Mike's Croms anvil and the adventures of Erland got me in the end. I felt I needed to do something that wasn't 6mm sci-fi for a while and 15mm sword and sorcery is about as different as I could get drawn into!
Surrounded on all sides by civilizations old and new, the sand-swept deserts at the center of the continent is home to many secrets left by the ancestors that came before. All trade between the realms of the east, west, the north and the south passes through the kingdoms, duchies and myriad other states that inhabit the more bearable parts of the scorched lands.
But it's not only merchants and traders drawn to these lands, no, not at all.
Among the ancient ruins and forgotten places of those who came before hardy adventurers come to seek their fortune and scholars and mystics seek forbidden and forgotten knowledge. Mercenaries and bravos also flock to the kingdoms of the desert, where conflict is common and profitable.
It's a dangerous land who will easily devour the unprepared or unwary, more than a merciless bandits and maddening heat await in the deep desert. Around campfires and in taverns traders and travelers whisper of unnatural fiends and terrible ghasts stalking the dunes and the ruins. Lately, even smaller villages and camps have been struck by calamity of the like only told in tales of old legend.
The subjects of tales yet to be told.
Common in the kingdoms of the west, Slayers are hunters that chase prey most men would rather flee from. In the west, sorcery is looked upon with slightly less fear and suspicion than most other places and a fair bit of interest as well. Because of this the prominence of magical beasts and all the trouble that can follow is more common than anywhere else exept the southern jungles.
Because of this unique talent the Slayers travel far and wide, hunting almost any prey. This too, is true of our wanderer. But what has he come seeking in the deserts and ruins of the ancients?
A sorcerer of the east, no doubt seeking knowledge stolen by the sands and by time.
Will he be friend or foe of our wanderer?
Being a merchant in the central desert is likely to make you a rich man, if you have the head and heart for it. It is also fraught with danger. Unscrupulous and greedy business partners can be as much of a danger as bandits or beasts. That's why most have bodyguards after all.
Not all live by trade or highway robbery in the desert or course. Many a nomad clan or tribes of peoples live like their ancestors, subsisting off the land. It's a hard life, so it makes the tribal men and women equally hard. The chief leads the tribe and it also the first among warriors. The medicine man entreats the gods on behalf of his people, heal the sick and injured as well as providing counsel to the chief.
The creatures are clearly intelligent, using tools and planning just like humans, leading some learned men to speculate that the could be the result of an magical experiment by their advanced ancestors. Others claim that they have evolved naturally.
Being violent and territorial, in addition to seeming be unable to comprehend human language, it seems unlikely that the great universities and colleges will solve this mystery any time soon.
The great deserts is not all sand, great boulders and even small mountains spring up in some parts of the central expanse it covers.
Along certain rivers and oases both camps and sometimes even towns grow, provided there is anything besides the water to live off of in the area. It's not uncommon to find small quarry or mining towns where the ranges intersect with a body of water.
Palm trees grow wherever there is enough water to sustain them. Date palms are a common enough sight around oases and have saved more than a few thirsting and starving travelers.
We will learn more of this settlement, including it's name when our wanderer finally arrives.
That's all I have to share with you for now, I should have the first part of the story in a few more days if all goes well.
Til next time!