Amongst noble families the practice of fosterage is quite common, a child (in particular second sons and the like but sometimes the heir) are sent to live amongst another noble family to build ties between the families in question, give the child access to skills, contacts and so on and thereby enrich the family of the child in question.
Often fosterage is used to gain influence - a powerful family shows favor by sending a child to foster with a lesser family while the the lesser family proves that it is worthy of note by being chosen to foster the youth.
In Khinasi lands the nobles of Binsada practice a form of fostering more akin to hostage taking - the various nobles are called upon by the ruling family to send their heir to live with the ruling family to ensure that in the case of rebellion vengeance can be immediately to hand...
From a game perspective PCs of different realms can justify ties by agreeing that they were fostered together, relatively minor families may be able to get favors beyond the norm by calling on a former foster-child, or conversely need aid from the PCs when a foster child goes missing.

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