The Coming of the Zioth

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The Mad

Description

In the year 577, the Mad are people exiled from civilization, due to their unusual, and sometimes dangerous, behavior. They spend a lot of time in trances or asleep, though there are periods of lucidity, and they occasionally speak in riddles. These riddles are considered by many to be prophesy, and some seek out the Mad in order to learn of their own futures or pasts.

The Mad live in isolated Enclaves, in self-contained communities. Since they depend on pilgrims for food, clothing and other basic needs, they often live in squalor.

“We come here, or we're brought here, when we can't live with normal people anymore. Once we're here, we never leave, except every few years one of us goes to another enclave. People give us food and other things we need, and we give them answers or riddles in exchange. This enclave has been here for a long time, back to Gornorleren's day at least.”208plugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigAppeared or occurred in:

Turn 208: The Enclave of the Mad

After leaving Tala, they moved deeper into the forest just to be safe. The woods were inhabited, if very sparsely, and a determined enough enforcer might check each and every hamlet that was under the influence of Yunim.

They soon approached a clearing which seemed like an excellent place for a meeting, except that a group of a half dozen people was already there, around a single long hut with a grass-thatched roof. An old man naked to the waist sat on the ground, leaning over a large book. His…

“We're beyond help here. There's no cure for the Mad, but we never say no to food and basic supplies.”208plugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigAppeared or occurred in:

Turn 208: The Enclave of the Mad

After leaving Tala, they moved deeper into the forest just to be safe. The woods were inhabited, if very sparsely, and a determined enough enforcer might check each and every hamlet that was under the influence of Yunim.

They soon approached a clearing which seemed like an excellent place for a meeting, except that a group of a half dozen people was already there, around a single long hut with a grass-thatched roof. An old man naked to the waist sat on the ground, leaning over a large book. His…

The Enclave of the Mad

There is an Enclave not far from Yunimplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigYunim / Dunweig

by Arnell, edited by the DM

Yunim

Yunim is (in the year 577) a cosmopolitan trade center in the region of Meheiral, run by the Orithoran religion, led centrally from the great Temple of Justice. It is on the edge of Yunim Lake, making fishing one of its principal industries. The
in the year 577. The party visits the Enclave in turn 208plugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigTurn 208: The Enclave of the Mad

After leaving Tala, they moved deeper into the forest just to be safe. The woods were inhabited, if very sparsely, and a determined enough enforcer might check each and every hamlet that was under the influence of Yunim.

They soon approached a clearing which seemed like an excellent place for a meeting, except that a group of a half dozen people was already there, around a single long hut with a grass-thatched roof. An old man naked to the waist sat on the ground, leaning over a large book. His…
, 209plugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigTurn 209: The Blood Master of Gallia

Time passed quietly, aside from the occasional muttering from one of the Mad. Voss continued to pace around the edge of the clearing, watching for any signs of trouble. The strange residents of this camp did not seem to offer any threat, but the odd children made him uneasy, children who never entered into normal reality, despite changing positions occasionally. An hour passed, then two. The arrival of the group must have spurred an unusual moment of activity, or perhaps they were unusually quie…
, 210plugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigTurn 210: A Question After All

Arnell finished up the food they had prepared and found a quiet corner to settle down in, grateful to be indoors at night. He checked the position of the windows and doors before sitting quietly and taking copious notes. It wasn't that he was unsociable, it was more that he had an evening and morning routine that he found hard to change. He also loved his sleep. If ever someone had wanted to torture
and 211plugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigTurn 211: The Legend of Zilgard

When the sun's light began to filter through the trees around the clearing, and make its way into the open door and windows of the shack, the enclave of the Mad was silent. For once, all of them were sleeping or in their trance.

Arnell awoke as usual and looked around, surveying his surroundings. Going to sleep early had its benefits: he often woke with the birds, and aside from the dreams, his sleep was silent. He took out his books as he always did when he woke, and read, completely focused o…
.

They soon approached a clearing which seemed like an excellent place for a meeting, except that a group of a half dozen people was already there, around a single long hut with a grass-thatched roof. An old man naked to the waist sat on the ground, leaning over a large book. His curved back was deeply tanned, implying that this was a common position for him. Two children around the age of nine stood six feet apart from each other, as if playing, but frozen in place. Three women who could easily have been daughter, mother and grandmother wandered aimlessly around the clearing, speaking to themselves.208plugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigAppeared or occurred in:

Turn 208: The Enclave of the Mad

After leaving Tala, they moved deeper into the forest just to be safe. The woods were inhabited, if very sparsely, and a determined enough enforcer might check each and every hamlet that was under the influence of Yunim.

They soon approached a clearing which seemed like an excellent place for a meeting, except that a group of a half dozen people was already there, around a single long hut with a grass-thatched roof. An old man naked to the waist sat on the ground, leaning over a large book. His…

Residents of the Enclave

Gornorleren

In turn 184plugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigTurn 184: A Secret is a Secret is a Secret

“Well,” the priest muttered, looking into the crowded room, “I suppose they have enough people in there.” He turned and walked the dark tiles towards the entrance portal to keep watch for the sorcerer and his unholy pets. He passed by Voss, who was intently examining his wounds.
, Gornorleren of the Mad is referenced in a passage written by an ancient Morenthianplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigMorenth

Morenth's theology revolves around the simple idea that the entire universe belongs to him, and humanity is barely worthy to bask in his radiant presence. Those who refuse to acknowledge this simple, self-evident fact heretics, and deserve punishment or death. There is no repentance for heretics
Ritual Minister:

The Voice of the Zioth is surely of the Few, or perhaps Morenthplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigMorenth

Morenth's theology revolves around the simple idea that the entire universe belongs to him, and humanity is barely worthy to bask in his radiant presence. Those who refuse to acknowledge this simple, self-evident fact heretics, and deserve punishment or death. There is no repentance for heretics
Himself, but that matters not, for the Voice is defined only in the mind of the writer. Gornorleren of the Mad may know, or perhaps yet another, though I doubt this knowledge is in anyone's mind, for even I have only my suspicions about the piece of Earth that is Morenthplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigMorenth

Morenth's theology revolves around the simple idea that the entire universe belongs to him, and humanity is barely worthy to bask in his radiant presence. Those who refuse to acknowledge this simple, self-evident fact heretics, and deserve punishment or death. There is no repentance for heretics
's.184plugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigAppeared or occurred in:

Turn 184: A Secret is a Secret is a Secret

“Well,” the priest muttered, looking into the crowded room, “I suppose they have enough people in there.” He turned and walked the dark tiles towards the entrance portal to keep watch for the sorcerer and his unholy pets. He passed by Voss, who was intently examining his wounds.

It is later revealed, in turn 208plugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigTurn 208: The Enclave of the Mad

After leaving Tala, they moved deeper into the forest just to be safe. The woods were inhabited, if very sparsely, and a determined enough enforcer might check each and every hamlet that was under the influence of Yunim.

They soon approached a clearing which seemed like an excellent place for a meeting, except that a group of a half dozen people was already there, around a single long hut with a grass-thatched roof. An old man naked to the waist sat on the ground, leaning over a large book. His…
, that Gornorleren brought Malethorpei, the oldest member of the Enclave of the Mad, to the Enclave, long ago.

She watched the conversation flow around her with a grin on her face and a light in her eyes, amused by the chaos. “Gornorleren brought Malethorpei here, a really long time ago. He wrote about the Zioth, and it looks like you're part of it. Malethorpei used to say that Gornorleren wrote that book he thinks he's reading, but he's mad, you know.” She smiled at Halarenplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigPreceptor Halaren

Halaren stands wide and heavy, large feet and hands offsetting a comparably small head. He looks in his late twenties. His skin is pale and a little blubberous, tugging his facial features downwards to give him a slightly sad and dim-witted appearance. His face is well shaved, and hair medium in length, though so thin and wispy his head is clearly visible underneath. Further adding to his girth are the heavy robes he wears, well worn and covered in smudges. A long, deliberate …
and looked at Corbynplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigCorbyn Wren

Corbyn is a 19 year old man with straw colored hair (indeed his thick locks greatly resemble a thatched roof upon his brow). He is quite thin and has rather spindly limbs that are nevertheless quite agile. Despite his youth, he wears the short robes of a scholar over his breeches and introduces himself as a tutor for hire. He prefers scarlet cloth for his robes and more pedestrian materials for his trousers.
. “The ninety-first dragonplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigDragons

Last updated for turn 216

There is a wide variety of stories about dragons. Some tell of majestic and benevolant beings who are willingly given tribute. Others tell of horrible, mindless creatures who think of nothing but destruction. Dragons in myth range in size from smaller than a blade of grass, to larger than Aerv itself.
is the Zioth. Ninety-one cycles of Zabrigarplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigThe Five Moons

Five moons rise and set in the sky of Aerv, never crossing paths. At the end of the world, they will all wane together, and diminish to nothing for the Zioth.

Quite a lot of mythology centers around the moons. Zahirans' theology revolves around the Moon Children. The Moon Wanderers in the Shirahjat Cohilition migrate with the rising and setting of the moons in ways that only they fully understand.
.”208plugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigAppeared or occurred in:

Turn 208: The Enclave of the Mad

After leaving Tala, they moved deeper into the forest just to be safe. The woods were inhabited, if very sparsely, and a determined enough enforcer might check each and every hamlet that was under the influence of Yunim.

They soon approached a clearing which seemed like an excellent place for a meeting, except that a group of a half dozen people was already there, around a single long hut with a grass-thatched roof. An old man naked to the waist sat on the ground, leaning over a large book. His…

Malethorpei says, “Gornorleren never said it would be so far,”209plugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigAppeared or occurred in:

Turn 209: The Blood Master of Gallia

Time passed quietly, aside from the occasional muttering from one of the Mad. Voss continued to pace around the edge of the clearing, watching for any signs of trouble. The strange residents of this camp did not seem to offer any threat, but the odd children made him uneasy, children who never entered into normal reality, despite changing positions occasionally. An hour passed, then two. The arrival of the group must have spurred an unusual moment of activity, or perhaps they were unusually quie…
in reference to his predecessor's prophesy.

Malethorpei

Malethorpei spends most of his time in a trance, hunched over an old, wordless book. He is the oldest resident of the Enclave, and on the rare occasion when he speaks, it is only in prophesy.

“An old man naked to the waist sat on the ground, leaning over a large book. His curved back was deeply tanned, implying that this was a common position for him.”208plugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigAppeared or occurred in:

Turn 208: The Enclave of the Mad

After leaving Tala, they moved deeper into the forest just to be safe. The woods were inhabited, if very sparsely, and a determined enough enforcer might check each and every hamlet that was under the influence of Yunim.

They soon approached a clearing which seemed like an excellent place for a meeting, except that a group of a half dozen people was already there, around a single long hut with a grass-thatched roof. An old man naked to the waist sat on the ground, leaning over a large book. His…

“Oh, don't mind Malethorpei … He's a Polinakaplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigPolinaka

This religion has been dead for three hundred years, since the Plague of Morenth, that bloody period when the followers of Morenth completely wiped out the Polinakas.

Polinaka's theology is much the opposite of Morenth's. Polinakas believe that there are gods in everything, and that only the actions of Man can bring order to the universe. They believe, for example, that the sun rises each morning only because Polinakas pray for it to rise each night. Spring comes only when Polinakas p…
. Everything's a god to him. But do mind him, because everything he says is pertinent. See? Even in our moments of sanity we talk in riddles.”208plugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigAppeared or occurred in:

Turn 208: The Enclave of the Mad

After leaving Tala, they moved deeper into the forest just to be safe. The woods were inhabited, if very sparsely, and a determined enough enforcer might check each and every hamlet that was under the influence of Yunim.

They soon approached a clearing which seemed like an excellent place for a meeting, except that a group of a half dozen people was already there, around a single long hut with a grass-thatched roof. An old man naked to the waist sat on the ground, leaning over a large book. His…

The children

Two children live in the Enclave, too absorbed in their madness to interact much with the outside world.

“Two children around the age of nine stood six feet apart from each other, as if playing, but frozen in place.”208plugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigAppeared or occurred in:

Turn 208: The Enclave of the Mad

After leaving Tala, they moved deeper into the forest just to be safe. The woods were inhabited, if very sparsely, and a determined enough enforcer might check each and every hamlet that was under the influence of Yunim.

They soon approached a clearing which seemed like an excellent place for a meeting, except that a group of a half dozen people was already there, around a single long hut with a grass-thatched roof. An old man naked to the waist sat on the ground, leaning over a large book. His…

“One of the children shrieked, startling the newcomers but ignored by the Mad. She fell backward, landing on the ground and clutching her face in her hands. The other child dove at her, falling short two yards and landing flat, face-down in the dirt. In this position, the two children froze once again. They looked like two mimes, acting out parts in the same scene, but out of synch with each other in both time and space.”208plugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigAppeared or occurred in:

Turn 208: The Enclave of the Mad

After leaving Tala, they moved deeper into the forest just to be safe. The woods were inhabited, if very sparsely, and a determined enough enforcer might check each and every hamlet that was under the influence of Yunim.

They soon approached a clearing which seemed like an excellent place for a meeting, except that a group of a half dozen people was already there, around a single long hut with a grass-thatched roof. An old man naked to the waist sat on the ground, leaning over a large book. His…

When the boy is alert, he can identify magic items by touch, though he only provides hints as to their use.

Three generations of women

“Three women who could easily have been daughter, mother and grandmother wandered aimlessly around the clearing, speaking to themselves.208plugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigAppeared or occurred in:

Turn 208: The Enclave of the Mad

After leaving Tala, they moved deeper into the forest just to be safe. The woods were inhabited, if very sparsely, and a determined enough enforcer might check each and every hamlet that was under the influence of Yunim.

They soon approached a clearing which seemed like an excellent place for a meeting, except that a group of a half dozen people was already there, around a single long hut with a grass-thatched roof. An old man naked to the waist sat on the ground, leaning over a large book. His…
Only one can be lucid at a time.

The mother is “a disheveled but richly-clad woman in her late forties.”208plugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigAppeared or occurred in:

Turn 208: The Enclave of the Mad

After leaving Tala, they moved deeper into the forest just to be safe. The woods were inhabited, if very sparsely, and a determined enough enforcer might check each and every hamlet that was under the influence of Yunim.

They soon approached a clearing which seemed like an excellent place for a meeting, except that a group of a half dozen people was already there, around a single long hut with a grass-thatched roof. An old man naked to the waist sat on the ground, leaning over a large book. His…
. She has a sense of humor while lucid, but spends much of her time wandering aimlessly about. She can see into the past.

The grandmother speaks mainly in riddles, and can see into the future.

Mia, the daughter, is a lovely girl of fifteen years. Corbyn Wrenplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigCorbyn Wren

Corbyn is a 19 year old man with straw colored hair (indeed his thick locks greatly resemble a thatched roof upon his brow). He is quite thin and has rather spindly limbs that are nevertheless quite agile. Despite his youth, he wears the short robes of a scholar over his breeches and introduces himself as a tutor for hire. He prefers scarlet cloth for his robes and more pedestrian materials for his trousers.
is enamored by her. “She smiled, and the life that it brought to her face made her seem far more rooted to reality than the women who may have been her mother and grandmother. She is straightforward and kind. She can see things happening in the present, in other locations.

Mia is from Erinim, a few score miles to the northeast. ”'My mother and grandmother had already been sent to the Mad, so everyone knew it was going to happen to me too. You don't have a lot of friends when everyone thinks you're crazy, but at least I got to learn reading and arithmetic unlike everyone else my age. I had my first vision at ten, and when I was eleven I was… like them' – she gestured to the boy still looking through Corbynplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigCorbyn Wren

Corbyn is a 19 year old man with straw colored hair (indeed his thick locks greatly resemble a thatched roof upon his brow). He is quite thin and has rather spindly limbs that are nevertheless quite agile. Despite his youth, he wears the short robes of a scholar over his breeches and introduces himself as a tutor for hire. He prefers scarlet cloth for his robes and more pedestrian materials for his trousers.
's pockets – 'from winter to winter and to the next autumn. Almost two years. When I got some time to myself, I was here. I don't know who took me here. That was two years ago, and that's my whole story.' She spread her hands out in front of her, emphasizing her words with the gesture, and smiled.”209plugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigAppeared or occurred in:

Turn 209: The Blood Master of Gallia

Time passed quietly, aside from the occasional muttering from one of the Mad. Voss continued to pace around the edge of the clearing, watching for any signs of trouble. The strange residents of this camp did not seem to offer any threat, but the odd children made him uneasy, children who never entered into normal reality, despite changing positions occasionally. An hour passed, then two. The arrival of the group must have spurred an unusual moment of activity, or perhaps they were unusually quie…

The Mad in 1001

The Enclaves are unknown in 1001, though it is possible that Master Johannes Eltermannplugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigMaster Johannes Eltermann

Johannes Eltermann is very tall, and slightly more slender than average, and has a well-defined, delicate bone structure. His hair and eyes are dark brown. He keeps himself well-groomed and clean-shaven, and tends to dress in plain but well-tailored clothing in dark, formal colors. The lack of ostentation flaunts his taste. He currently wears good-quality traveling clothes with matching boots, a belt, from which a dagger hangs, and a cloak.
was becoming one of them through his visions53plugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigAppeared or occurred in:

Turn 53: Johannes's Vision (Johannes only)

DM's Introduction

Johannes woke early on the chilly morning of the eleventh of Farinon. He hugged his arms to his breast, trying to rid himself of a lingering chill. Something didn't feel right, so he lifted his hands and looked them over. They were dirty and scarred, but narrow and light. They were a woman's hands. He took those strange hands and felt up and down his body, but somehow was not shocked at what he found. He was
,75-82
, and that Uyithlyaw88plugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigAppeared or occurred in:

Turn 88: Uyithlyaw's Prophecy

The heavy heat of the morning became more oppressive as the day wore on, then it slacked off, and by evening was replaced by a thickening fog. The Winter Fair and Festival went on. As stands and shops closed, people and their money moved inside, where all manner of entertainment could be found. Sir Jerenil's First Knight and the baron's Trader's Lodge, of course, had the best, and both had hired people to act like patrons of the competitor and then shout out things like,
was one of them. There is a root one can chew that mitigates the madness, but it has side effects.

The Messenger, who confronts the party at various times with cryptic but useful information, may also have been one of the Mad.152plugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigAppeared or occurred in:

Turn 152: Another Use for Galgewe

The next day dawned to clear skies and a Maelbourg only slightly worse for wear. There were a few minor injuries, and one person had gotten lost in the fog and fallen into the river and drowned, but buildings, for the most part, still stood upright. The streets were a mess, but by early afternoon, most of the fallen lamp posts, broken carts and winter boarding had been picked up.
,154-156,158plugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigAppeared or occurred in:

Turn 158: The Andrithan Townsman

Before bed, Halaren had some chores. He walked from the temple to the garden nearby, his wooden bucket in hand. From it, he produced a carrot wrapped in a greasy cloth from the kitchen. He rubbed it in the soil as he prayed for the Mother to look after her children, then buried it in the ground.
,161-162,164plugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigReferenced in:

Turn 164: A New Friend

Kreemon wasn't too gentle as he ripped out the crossbow bolts and searched the priest and the thatched pack he'd dropped at the beginning of the fight. There was a lot of worthless junk - an old bedroll, a winter blanket, a bucket with a strange symbol carved in the bottom, some candles, a fishing net and a piece of reflective metal possibly used for shaving. There were packages of herbs that
,166plugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigReferenced in:

Turn 166: Just a Lot of Books

Sometime later, Ziedon opened his eyes to the dark interior of the Temple of Andritha. He felt well-rested, if a little stiff and disoriented. Was it morning? There was no way to tell. He picked up his spell book and turned the stiff pages one by one, looking for spells that would be useful that day. An hour or so later, he stepped out of the study, leaving the skeletons behind, and gathered everyone to the south side of the temple.
,172-173,175plugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigReferenced in:

Turn 175: Meeting the Preceptor

Corbyn and Ramzi arrived at the temple to find that someone had done their job for them. Broken boards swung from the sides of the door, and from the looks of it, the door had been forced open from the inside. The sound of a shovel digging through hard ground came from the garden outside the temple.
,184plugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigReferenced in:

Turn 184: A Secret is a Secret is a Secret

“Well,” the priest muttered, looking into the crowded room, “I suppose they have enough people in there.” He turned and walked the dark tiles towards the entrance portal to keep watch for the sorcerer and his unholy pets. He passed by Voss, who was intently examining his wounds.
,200plugin-autotooltip__default plugin-autotooltip_bigReferenced in:

Turn 200: Where to Find a Secret

They continued to exchange information over the next hours. Arnell asked each of the others about their backgrounds, and was rewarded with stories of Tala as a wanderer from the east, Voss as a member of the savage Vhoosch tribe, Gil as a House Guard of Morenth who had felt drawn to