Legacy of Darkness (3.5e Campaign Setting)/Geography/Arquiura
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Arquiura was once a thriving city-state in the midst of the void. It grew its own food, governed itself, had its own magical defenses, and generally kept to itself. The shard bristled with magical spires that pierced the heavens, and the world was constantly surrounded by a magical haze. Underground, a vast network of subterranean tunnels expanded the area of the shard even further. At its center stood the secret of the shard's success: an intense magical sun, continually emitting magical radiation. It caused the crops to grow, the city to build, and the state to thrive off its power.
One day, however, the sun's output changed. In the span of a few minutes its output increased 100-fold, bombarding everyone with intense magical radiation and killing off almost everyone on Arquiura. Although none knew what happened, the truth was that the ancient enchantments and protections on the sun were sabotaged by an Imperial spy who had managed to infiltrate the city, freeing the sun into its true output. Only a literal handful survived the shard's apocalypse, those survivors became either magic-tainted with an increase to their connection to the magic of the multiverse, or mutated into horrible monsters. The imperial agent never returned and was presumed dead.
Nowadays, all that remains of Arquiura is a mammoth ghost-city. The towering spires and buildings, built on magic, have even stronger support and regenerating capacity with the increase in output of the sun and will likely stand strong into eternity. The shard, after human abandonment, contains one of the few true amalgamations of city and nature: around the buildings an impossibly thick forest has sprung up, its growth driven by the intense magical source beneath the soil.
No intelligent life remains settled on Arquiura, save for some mutated monsters. None can live there without being one of the extremely few who magical radiation has mutated into beings with stronger magical connections, or those with special protection against magical radiation. Few know that the place exists; if they did, it would probably be coveted for the sun at its core. The Imperials likely have an idea of its existence, but as the spy went missing how much they know is unknown. In any case, they would find it difficult to investigate as Arquiura's magical defenses do remain intact and armed.
Currently, Arquiura is being used as a base for a small group of pirates. Their ship and its pilot both originate from Arquiura, so they manage to safely bypass the magical defenses on the shard. They generally keep to the top parts of the spires, where the radiation is not so intense. It is unknown what future they plan for the abandoned shard.
- Size: Arquiura's surface is the size of a moderate state. There is a massive underground network of tunnels, as well.
- Shape: Ellipsoid.
- Geography: A large city is built all the way around the spherical surface of the shard. It does not cover it entirely however; mountainous regions and a few forests that existed before Arquiura's apocalypse are not industrialized.
- Location: Outer ring, shrouded near the mists.
- Climate: Variable. The intense magical radiation can make the weather mild one minute and intensely storming the next.
- Population: Mutated monsters, animals, and flora. Arquiura is otherwise desolate.
- Owner: None on record, though a small pirate group is based there and have laid claim to it.