Thursday, 30 July 2015

5e Setting Building: The Underworld

Third of the three realms, commonly interacted with by man, in this setting is the Underworld. In this setting the underworld is a place of shadow and fading passion, through which the dead must travel, before entering the Great Labyrinth of reincarnation.

The Bleak Moor

This is the part of the Underworld closest to the physical world. It is land with thin air, and gently rolling hills covered in course grass, heather and gorse. Threatening gray clouds scud across the sky as though time has been speed up, in the constant twilight. There is little colour here, and what their is, is almost always muted and drained. Across this land, ruins and  tiny abandoned villages are scattered across it. It is in this land that the dead first find themselves after their bodies die in the physical world. It is possible to walk for ever across these  desolate moors, and never find anywhere of import, for they are vaster that the imagination of man.

It is through this land that the dead must wander, with only their grave goods, in search of the spiral pathways, or the wardens. Those who are lucky find them, but the Bleak Moor is a dangerous place, and some souls find themselves devoured by the hungry dead, or other stranger things.

The Spiral Pathway
The Spiral Pathway is a mystical road way that spans all of the Bleak moor, but which some how, mysteriously, will lead any traveler upon it to the Great Labyrinth, with one year of travel. The road is marked by menhir, which are placed upon it's side. However, the Spiral Pathway is not safe, many threats lurk upon its rout. The path eventually leads into a great tangled forest, before opening into Roan, the city of the dead, who's heart at which can be found the great labyrinth.

The Wardens
Little is know of what exacly the Wardens are, save that their appear to be nine of them, and that the appear to be unique beings.  What is known, is that the Wardens will guide the dead to the great labyrinth, and defend them from the dangerous of the Bleak Moor and The Spiral Path.

Roan and the Great Labyrinth
At the end of the spiral path, where the dead are so numerous upon the road that they must walk in unbroken single file for a week before they come to vast clearing. It is filled with a ten-thousand buildings in at least a thousand styles of architecture. These buildings surround the great Labyrinth, a great mass of stone passages, at the center of which re-incarnation can be found. It is here that the dead gather and prepare to make their journey into the labyrinth. Not all venture into the labyrinth immediately. Some, those who's families remember them and continue to make offerings and prayers for them, set themselves up with homes, forming new lives with new friends or lovers, etching out a few more year of passion and pleasure before surrendering their personality and memories to the labyrinth and embracing re-birth. Others orders, such as the Thorns of Roan, striding back along the path, to protect the newly dead, and help them reach the great labyrinth. Lastly, some few, terrified by the prospect of the labyrinth, hide themselves away, long after their families stop making offerings to them, making lives as thieves and vagabonds, or devolving in into hungry ghosts.

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