Muspelheim is probably one of the most harsh, hostile and inhospitable Titanic Kingdom. The land is covered in ash or cold lava, with magma lakes and rivers. However, the land is far from being a desert. Muspelheim is actually densely populated with cities of burning coal and volcanic rock engaging in trade and war, fields of tiny volcanoes producing ash or sulfur (one of the main food source for Fire Titanspawn), and industrial complexes.
The North region - also known as Surtrsey - is controlled by Surtr. As the most dominant avatar of Fire, Surtr has made his turf a military tyranny. Strong and formidable, the fire giant’s forces are trained, raised and sent from the Fortress of Conflagration, a formidable castle of flame made solid. The fortress itself is the beating heart of Surtsey, with the large capital of Muspelheim stretching far an wide. Built for the Eldjötnar (Fire giants), the city is impressively large, densely populated and dangerous. Each building is built like a castle, the military presence is constant and outsiders are not welcome.
The rest of the region is composed forests made of fire or fields of sulfur, with small fire giant settlement and cities of two major subspecies : the industrious Múspellssynir and the violent Rjúfendr. The former can be reasoned with, are known for their craft and are considered the work force of the North. The latter are powerful, violent, strong and impulsive and usually welcome any outsiders with a house-size fireball. However, the two subspecies are quite difficult to distinguish from one another, and more than one intrepid merchant was blasted to cinders after accidentally talking to a Rjúfendr.
At the North-West, not far from the Fortress, lies the city-factories of Prometheus. As they approach, the traveller will first see gigantic coal surface mines with thousands of workers extracting precious ore and sulfur for the powerful creations of the Avatar. The Factory itself is an immense building, spitting an torrent of flames and smoke that makes the air thick and poisonous. The entry to the city-factories is guarded by patrols of Rjúfendr loyal to Surtr and an army of Golems. If one manages to get inside, he will be welcomed by the deafening sound of thousand of machinery, the heat of melting metal, the strong smell of coal and sulfur. The city-factories rise to absurd heights with train stations linking them together. Hordes of cyclops and fire giants bawl orders across the building, crafting weapons and equipment for Surtr’s forces, sent by rail throughout Muspelheim. The city-factories can be reached from Patala - through Dis Pater's realm - and Kosmos. Furthermore, Auahitūroa and his children joined forces with Prometheus, and use their fiery comets to carry troops and equipments across every Titanrealms and Godrealms.
In the East, lies the Scorched Desert, a region torn apart by the constant war between the humongous armies of Vrtra an Surtr. The region itself is extremely valuable as the soil is rich in many rare and magical minerals, such as Adamant. The Scorched desert is composed of an intricate labyrinth of canyons and lava rivers, as well as underground caves which have links to Terra and Patala. It is rumored than deep within those canyons lies the home of Nemesis. Its exact location remains however unknown as any who approach it seem torn by inner conflict and forced into inaction or even suicide.
In the center of Muspelheim lies the volcano Etimesoy. This perpetually erupting mountains spews torrents of magma, ash, sulfur and brimstone and is the source of all the lava rivers or Muspelheim. Ever changing in its shape, constantly melting and solidifying, the peak is about 10 kilometers high and inhabited by fierce lava djinns and magma dragons, all serving Kagutsuchi. The summit of Etimesoy pierces through a thick layer of ash clouds in eight massive craters, each dominated by a Magma Lord. These powerful titanspawn were once body parts of Kagutsuchi, cut down by his father Izanagi, and are named as such (Left and righ hand, arm, feet and leg, Kagutsuchi being the body and head). Their loyalty to their master is absolute (something that is quite rare in the violent realm of Muspelheim). Etimesoy can be reached from any place where there is or was lava, however, if the sulfurous gas and the torrents of lava don’t take care of the intruder, the magma golems will probably finish him off. The summit could theorically be reached through Amaunet or Nyx, but the sky over Etimesoy is guarded by Fafnir, a powerful magma beast who has a deep hatred for humans and heroes since he almost died by the hands of Sigurd…
In the vast south of Muspelheim, lies the suffocating Plain of Kumhalaana and the 99 fortresses of Vrtra. Although all of Muspelheim is extremely hot, the south seems to drain all mosture from all living things. This is not a problem for most inhabitants of Muspelheim, but any intruder would have to come thoughrouly prepared for the journey. The plain is mostly empty and flat, with the fortresses disseminated across the landscape. Inside, the servants of Vrtra relentlessly train in martial arts and heat magic, launching assault toward the Scorched Deserts. Vrtra also has a direct frontier with Aether at the South and its leader Aten, but the two Avatars seem at peace at the moment.
At the west lies the Ocean of White Flames. The color is due to a constant rain of liquid phosphorus acid pouring down and reacting to all flames. This act as a natural barrier for Blaze Island, territory of Xiuhtecuhtli. The island is the only barely viable place of Muspelheim (by human standards), and can be reached from Terra, Aether and Amaunet. There are even rumors that Fey Queen Titania was seen partying on the island. The landscape ressembles an extremely hot tropical island, with a dry and humid season, and unique wildlife. Tribes of Titanspawn, the Ifrit, are living in a certain form of bliss, engaging in war only to please their master and sacrificing the weak, the old and the captured through gigantic sacrificial pyres. Outsiders are very welcome on Blaze Island, but may be surprised by the strange custom of the natives, who are extremely extroverted, energetic and can even be sexually aggressive. Crossing the Ocean of White Flames is a difficult task although smugglers, known to bring the rare minerals from the other side, can be hired, for a price.
Internal Politics and Culture
Muspelheim is the land of fire, rage, emotions, destruction, passion… It is predictable in its unpredictability. Most of the Titanspawns are violent, destructive and aggressive and only the strong rule. However, the most prominent behaviour of Muspelheim, which is common to all fire titanspawn, is hunger. Fire dies out without fuel, and all titanspawn seek fuel to continue living. They need to expand, or they wither.
The main conflict in Muspelheim is Vrtra against Surtr and Prometheus. Although the former is outnumbered, his constant use of guerilla tactics has created a zone of perpetual war in the Scorched Desert. Despite Surtr sending his most efficient general Glarvonjar with Prometheus’ battle machines, he cannot seem to gain the upper hand, partly because he has to split his forces to fight against the Aesir. Kagutsuchi and Nemesis remain extremely neutral in this war as they are both empowered by it (Nemesis being conflict and Kagutsuchi selling rare volcanic ore to both sides).
Relations and links
Muspelheim is not an easily accessible realm as fire is, by its nature, quite hostile. The most common way to reach Muspelheim would be by Asgard toward Surtrsey (though the frontier is in constant battle) or (if one is tough enough) through a volcano toward Etimesoy. However, most outsider prefer the more peaceful Blaze Island, which can be reached from any major manifestation of fire that involves enjoyment and life.
Apart from the Iffrit of Xiuhtecuhtli, who are open-minded, overly dynamic and lively, most fire titanspawns are hostile to strangers. Their warlike nature and constant need for combat make them powerful enemies, but some can be reasoned with and Surtr has been known to ally himself with other destructive Avatars like Huracan or even Yam.
The Gods outposts are mainly established on Blaze Island, with some digging sites in the scorched desert that have been abandoned since the Titans return. Xiuhtecuhtli is fiery and energetic and constantly invites Gods and Demigods to join him for dinner or parties (though the food can sometimes be human flesh and/or atrociously spicy). Blaze Island remains a great ally of the Gods, and even though the temperature varies between 60 and 90°C, culture, trade and exchanges are still infused with life.
- Eris, Fire as Strife
- Kagutsuchi, Fire as Lava
- Nemesis, Fire as Divine Retribution
- Prometheus, Fire as Invention
- Surtr, Fire as Destruction
- Vrtra, Fire as Drought
- Xiuhtecuhtli, Fire as Life