Posted in Feature
on August 20, 2012
My Vision. My Evolution. My Guild.
The Simic Combine is Ravnica’s steward of nature and the wild; its mission is to preserve and advance the natural world even as Ravnica’s cities continue to grow. The guild seeks to protect the elements of the plane that are incompatible or mutually exclusive with its overpopulated, urban conditions. This is not easy, of course, because the forces of civilization are so prevalent on Ravnica that they threaten to subsume anything that runs counter to them. But the Simic practice a strange combination of detachment and holism that provide a kind of separation from the larger urban systems—a separation on which their conservation mission depends.
Illus. Ryan Pancoast
Prime Speaker Zegana. The regal and reticent merfolk called Zegana is the current guildmaster of the Simic Combine. She is the Speaker for Zonot One, the first of the mysterious sinkholes to emerge on Ravnica, and she delivered the Fathom Edict that declared a new beginning for the Combine. Zegana is quick to point out, however, that she speaks at the discretion of the Speakers’ Chamber, a secretive body of all nine of the zonots’ speakers. She claims that the Chamber can revoke that status, at which time another Speaker would replace her as the guildmaster. Many outside the Simic believe this is false modesty, however, and that Zegana controls the Chamber—if it actually meets at all.
Illus. Willian Murai
Zameck. The Simic guildhall is not a particularly ceremonial or celebratory place. In Zonot Seven, within the Tenth District, a huge chamber just below the surface has been cleared of debris and serves as the gathering place for all the Speakers, as well as a place where non-Simic visitors can meet with Zegana or other Combine emissaries. The roof of Zameck contains many openings to the sky, covered over with an Æther-infused organic material known as plax to create opalescent skylights, which makes the chamber seem almost as though it’s underwater. Thick cords of kelp buttress the walls of the huge chamber, and algae cakes the corners and edges of walls and floors. The main chamber floor is clear with the exception of a large table in the shape of a loose spiral, with a slightly elevated podium at its center.
Illus. Svetlin Velinov
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