Monday, July 14, 2014

[Urbis] Locations of the Cold Frontier - Whipgrass, Zone of Silence, Gopher Mounds, and Eye Botfly Swamp

Here the grasses of the southern plains grow especially tall. And hidden amidst the ordinary longgrass are patches of whipgrass. These grasses have razor-sharp edges and will attempt to wrap themselves around any creature that approaches them, using their blood as fertilizer.

This part of the Northern Wastelands was once the site of another titanic battle between the Mothmen and the Xill. As a result of the weapons unleashed here, there is an area approximately 2 miles in diameter where no divinations, no telepathy, and no communication spells will work. Furthermore, nothing can produce sounds here. There is an old, half-ruined First City facility close to the center which was used for clandestine meetings, as well as the most secret plannings when the First City colony was at war with its mother country. Excavating the site in depth will reveal a number of small glass slabs which are pressure-sensitive - their surface will turn white at points where pressure is exerted. This will fade over the course of a few minutes - faster if the slab is shaken. These were used to communicate between people who met there (since verbal communication would, of course, be impossible).

The fairly flat valleys between the hills in this region are filled with innumerable small mounds, which are up to 2 yards high and 10 yards wide. They are so abundant, with one placed next to the other, that it is hard to believe that they have a natural origin - and indeed they don't, as they are the work of innumerable generations of fey gophers who have created these mounds as their nests. The gophers are quite shy and will avoid strangers, though some of them do speak the language of the Coastal Tribes. They are not very bright, however.

This swamp area is inhabited by a particularly nasty variety of botfly - these insects have specialized in injecting their immature larvae into the eyes of mammals, where they will grow and eventually hatch, with predictable results for the afflicted eye. The nearby Inland Tribes know enough to stay away from these swamps, but their shamans know a herbal cure which will cause the larvae to die. If applied early this will prevent permanent damage, although the eye will be blind for a few days.

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