Provincia do Brasil
By Ben Levy
Explorers from the ESA, and shortly thereafter America, actuallty reached this area long before the Brazilains did. Western Oxala offers a number of flat, sturdy mud flats which made ideal landing sites for the first interstellar planetfalls. On the other hand, they tend to be in environments which are less desirable for colonies. After a few tentative landings and surveys, Oxala was untouched until it was reached by Brazilian teams operating out of Missao Primo in the late 2170s. They found extemely good soil in the east, along with rich deposits of petroleum and natural gas, and plans were quickly assembled for permanent settlement, which began in the early 2190s. In 2186, one of the common wild plants of Oxala, Rada, (also called Sand Cabbage for no apparent reason in English speaking areas) was found to be not ony edible but nutritous. This allowed settlers in Oxala to supplement their own produice with the native plants, and the ability ot live off the land made settlement here very attractive- in those early days when the survival of a crop, untested against all that Tirane could throw against it, was still very much in doubt. Much of Oxala was quickly assigned to Open Settlement- anyone who could build a homestead there was free to do so. It quickly became a haven for those seeking a life less structured than those available in the rest of Provincia do Brasil at the time, and the population grew rapidly, although it was outpaced by Cabo Vitorio and Lemanja.
Oxala was granted Estado satus on May 25th, 2227, simultaneously with Lemanja. For a long time, it was though that Oxala would develop apace with Lemanja, but as Lemanja fell behind Cabo Vitorio, Oxala fell behind Lemanja. Between the 4th and eight decades of the 24th centuries, Oxala cycled through periods of economic doldrums and periods where the Estados culture and economy would make a sudden lurch in a new direction, as if searching for an appropriate destiny. Oxala today has the feelign of a place that is still questing, not a child but still young and vibrant, still unsure of the best way to the future. The capitol city of Kantzauropolis (derived from the Greek for "Centaur City") is home to a third of the Estados 11,800,000 people, most of whom live in the fertile eastern area of the Estado. Popular with non-Brazilian immigrants from the start, Oxala has a cosmopolitan population, with the colonys highest proportion of citizens of African and Brazilian-African decent. Of all the Estados other than Nova Ostia, the Roman Catholic Churchs influence is weakest here, and the arts are allowed to progress relatively undisturbed.
Oxala has an area of 1,020,000 square kilometers, making it about as large as pre-Twilight Egypt. Oxala is largely flat, with rugged uplands in the northwest, and gentle hills along the coast between Kantzauropolis and the western border, along the northern shore of Baia de Oxala. The eastern half of the northern border is formed by the Rio Prado, the western half by the foothills of the Prados. The western border with Campobelo passes through rolling, seasonal savannah. From west to east, the climate becomes steadily wetter, with many coastal wetlands in the Peninsula Iridescente in the southeast. The western savannah is warm and subject to unpredictable rain patterns. The tree analogues here are all semi-deciduous, having two forms of leaves. Depending on environmental conditions the tree can shed or deploy one or both types, providing a high level of climate adaptability. The ground becomes more rolling towards the north, and in the southwest area are some stretches that run dead level for many kilometers. Transient lake beds dot the savannah, vast dry mud and salt encrusted pans that becomne shallow ponds after a rain, and burst for th with a riot of life forms that spend the long dry spells in states of arrested metabolism beneath the hardened mud.
The Baia de Oxala is shallow and known for shifting sandbanks. The water teems with native wildlife, and most of it is protected as a marine wildlife preserve. Several islands rise up from the shallow bottom. Two are government reservations, one is home to a small town earning its keeping from the very limited fishing permitted in the area, and one is privately owned, and used as a retreat and hunting ground for the absurdly rich.
Kantzauropolis was founded in 2193, and was orignially conceived as the "gateway" city to western area of Cabralia. It was named "Cidade Presidente Souza" after President Olivia Souza, who directed Brazil from 2176 to 2179, and pushed forward polices that resulted in the opening of Provincia do Brasil for colonization in 2184. The population swelled quickly with immigrants, since the surrounding lands were very fertile and capable of being easily farmed, and Oxala seemed a very promising place. The name was changed in 2214 to Kantzauropolis, as the Ministry of Colonization wanted a Greek sounding city name to commemorate the recent accord and emmigration agreement between Greece and Brazil. Partly due to the name (but partly due to the fact that whereas they would be lost among the Brazilian majority elsewhere) the first wave of Greek colonists converged on this city, and left an indelible mark on it before the focus of Greek colonization shifted to Nova Ostia.
The oldest part of the city still goes by the name under which it was established. Souza retains many of the original buildings erected by the first wave of colonists, but these are sheltered under the newer high rise buildings. Souza is the citys downtown, filled with office buildings, residential towers (and some townhouses for those who can afford the priviledge of a private dwelling in the downtown area) commercial centers and entertainment centers. The earliest version of the city contained no parks, as the thinking of the day must have been "were surrounded by endless open space, what on Tirane do we need a park for?". As a result, now that Souza is the center of a three and a half million person city, park space is at a premium. Several of the original residential blocks were demolished in the 2280s, and their land turned into public plazas which see very heavy use. In one of them, the Estado government has sponsored a "farmers market", in which small farms from throughout the Estado can sell their produce directly to the public from outdoor booths. The idea has been successful, and there are now Farmers markets in two other districts in the city.
Souza is a major commercial and media center, crowded with some of Provincia do Brasils tallest buildings. One of the major inconsistencies of Kantzauropolis is this: despite the broad vistas and readily available building space in Oxala, the capitol city boasts the tallest building in the colony, and four of the ten tallest. The city has often been seen as trying to "prove itself" against the larger cities in the east. For several decades at the beginning of the 23rd century, there was a push in the city to make it the capitol of Provincia do Brasil, not because it was a large or important city, but merely because unlike Missaoprimo and Vitorio de Conquista, Kantzauropolis (at first, Souza, of course) was located closer tot he geographic center of the colony. This idea faded with the Ministry of Colonizations strong policy of no Tiranean capitol, but the spirit of pushing the city to compete with the eastern cities never did. As a result the residents of the city are more likely to support policies favoring massive high budget, high visibility projects than are their peers in the larger cities. In 2294 the engineering firm of Geller-Pasos-Toyami completed what is still the tallest building in Provincia do Brasil, the Oxalufan. The building has an impressive 168 stories and rises well over half a kilometer from the base to the observation deck. In order to save space, the elevators act more like mass transit systems, with upward and downward cars on separate tracks, with multiple cars on each track, and some tracks given over to express service between high traffic stories while others are permitted to stop at any level. Much of the building is given over to commercial space, although the uppermost floors are home to the Hotel Oxalufan, which makes permanent suites available on its penthouse levels for the wealthy who like the view. The view is one of the hotel's strongest draws, although travellers who have experienced the beanstalk are not too impressed. From the fiftieth floor down, much of the view is obscured by other buildings, the offices of the comemrcial herart of central and mid-western Provincia do Brasil.
Sometimes referred to as "the Smart Side of Town", Virentaros sprawls horizontally while Souza climbs into the sky. Few buildings are more than two stories high. This district is home to middle class and upper middle class residential neighborhoods, the citys upper class preferring the lofty penthouses of Souza. Virentaros also contains the campuses of three Universities- the University of Oxala, the Jesuit Universidade Meiopais, and the Cabralian Technical University. Manufacturing here is light but concentrated in the high technology areas, taking advantage of the local talent pool. There is ample parkland, including the Jardims de Virentaros, an exotic botanical garden started in 2240 and since developed into one of the citys leading attractions. The only thing the District is truly short on is commercial facilities, but the area is well served by urban transport, and the people of Virentaros generally take the Maglev subway (Kantzauraopolis is one of the few areas in Provincia do Brasil using Maglev rather than the airfilm for local transportation. See Transportation.) into Souza for shopping. Ironically, the Districts only retail and restaurant areas are located around the Maglev stations. One of the larger industrial parks in Virentaros belongs to Beale-Sato, the Brazilian defense firms specializing in intelligence and deception systems. The plant was established here back in 2209, when the city was just a small town, and the firm wanted a remote facility near desert test ranges where its new systems could be developed away from prying eyes. Beale-Sato has supplied deception equipment to generations of Brazilian (and foreign) soldiers, and in the Brazilian Army, the word "Bilsato" has come to mean any expendable tactical decoy. Security is now a concern, since the plant is located in a major metropolis, and there is talk of moving it westward into the desert. Although several small towns in western Oxala and eastern Campobelo are overjoyed at the prospect, there is strong local political resistance to the move, despite the security problems.
As the name implies, this District was originally a farm. In fact, it was a unique social experiment called the pubic farm, where city dwellers could stake out plots and plant crops. This arrangement was short lived. In 2239, the growing population was pushing the city limits far beyond the original district of Souza, and Campino was opened up as a "homesteading" zone where settlers with little money could obtain land grants and establish a home. A generation later, Campino was crowded with small individually built homes on subdivided properties, and conditions were in decline. The Kantzauropolis government was in no mood to see the area follow the course of Vitorio de Conquistas Perfididade. Municipal investment was paired with a strong emphasis on security and cultural development. The "public garden" concept was restored, but in the form of scores of small plots instead of one endless public farm. Urban transportation lines were extended into Campino, with large, sophisticated stations acting as manets for commercial development. Graphic arts and publishing companies were given assistance in moving in. Unkempt, dirty, but brimming with energy and youthful promise, Campino quickly attracted young professionals and hopefuls in the arts and media industries, and later saw growth in the service, retail, and restaurant trades. Today the area still has the marks of its shanty-town style early growth period. Houses are small and independent, with few large structures (most of these are public works, and retail and entertainment complexes) the streets are narrow and poorly laid out, and there is no sense of unifying style. The district is still popualr with restless young, the art and media professionals, and the occassional social outcasts. On the southeast side of Campino, between the park area called "Ravinas", the waste processing and recalmation plant to the east, and Boulevard do Senador Alvim (notable for the dense concentration of avante-garde fashion boutiques) to the north, is the "Triangulo". This is the counter-cultural bastion known to be the center of the Provincia do Brazil non-heterosexual community.
Long before Nova Ostia became the primary destination for incoming settlers from Greece, Greeks moved into Kantzauropolis. (The city itself had been given a Greek name to make them feel more invited.) Greek immigration tapered off in the late 2240s, but over two hundred thousand had already arrived. Time has since swelled the numbers of Greek ethnic residents substantially, although a number of these later relocated to other parts of the colony, primarily Nova Ostia. Still, today, Oxala has about half a million citizens who identify themselves as ethnic Greeks. About half of these live in the Distrito Helenikos. Years ago, it was thought that this District would play the role of "little Greece" in the Brazilain volony, but this has proven not ot be the case, as Nova Ostia usurped the position as "most Greek" portion of Provincia do Brasil.
From its inception, Oxalas population was less Brazilian in origin than the other initially settled areas. Between 2215 and 2240, Oxala received the bulk of the Greek immigrant flow, and many immigrants from Portuguese speaking regions of Africa followed. Several of Provincia do Brasils smaller immigrant groups, such as a large contingent of Filipinos and the small number of Serbs, also settled here. This mix, while not enough to render the region "non-Brazilian" to any observer, resulted in a Brazilian culture more deferential to individual and community cultural variances. From the start, it was clear that simply rebuilding typical Brazilain social structures would not do; Oxala had to be something better, something Oxalan. Along with the Bishop of Oxala wielding less power than most of his peers, the Estado government has considerably more economic and social force here than elsewhere, and takes a noticably more pro-active stance in these matters. The city of Kantzauropolis is treated as a major subordinate unit of the Estado, and the municipal government, enjoying an excellent reputation as far as PdB governments go in matters of fiscal prudence, rarely duplicates Estado efforts and coordinates closely with higher echelons of government.
The Estado police number about 5,500. There are no municipal or town forces in Oxala, every streetcorner patrolman in Kanzauropolis being a member of the "mero" division of the Estado police. They have access to a small number of coastal patrol hovercraft, a few aircraft, and a surveillance sattelite. This last asset is a bone of contention between the national police and the Estado police. The former have a large presence in Oxala, a condition dictated by the number of advanced technology industries in the Estado working on intelligence and deception equipment for the Brazilian military. The national government considers counterespionage and security in this area to be a top priority. They consistently come up with "task requirements" for the Oxalan security satellite, and are consistently told to "bugger off", the sattlelite being used for the personal security of the average Oxalan citizen, not the needs of the national government, which should be able to afford a sattelite of its own. Oxalas police force has a headquarters and academy in the town of Mercury, about 60 kilometers southeast of Kanztauropolis.
The Estados hospitals are almost all private businesses, with a handful of public clinics being run by the Franciscan Order. The Department of Health has the responsibility of overseeing conditions and standards in all of the hospitals, as well as inspecting workplaces, public places, and occassionally private homes to ensure proper health and safety discipline. It also monitors and supports the health insurance program available for all Oxalans. They are a strong public agency with less corruption than one would expect. It is headquartered in an office tower in the Souza district of Kantzauropolis.
The Department of Transportation regulates the roads, train systems, and airfields in the Estado, sharing the latter responsibity with the Air Force. This agency has come under national criticism for acquiring sytems that, while being in best available solution in the view of the DTO, are incompaitble with systems used by other Estados. An example is the urban transit system in Kantzauropolis. It is Maglev while most of the advanced train systems in Provincia do Brazil is airfilm. When the national Ministry of Transportation tried to force regulatory changes that would have required airfilm, the Ministry of Colonization intervened quietly and successfully on Oxalas behalf. It is suspected amongst Provincia do Brasils media pundits (most of whom live in Oxala) that Min Col likes to see the Tiranean colonial governemts win an occassional round with the national government, as it helps take the steam out of indepence aspirations. The Oxala Department of Transportation has its main offices in Kanztauropolis, but maintains local offices and service garages throughout Oxala.
The Department of Social Assistance here is the strongest of its kind in Provincia do Brasil. It is also a very recently added agency. Previously, assistance to the poor and needy of the Estado was left to the Estados Board of Economic Development. The idea was that the people dependent on government aid were a potential asset to the Estado, as they would trade their labor tot he government in return for sustenance. In practice, the system collapsed quickly into utter corruption.
This foundation is headquartered in cluster of large stone buildings in downtown Kantzeropolis but active throughout Provincia do Brasil and far beyond. It is a very nationalist, very patriotic political foundation similar in ways to Americas Ronald Reagan Society, although it has fewer economic activities and more "moral" ones. The IOP continuously hounds politicians, issuing scathing public reports and attempting to expose corruption and abuse of the public trust of all sorts. They run into some opposition from special interest groups whose programs are attacked, and from the media, which often portrays the IOP as a fascist organization. This view is based on the IOPs support for strong central government authority (and in this they are quite different from their American counterparts). It is the stated belief of the IOP that Estado and local governments, given too free a reign, are quickly coopted by small local interests that lack the influence to undermine the more remote, more powerful national government. Although culturally conservative they are strongly opposed to church dominance of the Brazilian government, as they see the Roman Cathoilic church as an organization bent on spending the hard earned Cruzeiros of Brazilian citizens on all sorts of "give-aways" to the poor and to vocal interest groups. They also resent the competition for political influence, no doubt due to the fact that the Vatican seems to have so much more of it. This is all despite the fact that most of the members of the IOP are Catholic. The IOP also has a strong external affairs wing, which tries to bolster Brazilian influence and culture outside of the nation. The sponsor cultural exchanges, and Brazilian "friendship tours" intended to build strong contacts between Brazilians and allies both actual and potential. The Institudo Ordem E Progreso often hires investigators for the purpose of digging up discrediting information on political opponents, and undermining the efforts of rivals. They often rely on freelancers, as they enjoy beign able to distance themselves from an operation that goes bad. The IOP was established on Tirane with the intent of combatting seperatism, as its founders orignally thought that the Brazilian policy of establishing strong local Estado governments in the colony as early as possible was setting the colony up for a wave of independence movements. The IOP strongly opposes independence movements in the colony, but local seperatists were rarely in great favor with the public. Aware that a strong opponent is useful for their own cause, the IOP often portraytds pro-indepence groups, small and weak though they are, as large, dangerous, and under the control of foreign interests.
The Institudo Ordem E Progreso owns a number of service related industries, primarily in the three oldest Estados (Cabo Vitorio, Lemanja, and Oxala). These tend to be businesses that can employ low or unskilled labor, such as interior cleaners, launderers, and landscapers. They also have private schools and youth camps. In many areas they sponsir youth sports leagues, and support small businesses. In addition to the economic and social benefits these organizations provide, all serve as conduits for the IOPs message.
This is an organization founded by African and Afro-Brazilian immigrants and their descendants. It is a cultural and fraternal foundation with some 125,000 members, representing all walks of life. Although they dont oppose assimilaition into Brazilian society- most of the more influential members of the foundation are themselves the products of generations of assimilation- they do attempt to keep alive an interest in Angolan culture, including language, music, history, and the arts. They also seek to push Afro-Brazilians into positions of power. They heavily support, for example, political aspirations by Afro-Brazilians. Their interest actually goes beyond Angola, and now embraces other areas of Portuguese speaking Africa, and to a small extent, Africa as a whole. They are also engaged in philanthropy, especially in the area of offering support to immigrants from Africa.
The FdA has managed to antagonize, at times, the French and Azanian colonial governments on Tirane, as it sees both of them as imperialist powers bent on the domination of central Africa. It has more pull outside of Brazil than one might expect for a foundation of this type, but only because it is working in a vaccuum, with a shortage of African oriented foundations.
Reservacao do Deserto Aspero is a the Estados major military base, home to army and air force units. This is an area of some 11.000 square kilometers in the northeastern area of the Estado, one of the largest military facilities on the planet. The area includes an airbase, as well as manuever training areas, gunnery ranges, ordnance depots, etc. Stationed here are Brazils 3rd Tank Brigade, the 19th Mechanized Infantry Brigade, the 39th Area Support Brigade, the Oxala Garrison Brigade, and the 71st Training Brigade. The 3rd is a heavy armored unit, equipped with 60 recently purchased Crocodile armored fighting vehicles of Australian manufacture, an infantry battallion with indigenous Lobo infantry fighting vehicles, an aviation battalion, an artillery battallion, an engineer company, a cavalry company (armored) and an electronic warfare company. The 19th Mechanized Infantry has a similar arrangement, but has two infantry battalions, and only a company of tanks. The 39th Area Support Brigade includes the logistics units needed to keep the comabt units moving on extended operations, and includes signal and medical units, as well as an independent infantry and anti-armor battallion. The Oxala garrison brigade includes those uinits assigned to the operational supprot of facilities in Oxala, a military police battallion, an engineer battallion, a signals company, and an air defence company. The training Brigade is the primary training facility for new recruits from the eastern Cabralia Estados.
Operating out of Reservacao do Deserto Aspero is the 56th Tactical Support Wing, with trainsport, utility, liaison, and intelligence aircraft, and the 10th tactical combat wing, with short range fighters and ground support aircraft. The 144th and 110th training squadrons, and the 7th mobile strategic interface defence squadron are also statined here. The latter is a national level asset, designed to depart the base quickly in time of war and scurry off into mountain hideouts, then attempt, if the worst comes to pass, to knock a few of the other sides space assets out of orbit. Manchurian wartime exploits have shown that not all spaceships damaged or destroyed in wartime will meet that fate through ship to ship combat, but space naval planenrs still tend to disregard the effects of surface based weaponry in their thinking. It is suspected, but not proved, that the Brazilian navys aviation cruisers also posess some weaponry that can be used against targets in orbit.
The Superestrada Sur is the major through route across Oxala, passign through Kanztauropolis. In the western desert it meets a smaller offshoot line, maintained by the state, that links the connects the Superestrada Sur with Basilicade in Acre. Another Estado owned link heads north from Kantzauopolis to meet with Dom Monte. A minor line extends down into the Peninsula Iridescente. A minor line also runs along the coast, connecting the towns there. Only the Superestrada Sur is maintained by the national government. A feud with the national governments ministry of tranportation has had a few negative consequences for Oxala. Many Estados buy hand me down airfilm trains from the national government. Attempts by Oxala to do this have failed. Consequently, they have many older trains, and maintenance on some of them is problematic. Outside of Kanzauropolis, then, public transport is often second rate. Some locales make do with busses. Private vehicle ownership is higher, per capita, than it is in other well populated areas of Provincia do Brasil. Travellers who expect they might be travelling around Oxala should consider renting a car rather than relying on public transportation.
While most of Provincia do Brasil settled on a airfilm system for rail transport, due to the low initial costs needed to cover great distances, and most large cities subsequently chose airfilm for their urban transportation needs to take advantage of interoperability, Kantzeropolis elected to provide magnetic levitation trains. Anticipating future transportation needs during the development of the city, major easements were left undeveloped to allow for construction of track and stations. This sort of early planning for future needs was a hallmark of the Kantzauropolis municipal government during the middle years of the century. Resembling the Robert Moses regime in New York State in America during the 20th century, the forethought and investment of one generation paid off handsomely in the years following. Kantzauropolis is now the most fiscally stable large city in Provincia do Brasil. Their well planned tranportation system certainly deserves much of the credit.
In 2246, even before demand reached the point where a train system was considered necessary, a number of engineering firms receieved requsts for proposals. Their was heavy opposition to the Maglev scheme by the already entrenching Airfilm industry (the resentment continues to this days and it can get ugly at times.) but the government of Kanzauropolis, convinced of the superiority of Maglev by several neutral studies, chose it over airfilm. One hitch was, at this time, all the transportation engineering firms in Provincia do Brasil were committed to Airfilm. The contract for the first elements of the transit system was awarded to an Austrailian firm in 2255, causing even more bickering. Despite the opposition the system proved its worth, and costs per passenger per kilometer remain lower than in other Brazilian urban transportation. Conversely, system reliability remains much higher. The Airfilm lobby has done its best to discredit the system, rationalizing all its successes, focussing on its failings, but the citizens of Oxalas capital would never switch now.
A daily pass on the "SMUK" costs just 10 Cruzeiros, less than half a Livre. (Beware, the daily pass expires several hours before a full day as passed, as workers were exploiting the system by buying a one-day pass, then commuting to work on the second day just a little earlier than on the previous day, effectively timing themselves to need only two passes every three days!) Each of the systems 90 stations is the centerpoint of a commercial area, be it a major retail mall or a few shops and restaurants clustered around the station. The trains are quick, clean, comfortable and quiet. However, many train units are nearing the end of their life and will soon need replacement. As before, the contract will most likely go to a foreign firm as local companies have not developed their capacity to provide Maglev technology in lieu of Airfilm. People watching the situation expect a bitter feud involving lawyers and politicians
Located about 40 kilometers west of Kantzauropolis, Oxalas airport was named to emphasize its excellent "hub" position near the geographic center of the colony. MPIA is a fairly busy airport, logging over 135,000 scheduled departures in 2300, with over 12 million passengers and a hundred thousand tons of airfreight aboard. Because of the convienent location of the airport, Aerotrans Brazil has its major maintenance facilities here, and the above figures do not take int account aircraft flown into and out of MPIA on service flights. Many of Provincia do Brasils original major airports were undersize or built to close to their primary cites, and had to be replaced or supplemented later on. MPIA was begun in 2203 as a temporary field, but the location was well chosen, and the airport, much larger today than it once was, still covers the original site. New buildings and features have been added as time went on, so the airport reflects a diversity of times and styles. The large number of maintenance and repair facilities here support a local light aviation industry, and the nearby major town of Pista Oxa (population 120,000) exists mainly to serve them. In addition to the maintenance hangers of Aerotrans Brazil, MPIA is home to the main Tirane laboratories and production facilities of Magico-DMS, the avionics company, and Aviatek Oxala, an engineering company specializing in the inspection and maintenance of aircraft. The commercial pride of the airport is its own retail mall, the Galeria Media Provincia, and the large and very new hotel, the Embaixada Medi-Provincia. The airport is connected to the rest of the planet by Air France, Tiranair, and Aerovia in addition to Aerotrans Brazil, and is served regionally by Alaoeste and Impulsos.
Despite the extensive coast, sheltered gulf, and numeous offshore islands, Oxala has no deep water ship capability. Kantzauropolis is the largest city in Provincia do Brasil without a port.
The efforts of Kantzauropolis to become the "center" of Provincia do Brasil havent failed entirely. The city has become the home of the colonys media companies and several related organizations, in addition to being the home of several major secular foundations. Brazils number one news network has its planetary headquarters here, as do its competitors, including Noticias Nacional Cabralia, the largest news orghanizaiton based in Provincai do Brasil. NNC has its own office building in Kantzauropolis, while the two larger Terran Brazil based networks, as well as the foreign network offices, lease office space in buildings they dont own. This is part of NNCs strategy of presenting itself as the "home" company here. One other advantage to locating here, from the new reporting point of view, is that Kantzauropolis is central in a colony that spans many time zones. Therefore, a daily report from an office in the city is likely to be caught by people throughout Provincia do Brasil. Various media corporations together employ over 35,000 people in the city, directly and indirectly through several secondary industries.
News is presented in Provincia do Brasil in several different formats, but the most popular is the ever present "Ejorno". This is basically a portable high resolution flexible screen, minimal controls, and a small memory. The average Ejorno can be rolled into a tube about 25 centimeters long for easy stowage in an attache case, or dangling from a belt. They are often kept in handsome tooled leather cases. The owner pays a small fee to download a days updates from a particular agency, and the Ejornos small memory can keep many days of information, depending on the size of each downloaded agencys daily updates. The downloads are only available in their entirety, either from the commiunications net or from street and store kiosks. Advertisements are inlcuded along with the regular content, which helps offset the cost of the download. The Ejorno really cant do anything a portacomp cant, but as it is much more specialized it is cheaper, smaller, lighter, and much less intrusive, so reading your daily "Oxala Today" while commuting is much easier. The screen size and detail is better than most portacomps as well. Brazilians on along lunch breaks, poring over Ejornos while sipping cups of potent coffee is a common site in the colony, as well as on Earth.
Paper newsprint is gone from society here. Although the availability of artificially grown woodpulp has presented a way of continuing mass production of newspapers without despoiling forests, the invention arrived too late to halt the decline of the newspaper industry. (This is not the case everywhere- there are still holdouts. Just not in Provincia do Brasil) The glossy magazine, for reasons unknown, still exists. It has been specualted that the tactile sensations of handling a magazine cannot be found in a portacomp or an Ejorno, and are much desired by consumers, even if they do not think so. Some have put for the idea that magazine artwork, relying on reflected and not transmitted light, is by nature more pleasing to the eyes. Plenty of other explanations have been offered, none of them entirely satisfying. It remains just one of those inconsistencies humanity is known for. People in Provincia do Brasil just buy magazines, even thought the same content is generally available in electronic format. Oxala has by far the greatest concentration of magazine publishers. Supporting one of the theories of magazine survival, most magazines are targetted at narrow subject areas and feature visual artwork of some kind. Magazines are devoted to suchg topics as fashion and art, where the visual display is highly important.
One magazine company in Kantzauropolis, Revistas do Globo, has been eager to seize on novel new ideas, ad a few novel old ideas, for magazines, such as the incorporation of scent into the articles. Now, this has been around in various forms since the pre-Twilight days of "Scratch and Sniff", but Revistas do Globo takes this to new heights, incorporating scent releasing micro capsules into articles, adverisements, and artwork. Reading a cooking magazine in a crowded area and using the scent feature can cause interested reactions in literally hundreds of passersby, and is discouraged. Still found only in a few magazines, this feature actually became popular a decade ago, when a local Oxala artist began incorpoirating synchronized and specialized release of scent as an element in his artworks.
Most media presentation is through electronic means, principally communications net static diplay, net casting, and broadcasting. The former refers to the placement of mateiral in unchanging permanent or semipermanent data storage sites accessible though the communications net. Net casting is more spoecialized and means the timed presention of specific programming through the communications net. Once netcast, all or some of these programs may be availaible at stores' static display sites. Netcastings are generally available throughout Provincia do Brasil, although there is insufficient bandwith to make it available to mobile recievers in many areas, and even home receivers in a few zones. The communications net expands daily in Provincia do Brasil, and all areas wil have complete coverage by the mid point of the 24th century.
Of course, the style of media reporting tends to vary considerably from market to market, and Provincia do Brasil has its own local idiosyncracies. For one, news here tends to focus on dramitc personal stories. Where the necessary drama seems to be objectively lacking, the Provincia do Brasil journalist will seek it out and find it. For example, if an airliner were to crash, the reporters from Tunghu will discuss the effects of the crach on the airlines business stance. The journalists from Provincia do Brasil will seek out a few colorful "victim" stories, and investigate the personal lives involved, until they have found something truly juicy the masses of Brazil can sink their voyeuristic teeth into. Will the crash have any effect on the airlines bond rating? Who cares, but you must know that in the weeks before the crash, the copilot was carrying on a steamy affair with the spouse of a friend, and perhaps the stress of this affair contributed to the accident. Judge for yourself, after absorbing every detail in the week long netcast series
Pundits have specualted that theis slant to Provincia do Brasils news is a result of the peoples desire for cathartic entertainment based on emotional human drama. With provacative fiction suppressed by the government, they turn to provacative non-fiction, which is much more diffcult to control.
This is Provincia do Brasils "underdog" media group, often specializing in outrageous news, presented in comedic form, much of it extremely embarrassing to the subjects of its stories. They have no friends left in the church, few in govenrment, and many corporate execs despise them, but Ox-Ti-Vi has a "Robin Hood" reputation that makes it popular within media circles and very popualr with the public. This, in turn, makes them popualr with advertisers, and many corporate execs, the very ones described as despising Ox-Ti-Vi just a few sentences ago, turn to them to advertise their products. This is the way the media wheels turn.
This is an private telecommunications comapny created by Brazilain government to own and operate the sattelite transmission equipment needed by the colony. The national government divested itself of Tirasat in 2277, under the terms of a deal in which al the Estado governments of Provincia do Brasil were offered the opporunity to acquire shares before they were made available to the general public. Only Oxala chose to pursue ownership, partly because it was (and is) the home to Tirasats offices. Oxala owns just 26% of the company but has been very proactive in its development. In 2291 Tirasat acquired a subsidiary wihich now manufactures communications sattelites for the Provincia do Brasil market and other costomers. Tirasat has several geostationary platforms, but makes extensive use of Low Tirane Orbit sattelites. Since these spend only a fraction of their time over a given broadcast area, computers track the network and rapidly shunt broadcast taskings between sattelites, and sell time on sattelites no longer inposition to seve Tirasats own market area. Thus, for a given sattelite with a 108 minute orbit period, Tirasat may use only 9 minutes of its time during each orbit, selling the remainder to other users.
Oxala is not a banking center, and there are suprisingly few actual bank buildings in the estado. Most transactions are carried out over the communications net, and the banks, headquartered elsewhere, need only minimal offices to support their activities in the area. Oxalans actually pride themselves on the level to which theyve plugged themselves into the communications net. No region of Provincia do Brasil, except the Missaoprimo-Porto Jardim region, is better connected. The same goes for major mercantile transactions. Retail centers are present in Kantzauropolis, which is the social and economic focus of the Estado.
This corporation, while headquartered on Earth in Sao Paulo, is a major presence in Provincia do Brasil. On Tirane as on Earth, their primary areas of interest are in power, and hydrogen fuel. There are over 200 Ultimas fuel and service stations in Provincia do Brasil, with most major popualtion centers having at least one. It is the largest such chain in the colony. Ultimas also runs a number of fusion powerplants, which supply energy through the powergrid to end users, as well as powering their hydrogen fuel production plants. At one time, they were a significant presence at starports, but when the Ultimas strike of 2294 grounded shuttles and spaceplanes throughout the colony, spacecraft operators quickly lined up alternate fuel supplies, and they still hold a grudge against the corporation. Ultimas Provincia has 16,000 employees. Gross revenue reported in 2300 was about 2.5 Billion Lv. Three quarters of the stock is held by the parent company on Earth, the remainder is publicly held, and sold through PdBs Fazenet, with about 40% of the shares being held by Tiranean Brazilians. Most analysts consider Ultimas Provincia a good buy, even if the dividends are never high. Being the "big guy on the block" means Ultimas is faced with unique challenges. They are the perrenial target for both law abiding protests and criminals and terrorists of every sort. Their computer systems area attacked merely because the company is percieved as a challenging target (Not necessarily so. Many computer security proffessionals report smaller concerns with much better computer security.) Their operations are occassionally sabotaged because of the media attention given to such a well known companys problems, and executives and major shareholders have been kidnapped simply because of the companys ability to pay off exhorbitant ransom demands. All this activity has led to the creation of a three-winged special securrity section. The physical and computer securty branches protect the company in their respective fields, and the couter-intimidation branch uses lawyers and more devious sorts to make life difficult for those who threaten Ultimas. There is an urban legend circulating though PdB about a computer prankster who attacked a company data store. Supposedly, he then made the tragic mistake of refilling his motorcycles hydrogen cells at an Ultimas station, shortly before the motorcycle exploded. No hard evidence of the tale has ever been unnearthed, the story changes both details and setting, but Ultimas has done little to combat it.
One of the many inconsistencies of Kantzauropolis is this preoccupation with massive buildings (excluding Campino, of course) despite the availability of land. The Kantzaura is not the tallest building in the city, but it is the most voluminous. Contained withing the buildings stainless steel exterior wall are multiple levels of shopping, dining, and entertainment- no less than a dozen holo-theatres. The building is also home to a hotel, offices, athletic facilites, a library, and towards the top, a number of private apartments. This is the shopping mecca of Oxala. Most of the trend following stores can be found here.
Oxala has some of the best land for food crops in Provincia do Brasil. It is a major producer of Wheat, Corn, Beans, Rice (Oxala grows both "dry" rice and "wet" rice, the latter in the wetalnd areas in the southeast.) Manioc, Soybeans, and a number of other fuits and vegetables. In Grandsummer, the region produces tropical crops such as Avocados and Olives, with the tropical trees kept in a dormant state during the Grandwinter. One company in eastern Oxala has a large plantation of Eucalyptus trees, grown for the extraction of extracts and oils. Livestock production is high in the Estado, second only to Campobelo. There are heards of beef and dairy cattle, pigs (especially in the wetter areas), large numbers of goats, numerous poultry farms, and many farms specializing in exotic livestock- including a couple considered exotic only by non-Brazilians. (Actually, some other South American cultures consider certain large rodents a fair choice for a roast as well, but many Americans and Europeans will look at it and say "but its a rat ") Agriculture, inncluding rangeland, consumes some 350,000 Square kilometers, some 35% of the Estados land area, giving the region a moderately large proportion of land devoted to agriculture.
The shallow Gulf of Oxala is less than three meters deep in most areas. This makes the area convenient for aquaculture, as huge stretches of productive water can be easily cordoned off. Eager to have available their favorite seafoods available in their new home, Brazilians imported literally hundreds of Earth species to test their potential for economic production in Tiranean waters. Some failed to survive, some prospered, one species incredibly so (see below). The fenced in and highly controlled waters off Oxala are fished by about 25,000 fishermen, pulling in familiar Earth food fish for local consumption and export. The harvest includes pompano, flounder and cod, as well as larger species like albacore and mahi-mahi.
Despite the overall simialrity of Tiranean biochemistry and the compaitbility of the two ecosystems, it is almost impossible to predict in advance the success of Earth native organisms when imported to Tirane, either as agricultural stock or as accidental releases. (Its hard enough to do this on Earth, when moving species between habitats!) The aquacultural efforts in the Gulf of Oxala have led to one unexpected development. Among the many Earth species raised in cordoned off sections of the gulf, the Octopus, brought to Tirane to supply the tables of seafood lovers, has apparently been able to escape the enclosures, and prosper in Tiranean waters. Not only prosper but thrive, and increase their numbers rapidly. The Marine Life Science Institute on Ilha de Silva has been monitoring octupus populations since they were first seen in "wild" waters four decades ago, and have caught examples for study. In 2299, they reached the astounding conclusion, after several years of studies on octupi captured live, that the octupi spreading across the gulf were more intelligent than the earth native stock from which they originally descended. Scientists studying the situation have confirmed the findings, but the cause and meanings of this discovery are as yet unknown. Of course, the creatures are still a long way from approaching sentience, but for a mollusk, theyre clearly of advanced intellect. Given fifty million years or so who knows?
When early surveys indicating the presence of economically valuable oil and gas deposits were confirmed, mostly along the coast and offshore, the decision was made to allow only very limited awarding of extraction rights to corporations. This was done in 2204, before the establishment of the Estado government. However, even at that early time, it was generally known that an Estado government would be eventually established, and the decision was made to reserve most of the control over natural resources to them. Several grants had to made, however, to companies that hads helped fund the early colonization. The question of how to handle the petroleum and gas reserves was one of the first issues tackled by the new Estado governemtn, and the plans quickly boiled down into two distinct types. One camp favored the opening up of oil and gas fields to private corporations which would bid on the rights to extract the resources, while the other insisted that the resource be handled by a government regulated monopoly.
Since they had already made some movements in that direction, the decision was made to auction off petroleum and gas fields to private industry. Ironically, though, the industry in Oxala eventually swung the other way. In the 2260s there was a considerable shake-up and consolidation in Oxalas oil industry. Many firms had duplicated each others facilities, and the over investment, along with newly opening and even more attractive fields elsewhere, was hurting their efforts in Oxala. Several companies closed, and the Oxala government invested in the remaining few to keep employment up. By 2285, there was only one corporation still producing in Oxala, and the government acquired a 51% stake in it under the Oxala Petrol Bond Issue of 2285. The corporation was renamed Oxalagas, and the new investment was able to reverse its fortunes. Within a decade the state industry was strong and profitable, and is today the largest government owned corporation in Provincia do Brasil. Oxalagas stock pays no dividend, and proabably wont for a few more years, but is considered a strong bet. The support in Oxala for the company, which employs tens of thousands, is too great, and the company is too sucessful on its own merits to face any more survivablility problems in the near term.
Oxalagas has a number of facilities along the Oxalan coast, and one major refinery and shipping terminal on one of the offshore islands. (This is the estados only deep water shipping port, the extremely shallow waters of the Gulf of Oxala precluding tankers from reachign the coast) Petroleum is generally not used as fuel (although natural gas is, in many rural and specialized applications, like barbecues) but is supplied ot the chemical industry to produce solvents, lubricants, raw materials for plastics, etc.
Oxala is home to a number of firms in the defense, communications, and avionics fields, Beale-Sato in Kantzauropolis being one of the best known. Beale-Sato manufactures the expendable countermeasures in widespread use by th Brazilian Army, where they have been in use so long that the word "Bilsato" is commonly used to mean any expendable countermeasures device. Combat vehicles typicaly carry a rack of Bilsatos, and automaitically launch 3-5 upon the detection of an incoming weapon. The current "Gen-Nine" countermeasures devices, cylinders about 10 centimeters in diameter and 20 centmeters long. mimic the vehicles thermal and radar signatures, while releasing obscuring smoke and flashing directional strobe lights toward the enemy in the frequency of their targetting lasers. "Gen-Ten" is undergoing preliminary testing and development.
Oxalan firms also design and manufacture such things as robotic assembly units, avionics, sattelites, sensor equipment, and commuinications equipment. Those elements of the inudstry serving the military are considered nationally sensitive, and a vary large and paranoid element of the national police is on continuous vigil, convinced that every planeload of visitors arriving in Oxala contains at least three Argentinean spies eager to acquire Brazilian military secrets. The less cutting edge companies in this industry are dispersed across the many small towns of Oxala, with the sales, production, warehousing, research, and administrative branches of single company often widely dispersed, coordinating their operations with the communicaitons net.
Oxalans produce textiles and clothing, including much high end apparel for domestic and export markets, in direct competition with the companies in Cabo Vitorio. The Oxalan companies are generaly larger, better run, and better organized than their Cabo Vitorio competitors, but the latter have the reputation as small, personal businesses with the mystique of Italian fashion. Factories in the Estado also produce such products as tires, high pressure pneumatic and hydraulic tubing and equipment, plastics (especially reinforced sheet plastic, with almost all the tarps in use in Provinca do Brasil having their origins here), glass, and ceramics.
Oxalans are not known to be blind, fierce supporters of a single sports team, no matter how long the team has represented their region or no matter how well it has performed. They seem to recognize that the team is a business like any other and exists to make money by entertaining them. So, the Oxala Compeadors understand they are playing to a difficult crowd. They compensate by offering a bit more than the typical futbol (soccer) team. They own their own stadium- Parque Compeador, on the east side of Kantzauropolis- and put it to use for concerts, circuses, and other entertainments in addition to their own games. Other than not taxing the land the stadium is on, neither the Estado of Oxala nor the city of Kantzauropolis has had to invest in the team. True, the team is only midling in performance, but if the Conquistadors of Vitorio de Conquista are an example of what it takes to field a first class team, the people of Oxala would rather not foot the bill. Besides, Parque Compeador offers more than just spectator sports. It is also home to floral gardens, a very popular childrens park, and a thought provoking interactive outdoor sculpture garden.
Horse racing is extremely popualr in Oxala, and several tracks exist, the most famous being the entirely indoor Hipodromo Kantzauro. Completed in 2284, this building is about as high tech as a horse race track can ever expect to get, with tiers of private luxury boxes offering all the lates high tech amenities for patrons who wish to divert themselves from the action (or inaction) on the track below. Other tracks can be found near a few of the larger outlying towns of the Estado. Oxalans do not have the "amateur horse wins big" fantasies of Cabo Vitorians. They are to busy with their own lives to raise race horses, and would rather leave the task to a professional. Owning shares in a horse, or more commonly, a stable of horses, is more popular. Many professionals raise money this way, returning a share of winnings to the investors. Race fans report that ownership, however remote, adds to the exitement, since they know that one of the horses theyre watching is "theirs".
Other popular sports in Oxala include handball and Jiu-Jitsu
More than just a tourist draw, and less than an Angolan colony, this early settlement of Angolan immigrants has mutated into a "Disneyfied" African theme park, complete with "tribal dances" and recreations of quaint customs that leave genuine Africans confused and often insulted, African looking villages and towns connected by a faux-steam engine train (Its really fuel cell powered, and all the smoke, bells, and whistles are really, just, well, smoke, bells, and whistles), and, of course, genuine African animals living in somewhat realistic looking woodland terrain complete the picture. The inhabitants figured out a generation ago that by presenting Africa as family entertainment, they could pull in a lot more Cruzeiros than their agricultural and light manufacturing enterprises ever hoped to. Nova Benguela consists of a fully functional central town of some 30,000 people, many of whom keep up appearances by dressing in high tourist appeal costumes as they go about even the most mundane of jobs, (The busses have "Zebra-stripes") and a number of outlying villages, bringing the total permanent popualtion up to 50,000. Three missions by one of the "Boi" ships (The follow on to the "Vaca" class) established a population of genuine African wild animals, and pith helmeted guides lead brave tourists on photo-safaris. Tundukubwa has promised revenge: they want a group of Latin American settlers to establish their own "tourist town", complete with scantilly clad female dancers and military coups.
The middle class and small upper class of Kantzauropolis are an intellectual, cultured bunch, more given to debating politics and economics than futbol statistics. After dark they congregarte in the quiet, refined nightclubs, at street level in Campino and at roof level in Souza. Lighting and noise level is usually low in these places, (travellers have reported them to be the most romantic restaurants and clubs in Provincia do Brasil) the service typically friendly but unhurried, and the quality varied. All of them aim for an antmosphere of serenity and esthetic culture, this being the goal of the stressed media, electronic enginneering, managerial, and design workers who frequent these palces after their hectic days. The clubs of Kantzauropolis were the cradle of one of the newer forms of music to arrive on the Brazilain scene, one very much at odds with their centuries old tradition of strong, rhythm and dance oriented music. This is the serene music called "Angelak", a slow, soft genre utilizing natural sounds not only as backgorund and highlight elements, as many previous styles have done, but as central units of the piece. Various Angelak composers make use of everything from tropical birds to thunder to crashing waves to the creaking of timber under stress, all digitally arranged by computer. Angelak does not have a large following, and interest in it is growing very slowly, but listeners tend to become strongly attached to it.
An elaborate building emulating ancient Greek construction styles, the Amphitheatre actually contains three separate stages, including one under a transparent dome canopy simulating ancient Greek outdoor theatres, without the intrusions of such things as weather. It also houses an art gallery. The Amphitheatre is known for the wide range of its productions. It presents contemporary Brazilian Opera, Anglo-American 20th century stage musicals, and the occassional remake of a classic by Aristophanes or one of his peers. The Amphitheatre is located in the heart of Helenikos, the old Greek district of Kantzauropolis, and is surrounded by a wonderfully diverse restaurant and retail neighborhood. Many citizens acquire season tickets to the Amphitheatre, allowing them access to a braod range of cultural presentations.
Viagedor Neptune Memorial
This memorial and classic sculpture garden in western Oxala commemorates the 2260 crash of the shuttle Viagedor Neptune, transferring 212 passengers from the passenger ship Viagedor Alcyon. This incident was a national trauma. Unlike a typical aircaft accident, in which the aircraft is lost in obscurity, one of thousands flying that day, the loss of the shuttle was a high profile public event, made more so by the fact that most of those lost were young students arriving on Tirane for semester of study on the new world. Two hundred and twenty carved stone memorials arranged in a meticulously kept floral park mark the site of the disaster.
Three biomes dominate the Estado of Oxala. In the east, the land is forested with trees of Division Constanphyla. Although a wet-dry system oscillates unevenly, there is enough misture to support a forest continuously, although it is a thin forest of widely spaced trees. To the south is ther Peninsula Iridescente, and the vast wetlands. This is a place of swamps and marshes, and it teems with life, although much of it slithers around through the much unnoticed. The other areas of Oxala, by contrast, seem less habitable to wildlife, both from the relative lack of moisture and the much stronger human influence. In the west, the forest thins out to become the great open savannah. Being at such a ecological crossroads, Oxala really doesnt have any wildlife specific to itself. Presented here are three sample creatures, one from each biome.
Hunter. No. Appearing: 1-6 Initiative: 7 Melee Hit Chance: Routine, Size: <1 Kg Speed 60 (Flying) Armor 0, Consciousness: 1 Life: 1 WPM (Killed by any hit) DPV 0.2 Signature 5
This is the largest insect on Tirane (for the sake of simplicity, the small exo-skeletal life forms on Tirane are referred to as insects, even though they devieate significantly from Earth insects.). It is common to the coastal wetlands of the south, especially along the Peninsula Iridescente, where it hunts during warmer weather and becomes dormant (or sometimes dies off entirely, leaving only egs behind) during cooler cycles. The Zundor is a primitive creature, analogous to Earths dragon flies, having evolved its current form hundreds of millions of years ago. It is now confined to a few ecosystems. It is large and heavy for an insect, and emits a distinctive humming sound as it flies, much as an Earth hummingbird. The name "Zundor" is derived from a Portuguese root meaning "hummer". The Zundor hunts singly, in the twilight hours of morning and evening, skimming low over the wetlands as is searches for small aquatic creatures- typically those up to several centimeters in length, which it spears with its long, sharp, probiscus before hauling back to its nest. The probiscus of the Zundor is quite lethal- if you happen to be a Tiranean acquatic creature a few centimeters in length. On occasion, they have attacked humans, generally when provoked, or when the humans happen to be eating or handling fish. Their tend to fly away after scoring one hit, which does not cause real damage. The DPV in this case is used only to see if the wound penetrates armor, and it will never penetrate rigid armor. The victim recieves a painful, itchy rash that will persist from 4-40 hours. In rare cases a more severe reaction might result, non fatal, but incapacitating and requiring medical attention. (To avoid severe reaction to Zundor bite, Routine, 10 minutes, Size of victim and Medical skill of person treating bite) Zundors are about 60-100 grams, and are iridescent green, and are of no commercial value. Although more than one Zundor is often seen at one time, they do not coordinate their attacks in any way, and the appearance of multiple creatures is simply a matter of each competing for food in the same favorable area.
Grazer. No. Appearing: 10-1000 Initiative: 4 Melee Hit Chance: Difficult, Size: 100 Kg Speed 140 Armor 0, Consciousness: 4 Life: 9 WPM 0 DPV 0.2 Signature 1
Oxalas native herd grazer, the Red Tarnder, is an adaptable animal that roams prairies, deserts and open woodlands from Central Oxala west to Nova Ostia. They avoid the dense forests of eastern Oxala, as the vegetation impedes their speed and vision, their primary defenses against predators. The animal is a mammalian appearing quadruped distantly related to the Jumbuck but more closely related to the other Tarnder species, including the Bald Tarnder of Sera do Prado. The Red Tarnders have a rich red pelt, the color of iron-rich clay, which, after acquiring dust from their travels, gives them excellent campflauge in the deserts of western Oxala. Following the plan of most herd grazers, they susbsist almost entirely on vegetation. The Red Tarnder is a skittish creature, quick to run. Given the choice, it will never choose to fight, but will lash out with strong kicks as a last resort. Like most grazers of open areas, they are highly visual animals with eyes set back to allow the widest possible field of vision. They have extremely acute eyesight, very sensitive to sudden motion.
Chaser. No. Appearing: 2-12 Initiative: 6 Melee Hit Chance: Easy, Size: 150 Kg Speed 100 Armor 0, Consciousness: 6 Life: 10 WPM 0 DPV 0.4 Signature 1
This predator of forest, woodland, and wetland is related to the Weasent, but is much larger, and seeks larger prey. It is one of the few predators in Provincia do Brasil that will attack a human, typically a small human. Jacanthas are pack animals with a reputation for intelligence and agility. (They seem to combine in one animal the most dangerous traits of wolves and wolverines. ) They are known for watching potential prey for extended periods from hidden positions before striking. They can climb trees and swim well, but are not fast runners. Unable to catch swifter animals in an extended chase, they will position themselves ahead of prey and wait in ambush. Like wolves, they instinctively encirlcle prey. Their pelts are varigiated shades of gray and brown, evolved to provide concealment in shadowy forests. The pelts become thicker when the weather turns colder, and ther is some market for Jacantha fur in good condition, although hunting is severely restricted. Their packs are matriarchal, composed of a lead female, her mates, and those of her offspring that have not departed to form packs of their own. They range throughout all of eastern Cabralia, but are rare along the mountainous north coast. Typical game includes Tarnders and other herbivores.