Friday, June 13, 2014

[Urbis] Locations of the Cold Frontier - Marmot Warrens, Wendigo Altar, Fog Wraiths, and Ghoul Warrens

In this outlier of the coastal mountains, numerous extended families of marmots make their home. If someone starts to sing, whistle, or make some other kind of music, they will quickly whistle along.

Here the coastal forests fade into the plains, only leaving small copses of trees. In one of them there is an ancient altar with the sign of the wendigo. Sacrificing a living being on the altar will summon a hunger spirit into a nearby animal, or even human being - depending on the power of the sacrifice. A contest of Will can force the animal to attack a designated target. Wendigo priests have their own rituals to improve the odds. In order to destroy the altar safely, a hunger spirit inhabiting it must first be driven out, or else it will attempt to possess the destroyer.

Fog wraiths inhabit this part of the coastal mountains - 2 yard long, snake-like beings made out of fog which are attracted to the warmth of the living. They are not immediately dangerous, but they will cause their victims to become wet and gradually drain their warmth if not driven away. Fire will drive them away, and if their victims can somehow mask their body heat they will lose interest.

Near a small lake ruins of an Old Native settlement can be found. These used to be largely stone buildings, in contrast to the modern wooden constructions used by the Coastal Tribes. When the Great Darkness arrived, 150 villagers - about have the population - sought shelter in a nearby underground warren stretching deep into a mountain which was used for kivas and as a burial ground. Unfortunately, it offered no protection, and every last one of them turned to ghouls. A few of them, including a female shaman named Burning Feather, were able to remain lucid and stave off the hunger better than others, and if encountered by explorers before the other ghouls they will be able to hold a brief conversation about the history surrounding the Great Darkness before the other ghouls will be heard coming from the depths of the warren, and before Burning Feather is likewise overcome with hunger for human flesh.

The Coastal Tribes have put a large boulder in front of the cave entrance, while Burning Feather and her allies have destroyed the stairs leading down in order to keep themselves and the other ghouls imprisoned and protect their living relatives. Some living shamans of the Coastal Tribe occasionally contact Burning Feather telepathically, which is safe for both sides. These shamans value her knowledge and would not appreciate attempts by the explorers to destroy her.

Note: A list of all Urbis-related posts can be found here.