Shadows of Change
The Bone Gate
The frontier town of Vulyar, Karrnath’s gateway to the Talenta Plains, is one that wears a grim reminder of the prowess of Karrnath. Although the trend in architecture has now taken over the entire nation, Vulyar was the first town to incorporate iconology of death and skulls. The Bone Gate of Vulyar stands at a hundred feet high, twin stone skeletal sentinels flanking the iron gate. Above, upon the keystone of the great arch hangs an iron shield inset with a triad of skulls. Rain and sun have bleached the colours from the statues and the skulls, and the Vulyan guards have saw it fit to keep the skulls alabaster white through magical means. Braziers are set into the sockets which are lit at night, providing a truly eerie and unsettling effects for those who approach the Karrn town after the sun has set. Whilst menacing and deterring, the skull’s sockets also serve as murder-holes and battlements should Vulyar be under siege.
The town was built for defense, much to the chagrin of merchants and travellers; roads never did run straight in Vulya. The twisting web of wide avenues and narrow alleys provide the town guard – and the local thieves and smugglers, plenty of ambush points. Despite the confusing avenues, Vulyar can be separated into four distinct wards:
The heart of Vulyar’s trading and merchant life. Fairmount Market is perhaps one of the more exciting markets in this region, mixing traders from the Talenta Plains, the Mror Holds and even as far south as Valenar. Security here is tight, as any minor incident could potentially erupt into a diplomatic disaster.
Other Places of Interests:
- Lightning Rail Station and Railyard
- Fresh Boones (Theis Prose’s Bakery)
Whereas the Bone Ward is the trading heart of Vulyar, Karrn’s Ward is the military heart of Vulyar. Here, King Kaius I erected a large military compound that occupied almost half of the ward. Whilst it was once filled with promising recruits and grizzled veterans during the Last War, it is mostly abandoned and empty now. Rumours abound as to what Karrn’s Hold still have locked away in its deepest dungeons. Some say that due to Vulyar’s proximity to Bone Fort and Zombie Fort, Karrn’s Hold is now a glorified warehouse of the undead legions.
Other Places of Interests:
- Halls of Learning (Aureon Temple)
- The Velvet House – Private holding of the ir’Methas family.
Sethabti was a general that once devoted himself to the scriptures of Karrn and the Old Religion. He was a fierce warrior that advocated the path of Learning alongside honing one’s skill with the sword and bow. Here in Vulyar, Sethabti erected a temple to Karrn – now converted to a temple of Dol Dorn, that functioned both as a school and a war academy. Ever since, two major academic complexes now dominate the Precinct, Ventas, the College of Arcane Learning, and Urnaav, Academy of War Studies. Urnaav is somewhat funded by the Karrn military, and receives some sponsorship from the more prestigious Rekkenmark Academy. Ventas on the other hand, is a relatively smaller, privately funded college. Enrolment into Ventas suffered greatly after the completion of the Learning Institution of the The Twelve in Korth.
Other Places of Interest:
- Ventas, College of Arcane Learning
- Urnaav, Academy of War Studies
- Temple of Old Heroes (Temple of Dol Dorn, previously, Temple of Sethabti)
Boiling out like a malignant tumour from the side of the town is New Ward. Here, though the streets run straight in a grid, the masses of hovels and dilapidated buildings speak of the squalor that permeates this ward. The far end of this dismal ward stands the Merit Tower, the docking tower for airships. The area around the tower is particularly heavily guarded, and disembarking visitors are advised to quickly travel down Nephbis Avenue to enter the town proper.
Floral Surprise for Vulyans
Vulyans woke up to a botanical surprise on Zul 23 when buildings and stones began blooming. The profusion of flowers were sufficient to impede traffic and business, to the effect that the Vulyan town council announced trading to be close for three days.
The Vulyan town council has since decried this event to be an act of wanton vandalism and mischief, claiming a total of 29,000 gold has to be spent to remove the flowers, at times repaving sections of a street. Other citizens welcome the surprise. “The thing with winter [is] people get dour and gloomy along with the skies. A little reminder of spring won’t hurt,” said local militiaman, Private Waboth.
As of the time of reporting, there has been 20 people admitted into House Jorasco’s care for severe pollen allergy. The perpetrator[s] of this floral display has yet been found.