The College of Rekkan is a library, repository, laboratory, musuem and teaching institution that lies within Rekkan (city)
During The Red War, the Great Library of Haven was burned, and most of all recorded Dramer lore, history and technology was destroyed along with it. When the Dramer fled to Rekkan, one of the first things they did was build the College of Rekkan, to help piece together the broken fragments of their past.
After the war, it became a place to build a future for the Dramer. As well as being a library and museum, it became a teaching institution, and a laboratory - to help defend and protect Rekkan, so that the monstrosities that occured during The Red War would never happen again. So led to the two core tenants of the College - the preservation of peace, and the restoration of Dramer knowledge.
The College of Rekkan is broken up into six branches, which represent a key area of Dramer Lore, Technology, or Magic.
The Keepers are responsible for the categorization, storing, replication and upkeep of all historical documents. They also make the laws of the Dramer, being the most isolated, and the most independent branch of the College.
The work of the keepers can therefore be considered two-fold - the restoration and preservation of old documents, and the creation of new documents. These two jobs are obviously extremely different, and as such the Keepers can be a varied group.
The Keepers involved in the preservation of documents are often old, in their second and third incarnations. Keepers are regularly drawn from other sections of the College, as young Dramer are often too bold and headstrong to have the necessary foresight to perform the often delicate work of the Keepers. They are also one of the few groups that are entirely closed to outsiders, as the information they hold is often considered too delicate to be placed in any other hands.
In contrast, young Keepers are tasked with cataloging and capturing the world as it is. These Keepers are often called Seekers, as they are often charged with the task of acquiring new knowledge, rather than keeping the old. This part of the Keepers work draws an extremely talented, gifted group of Dramer, interested in the world outside their walls. They are painters, writers, scholars, and above all else, explorers. It is not uncommon for a Seekers to go several hundred years without returning, and when they do, it is with a wealth of new knowledge and experience. However, Seekers require a wide variety of skills, and as such, it is more often that a rash and headstrong Dramer become a Merchant to see the world.
The Teachers educate young Dramer, and often outsiders, in the history of the Dramer, the world, as well as literacy, numeracy, critical thinking, economics, politics, and strategy. The work of the Teachers, given the high level of education Dramer have at home, is often therefore more applicable outside the confines of Rekkan. The Teachers have multiple schools through various parts of Atheryin, and such schools are crucial in the education of noble children, and wealth merchant offspring. They also provide charitable relief, teaching locals to dig wells, irrigate, and other technologies deemed non-sensitive. Given this, the Teachers often work side by side with young Seekers, who scout potential locations for schools, as well as provide much needed information on the areas. The Teachers in turn provide accommodation for the Seekers.
Over the centuries the Teachers have proven instrumental in keeping the Dramer out of conflict with surrounding nations. The education they provide goes to those who shape the world, and having them look upon the Dramer in a favourable light is always preferable. It also stands by the College tenants of enlightening the entire world, not just Rekkan. However, many argue that the Teachers have become more a political organisation than an educational one, and their expansion into charitable ventures has led some to debate whether they are overstepping their brief. The services they provide are valuable, and useful to the College and their recipients, but technically lie outside their responsibilities.
Craftsmen go through an extremely long period of training, often from early childhood into several centuries old. Many of the Dramer crafting techniques are dangerous, and require a stern logical mind that may also think creatively, but never wander - an almost impossible combination. As such, those who reach Professor are highly paid and revered.
The Craftsmen work in tandem with the Researchers, as their work directly follows the discoveries of the Researchers. As such, it is not uncommon for a Researcher to become a Craftsmen, or a Craftsmen to become a Researcher. The two groups have attempted to merge in the past, but it has proven difficult, as the skill set for a Researcher is far looser than that of a Craftsmen.
Craftsmen are responsible for most of the architecture that litters Rekkan, and in the past have constructed aqueducts and other such building projects in tandem with the Teachers. However, as Dramer society developed, the Craftsmen became more reclusive, and more of the technology was ultimately deemed too dangerous to share.
The Merchants are perhaps more accurately described as politicans, as their training deals far more with negotiation and oratory techniques than economics. They are also sailors, in the traditional sense as well as using the Vakir. However, their brief was, and remains to this day, the export of high quality goods to other nations, and the import of unrefined materials for refinement.
The Merchants largely operate outside the College, and often under laws all their own. Once qualified, Merchants can set up shop in Rekkan, or wherever they damn well please. The College used to provide rented boats, but in the Era's that followed it's foundation the Merchants bought their own, and soon guilds within the Merchants began to appear. This was eventually outlawed because of the unnecessary competition inside Rekkan it created.
The Merchants are often representatives in foreign, democratic governments, and serve in courts of the more imperialistic or monarchist states. They, along with the Teachers, contribute the most to preservation of peace - at least as far as Rekkan is concerned. Though members of The Merchants have in the past been accused of treachery and even corruption, no evidence has ever been found that a member has willfully endangered the peace that underpins the College's aim.
The Researchers create, refine and build Dramer technology, traditional Dramer crafting techniques, and develop and produce drugs.
Contrary to the Seekers, who venture abroad to find knowledge, the Researchers create "homegrown" knowledge. They are scientists, engineers, and madmen alike, devising brilliant, horrifying, and sometimes pointless machines, schematics, buildings and any number of other things. The research they perform is not required to have a point, like many institutions around Atheryin. This has led to some of the most genius inventions as we know it - and also some of the most ridiculous.
The Warriors members are made up entirely by Dragon Warriors, or Dragon Monks, and teach the Dramer arts of Kinetic Magic, Shapeshifting, as well as strategy, weapon and armor mainteance, and policing.
The Warriors have a divided past. Almost upon their foundation, they were split between tenants - the reclamation of what was once Dramer lore and homeland, and the preservation of peace and protection of Rekkan. This ultimately led to a schism that divides Dramer politics to this day.
The Warriors are an incredibly political branch, and their members are often as good orators as they are fighters. They are taught not only to follow, but to lead, and the emphasis on strategic planning is something that overarchs the divide between the two factions within it. Though it is not explicitly said, many blame the loss of Dram on the lack of appropriate strategic planning and analysis, and this fact burns many in the Warrior branch.
The Warriors are magi as well as fighters, and practice many foreign magical arts - often with an emphasis on the Dramer way of thinking of magic, however, which often leads to conflict in the theory of how these magics actually work. However, they primarily deal with Shapeshifting, Kinetic Magic, and weapon use. In the Dragon Monks, this has evolved to the teaching of Rolkakan where as the Dragon Warriors have a far more fractured, if more varied teaching. The result is generally that the Dragon Monks are far better trainers and tacticians, while the Dragon Warriors are better fighters.
The College of Rekkan is led by either a Dragon Warrior or Dragon Monk, who is named the Lore Keeper. The Lore Keeper is the highest authority in the College of Rekkan, and has the final say in how the various magics and craft forms are taught, as well as further research into areas of technology. To become Lore Keeper, the prospective must become a professor of all 6 branches of the College - meaning that it's impossible for a Lore Keeper to not be affiliated with the Dragon Warriors, or the Dragon Monks.
Council of Professors
The Council of Mages are the advisors to the Lore Keeper. Each of the 5 Council Member are taken from the different branches of the college, and represent their branch in decisions. They make most of the day to day decisions of the College, and appoint new Professors.
A Professor is a member of one of the five branches of the college. The name is mainly a title, as the Professors typically identify themselves as a member of one of the five branches, rather than as a Professor. They are represented by their Council Member.
A student is any one who has chosen to study with the college. They do as much or as little work as they like, though the Professor they are assigned to reserves the right to remove them from their class. While Students can study under any branch of the College, they typically start with The Teachers. Those who don't usually study under the Warriors. While the students of the Warriors do not have to be Dragon Warriors or Dragon Monks, they must join one to become a member.
The College of Rekkan is the most important political entity in Rekkan. They represent the most important parts of Dramer society. The College, however, does not represent the Dramer people - only it's own members. The difference is often lost on outsiders, and the Dramer themselves, without any real government, recognize the College as the body for dealing with them. The sole exception is in the event of war, when the Dramer are represented by solely by the Warrior branch.
In recent times, the College of Rekkan has taken on the role of not only preserving and collecting information, but also protecting it. Many technologies, magics and documents are considered extremely secret, and access is extremely rare to those outside the College - which usually means Dramer only. The key exception is the Aq'Ryss, who are often members of the Craftsmen Branch. The protection of sensitive information has lead many to view the College, and the Vault in particular, in a slightly mystical way, and many attempts have been made to discover what secrets are hidden from the general populace.