Ruinous Scar

Jack Shear’s post on the Ruinous Scar is here. This is one of the country descriptions for my upcoming book on the World Between. This is a draft.

Basic Description

This wasteland is rife with shrieking winds and howling monsters. Life is twisted and torn by the resonant energies of a Cosmic Event over seven thousand years ago. The Gods made war, and everything was shattered into the World Above, the World Below, and the World Between. The Hundred Death Gods have never stopped trying to force the Scar open to be a Wound once more, so all might die. People don’t go here; if they do, they don’t come back. The rare exception is changed forever by what they experience.

 Stylistic Feel

Not-Post Apocalyptic Asia. Beyond the edge of the map, “There Be Dragons.” The disaster was more intense than nuclear fallout, and mutation of vast monsters is possible in the deadly depths of the territory. The Death Gods have reached up through the Scar, the Armies of the Lady have built cities to ring it in, the Father and Family were protected by the Beast Gods long enough to sacrifice themselves in sealing it… the Scar has shaped many cultures in the World Between, and their sense of self and place. It remains profoundly toxic but alluring in its mystery.

 Ruling Structure

Chaos rules. No human civilization survives in the tainted rubble of shredded reality.

 Stereotypes

Anyone who has been there is a mutant and/or is protected personally by a god or demon. Mounting a successful expedition to one of the Ring Cities cements your reputation as a legendary scholar/treasure-hunter, and after such an expedition, many retire after selling their lore in Midian.

 Famous For:

Clues about the first Armies of the Lady that came to the World Between, more undiluted lore and history. Pools of the blood of gods. Powerful monsters.

 Major Cities

The Ring Cities. The first Army of the Lady came to the World Between, chased off the Death Muster, and built cities around the Ruinous Scar to contain its energies. They used magic or technology long-since lost, and they could live very near the Scar as they kept it shut. These five cities were destroyed by the undead, and the Beast Gods ushered the Father and Family avatars past them to seal the Scar for good. Somewhere out there, in the drifting tainted dust, half-buried by millennia of shifting sands, those cities still stand. They lure many adventurers to their deaths in the haunted nothingness. The cities were Tellminga, Elydirin, Vothuria, Kagalias, and Sherebae.

 Notable Locations

Deep Ward. Scholars and theologians have pieced together a working theory that the extensive construction under the Ring Cities formed a vast three-dimensional runic barrier that contained the energies of the Scar. In any case, there are incredible labyrinths and tunnels under the cities, and elsewhere in the Scar. They are full of ancient lore and twisted monstrosities now.

Heartswell. There is supposed to be a magically hidden spring in the Scar that contains the ever-welling heart blood of the Lion, who was slain on that spot by five of the Death Gods working together. Those who dip into those waters are cleansed of mutation and rendered immune to radiation, as long as they honor the Lion and provide it with new life in the world.

Tomb of the Seven Swords. Each sword was carried by a paladin of the Army of the Lady. They did not want their efforts to cease when they died, so the Lady herself blessed each of their swords when they were buried together. The swords can be found and carried in the world for the lifetime of one owner, then they magically return to the tomb to be found again. The last sword disappeared over 200 years ago, and some doubt the tomb even exists.

Zzorchville. Mutants worshipping Zzorch can often find their way to a certain underground settlement in the Ruinous Scar, where only mutants live. They experiment and oppress and breed and do all the things normal people do, just with different numbers of organs and limbs. Some theologians rant that this settlement is a magnet for demonic energy, and that the city will eventually erupt and invade.

 Supernatural Elements

Junox and Skaylex. Junox is thought to be an avatar of the rotting corpses of the gods slain in the Cosmic Event, squatting at the heart of the Scar. Skaylex is thought to be the horrific mushroom goddess, growing on him and pushing him around. Junox’s goal seems to be continued squishiness, sloughing off oozes, slimes, and so on. Skaylex’s goal seems to be to slay the world and grow an army of cosmic mushrooms on its corpse.

Supernatural Architecture. The Armies of the Lady knew tricks for making secret buildings, hiding doors, bending time and space around the shape of stone, and other weird spatial tricks. Any lore, portable or experiential, is wildly valuable to scholars back in safer lands.

The Hundred Death Gods. They got sealed out, that makes them very angry, and they still try to force undead energy up through the plug to keep their already-animate servants active. Some of the strangest, deadliest undead in the world roam these haunted wastes.

Armies of the Lady of the White Way. Two separate movements of armies from the World Above came out to the Scar and left traces behind. Ancient magic and technology remain in the wreckage. Their legend resonates, sometimes corrupted and sometimes as a last note of hope.

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