Shadowlands

From Traykon Campaign Setting - Pathfinder
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Cosmology The Nature of Magic
The Curse of T'lor Runes of Creation
Shadowlands Death in Traykon
The Dark Mark Kingdoms and Lands
Organizations Events and Festivals
Character Classes Feats
Important Characters Extras and Articles

Adjacent to the world of Traykon, the Shadowlands is a dark and twisted reflection of Traykon's material existence. Souls of the dead pass from the material world as shadowy wraiths into the Shadowlands. All souls appear as a wispy nebulous of light that travels through the Shadowlands. Most of the souls eventually find their own way to Ulvanic Keep, the only pathway to other plains of existence and eternal rest. A few lose their way and must be collected. Souls of the dead are vulnerable during this time of transition. A few powerful demons break into the Shadowlands to hunt for wayward souls to fuel their power. Necromancers can breach the veil and try to subjugate or steal souls before they reach safety behind the walls of Ulvanic Keep. Some deities and demi-powers exist in the Shadowlands and will capture souls they encounter for their own uses.

The nature of the Shadowlands is such that it is like a mirror to Traykon at the closest point where the Shadowlands touches Traykon. The demarcation point acts as a barrier between the world of the living and the world of the dead. Ghosts and other incorporeal creatures exist in this periphery where they can manifest to the living while being protected from the denizens who collect souls. The Shadowlands exist in such a way that the "beginning" appears to be where the living world and Shadowlands touch. As one travels "deeper" into the Shadowlands the connection to the material world of Traykon becomes tenuous at best. It is in this between area where souls must pass and where encounters between denizens are most likely to happen.

At the far "end" of the Shadowlands lies the only two known exits from the realm of Traykon, each existing at different points within the darkness. The Ulvanic Keep and Umbral Citadel both can act as terminal ends to the Shadowlands. Souls can pass through either but one leads to The Void while the other allows passage for souls to their version of paradise. There are no known exists from the Shadowlands except to go through one of those two places or return to Traykon. Since both exits are guarded by deities, passage is strictly monitored.

Denizens of the Mist

The god Ulan sends his Mord Wraiths out to patrol the Shadowlands and collect wayward souls and guide them safely to Ulvanic Keep. These creatures fly throughout the Shadowlands to hasten the souls through the gates of the Keep in an attempt to protect their journey toward the afterlife. They operate with a single minded determination and only a direct attack against one will draw its attention away from carrying out it's duty.

The druidic entity known as Wild Hunt roams the Shadowlands when not called to take form in Traykon. Although it normally ignores the existence of souls traveling through the shadows, The Wild Hunt will snare any soul it encounters that is being called back to the material world. Any soul thus snared becomes part of the Wild Hunt as one of the pack hounds. Souls thus snared will only be released by granting the demi-power a boon of significant strength.

Undead servants of The Unnamed One can be found in the depths capturing souls and taking them to the Umbral Citadel. Powerful Demons and Devils sometimes find their way into the Shadowlands to harvest souls for their own power and to corrupt those living they can reach. Other stray greater powers and exist in the depths of the Shadowlands where their activities remain hidden from the denizens of Traykon.

A particular breed of Fetchlings known as the Shadow People make their home in the Shadowlands. Having been cut off from the Shadow Plane sometime during the creation of Traykon, these hearty souls live at the border of the Shadowlands and seldom venture any further into the depths. They tend to make their homes in the shadow of material cities, often building their own towns in the same location as human cities and towns just across the boundary within the Shadowlands.

Ulvanic Keep

Sitting astride a great chasm that breaches the various planes of existence, this great castle is the home of Ulan, The Soul Collector. Dead souls rise from the base of the Shadowlands and eventually arrive at the gates of the Keep. Millions of souls can occupy the vast necropolis within while awaiting their release to either another plane of existence or reincarnation into Traykon. Ulan's greatest servants become retainers to the deity in death, serving as caretakers and guardians of the Keep.

Souls who are brought through the great gates must present themselves before the Golvor, those who decide the fate of the dead. The Golvor judge the person's life against the precepts and beliefs of their patron deity. Only those whose life has followed closely with the tenets of their deity may pass through the vortex within the heart of the Keep to be with their deity. Those who fail to have lived a mostly righteous life by their god's standards are sent back to Traykon to be reincarnated in order to have another chance for a different dispensation of their soul. Those few unlucky souls to have betrayed their deity are have their souls enslaved by Ulan to serve the needs of the Keep for an eternity. Truly blackened souls who betrayed their deity in epic fashion are believed to suffer torments that would make Devils quake in fear.

Umbral Citadel

Even within the Shadowlands their exists a place so dark from which no light escapes. Home of The Unnamed One, the Umbral Citadel is where all souls who worship no god are drawn. The Citadel is said to exist simultaneously in multiple worlds, only partially existing in the Shadowlands as well as a forgotten level of the Abyss. Umbral Dragons, savage undead, and rogue demons can be seen roaming the lands around the Shadowlands hunting for wayward souls to offer up to the dark master of the Citadel.

The fate of souls drawn within the citadel is known only to the Dark God and his servants. After souls have entered the gates of the Citadel, not even a wish or miracle can raise the character from the dead. Legends tell of a few souls who were released from the Citadel in response to dark quests or immense sacrifices devoted to The Unnamed One. Any soul returned to life retains no knowledge of their existence within the Citadel and often retain some touch of the grave.