Taglios (formally known as Trogo-Taglios) is a sprawling city in the southern continent which was a key location in both Books of the South and all four Books of Glittering Stone. The city was identified as Troko Tallio on the maps at the Temple of Travellers' Repose.
Located almost 7,000 miles south of the Sea of Torments, it was the largest city the well-traveled Annalist Croaker had ever seen. The city lay on the southeast bank of the great river, actually inland a little, straddling a tributary that snakes between a half-dozen low hills. The great river's First Cataract is 480 miles north of Taglios.
During Croaker's lifetime, Taglios was officially ruled by its Prince, the Prahbrindrah Drah with the help of his sister, the Princess Radisha Drah. However, the royal siblings were forced to share an enormous amount of power with the head priests of the three major cults of the city: the Gunni, the Shadar, and the Vehdna.
Before Croaker's AnnalsEdit
For generations, the people of Taglios were peaceful and were not very skilled in warfare, as their warrior caste had been pacified and extinguished after the Khatovar Wars 400 years before the modern Annals. The unwalled city's only protection was the surging Main river to the south. Despite the constant political maneuverings of the upper classes and the general restiveness of the major religious groups, Taglios was characterized by "quiet changelessness" for generations. After apparently centuries of such peace, everything changed for the worse with the arrival of the Shadowmasters' scourge from the south.
With the coming of the mysterious Shadowmasters and their armies, the Prince and the priests of Taglios assembled a rabble led by three foreign veterans from the north – Willow Swan, Cordy Mather, and Blade. This was "Willow's war", the opening conflicts of the Shadowmaster wars. The trio enjoyed a lot of early success holding off the Shadowmasters due to Willow's orchestration. He permitted the Shadowlanders to cross the Main, drawing them with no resistance, where they spun-off into many small, easily-crushed raiding parties. Following the successes of General Swan, the priesthoods assembled their own rabbles.
The Prince hires the Black CompanyEdit
About a year later, more armies of Shadowlanders arrived from the south to once again threaten Taglios directly. The Prahbrindrah Drah, over the protests of Taglios' powerful priests, hired the Black Company to defeat them. The Company's Captain, Croaker, would come to be hailed as the Liberator among Taglians. He grew the new Taglian military using the legions found during the ancient times of the Jewel Cities as his model. The army initially consisted of 30,000 infantry in total, divided into 3 legions, each lead by a Nar general: Mogaba as overall commander as well as general of the first legion; Ochiba as general of the second; and Sindawe as general of a third, reserve legion. However the priests, the most influential being the Shadar chief cleric named Jahamaraj Jah, still commanded sizable Taglian armies themselves. Jah's forces would be reduced following the Battle of Ghoja Ford, when Croaker drafted many from the Shadar priest's army into his legions. The Taglians briefly liberated Stormgard (Dejagore) at the start of the Battle of Dejagore, but were forced into the city after the pitched battle was lost.
Dreams of SteelEdit
The Prahbrindrah Drah's Taglian armies were trapped during the Siege of Dejagore by Shadowspinner's siege line. With Croaker missing and presumed dead after the Battle of Dejagore, there were two claimants to the Captaincy of the Black Company: Mogaba, who was trapped with the Taglians inside Dejagore; and Lady, who was outside the city. The Taglians, with the Prince's explicit permission, supported Mogaba's claim to the Captaincy. Under Mogaba's direction, Pal Subhir's Taglians committed mass murder against the Nyueng Bao population within Dejagore, wiping out two thirds of the tiny minority race's pilgrimage. The remainder of the Nyueng Bao fled Dejagore with Old Crew (non-Nar) Black Company faction.
Back in Taglios, the priests made an attempt on Lady's life. In response, she organized a purge, and over 1,000 priests were executed in a bloodbath known as the Massacre at Khadi Junction.
The situation for the Taglians trapped in Dejagore remained relatively unchanged even after the Lady assassinated Shadowspinner. She simply took control of the Shadowlanders and had them maintain their siege line to support her claim to the Captaincy over Mogaba. However, now the Taglians were encouraged to surrender and their safety was guaranteed, unlike before. The situation was finally relieved when Croaker the Liberator returned, entered Dejagore, and peacefully retook command from Mogaba.
She Is the DarknessEdit
Eventually Croaker became a military dictator and assumed full control over the city in order to fulfill the Company's contract with the Prince. Taglios remained committed to liberating the Shadowlands and defeating the last remaining Shadowmaster, Longshadow. Croaker and the Company led the Taglian armies in battle southward, including two dramatic victories at the Battle of Charandaprash and finally the Siege of Overlook. The Liberator had finally won the Shadowmaster wars as he and the Black Company was contracted to do.
However, shortly after those events, the leadership of the Black Company and the Prince of Taglios disappeared. They were believed by all Taglios, and the rest of the world, to be dead. They had in fact been imprisoned (forced to become the "Captured") by Soulcatcher.
The Captivity and the Kiaulune wars Edit
The 15-year gap between She Is the Darkness and Water Sleeps, as well as the events of Water Sleeps, were referred to in Company lore as the Captivity. During 5 consecutive years before Water Sleeps, the Kiaulune wars were fought.
Soulcatcher creates the Protectorate Edit
With the Prince presumed dead, the Princess of Taglios – the Radisha Drah – betrayed what remained of the Company when she agreed to give Soulcatcher military control over Taglios. The Radisha's purpose was, like so many others who made a contract with the Black Company throughout its history, to renege on the agreement she and the Prince made with the Company to win the Shadowmaster wars.
The Kiaulune warsEdit
Soulcatcher used this new arrangement with the Radisha to become the dictator ("Protector") of Taglios's traditional territories. She then promoted the Company's worst traitor, Mogaba, to the new rank of Great General. Mogaba's task was to conquer the former Shadowlands to be ruled by Taglios and to defeat the remains of the Black Company. Fighting back, the Black Company now became allies with native Shadowlanders to resist the Taglian forces... forces which the Company itself had raised and trained. This led to the 5-year-long Kiaulune wars. Thousands of Taglians were killed, and the Shadowlands were further devastated. The Protector won the Kiaulune wars and consolidated her control over Taglios and the newly-conquered Shadowlands.
By the start of Water Sleeps, Taglios was at the heart of a sprawling empire, the Protectorate. But its population was subject to the insane whims of its "Protector", the foreign sorceress Soulcatcher. She built a wall for the metropolis, but with no threat anywhere in sight, the size of the Protectorate's armed forces shrunk drastically and declined in quality, especially in the newly-acquired Shadowlands territories. She ignored most of the important military advice of her Great General, Mogaba, whose desire to remain prepared for unforeseen eventualities was dismissed. Most of the day-to-day maintenance of the city and its imperial territories were administered to by the Privy Council and its subordinates. A new police force, the Greys, was raised up from among the minority Shadar population. Although they were unpopular for being inextricably linked to Soulcatcher, they were praised for their anti-corruption work.
Meanwhile, the Black Company itself, after losing the Kiaulune wars and being evicted from Overlook, became an underground movement within the city of Taglios proper. It continued to be led by its Annalist, Sleepy, and the Company's primary ally, Ky Sahra. They were now headquartered in the warehouse of their benefactor, Banh Do Trang, on a bank of the great river. Local Taglians, the Greys, and especially Soulcatcher were all unaware of their presence on account of a complex web of disorientation and distraction spells woven around the place by One-Eye, Goblin, and Tobo.
Soon Taglios was beleaguered by gruesome self-immolations committed by the Bhodi disciples and other forms of protest against Soulcatcher's regime. Many protests and public spectacles were secretly orchestrated by the Black Company. Matters escalated further when Sleepy conducted high-profile abductions. The Company captured Princess Radisha Drah, as well as top-level Taglian officials of the Privy Council: Willow Swan, Purohita Arjana Drupada, and Inspector-General of the Records Chandra Gokhale. As Soulcatcher began to personally investigate, she fell for a trap set by Goblin and permanently injured one of her feet by stomping on hidden fireball projector ammunition.
Taglios was eventually left in Soulcatcher's unstable hands after the Company departed the city during Water Sleeps. They then escaped the Protectorate entirely by exiting the homeworld itself, when they finally crossed the shadowgate, in their quest to end the Captivity. They would return four years later in Soldiers Live.