastery lacks new students due to the nation's long period of peace.[10] Trying to find another way of income, they begin to sell their homemade beer and bread. The warriors of the monastery are often nicknamed as the "Landen Guards." It is worth noting that they are open to, and even welcome, foreign believers.[12]
  • Ecclesia Requietum: A mortuary lying on the outskirts of Laterano used as the sole funeral house for deceased Laterans.

Landmarks

  • Tower of Revelations: The ancient stone belfry that is said to be the foundation of Laterano built by the first Saints. Since then, the bell has not been rung for a thousand years until the Summit incident in the year 1099. The ringing of the bell usually symbolizes grand changes in history.[5]
  • Pagus Stevonus Central Hospital: The only hospital located in Pagus Stevonus, which is frquented by numerous kids going for their daily check-ups.[13] The director of the Psychology & Empathy Department there is researching a phenomenon called errari.[14]
  • Universitas Michaelionis: The institution where Stefano Torregrossa graduated from with a double major on international relations and classical philology[14]

Notes

  1. Sing. signum certificatorum; Latin for "certificate marks"

References