Sexuality, identity, and relationships

From Breaking Worlds

The diversity of humanity has been recognised and celebrated since time immemorial, and Arginese society equally includes people of a huge range of sexualities and identities. It would be considered thoroughly rude and backward to draw undue attention to a person’s sexuality or identity or to suggest that it might make them somehow less capable or desirable.

Marriage and relationships

Marriage within Arginet is an institution that exists as a bond between two or more people. For commoners at least, there is no social expectation for a marriage in order to pursue an intimate relationship, so it is most often entered into as a sign of a long-lasting commitment. Ceremonies vary across the country and between traditions, but an exchange of rings or other tokens is most common, and a priest or the liege lord of one of the parties is generally called on to officiate.

Although many people marry with a view to having children, it is well-established that producing offspring is distinct from marriage - reliable herbal contraception is widely available and there is no stigma attached to adoption or to having children outside of wedlock.

Matters are a little different for the nobility. Due to the high political stakes and the desire to produce blood heirs, noble marriages are come with an expectation of permanence and absolute fidelity. If a noble has no biological children they are socially required to designate an heir from within their own family, usually a niece or nephew, to ensure the bloodline is continued; this is the usual practice where no children are expected, including most same-sex marriages.

Noble houses can become extinct if the title holder dies without issue and without having named a blood relation as heir, in which case the title reverts to the Crown. They may also merge when heirs marry, thus accumulating titles (which may be of different ranks).

“While the scale and complexity of weddings varies across Arginet, the one relative constant is the five questions. Even among the Seekers where they do not revere the five Elements they still tend to use five, though not ones connected with the values of the elements.
The notable exception to this is the ‘Battlefield’ wedding, which requires only a superior (often a Lord) and usually held in the midst of combat. This wedding requires only one question and is used to avoid children being considered out of wedlock should one or both parties die before a more formal ceremony can be arranged.”

- Sister Lily of the Abbey of Holy Reflection

Adulthood and identity

Coming of age in Arginet, generally at the age of sixteen, is considered an occasion for celebration - often with a family meal, a party, or a special church service. For the nobility it is also considered their time of entry to society. A person coming of age also takes on the gender identity (and pronouns) they wish to be known by as an adult.

A change in gender identity - whether at coming of age or later in life - is often marked with a change of name. Commoners most often choose their own, though they may seek advice from friends or relatives. In contrast nobles are expected to ask their family for a new name; their parents, grandparents, and sometimes even ancestors will choose one that is is keeping both with the new identity and with their own family traditions.

Please note that not only is discrimination based on sexuality or identity considered crude and backward within the world of Arginet - it is unacceptable out of character. You can find out more in our rules on discrimination.