Dead Secrets of Ultima Thule

Prologue

Prelude to Tsathoggus' Malice

Nestled among the rolling hills of Beregor and the delta of the Kabrael River as it flows into the Western Sea, Ashkelon is a powerful city. Its prime location has made it a center of trade in the west of Ultima Thule. Day and night ships come in and out of the harbor bringing gold and obsidian from the south, ore and food from the north, and lustrous silks and pungent incense from the east; some legitimate, some illicit. A tributary state of the great Beregorii Empire, Ashkelon has long enjoyed much autonomy while receiving great protection from potential invaders. Gilded, jewel-encrusted domes adorn the towering spires of temples, administrative buildings, and the palace. With architectural influences from every conceivable culture and era Ashkelon lend the visitor mysterious sense of esoteric whimsy; one cannot help but wonder what ancient and nameless horrors are housed amongst the antediluvian temples and shrines of the city. Fabled Ashkelon, with wonders to sate desires both subtle and gross.

Discontent stirs amid the eccentric buildings of Ashkelon. Marius, prince of Ashkelon, has many political rivals and would-be usurpers who would see him slain. It is in this capacity that you were employed. An green-pallored, emerald-robbed aristocrat named Patroclus hired you to shake the prince loose from his mortal coil. A plan was concocted, coin exchanged, and on a moonless night you stole though the ancient, legend haunted streets towards the palace. Ingress was simplistic. After neutralizing the retinue of guards stationed between you and the royal apartments, you alighted quickly towards your quarry. What you did not expect was the two other assassins waiting just outside Marius’ door. Less did you expect the soldiers within the chamber.

Subdued, shackled, and dragged to the palace dungeon, it dawned on you that you had been set up by Patroclus. You have been left with but two choices: extricate yourself from your imprisonment, gain revenge; and abandon Ashkelon, or sit in your cell in anticipation of the death that is surely awaits you come the dawn…

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