Jannadael Ethnicity in Vazdimet | World Anvil


Known as Mordena to the rest of the universe, the Jannadaelox of Janikk have proudly forged their own path, forming a culture all their own from the mixed traditions of their past and the lessons they learned from them.


Culture and cultural heritage

Founded on 2291.08.34 EVT, the Mordena mercenaries set forth to find their own place within the Void. Beginning with their traumatic roots as former Sparnelli, they slowly began the process of analyzing everything they had learned within the Sparnell Confederation, tossing aside that which no longer suited them and replacing old traditions with newer ones.  

Merge of Cultures

Over time these original founders were joined by others fleeing their own pasts, now including True Descendants and even Freeholders seeking a new, better life. Shane Lawrence brought back components of the Kin's belief systems, learned over a long spaceflight in close quarters with the Ferrik Clan, reinforcing the communal spirit forged in shared challenges and hopes.  

Janikk's Influence

Janikk, too, added her own contributions. Her agreement with Shane Lawrence allowing the Mordena to settle on her planet required they follow the ancient Jannadael traditions, including the Ecknaab. The local wildlife merely served to reinforce these beliefs, due to their brutal and efficient adaptations when the planet was uninabited.   The Jannadaelox have accepted their varied pasts, embracing the portions which made them feel valued even as they slowly discard that which was used to oppress them. They're open about others former cultures, as well, using this diversity to forge a new, stronger identity by laying claim to the traditions and belief systems that speak best to them from the many options available across the universe.

Shared customary codes and values

All life on Janikk is linked through the Tenecknaab, a planetary-wide network of awareness and occasionally emotion which also allows all Jannadaelox and Mordena to recognize each other without words. This constant awareness mentally tying everyone together has had a notable impact on their cultural beliefs and values.  

Family and Community

Through the common hardships faced by most before finding their way to Janikk, the Jannadaelox have learned an appreciation for their found family and the community they are building together. They have formed a thriving society founded in these priciples, where parenthood is considered an important and respectable profession even as the rest of the community steps in to help as needed.   Even those actively serving with the Mordena, whether supporting the organization's mercenary contracts for the Freehold Coalition and other contracts or focusing on defense of their homeworld, are known to take time from their schedules to support the physical and emotional needs of Janikk's civilian population, regardless of age. They carry these ideals into their work off-planet, as well. Those with the fortune of working personally with the Mordena often report a heartfelt camaraderie with the mercenary organization, even while agreeing their fearsome reputation is well deserved.  


Shortly after the Mordena's founding, Shane Lawrence made an agreement with Janikk that he and his people would follow the ancient teachings of Ecknaab - The ay of the Balance - in exchange for a home and sanctuary on the planet. In the decades since the Jannadaelox have continued to uphold this promise, caring for their beloved planet and assisting her in maintaining and respecting the delicate balance between life and death.   This reverence for Balance has left its mark on Jannadael beliefs, with many of their more personal traditions, from the Tsekeht Leadership Trials to their Mordena Funerary Rites, focused in part around this concept.  

Economy and Trade

Lira carefully took the tablet the fae offered her, quietly scrolling through the catalogue, slightly stunned by the sheer number of choices in front of her. There were no prices on anything, which she had learnt over the years was not a great sign for someone like her. She mentally tried to calculate the bare minimum clothing that she would need. The pyjamas could last, probably.   She looked up at Scout again for help. "This is - how much am I allowed?"   "As much as you like." Felix's tail twisted in satisfaction. "Anything you want. Nobody's paying for it, if that's what you're worried about."
Hands of Destinee, Book 1: A Date with Destinee
The Jannadaelox have no need of money, each citizen instead focused on how they wish to contribute to their community. Often those with similar interests will band together to divvy up the requirements in beginning a new business or pursuing a particular career path, coordinating to guarantee each required role and responsibility is covered, including procurement of any necessary raw materials.   When problems or needs arise, members of that community will raise awareness of the issue, with self-elected community leaders working together toward an effective and beneficial solution. If resolutions prove elusive, or the matter is an emergency, notification is sent to Mordena Logistics and Maintenance requesting assistance and coordination.   Logistics will also handle all situations requiring outside resources, particularly in fields where the Jannadael have not yet achieved self-sufficiency. Often Mordena Public Relations will be brought in to negotiate trade agreements with a suitable Freehold planet, as the organization directly responsible for Mordena Budgets and Finance and managing the planet's coffers. Logistics also maintains a regular agreement with the Ferrik Clan of Vardan traders.  


Physical and mental health are both important to the Jannadaelox, with therapists and healers of every specialty freely available to all. Citizens of Janikk are also encouraged to utilize the many services offered by Afterlife Planners, including full access to the Mordena's Resurrection Center should they choose to return with a reconstruction clone.  


Lira perched back on the bench next to Luke. "Weird thing about the Mordena, the highest rank has to clean up. Which usually means Jake."   "I noticed at lunch. Very weird."   Jake shrugged. "It's a reminder of humility. Of why we do what we do. And who we're doing it for."
Hands of Destinee, Book 3: The Path of Destinee
  Jannadael leadership focuses on service, and the obligations of those with power to help those who entrusted them with that power. This concept draws heavily on Lawson Family ideals, with flourishes added from Shane's time spent among the Kin, coupled with the Jannadael tradition of exuberant and helpful inclinations.   The sentiment is also built on the one-shaky foundations of the Mordena's original founding, and the confidence the Grand Navarch Shane Lawrence displayed in both himself and those looking to him for answers. This set expectations of a powerful, decisive, and protective leadership, which thus far the Navarchs have continued to exceed, further cementing this aspect of Jannadael hierarchy.  

Education and Employment

All children receive a basic, general education, although the specifics of this education vary depending upon the year and the child's parents. As a society, the Jannadaelox are young, and still learning the best ways to educate and prepare their young for life, with a heavy focus on avoiding the issues that plagued their own childhood and educational journey.  

Early Education

Reading, writing, basic mathematics, and Shielding Magic currently form the core foundation for younger children, accompanied by a wide variety of opportunities to play by one's self and with others, learning both self-sufficiency and empathy.  


Early language lessons focus on Galactic Common first, with hints of the many other languages available across the universe. Once a child displays a grasp on Common they are also granted Morjakk through Language Dictionary, with options later to add more languages later.  

Middle School

Once a student has conquered the basics, they graduate to the more fluid portions of their education. Here students learn an assortment of skills, from a wider foundation of Magic and Technoarcana to an ethics-focused overview of universal history.   Liturature from different cultures, from the Jannadael to the other factions, is often analyzed with the goals to glean information about cultural values, historical background, worldview, and morality of its author and their society. The Mordena themselves are not above reproach, with even their Grand Navarch, Shane Lawrence himself, a popular subject for ethical debates.   Current events remain an important part of Jannadael curriculum, with those old enough often following combat reports from the fleet and debating the actions taken - and potential alternates that may have worked better - with their friends and teachers. Those wishing to join the Mordena in some capacity are heavily encouraged to join these conversations, with the caution that decisions in high stress situations are more difficult than classroom debates with lower stakes and more information. As a result, they are told, it is important to build their knowledge and experiences now to improve their chances of sound decisions later.  

Higher Education

Every individual chooses their roles for themselves, based upon what they believe will bring them personal fulfillment. The Mordena believe that each and every role, from botanist to battle mage, provides their own contributions to society, and as such should be treated equally.  

Course Catalog

Education is free and freely available, via the Janikk Educational System Course Catalog. Classes vary depending upon the subject and the teachers' personal schedules, with easy transportation to all but the wilderness courses provided via the planetary Portal Transit System. Students select their desired classes to craft a career for themselves based upon what topics interest them. Critical, skilled, or dangerous careers also require an apprenticeship with a currently certified practitioner, often accompanied by additional educational requirements depending upon what deficiencies are discovered by each apprentice's mentor.  

Mercenary Work

While the majority of the universe consider all affiliated with Janikk as Mordena, the Jannadael see more nuance in their labels. Those actively engaged within the mercenary arms and organizations of Janikk - meaning the Grand Armada, Mordena Special Forces, and Mordena Security Council - are specifically referred to as Mordena. Most members of Mordena Public Relations are also included under the term, due to their efforts as the public face of the combat-focused organization.   Civilians, on the other hand, generally do not consider themselves Mordena, and will rarely refer to themselves as such, even when traveling off planet. Mordena have ranks and titles and responsibilities to the outside universe, and thus require a special title to differentiate their relationship with Vazdimet at large. Everyone else is merely Jannadaelox - the people.   These distinctions blur easily depending upon the conversation and its audience, however, and many have found themselves using both terms interchangeably for clarity. Jannadaelox are also reluctant to reveal themselves as such to outsiders, due to the continued secrecy surrounding Morjakk, but have been known to introduce themselves as Mordena should the situation require it.  


Jannadaelox enjoy a wide variety of entertainment, available freely to all due to their lack of monetary currency. Those wishing to pursue a career in the entertainment industry are just as encouraged as those wishing to support the many services and technologies required to keep civilization functional. Entertainment, after all, is critical for morale.   Due to an assortment of backgrounds prior to settling on Janikk, Jannadael entertainment often borrows elements from many of the other Factions across Vazdimet.  

The Arts

Regardless of the medium, creativity and personal expression are always encouraged, both to explore one's sense of identity and to share one's view with the universe. Visual, literary, and performing arts are all openly encouraged, with many opportunities to share their works not only with fellow Jannadaelox but also the universe. Regularly rotating exhibits at Janikk Station showcase an ever growing variety of artists and their chose medium, after a brief censor review board to ensure the offered works do not provide information which could jeopardize the Mordena's roles or reputation, particularly as required for the defense of the Freehold Coalition.  

Casual and Competitive Sports

Servicing as an opportunity for healthy exercise, boisterous competition, and teambuilding, Janikk has embraced a variety of sports for both participants and spectators alike. Many of these sports revolve around skills useful among the Mordena, most notably the sparring competitions hosted regularly at Ekkil Turikk and the Blade Dancing leagues. More traditional civilian activities include a variety of competitive team sports and athletic competitions.   For those seeking opportunities to challenge brains rather than brawn, a variety of trivia, strategy, and critical thinking activities are also available, although the annual Lies and Allies Championship remains by far the most popular.  

Outdoor Recreation

Outside their settlements, the wilds of Janikk are fierce, dangerous, and untamable - which many have found an exhilarating reason to explore. Some choose to set out on their own or with a small group of their trusted friends on survival excursions into the barely known corners of the planet, outside the safety of their Shielded settlements and the portal notes allowing transit between them. Others retain the services of planetary guides and retired battle mages to ensure their safety, allowing for more leisurely activities.   Others prefer to hunt the more ferocious creatures of Janikk, for both meat and sport. The planets' native species are well adapted to self defense and aggression. Those who choose to hunt on Janikk often discover they are the subject of a hunt themselves. Pack-hunting flights of gromdornox have been known to lure whole Blade wings into ambushes, tearing through the aircrafts' crunchy exteriors to reach the tasty meals within.  


Easily enthralled by culinary delights, an endless variety of restaurants across Janikk provide an assortment of meal options. Fare ranges from simple yet comfortable, such as the many breakfast offerings of the Fresh Start Cafe or the appetizers and juices from Ekkil Turikk (a Morjakk pun translating as both "Fruit Juice" and "Sacrifice of Blood"), to the complex fine dining from such establishments as Yelb Yekkarit ("The Satisfied Appetite") and Yukkan Nikkeer ("Welcoming Sanctuary").  

Janikk Station

Mordena Public Relations's famed Janikk Station is open to any Jannadaelox at no charge, although overnight stays do require a reservation. Available rooms range from cozy to luxurious to communal, for short term visits or long term residency, as well as visits from relatives and friends. Citizens are also welcome to spend the day wandering the station and mingling with guests from across the universe, admiring their planet from orbit.   Due to its nature as a military orbital outpost, Mordena Public Relations and the Grand Armada both reserve the right to cancel reservations at any time, should a pressing matter present itself.  


Jannadaelox are bilingual, speaking fluently in both Galactic Common and Morjakk, the private language of the Mordena. Common remains their primary language for everyday conversation, due to its ease of use and its prevalence across Vazdimet, while Morjakk is more often reserved for swearing, jokes with friends, or private conversations around outsiders. Personal nicknames and professional titles are also more commonly derived from Morjakk words and phrasing.   Due to the varied origins of those who now call Janikk home, not to mention the open availability of the Language Dictionary spell and other educational options, a large percentage of Jannadaelox actually speak more than two languages. While Sparnick, Legionese, and Vanaric are especially common, a surprising number of Jannadaelox have also chosen to study less common languages, such as the Loxiran most commonly used in Legionnaire poetry, or even ancient long-extinct languages. An interest in literature or ancient history, employment with Mordena Public Relations or the Mordena Security Council, work in advanced technical fields, and even simply a love of language and syntax are all common reasons to add another language to one's repertoire.   On Janikk, the resources to learn a new language are readily available and commonly utilized.

Common Etiquette rules

Personal Space

Lira stepped through the portal Felix created, frowning back at him. "I'm not just going to let myself in. That's rude."   "But I said you could." Felix closed the portal behind them, tilting his head to watch her quizzically. "What if you need to get in while I'm not here and someone else isn't around to help? I'm not going to just leave you out in the hallway, that would be rude."   Lira moved to retrieve the tablet, holding it a little gingerly. "You know, normal people would take that as a sign to come back later, not just let themselves in. But thank you."   "I guess that would work, too... If it wasn't too important?" Felix sounded unconvinced.   Lira tilted her head slightly. "You Mordena are weird." The words were affectionate, rather than exasperated.
Hands of Destinee, Book 1: A Date with Destinee
  The Jannadaelox remain a friendly and welcome people as a whole, perhaps due to the shared traumas of their past. Newcomers are welcomed with open arms and helping hands, eager to help them feel at home.   Friendships, on the other hand, become an intimate affair, with open hearts and open doors. Close friends are often referred to by the nickname "Zurikkael," meaning family. Those who have earned the title Zurikkael have earned the right to invite themselves into the speaker's personal space, including their home, regardless of whether or not the speaker is present at the time.  

Personal Boundaries

Despite their overtly friendly nature, Jannadaelox have a strong belief in respecting the personal boundaries and comforts of others. Jannadael society's emphasis on mutual respect means the emotional comfort of others is an important component to all interpersonal reactions between Jannadaelox.   Traumas are complicated things, and everyone has their own trigger points and comfort levels. Given the variety of unhealthy situations most have experienced prior to Joining the Mordena, Jannadaelox are more understanding than most regarding boundaries, especially when those boundaries seem unusual or unnecessary.  

Becoming Jannadael

Known among the Jannadaelox as the Yukkanit Tenael, quite literally "The Linking/Belonging," the process to claim residence on Janikk begins with joining the Tenecknaab, which links all life on the planet. The Munokkael is then taught Morjakk through use of the Language Dictionary spell.   While the Jannadaelox are an open and welcoming people, not just anyone is welcome among them. Those wishing to become Jannadael must first display a willingness to live by the Ecknaab, the ancient traditions of Balance practiced by Janikk's original people.

Common Dress code

The bell rang as another customer entered the shop, a shy black canid with his arms full of clothing. He dropped them on the counter in the back. "The boys have outgrown these, so I'm bringing them back for recycling."   He retrieved a single garment from the pile, a rather fantastical dress which shifted between shades of blue and purple as if it had a mind of its own, and pointed to a small tear between the top and skirt. "And I tore my wife's favorite dress, if you could patch it up for me."
Hands of Destinee, Book 1: A Date with Destinee
  While the Jannadaelox have no official dress code, their communal spirit and ready access to magic have led to a large array of clothing options. Chromamancy and Fibramancy feature prominently in Jannadael designs, often accented with additional magic, resulting in durable garments capable of shifting colors at will or accessories which seem to come alive.   In keeping with their respect for the planet they call home, worn and no longer desired clothing is recycled rather than discarded, either altered to fit the next recipient or pulled apart for reconstruction into something else. Very little is wasted.   Self expression is also a valued quality on Janikk, resulting in an assortment of body modifications ranging from hair and fur dies, to tattoos and piercings, to gene therapy. Makeup and body care, including nail and claw polish, remain popular among all genders.

Art & Architecture

Jannadael architecture revolves around the nikklub tree. Specially-trained Jorrael use Agrokinesis to coax the groves into desired shapes to form housing direct from the trees themselves.   The process requires patience, as forcing the trees to grow too quickly will threaten their health and weaken the durability of the resultant structures. Any needed infrastructure, such as water pipes, tyrellium wiring, and Runework, are woven in slowly as the city is grown.   Buildings on Janikk typically consists of windowless single- and multiple-room apartments, with generous walkways throughout, although those requesting custom housing or storefronts often work with their assigned Jorrael to identify layouts and features unique to their needs and aesthetics.

Foods & Cuisine

Jannadaelox have a surprising appreciation for food, to the point of setting entire systems in place to guarantee periodic deliveries of favorite foods from home to the Grand Armada. Due to their different cultural backgrounds before joining the Mordena, Jannadael cuisine has become a flavorful amalgamation of dishes from across the universe, adapted for use with the ingredients naturally available on Janikk.

Coming of Age Rites

Jannadaelox who wish to take up leadership positions on Janikk or with the Mordena are required to undergo the Tsekeht Leadership Trials, the same Trial Shane Lawrence faced to earn Janikk's favor prior to settling on the planet. The Leadership Trials are also recommended for those seeking closure on past regrets, although it is recommended to meet with a therapist first due to the intense nature of the Tsekeht itself.

Funerary and Memorial customs

Death and life are nothing more than phases of existence.
As part of the Balance, and aided by the ready availability of reconstruction clones for all citizens, the Jannadaelox have adopted a relaxed acceptance around the concept of death. To die is merely to shift from one state to another, with the option to change states back to how things were before, if one so chooses.   For this reason, the Jannadael Funerary Rites are often considered callous and uncaring of the deceased, laying out their bodies for the creatures of Janikk to devour. But to the Jannadaelox, this is a sign of respect to the planet they now call home, a gift from the dead to the living.

Common Taboos

As a culture built by the misfits and downtrodden of other societies, plus those seeking the opportunity to fight against the injustices they've seen and even faced themselves, the Jannadaelox place a remarkable importance on accepting and supporting those around them. Behaviors which intentionally harm others for one's own benefit are not tolerated, particularly when the intent behind those actions is specifically to hurt or exert unwelcome power over another.   While the Jannadaelox police their own, certain more violent or manipulative behaviors are a sure way to gain Shane Lawrence's personal attention. He has been known to step in directly, depending upon the nature and severity of the crime, ensuring the perpetrator ceases their harmful behavior - through any means necessary.  
You cross the line, you run out of time.
— Jannadael saying
Official Languages
Galactic Common

Mordena Dawn Book 1: In Spite of the Inevitable

Mordena Dawn, Book 1

The past isn't the only thing that won't stay dead.


Cover image: Planet Moon Solar by LoganArt


Author's Notes

Many thanks to Dr Emily Vair-Turnbull and TJ Trewin for your questions, to help me list the interesting bits to write about.

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Jul 26, 2023 23:44 by Dr Emily Vair-Turnbull

I love them so much. This was a truly fascinating article.

Jul 27, 2023 00:53 by Morgan Biscup

I'm so glad you enjoyed it!

Lead Author of Vazdimet.
Necromancy is a Wholesome Science.
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