The Rise of the Morning Sun
The Djala of the Telket have been slaves and servants ever since they came to the region, whether they traveled in the baggage trains or palanquins of their Kahakunani masters. Their lives under the rule of the Pasha are by no means luxurious, but still much improved. About one in ten Djala are legally slaves, and a little over half live as retainers to wealthy Kahakunani and Delzahn, which amounts to the same thing. Of the remainder, about half are unemployed.
Most Djala attached to Kahakunani masters serve as domestics and courtesans. Both are considered demeaning work to the culture at large, and this is essentially the lowest rung in Prismat society. The Delzahn employ some Djala in this fashion also, but more so as couriers, heralds, and pages. Even though the pay is little better, if there is any at all, there is much more prestige attached to such posts. Djala in the official service of Delzahn nobles enjoy privileges of immunity and free passage, if not their freedom, and often the same family will serve a Delzahn line, generation after generation.
“Free market” Djala often make their living as entertainers. Others become craftsmen, guides for visiting foreigners, and the most successful open cafes and gambling parlors. Just as many fall between the cracks of Prismati society. Their traditional position at the bottom of the social ladder, coupled with their natural talent for stealth, evasion, and acrobatics leads many to form gangs. Djala gangs have been a fixture of the city’s small but active underworld for decades. For the most part, they restrain themselves to petty theft, vandalism, and protection rackets, but every few years a Kahakunan is found in an alley, stabbed dozens of times… at waist level. Only a handful of Djala have ever attended the Jami’ah, due to a lack of financial resources and the prejudices of the ruling classes.
One thing almost all Djala have in common is a love of gambling. The most popular game is a variety of dice called Rachi’s Wager, but they have picked up games from across Creation. This is, in part, why the Kahakunani consider them “degenerates”, but that doesn’t stop them from discreetly patronizing Djala gambling houses.