Hellrime Keep

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Deep in the freezing wasteland of Rimewind Heath, a massive tower of dark ice rises from the snow. Surrounded in a massive howling blizzard, what might be mistaken at first for a strange natural ice formation is perhaps the largest and most daunting castles in all of Arcur – Hellrime Keep.

The grim walls of the tremendous fortress have stood for centuries, unyielding to the storm that rages eternally around it and impervious to even the most powerful seige weaponry. It is the tallest structure known to exist in Arcur, the citadel as large around as some cities. The main gates of the citadel are themselves over 200 feet tall, large enough that even giants are dwarfed by the architecture.

Nothing is known about what lies within the fortress. Only one being is known to have entered and emerged alive – and that being is The Speaker himself.

Centuries ago, Hellrime Keep was discovered by paladins of Lethray in a time when the ecclesiarchy controlled the whole of Sendaiya. The first scouts reported it to be a place of pure, unimaginable evil, and only one of them managed to return from the Heath to report her findings. Lethray soon mobilized its holy legions and marched upon the Keep, beginning the Frigid Crusade. The resulting war lasted almost a century as the armies of Lethray pushed inch by inch towards the colossal grim castle, fighting waves upon waves of unholy beasts and frozen monstrosities. When they finally reached the castle, they found the walls utterly impregnable. Only when The Speaker, bearing the Shard of the Pure Soul, arrived did the gates finally open. The Speaker entered the fortress alone, as all the paladins serving as his vanguard were slaughtered on the way inside. Six hours later, The Speaker emerged and the dark magics of the keep collapsed. The Speaker then sealed the castle with powerful holy wards, preventing anyone – or anything – from passing. When asked why he established the wards, The Speaker said that nothing could be permitted to enter or exit the fortress under any circumstances. To this day, nobody knows what might remain inside that The Speaker might have wanted to imprison.

Today, Hellrime Keep stands as a monolithic spire, silent and still for almost over two thousand years. Every few decades a group of explorers or treasure hunters may attempt to enter the castle, but with no success. The wards of The Speaker still stand and bar the way, even though the fortress is seemingly abandoned. However, in all those two thousand years since the end of the Frigid Crusade, the blizzard has never stopped raging. Something still lies within Hellrime Keep, some magic that keeps the winds screaming across the northern reaches of Rimewind Heath. Scholars who have studied its history all agree that is only a matter of time before the power of the keep awakens once more.

Hellrime Keep

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