The p’dka (translated: secret gathering) is the true ruling party of Catal, organized by a system partially hereditary and partially self-selective. Catalians know of the p’dka’s existence but tend to disregard it, as governmental service is something most of them would prefer to avoid. Ruling Catal is seen not as a powerful position but something of a chore, and the fact that the group is the least social in their society doesn’t help either.
The p’dka is comprised entirely of women. This is viewed as highly logical, as the Cariff must be a man (this achieves a sort of balance) and that science has revealed firm evidence that women are better designed to multitask than men, and what is government but the greatest multitask of all? They are not allowed to marry, as they are far too busy to set up a household, though they all of course have whatever romantic affairs they like and have time to manage. Most use concubines, though in the spirit of practicality and sisterhood they often have affairs with each other.
However, they are all in a sense the “wife” of the Cariff and are expected to have a somewhat regular sexual relationship with him. This addresses both a Catalian belief that sexual contact is an important social exchange and the desire for balance: the Cariff is a figurehead, but for the p’dka he reminds them that they are still human and must submit to human desires.
Cultures outside Catal cannot grasp/refuse to accept this complicated arrangement and insist they are simply a harem.
The p’dka have one more important governmental function: they are in charge of executions and are all expert and terrifying swordswomen.