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    The Sud Graufult: The Ruins of Torvald
    Posted on Mon, September 17, 2001 by Toran
    Taras writes "A dark blight upon the lands of the Sud Graufult, the ruins of the town of Torvald have stood empty and forgotten for hundreds of years. Foul magics were once worked within it's walls, and vile sacrifices and atrocities were performed upon it's inhabitants. Few know anything about what lurks today within it's shattered walls.

    Author: Taras Guarhoth




    The Ruins of Torvald

    by Taras Guarhoth (montand@canonfire.com)
    Used with Permission. Do not repost without obtaining prior permission from the author.

    As the Aerdi armies moved southward, forcing their way into the Suel dominated-lands of the south, many of the Flan tribes and houses welcomed the Aerdy, but not all did. Some violently opposed the Oerid push which would eventually break the power of the Suel in the lands north of the Vast Swamp. One such group of Flan was House Toshna (of mixed Flan-Suel descent), the most powerful and influential of the Harashim houses in the Sud Graufult.

    Situated just off the southern banks of the Greyflood river, Torvald was the richest of the towns in the area, and by far the most powerful. Founded in the days immediately following the migration of the Suel through the area, House Toshna vowed never to let another group push them out of their lands or enslave them. They vowed to keep their lands, no matter what the cost.

    House Toshna greeted the Oerids as many Flan had, hailing them for destroying the pureblood Suel presence around them, which resulted in the destruction of many of their rivals. As the Aerdy began to slowly work their way into total control of the entire area, however, House Toshna struck back, sending troops across the river and attacking several forts and towns, burning them and butchering their inhabitants. Rumors persist that not all of those in the towns were butchered, but were instead carried back to Torvald to be sacrificed in hideous rituals designed to give more power to House Toshna.

    Houses Mallosh and Nashalla were outraged at the activities of House Toshna, immediately throwing their lot in with the Oerids, who had, before this, treated the Flan and demihumans of the Sud Graufult as valued allies in their wars against the Suel. The wrath of the Aerdi was great. They descended on Torvald, and utterly destroyed the town, tearing it’s walls down, slaughtering it’s leaders, and defiling it’s temples.

    Accounts from the destruction of the town are sketchy at best. It is known that a number of of the vengeful Oerids were driven mad by what happened within the shattered walls of that town during the final assult on House Toshna, and many other fell victim to fell horrors only half-seen by those who survived the assult. As the Oerids moved through the darkened streets, they were met by the Harashim living there, not to attack the Oerids, but instead to beg for the Oerids to take them out of that hellish place. Many more were found by the invaders, dead before the first Oerid ever found them, victims of the atrocities and blasphemies House Toshna was unleashing upon their own people in a futile effort to stop the Oerids.

    In the end, the leaders of House Toshna were all believed to be killed, most of them clustered around the altar of the central temple in the town, which originally had been dedicated to the benign gods of the Flan, but now was devoted to something unspeakable, the icons and statues of the former gods shattered. It is unknown what House Toshna was worshipping in that temple, for of those Flan who survived the sack of the town, none had set foot within it since it had been converted to the new, dark gods of House Toshna, and the Oerids, at the urgings of those Flan, utterly destroyed the temple, burning as much of the hateful structure as they could. They then fled the town.

    In the years since then, Torvald has stood, a forsaken ruin, unlooted and shunned, ordered sealed by the new Waldgraf of Olvanstaadt-am-Graufult. Those few who were known to have defied the order and entered the ruins have never returned. Since whatever dwelt within the ruins never came into the lands of the living, the peoples of the surrounding areas were content to ignore the ruin. Now, though, there are reports of those from areas around the ruin disappearing, and of strange noises within the ancient town. Some whisper that House Toshna wasn’t destroyed, and that they’ve returned to reclaim their land.



    Note: Aerdy, Ahlissa, CthulhuHawk, Sud Graufult, Sunndi"
     
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    more CthulhuHawk? (Score: 1)
    by grodog on Tue, September 18, 2001
    (User Info | Send a Message) http://www.greyhawkonline.com/grodog/greyhawk.html
    Taras---

    The more I read, the more I grow entranced by your use of some Flan tribes as HPL-style, dark-god-worshipping, bloodthirsty cultists.

    If some tribes of the Flan turned to dark gods (be they Azathoth or more traditional D&D demons/daemons/etc.), and they are among the oldest of the human races (purely my supposition about your campaign's worldview, based on the few of your works that I have read), how aware are the various demi-human races of these dark forces? What lore do they hand down about these dark gods, and their human worshippers?

    grodog



    Re: more CthulhuHawk? (Score: 1)
    by Taras on Tue, September 18, 2001
    (User Info | Send a Message)
    Well, first, to clear something up...I'm not claiming the Flan are the oldest humans. Just the group that has lived in the Flanaess for the longest.

    Now, onto the demi-humans...I'd say they know quite a bit more about the dark history of certain groups of Flan than the Oerids, Suel, or even most Flan. This has colored their perceptions of humanity, which some of the atrocities from the time of the Great Migrations (espically from certain Suel Houses) has only reinforced.

    One of the results of this is the fact that among certain groups of demi-humans, humans are treated like the humanoids are. Now, not all react like this, but some definately do.

    In general, the average demi-human knows little about the dark deeds of certain Flan groups, just what stories bards still circulate today among the other civilized races, which are often distored and full of disinformation (some of it delebrately placed by those who defeated the evils mentioned). There are certain elements among the demi-humans (certain scholars and priests, as well as those tasked with guarding things or entities that couldn't be destroyed) who know a lot more, although they are, in general, unwilling to share this information with outsiders, espically humans.

    Sometimes, the largest libraries of forbidden books detailing blasphemous rites to hideous entities aren't found among the overtly evil kingdoms...sometimes, they're found hidden away in the hands of good, and sometimes, the accumulation of that knowledge leads to their corruption and slide into decadence, madness, and profane evil.


    ]


    Re: more CthulhuHawk? (Score: 1)
    by MTG (mtizoc@canonfire.com) on Wed, September 19, 2001
    (User Info | Send a Message)
    Taras writes:
    Sometimes, the largest libraries of forbidden books detailing blasphemous rites to hideous entities aren't found among the overtly evil kingdoms...sometimes, they're found hidden away in the hands of good, and sometimes, the accumulation of that knowledge leads to their corruption and slide into decadence, madness, and profane evil.

    Are you impugning House Cranden? Are you saying that Almor deserved the Szeffrin's embrace?

    Speak, heretic!



    ]


    Re: more CthulhuHawk? (Score: 1)
    by Taras on Wed, September 19, 2001
    (User Info | Send a Message)
    Well, as Ivid the Undying notes, House Cranden is split into three groups...the Lawful Good, the Neutral, and the Chaotic Evil. And as Ivid the Undying goes on to state, "House Cranden contains some of the most violently evil people in all of Aerdy." Infer from it what you will about House Cranden and what has happened to it.

    About Almor...nah, it didn't descend into corruption. It was blasted from without, by a country much more powerful than itself. Almor would have had to go through a long, slow fall into increasingly greater depravity and evil to fit into the circumstances I had mentioned. Say, much like it's neighbor...Aerdy. Not that I'm claiming that's what happened to the formerly Great Kingdom.

    I suspect that these kinds of corruptions would happen on a smaller scale, with a temple or order being corrupted, a mage's guild sliding down the path to darkness, a noble family falling into the worship and service of foul entities. A slow rot that eats at the heart of a once-proud and noble land, sending it down the path of corruption as more and more of the nation's institutions succumb to the growing darkness around them, whether that is merely the darkness of political corruption and vice or the darkness of some foul being's touch.

    Who knows...Nyrond or Sunndi could be the next land to find itself firmly in the grasp of evil.


    ]


    Re: more CthulhuHawk? (Score: 1)
    by grodog on Thu, September 20, 2001
    (User Info | Send a Message) http://www.greyhawkonline.com/grodog/greyhawk.html
    Who knows...Nyrond or Sunndi could be the next land to find itself firmly in the grasp of evil.

    You mean they haven't fallen already? ;->

    grodog


    ]


    Re: The Sud Graufult: The Ruins of Torvald (Score: 1)
    by Man-of-the-Cranes on Wed, March 27, 2002
    (User Info | Send a Message) http://www.ManoftheCranes.com
    The more of these articles that I read, the more I want my PC's to head east - and where better to base a Sud Graufult campaign than within the ruins of Torvald?

    I would love to see some write-up of any campaign you actually ran in these areas.

    Cheers
    Man of the Cranes




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