The Valley of Ancients

"Shashtah and Tphah"

by

L.A. Malcor

The Valley of Ancients is the most sacred haram ("holy site") of the Dumnonian people. The mouth of the box canyon opens off the massive whaleback dunes where the Dumnonian Bronzes make their nests. From there, the sides rise steadily for a good two dozen dragonlengths, terminating in an enormous cliff. Four smoothed stretches can be seen along the rim on either side of the gorge where ancient waterfalls once plunged into the ravine. These areas are now the perches for the eight members of the Council of Ancients, the eight eldest Dumnonian Bronzes. By order of Shashtah, Dragonking of Dumnonia, all eight Councilors must be Bonded at all times or withdraw into exile. The current Council Members and their Riders are listed below.

"Kashon Astride Katrell on the Valley Floor"

by

L.A. Malcor

Council Roster

  1. Katrell (Kashon) (LAM)
  2. Tkai (Eschlend) (LAM)
  3. Garesh (Nikki) (LAM)
  4. Tanatika (Dameth) (LAM)
  5. Tlee (Jaaziah) (LAM)
  6. Ephratah (***) (LAM)
  7. Besai (***) (LAM)
  8. Vajezatha (***) (LAM)

The place atop the massive cliff at the end of the box canyon is reserved for the Dumnonian monarch and the Monarch's Dragon. From here, Shashtah and Tphah preside over meetings of the Council of Ancients.

Below the Monarch's Perch, steps lead from the floor of the canyon to a dais. In the center of the wall behind the dais are the bronze-gilt doors that lead into Corin's Tomb. Anyone who wishes to Bond with a Dumnonian Bronze must present him or herself at the doors of the Tomb. If a Dragon accepts the Warrior as a Rider, the Dumnonian ruler will send the Pair into the Tomb. If the Pair passes a secret test that is set for them by Corin's shade, a Bond is created that will last as long as they are both alive--unless the monarch is called upon to sever the Bond by way of punishment. Only the Dumnonian Ruler can open the doors to Corin's Tomb.

When a Dragon or Rider dies, Corin's magic transports the body to the Valley of Ancients. Here, the Dragonlords sort through the dead after a battle and identify them. The Dragonlords must account for every Rider or Dragon who dies, else face the wrath of the Council of Ancients.

The Valley is also where people who commit crimes against Dragons are brought for trial. The Council also handles cases where Dragons are accused of committing crimes. (Disputes between non-Dragons are handled by Shashtah in the King's Tent.) The Council, with the Dumnonian Ruler serving as advisor, debates the pros and cons of each case and meets out punishment as it sees fit.

Dragons who serve on the Council of Ancients possess a very special kind of magic against which non-Dragons have no defence. Called "Council Magic", most of the spells consist of illusions so real that they can cause permanent psychological damage to the subjects if not used with great discretion. Shashtah Dragonheart is rumored to be the only non-Dragon ever to possess this type of magic.

Locations within the Valley of Ancients

UnBonded Dragon Roster

Some of these Dragons are actually UnBonded. Others the player has not said what the beasties are up to, so until a decision is made, they will be listed here.

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