Founded in the 98th year of residence on Promise, the city of Cliffside is a gleaming jewel on the rocky cliff it calls home. Home to spires of dizzying heights, a rich culture of pride and pursuit of knowledge, it is little surprise that the world's best divine mathematicians are trained within its walls.
It began as a wilderness outpost, carved from the untamed lands in a place the native creatures seemed to avoid. It became a thriving metropolis as the years past. There is no one ruler of Cliffside, instead headed by a Council of Elders, whom are often leaders of various fields of research and magic. The youngest being to ever serve on the council was fourty years of age, Lady Thoma Bigg, a tiger born Clever Folk that had a monopoly on the production of the manufacturing process of crystals cut finely enough for the spells of the time.
Elders rise and fall with the opinion of their fellows, with only the most prestigious and awe inspiring of the businessmen and scholars rising to the top. This exchange of power is not always clean, and violent sprees of assassinations and intrigue are not unknown when a new upstart has their eyes on a seat they feel should be vacated. Those aspiring to gain, or hold, a seat on the council must, by necessity, be skilled in the ways of political navigation, and sleep lightly.
The single most well known feature of the city is its grand collection of colleges. The colleges of Cliffside are considered, without debate, to be the finest of Promise. Each college offers its own particular spins and specialties, and many students take classes in a selection of them on their way towards mastery of their profession. It is not unusual for any being to not complete a specified curriculum. To obtain certification of completion, each college has specific requirements of aptitude and testing. Passing does not require specific course(or courses) be taken, simply that the student can pass the test and prove they are capable and learned.
Cliffside is a city state, with no other city within its borders as grand as it. Most activity of the nation of Cliffside takes place within its city. Its army is professional, with citizens encouraged to enroll as a career, rather than a mandatory term. The army has many divisions, working also as the city's fire fighting force, emergency response, and city guards. Officers are well paid and respected for their duties, but the higher ranks are just as mired in intrigue as the council posts.
Cliffside's relation to Sweetwater has often been turbulent. Sweetwater has long coveted Cliffside's crown as head of learning, and Cliffside regards the 'podunk' nation as barbaric imitators at best, filled with dimwitted simpletons. Sweetwater citizens regard Cliffside as arrogant, braggarts, and dishonest backstabbers. Diplomats from either nation often fall head first into age old disputes and argument, preventing long term resolution of their differences. Wars between the two nations have been frequent, intense, but usually short lived. The longest official clash persisted for thirty years, ending with the assassination of the Good King of the time. Though many blame a Cliffside agent, some, much more quietly, whisper it was a domestic peace seeking dissident. The Good Queen that followed called an end to the conflict, and trade resumed.