Carrion Crown: Funeral for a Friend
Moldering hinterlands and the remnants of a bloodthirsty religion seem like an unlikely setting for a scholarly revolution, yet on the Lesser Moutray brazenly flourishes just such a renaissance. Under the auspices of the nation’s greatest university, egalitarian philosophies and radical sciences clash with popular superstitions and forgotten secrets, clenching the city of Lepidstadt in a war between a past that refuses to rest quietly and a reckless future.
The community of Lepidstadt rose upon the Lesser Moutray over 700 years ago, little more than an outpost of farmers and woodsmen who trusted in the murk of the Dipplemere to keep roving bands of orcs and Kellids at bay. They of course knew of the ancient “witchstones” that dotted the lands, monuments to strange entities worshiped by ancient Kellid shamans, but all with sense knew to give the pale rocks a wide berth. The Treyes brothers changed that, as their audacious exploration of the Spiral Cromlech revealed treasures of a mysterious past, their value in gold and mystery outstripping the threat of ancient curses. Soon an army of scholars and adventure seekers made the city their garrison, besieging the ruins of the ancient land. As discoveries and doldrums caused the land’s novelty to ebb and flow, Lepidstadt became the permanent home of numerous academics, whose works and families promoted the growth of the local university and, over time, elevated it to the vaunted center of scholarship it’s known as today. Within the past 40 years, much of Lepidstadt has been renovated, with centuries-old hovels replaced by freshly imported wood and marble. Yet only the city’s elite preoccupy themselves with idyllic aspirations, and as one wanders away from the central plazas, old stone homes and repurposed mills show through the modern veneer, their residents living as they have for centuries, rolling their eyes at every new convolution of the city’s higher society.