When the Gods broke the world, their followers were temporarily abandoned. the echo gods were shadows of their former power, and they could no longer grant their faithful the power of new magic. The world needed their divine power, but the clerics were forced to hoard their strength. The faithful were seen as cruel and miserly during this time, in a world that was already torn by conflict between the Faithful and the Free, and one by one, the surviving nation began to exile their faithful members.
The Faithful Flight, as it is known in the Broken Horn, was a decade of exile, as they faithful lost more and more of their number to violence, as well as many abandoning their faith as they felt the gods had abandoned them. The Faithful were driven further and further underground, having to keep their faith a secret from their neighbours lest they be exposed and driven from their homes.
A glimmer of hope came when a venerable priestess of Vanur, Lasinia, managed to forge a reconnection with her god's echo, slowly regaining her divine power, and teaching the technique to others. Some of the seeds of Delan discovered this fact, and fearing a resurgence of the divine, led a campaign against the faithful once more. The Faithful were driven from the south at first, ever northwards. The tactic was to exterminate any divine wielders, and eventually move northwards in an effort to finally cleanse the world of the divine. The tactic was brutal, and effective. Some managed to remain hidden in their homes, but most were driven out or slain.
Eventually, Lasinia took action. She sacrificed her own life to fuel a powerful spell, breaking the eastern horn away from the mainland, turning the peninsula into an island. The faithful fled to this land, claiming it as their own, and fortified themselves. They were unable to be rooted out, but they were not able to strike back against their foes in the mainland without fear of retribution, as a decade of harsh reality in the new broken world had turned the common folk away from the divine.
Now, the clergy rules with an iron grip of theocracy, with the divine servants holding all the power, cowing a population of people whose entire lives are governed by faith, ritual and a fervent belief that one day, the gods will return to reward their true and faithful servants.
Originally,the eastern Horn was a small collection of fishing villages and towns nominally ruled by the Astorina Imperium under the Counts of the Horn, the Alsbergis. The family was a faithful one, and still holds some sway in the nation. However, the true power is with the council of Heirophants, an organisation made up of the highest ranking cleric of each Echo God, with one amongst their number voted as Supreme Heirophant of the Faithful for life.
As originally the Broken horn was a refugee nation from around the continent, their culture began as an amalgam of all the other cultures of the continent: Imperial arches would sit over Northiran doors, Terichtlan clothing would be paired with a Baxish sash and hat. Now however, this has merged into a monoculture that adopts the strongest points of each culture, and ruthlessly weeds out undersirable traits. Though the overwhelming majority of the populace is Human, some of the other races do live here, those that were called to faithful service, or their offspring. Every year, some citizens escape to the mainland, and some mainlanders come to the Broken Horn to live their lives in faith.
Most of daily life is governed by church life. Every citizen at maturity is required to register their patron deity, though all gods must be worshipped and respected. Church and formal worship is a daily occurrence at the minimum, and the clergy are respected and held as the ideal. The clergy takes the best and brightest of the youth for formal training regardless of their desires, though any others that volunteer are accepted.
Languages and names
As the nation was founded from a racially and culturally diverse population, a variety of languages are spoken freely, though Imperial has emerged as the dominant language. Even then, most people pepper their language with phrasing from other languages. Names are diverse, with no naming conventions or restrictions. IT is not uncommon to hear first and last names that come from two different languages, or names that have been subtly changed from their root language and culture.