Forgotten Palace

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    Just SurvivingForgotten Palace[Site – Lunia]Copyright © 2000 by Heiner de Wendt

DescriptionAt first glance, it is nothing more than a ruined castle of average size. A deeper investigation reveals that the Forgotten Palace is made from only the finest materials, and must have been of the utmost beauty once.

It is covered with countless plants, vines mainly, and bears unknown runes on its still intact stone doors. Anyone who enters the ruined castle comes into a great festhall, also covered in vines, lined with wonderful statues of knights and ladies. Two great staircases made from white pearls lead up to a balcony, and beyond lie some sleeping rooms. It seems the Forgotten Palace was once a site of great festivities, and wasn't really used for living. Nowadays, the only thing that could be of any real interest are the vines, which are of the finest quality found in Lunia.

Special FeaturesThe Forgotten Palace holds more secrets than anyone dares to guess. Aasimon and most greater archons avoid the palace completely, while the lesser archons don't seem to know much about it. No priestly spells work within the temple, yet any servant of a deity of Mount Celestia feels a stronger link to his god here. Interestingly, the special abilities of paladins don't work here, yet those of other classes (druids, rangers) do.

All members of the Athar feel completely repelled from this place, and individuals of evil alignment feel a burning pain in their hearts. Only those evil beings of greatest willpower can remain here for long (wisdom check each round, or flee in pain and collapse for 1d4 rounds afterwards). Whenever this place is in danger, the petitioners and proxies of Mount Celestia do their best to defend this place, even risking their own lives if needed.

The ChantLegends which are forgotten by all except the wisest archons and aasimon explain that the Forgotten Palace was once part of Arborea, before the god residing within was converted to lawful goodness. Just as he moved his realm to Mount Celestia, an evil deity attacked this plane. The new convert, seeing his new home in terrible danger, gave up his own existence to beat the evil god. He blew himself up in a wave of purity, unleashing the very essence of his nature. He infused the whole land around himself with it, and the evil power had only two choices – either to flee, or to become infused with goodness itself. Thus, it left Mount Celestia, utterly frightened, never to return again.

Most of the land infused with the good power's essence soon faded into higher layers of the Seven Heavens. The Forgotten Palace, though, stayed for some reason. It still keeps the essence of the martyr god, which is the reason for all the strange twists one can experience here. The feeling of a divinity of Mount Celestia brings a traveller the feeling of being nearer to "his" deity (even if, in truth, it's "only" near to divinity in general), while the direct presence of this essence somehow blocks all contact with other deities, involuntarily interfering with the prayers of worshippers.

The servants of Mount Celestia do not believe that the power who died here can be resurrected; it did not appear in the Astral, but instead seemed to truly merge with the plane, giving all of its existence for the greater good of Mount Celestia. Still, Mount Celestia's planeborn (actually, not even the other powers) aren't sure what of the power truly remains. The power’s essence stays in the Forgotten Palace, yet it seems more like blood on a carpet which cannot be removed.

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