Sunday, August 11, 2013

Tales of the 13th Age: Roachdale

Less than a century ago, Lana Roach, the Witch of Montessi, led a small contingent of followers down the New Road to what eventually would be known as Roachdale.  Lana was a celebrated and staunch follower of the Priestess before a deep and mournful schism forced the Witch to seek a place to worship the light in the way it called to her.

Lana led her most dutiful followers from their homes near Santa Cora to a homestead in the Wild Wood.  The site was an ancient place that Roach had rightfully purchased, through esoteric negotiations, from the Elf Queen.

The Queen was triumphant because the bargain she had reached with Roach freed her lands of a cursed site.  A place where an atrocity from the 9th Age had made the area a blight upon her realm.  

But unbeknownst to the ecstatic Queen, the Witch was no fool and knew of the cursed history of her new home.  Roach and her followers cleansed the plot they'd purchased and set about building a place for them to worship in peace and respectfully tend the land for fur and lumber, careful never to break their contract with the Elf Queen.  Lana's followers chose to name the settlement in honor of their beloved leader, Roachdale.

What Lana's followers would never know was that this site was essential for her to pursue the calling that had separated her so deeply from the Priestess.  The Witch devoutly believed that light cannot exist without a darkness to keep at bay, and the greater the light, they more terrible the darkness to hold back.  She knew that below their new home lay the ruins of a loathsome bulwark, an ancient Keep of demoniac horrors.  The Witch of Montessi hoped the daily rituals she taught her people would ward this Age from the Keep's dreaded return, because in her darkest moments Roach feared that the Priestess's warnings, in the days before their schism, could ring true.

And Shadow Well Keep should never again be allowed to blight this or any Age.

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