Mar 15, 2012

Places to Go: The Hill of Release

Hex 0701 on the Cauldron and Hinterlands Map: The Hill of Release

The area surrounding the Hill of Release is the most monster-plagued part of the Dawnlands short of the inner depths of the Molten Womb, or the ruins of the Cities of Night. This is because the Hill of Release is where the Kaddish soulforgers traditionally release their creations once they no longer require them for any other purpose. This is done in a festive, congratulatory air, especially when it's a new Master Forger's first true-breeding species.

The hill itself is unassuming. It is located about a day's march south of the nearest hill fort, and consists of a set of large pits with gutters to release the creatures from, and a stone tower of four levels, with a balcony ringing the top level. The tower is known as the Impregnable Tower, and is sealed to visitors by the orders and magic of the soulforgers. When not being used, it is guarded from intrusion by the Thurakan Himex, a creature made of glass and shadow with a killing gaze that spares only those who know its command word.

Recent releases from the tower including a humanoid set of glass pipes whose whistling drives those who hear it insane, a collection of giant crabs with dog's heads for claws, a herd of horses made of quicksand into which anyone attempting to ride them is drawn inexorably, and a flock of ravens made of interlinked legs of brass spiders. These are far from the strangest creatures to have been created and set free to plague the Dawnlands.