Krell Caverns

The Krell Caverns is a major Dwarven city on Taern. It is the center point of the most popular Dwarven religion, that of the worship of Moradin. It is by far the most populous and cosmopolitan of the Dwarven kingdoms, boasting many city districts and wards and many different kinds of citizens. These citizens are mostly dwarves, but you can easily find people of other races living in the crowded city.

The city's architecture ranges from ancient and great structures carved into the cavern in uniform and angular shapes to hodge podge wooden and cobblestone buildings leaning against each other, usually in the lower wards away from the Palace and Temple. Because of the cosmopolitan culture of the Caverns you'll find a lot of bright colors among the buildings, as well as graffiti of all types especially in the markets and wards.

The city is made up of the following districts:

  • Stonecrown Palace - The palace sits in the inexact middle of the Caverns, and is easily gotten to through the Gold District or the Temple. This is the seat of Kagar Stonecrown and his wife Milse, and was the former home of the crown prince before he went missing. Kagar has no heir.
  • High Temple of Moradin - This vast structure houses the orders of Clerics and Paladins under the control of the High Priest of Moradin, Polar Lodeseeker. Here religious dwarves gather to worship, or to relax and entertain themselves among the cavern gardens and pools. It is a tranquil place where it is said that you can feel the heart of the earth beat.
  • Anvil District - This district houses the forges and craftsmen of the Krell Caverns. Many of the items here are sold in the Gold District or kept in the Vaults and sent out with traveling merchants to sell in other cities.
  • Graygate - The main entrance of the city is built right into the side of a large mountain with a high peak. The gates are a dull gray stone, opened and closed with giant iron and steel wenches and gears. They are nigh impregnable when closed, but they are almost always open to the high amount of traffic from travelers, merchants, and recently refugees. Many find the sight of the vast gates as comforting, and they are sometimes used as symbols in Dwarven heraldry.
  • Lower Wards - The vast majority of the cities citizenry live in the Lower Wards, a number of large caverns in the cities lower levels. These are crowded places full of smoke and steam, and many of the inhabitants are poor and distraught. Recently Dwarven Shamanism has re-emerged among the lower class, with many of the Temple authorities decrying the groups as heretics and doomsday cultists. Insofar as they have a leader, many point to Kreya the Stoneshaper as the person behind the strange new (old?) dwarven mysticism. In recent times two of the lower wards have flooded and a few others seem to be on the verge of breaking down due to lack of repair and attention from the city council or the palace.
  • Crystal Ward- The Crystal Ward is where the higher class dwarves live, noble families of long lineages who can trace their ancestors back to the Schism Wars. It is actually a high-risen terrace off to the side of the Palace, and overlooks the Gold District.
  • Gold District - The Gold District is by far the largest district, and sits right between the Graygate and the Stonecown Palace. It is a ramshackle collection of marketplaces, shops, inns, pleasure houses, and many other distractions and delights for the visitors and citizenry of the Krell Caverns. A hazy smoke fills the top of the very high ceilings and lights and brightly colored banners and signs illuminate the tight alleys and streets. The roads always seem to be slightly damp. Here the very poor from the Lower Wards beg at corners or work for a pittance. Many laws are relaxed here.
  • Tomekeeper District - The Tomekeeper District houses one of the prides of the Krell Caverns; The Archives of Gheddon. This vast library is a huge collection of scrolls, books, and other literature from all across Dwarfdom and the world. It houses many ancient writings, many of which have yet to be translated. A huge order of Scholars oversees this huge building. Also in this district is the newer Archaeologists Guild, formed by scholars and adventurers to bring new relics into the kingdom for study and profit.
  • Bearward District and Barracks - This is the military wing of the Krell Caverns, and where the vast majority of the army and guardsmen train and sleep. It is overseen by Rock Bearward, General of the Krell Army. He is an old and craggy veteran of many conflicts and is known as strict, fair, and completely unmoved by the machinations of politics. Many nobles call for his resignation.
  • Wormpaths - Along the side of the Gold District are a vast array of strange tunnels, originally formed by Purple Worms burrowing deep in the rock. In times of old, before the Schism War, these paths were said to connect all of the dwarven kingdoms beneath the surface of Taern and beyond. Today, one or two can still be reached, but the journey is long, dark, and treacherous.
  • Vaults - Beneath the Gold District are the Vaults, a heavily guarded set of stone warehouses and storage places. Thievery is punished very severely if it is committed here, and many merchants and nobles supplement the guard forces here with mercenaries of their own.
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