Ancient Library

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((This is a realm within the realm of Ayenee that is open for any and all travelers to use.))

Setting: Ager ab Aeternus Tenebrae "Land of Eternal Night" Also known as the Undead Land to passing travelers.

Realm Description: In the land of the living dead, the darkened sky has known no sun for eons, and the earth is barren and gives no nourishment of itself. The few trees, strange and flytrap-like in appearance, feed themselves from the passing creatures they can entangle, and from the souls trapped beneath the earth's hardened surface, interred along with their mortal coils in the ancient graveyard that stretches beyond the horizon. Cold winds drive icy rains across the land, and yet the ground never loses it's parched and drought-starved look; it is in this haunted wasteland, where dwells the remains of the House Faustinas, that a tavern beckons weary wanderers, a library's crumbling exterior belies it's inner knowledge, a cursed lake shimmers darkly under a blank sky... and unseen grave-diggers ensure that there's always room for more.

Tavern Description: Sanctum Obscura "Dark Haven" Known as Graveyard Tavern to travelers.

A former place of holy ground, the sanctified air of this former chapel has long since fled; and yet, it's windows glow orange-yellow through the dim night, welcoming those unfortunate enough to be passing through. Marble statues, dating back to the chapel's institution, litter both the exterior and the interior; some look strangely familiar, but only the Lord and Lady might identify them for certain. A former-crematorium-turned-fireplace brings warmth and heat along the north wall, the entrance being placed on the east, and the bar-counter lies to the west... Where the alter used to be. The windows are a mix of tempered glass panes and stained-glass artwork, and the area as a whole is enchanted to protect itself from any damage, magical or otherwise, that it might suffer.

When the Lord and Lady are both absent, a misty-formed summoned spirit-creature maintains the tavern and it's surroundings; a strange kind of bartender indeed, it is often playful yet rarely fatal, though - should it be provoked - it is more than capable of handling the troublesome patron. ((As an NPC, the creature is both the bartender and the "bouncer"; if attacked, it will disperse, reform, and react accordingly.))

Ancient Library Description: Bibliotheca Adeo "Library of Time" Known as Ancient Library to travelers.

The library sits, as it has through untold ages, to the left of the tavern; it seems on the perpetual brink of collapse, and yet it has outlived the rise and fall of countless empires... each of which is chronicled, somewhere, on the infinite number of pages and scrolls within it's walls, for this is a library greater than that of ancient Alexandria.

Above the entrance hangs a bronze-inlaid signboard, tarnished by Time and the weather; barely legible now, it's green-hued metal reads "Bibliotheca Adeo" and swings in the sporadic wind. Within, the library seems MUCH larger than would be possible, with endless rows of shelves housing everything from modern novels to data-entry disks to the first clay stylus and it's rudimentary pictographs. The knowledge here is free for the use of all - merely thinking of what you seek will bring the appropriate material to hand - but under no circumstances are they to leave the building; the library protects it's treasures, and itself, with powerful magic, and any materials attempting to be removed will vanish from the would-be thief, re-appearing somewhere among the infinite shelves.

As for furnishings, whatever space NOT taken up by shelves is occupied by an assortment of tables, chairs, and couches, all quite comfortable, but of various styles and makes; one might find a classical velvet-upholstered footstool next to a La-Z-Boy and a Roman couch, for example. In addition, the library also contains rooms, simply-furnished but comfortable, for those who wish to rest briefly from their studies, and one need only address the air and a way will be shown; below the library, the darker facet of history and magic is revealed, carefully preserved and lit only by the occasional levitating sphere of light.

The librarian is an ancient spirit, who manifests as an elderly woman with prim, no-nonsense clothing and her hair in a tight bun; she tolerates no nonsense, and will quickly eject any who maltreat the libraries contents of the other patrons, but will aid anyone who approaches her for it. Strangely, though the realm is one of eternal night, the library's above-ground windows are always lit by a phantom dawn... though some rooms lack windows altogether, to accommodate those less-inclined to daylight.

Cursed Lake Description: Furvus Letum "Black Death" Known as the Cursed Lake to travelers.

The waters of the cursed lake mirror the depth-less, blank sky above; though it's surface appears calm and placid, even tranquil, it's waters are unsafe to the touch-- Furvus Letum is cursed, and has been so for as long as any can remember. Any living creature in contact with the lake-water risks having their vitality drained from their body, and it is said that the lake feasts upon the corpses of the completely-drained. That being the case, any already-dead creatures - vampires and ghouls, in example - are at risk of being physically consumed, while immortals such as the fae, the divine, the infernal, and even those beings from the Outer Realms will find that the lake seems to grow stronger in proportion to their power, attempting to draw them beneath it's surface, where they will remain forever as it siphons away their eternally-replenishing life-force.

What kind of foul magic, you might ask, could create such an unending maw of death? Once, near the beginning of time, a creature born of oblivion shed pitch-black tears of chaos, and those tears coalesced into this lake, imbuing it with a certain eerie sentience. Though it may be, by now, capable of leaving it's bed, it chooses to remain; this dismal realm may simply suit it's temperament, though it's more likely that it's of only rudimentary intelligence, concerned only with eating more, and knows that it's next meal will happen by soon enough...
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