Deep in the depths of the swamps of Aerdmoor lies a lonely hut. There is but a single resident here, a creature known only as the Crone. Many think she was once a member of the Seelie Court, a full bloodied Sidhe, but what she is now is a bent and twisted thing. She also has a fondness for flesh, any flesh will do fine for her cooking pot. Despite this, there are those who seek out this place, not for the company of the Crone, but for what lies far below her home. Of course, the Crone won’t just let anyone inside. To gain entrance requires a sacrifice, one of flesh and blood. It doesn’t need be sinister, but the Crone is fickle, and she might just eat the sacrifice and those that brought it.
Yaktha was a powerful demon that ruled over part of the earth that was, and it is said that he was bound in blessed iron and cast into a deep pit. The entrance to that pit is inside the Crone’s hut. Bound though he is, Yaktha still wields incredible power and his knowledge is vast and unsurpassed by any being still alive. Those brave, or foolish, enough can seek his aid, though the price is often higher than most would willingly pay. It is always different for each that seeks his guidance, and it is never pleasant.
If Yaktha concedes to give aid, he will answer any three questions. He will not lie, but how he interprets the question is up to him. It is best to ask questions that can’t don’t allow Yaktha to dance around the answers, though fooling him will be difficult. Over the centuries many have sought out his help, most end up in either the Crone’s pot or consumed by the pure malevolence that is Yaktha.
South of the rugged peaks that make up the surrounding environs of the Evenstar is one of the largest and most fierce Mist Storms. Unlike most storms in the Mists, it hasn’t dissipated over time. In fact, it has appeared to only grow stronger. Anyone unlucky enough to be caught in the storm faces a fate much worse than mere death. The storm seems to tear the very soul out of anyone caught in its furious grasp, leaving an empty husk of a being behind. Animals seem to be unaffected by the storm, but anything sentient is gobbled up by it.
Since the storm first appeared, roughly ten years ago, many magical experts have studied it, some at the highest cost. Both Faye and mortal alike are stumped by the storm. There has been a single breakthrough by a member of the UnSeelie Court, a petty noble named Variss who is well known as one of the greatest Mist scholars the Faye have ever seen. He has been able to communicate with some of those unfortunate souls that have become trapped within the storm, or at least what remains of them. It seems that the longer a soul is trapped within the soul, the less it retains of it’s original sense of self.
The storm itself has a consciousness of its own, able to stalk victims by moving itself through the Mists. It does seem to have a limited range though, never straying further than 200 miles from the Evenstar. This restriction has lead many investigators to believe that the storm is somehow tied with the mystical mountain, though what that tie may be is still unknown. There are many handsome rewards for anyone that can figure out how to free those trapped inside the storm, and many that have tried have only joined those they tried to help.
Zerra is large, even by Anuir standards. However, it isn’t the size of his body that sets Zerra apart from others, but instead it is his demeanor. Zerra is the only male priestess in the Sisterhood of Stevra, though the rules strictly forbid such a thing, the High Priestess Shara herself concludes that despite Zerra’s outward appearance, his soul is that of a woman. Despite offers to have his appearance magically altered to match his inner spirit, Zerra has refused, stating that his body is merely a vessel used to perform the work of Stevra and that it’s appearance does not matter. As if to exemplify that, Zerra has grown a rather impressive beard that he wears in braids tossed over his broad shoulders.
Zerra can be found in the rather isolated village of Stolsbruck near the edge of the Blood Glacier. The only other permanent residents of this bitterly cold outpost are a handful of other initiates of Stevra that have been sent here to do penance in order to restore themselves to good standing in the eyes of Stevra. Though most regard this as the worst of punishments when they first arrive, after their stay under the guidance of Zerra, they leave stronger in their faith than ever before. Zerra is a firm, yet compassionate priestess, and for many it is the only aid to be found in this harsh environment.
The Sisterhood in Stolsbruck also sell supplies to those that wish to explore the Blood Glacier, along with a parting warning that such endeavors are foolhardy at best. Even so, if asked they will perform a blessing ritual to bestow the good graces of Stevra upon any travelers.
The Baldersnags is a messy tangle of swamps and briar patches lying to the east of Greeningsdale. Maintaining an open road between Greeningsdale and the coast is a constant struggle. Between the thick masses of thorn bushes and the dangerous bogs one also has to contend with the swirling chaos of the Mists, as the Baldersnags lies partially within. It is not uncommon for miles of road to simply be swallowed up, interrupting trade and travel for weeks, sometimes even months.
As if the natural elements of this place weren’t bad enough, the Baldersnags are a breeding ground for Grey Spinners. The giant spider-like creatures can nimbly move over the knotted brush and their sticky webs dot the landscape, waiting for anything unlucky enough to stumble into them. The Mistrunners Association has an open bounty on Grey Spinners in the region, offering a 100 soverns per head.
The Baldersnags presents the biggest challenge to the new railroad that the city of Wayfarers Way is attempting to build between the coast and the interior of the True Realms. For anyone in need of work, crews are always hiring, both for physical labor as well as muscle to keep the local wildlife at bay.