So looks like next up is Lanne, mmyep.
It's technically pronounced "layne" (rhymes with "spain"), but mentally I've sorta been calling it "lan". I might change it. Or I might just leave it up to the readers' collective imagination. WHO KNOWS IT IS A MYSTERY OOOOOOOH~
Lanne is, very technically, the southernmost country in the "world" of WHIPLASH!. Why is this? Because no one actually knows where the southern border is. Most northern countries regard it very vaguely and hesitantly as the large canyon that cuts through the bottom half of the world (and serves as part of the southern border of Bauk), but the southern countries know better. Especially the northern Lannish. They may not like the southerners, but they know that many groups have traveled a lot farther south than the canyon.
Oh! Let's just jump right into the two groups then.
We have the northern Lannish, and the southern Lannish. This has already been introduced as a concept in chapter five (remember, I don't count the prologue as a chapter), but here's a quick recap: Two groups who are very opposite and hate each other to bits and pieces. They get along like a house on fire. Even Maria, who was born and raised in Sovine, and Emil, a young boy who probably never met a northerner before in his life, were about to come to blows over it. People outside of their culture can't really grasp it, but look at it this way. They have been warring for forever and a day. They currently aren't now, since they see the outside war as a bigger threat and are not stupid enough to weaken themselves, but it doesn't mean they have any sort of alliance. In fact, it basically means that the southerners went into hiding in the deserts and left the northerners to work it out with the political bullshit flying every which way.
Another note: southern Lannish are very skittish, simply put. They do not socialize well and are perfectly content with letting the northerners run the politics with other countries. They very rarely trade with certain Baukish companies, but that's about it. They are nomads who travel around the desert and basically just chill there for all their lives. They also only make up about 15% of the Lannish population - and that's a very rough and generous guess, since it's not like there's a census bureau down there. There's been talk lately (by the northerners, granted) that they've been dying off lately. Why? It's a mystery...
Anyway, geographically speaking, Lanne is separated pretty cleanly into two sections: the southern desert (about 40% of the region internationally known as the country) and the northern mountains. There's some plains in between, making a neat little belt in the middle, but no one lives there because while it would make for a temperate climate and nice farmland, neither the northerners nor the southerners would have anything to do with them and they'd probably die in a civil war battle, anyway. The mountains in Lanne are high and cold, but only the northernmost are snowy all year round.
Northerners have dark hair and dark, angled eyes, and usually have stockier and thicker figures. They traditionally hunt, but that's not to say they're uncivilized; they have cities, and roads, and while it's too mountainous for a train system, they know all of the safe passes and can get around pretty easily. They like hunting, and have an equal society; anyone who can hunt, will. Anyone who takes down large prey will be celebrated, male or female. They don't like the stereotype of wearing furs and sitting around fires, and won't take kindly to the implication, either. (but they are known for their very nice fur coats and have several companies who sell various kinds. they're considered a luxury in other countries, but everyone and their grandma has one in northern lanne.)
They wear dark colors and thick clothes. On the western border, Baukish fashion is not uncommon, too. Other than that, they don't really get into other cultures that much.
Lanne is technically neutral in the war, which is partly because they genuinely don't want to mess with that can of worms up north, and partly because they are nestled between Bauk and Kyym and enjoy their peace with both. This does not mean that they are neutral in action, however. Both Bauk and Kyym have recently taken more aggressive actions against them in order to sway them to their side of the war, and most refugees to the badlands are from Lanne. Bauk, without a guarantee of an alliance, won't let very many through their country up to Sovine, so going to the badlands is their best bet. Where they go from there is a mystery. A fair amount do end up in Sovine, though rumors state that the rebels have a large amount of Lannish in their ranks...
Southern Lanne is a whole 'nother beast, though. Emil is pretty typical of their kind. Thinner, darker skin, pale blond or brown hair, and light blue eyes. Whereas northern Lanne is staunchly atheistic as a culture, southern Lanne is polytheistic. (We'll learn more about that with Emil later on.) They wear long sleeves and long cloaks and tunics, but they're light and airy (and surprisingly comfortable). Camels are practically worshiped, since it's the easiest mode of transportation in the desert, not to mention the food aspect. Some groups have also taken to raising other domestic animals for food, though not in any large number.
Southern Lannish don't fight with technology or sheer number like northerners tend to do; instead, they are all built wiry and tough. They are used to scorching sun, freezing nights, sandstorms, poisonous insects, animals, and arachnids, and have on more than one occasion slaughtered "peaceful" groups of Baukish or Kyymese negotiators coming to, well, negotiate with them. No one but they know whether or not they actually have some sort of unified system of government between them or are simply a bunch of groups traveling around. They've also, due to their nation's proximity to both Bauk and Kymm, created their own fighting style that is a haphazard mix of the two, but somehow, it works for them. (Sadly, we don't get to see that, because Emil never learned it.)
Lanne as a whole speaks one language, though dialects naturally vary between northern and southern. And as a whole, the culture is based upon the Spanish, French, and Basque cultures. It's sort of touch and go at this point, though, haha. It is only one of two of the countries in the "world" that are based on existing countries/cultures.
And that's about it! From here on out, these things will probably be shorter, since I don't have as much planned for the other countries (nor do I need that much...). Still! What country should come next? (paronene, bauk, kymm, avle, escaia)