|SPOILER WARNING: This article has important plot information. Caution is advised!|
The Torre Cesme, or Tower of Dawn, is an ancient building in Antica that houses and trains gifted healers.
Twelve hundred years before the Khaganate conquered the Southern Continent, an ancient queen had the Torre Cesme constructed as a gift to a healer who saved her child's life. The Torre, constructed near the palace for quick summons, was given to the healer as a place to study and live and to invite others to train as well.
Over the next twelve centuries, various rulers conquered and held northern Antica; the queen who constructed the Torre was killed and her palace destroyed. The Torre was left untouched throughout the various conflicts, as a building full of women who could save a person from death was deemed valuable and left alone. When the khaganate took over and began their three hundred year rule, they constructed their palace upon the ruins of the ancient queen's home and made sure to respect the Torre Cesme and honor the healers within.
The first healers of the Torre began a tradition of every acolyte who entered the building taking bronze, silver, or glass bell etched with their name and entry date and hanging it in Silba's Womb to serve as guidance for future healers. Additionally, they decided that tuition at the Torre would be free. They adopted Silba, the healer-goddess, as their patron.
The Torre is a tall, broad white building consisting of eleven floors and an underground system of caverns called Silba's Womb. It resembles a keep. The building is cylindrical in shape, with a winding staircase that leads to the different floors. Surrounding it is a gated compound, which contains a courtyard and sand-colored gravel walkways lined with lavender bushes and herb beds. Buildings flank the Torre's sides, connected on lower levels. All the buildings are enclosed by towering white walls, and the iron gates are fashioned to look like an owl spreading its wings. The Torre's massive tower can be seen from nearly every street and angle of Antica.
Silba's Womb consists of various tunnels constructed for escape in the event of an attack. Natural hot springs flowing through the caverns, and have been diverted to flow into a dozen tubs built into the cave floor. Pale stone pillars act as structural support, and hung between them on chains are countless bells that represent the healers that have passed through the Torre. Jagged stalactites drip water onto the bells, creating a soft ringing sound throughout the chambers.
Candles tucked into natural alcoves or clumped at either end of each sunken tub provide light, and set the owls carved into every wall and slick pillar in flickering relief.
At the base of the Torre is the Library, which contains many ancient texts meant to assist healers in their studies.
- The library
- Silba's Womb
- The death chamber
- The Torre library is inhabited by Baast Cats, thirty-six female cats that guard the library.
- Despite its neutral nature, the Torre contains a warning bell meant to aid in evacuation of the healers. It was established a thousand years ago.
- Torre guards are dressed in cornflower blue and yellow.
- The Torre healers are employed by the khaganate to render their siblings and family members infertile.
- Torre Cesme means Tower of Dawn in Halha, the language of the southern continent.