The Grounds of Vengeance

Anonymous's picture
    Just SurvivingThe Grounds of Vengeance[Realm – Lunia]Copyright © 2000 by Heiner de Wendt

CharacterFor every evil deed committed, justice must be carried out. Against the forces of darkness, only the strong can prevail, thus training of both body and mind is an obligation. Feelings are for the rare times of privacy, while in public, the servants of Good have to shine with righteous fury.

PowerVralkah, Slayer of the Tearbringers, is an unforgiving god of Revenge and Justice. Not even his greatest servants seem to know his true form, and his avatars always take different humanoid forms. Some archons have speculated that Vralkah has fallen victim to the trickery of an evil power, and has lost the knowledge of his true nature. This, they believe, is why he is so full of rage, and so fearful of opening his heart to even his greatest allies.

DescriptionThe Grounds of Vengeance are situated on one large mountain in the upper regions of Lunia. Here, countless bastions, fortresses and castles house the archons and aasimon serving Vralkah, along with many other beings fighting for righteous vengeance in the name of this deity. The sky is constantly patrolled by winged celestials, as well as a couple of good dragons sent here by Bahamut, a strong ally of Vralkah. Dark tempest clouds always cover the realm's sky as a constant reminder of the dangers of Evil. Many strange and dangerous creatures roam this realm. As the proxies of Vralkah explain, these are sentient beings from various worlds and planes who have been punished for their sins by imprisonment in this realm. Here, they may only live if they slay each other, or are able to stand their ground against the servants of Vralkah (which they manage very, very rarely). Or, of course, if they learn the ways of Goodness. The god's servants actually consider these beings an ever-present challenge, and archons often seek out these beings on their paths to ascension.

Principal TownsOne of the most impressive fortresses on Mount Celestia, the Fiery Justice is Vralkah's own seat. His highest proxies also live here (if they're not on a quest for justice), on the top of the mountain that is Vralkah's realm. Furious tempest clouds keep all invaders away, and only the power's strength keeps the fortress itself from being blown away by the raging storms. It's said that every bolt of lightning emitted from these clouds stands for a punishment that's been carried out by one of Vralkah's servants - and there seem to be more lightning bolts here than there are flames on the Plane of Fire.

Special ConditionsThose inside this realm who commit a sin are suddenly made aware of it, and mentally receive a description of a fitting punishment they may enact on themselves. If they refuse this, it doesn't take long until one of Vralkah's proxies appears to "bring justice". Not surprisingly, the Grounds of Vengeance have few visitors.

Principal Non-player CharactersProbably the most interesting character in this realm is the githyanki paladin Shra'duor, who has sworn to take revenge on the lich queen of his race for all the evil she's committed. Shra'duor (Pl/male githyanki/Pal16/LG) is known to many githyanki himself, and the giths have promised extremely high rewards to whomever can bring them his head. The best-known "punisher" of the realm is Ravvijel (Px/female warden archon/LG), who has the task of guarding the entrances to all buildings in this realm. She brings swift justice to any offender she detects, and a few of the realm's mortal inhabitants do not only respect, but also fear her - something that saddens her greatly, but does not make her change her ways.

ServicesThose seeking righteous revenge or honest justice can easily find help in this realm. It's important to note, though, that Vralkah considers revenge a part of justice, and would never allow an unjust revenge. One could say that the power is actually dancing at the edge of evil, but has up to now managed to keep on the good side (if barely, sometimes). Some say that Vralkah's paladins are actually more merciful and just than Vralkah himself. Few beings truly come to this realm to ask for aid, for there are certainly easier ways to get help, without risking punishment for one's own sins at the same time. The furious tempest clouds that cover the realm’s sky hide many connections to the Elemental Planes of Air and Lightning, but they're rarely found by those who seek them (and sometimes by those who didn't...)

The ChantIt seems that in the last two or three years, Vralkah's interest in the Mercykillers is increasing. Some of the faction's members have become worshippers, and some of the members of his church have joined the faction. Currently, the young paladin Zakon of Bluecourt (Prime/male human/ Pal6/Mercykillers/LG) is putting a great effort into bringing the faction closer to his faith, hoping to wipe out the dark side hidden within the Mercykiller faction. His strongest opponent, interestingly, is the factol herself, who states that she believes Vralkah wants to overtake the faction and rob the members of their independence. Due to the factol's strong repulsion to Vralkah's faith, the ties between the church and the Mercykillers are still very small, and will probably stay that way for the next few years. The other inhabitants of Mount Celestia look upon Vralkah and his servants with something that could be called "hopeful sadness". They believe that, did the god himself not keep his realm in Mount Celestia, it would have slid over to Arcadia long ago. The Astral Deva Koryeez, a servant of Torm, states that Vralkah makes the mistake of hoping for perfection in others without giving them time to learn. Still, Vralkah himself seems to learn slowly, as he has lately become more and more interested in justice, and less in revenge. Most observers believe that the god will only embrace the ideals of Mount Celestia again when he has finished his personal quest, regaining the knowledge of his true nature.

Planescape, Dungeons & Dragons, their logos, Wizards of the Coast, and the Wizards of the Coast logo are ©2008, Wizards of the Coast, a subsidiary of Hasbro Inc. and used with permission.