Urgalroth

building Urgalroth
CategoryStrongholds
ContinentBrucrumus
RegionTribe Steppes
Built18 War March 933 HE
MapSava'loth

Urgalroth is an ancient fortification in the nightmarish wetlands of Ilorath. It was built in the Horgon Era by a Durkoth named Rereth. During what became known as the Durkoth Descent (995 HE - 1355 HE), he sought to stop the change that was overcoming his body along with all the other Durkoth. He used knowledge of golem-making from the Book of Orinite, a tome predating Horgon civilization by a thousand years, turning himself into a golem abomination. He went from being a Durkoth to a half-flesh golem and half-Durkoth, and when this failed to stop the mutation, he turned himself into a half stone-golem. From Rereth's journals, it says that the experimentation did not occur over a few days or even a few months, for it took almost a year to go from humanoid to half-flesh golem and then to half-stone golem. Because of time and pressure, Rereth turned to capturing his own people to serve as subjects in his grisly experiments.

Before Rereth turned to re-shaping himself, he had to build a normal golem specimen. Standard golems require a soul to power them up. Six months went by before Rereth had a successful experiment, so many souls were drawn to this realm, and having nothing to inhabit, they wandered off from the labs of Urgalroth. These hapless souls became marooned on this realm, forever waiting for something to host. Over time, these lost spirits became insane, some vengeful, and others seemingly lost in their own dreams.

- Zarilangian, 3rd Seer of the Magis Institute - "Golem Lecture"

The vengeful spirits led to Rereth's increasing the defenses around his cavernous labs. These defenses were done entirely with the help of iron golems, stone golems, and flesh golems that he created. Rereth's journals makes no mention of other half-golem Durkoth that were undoubtedly created by him. Considering the nature of such a transformation, it is all possible that he considered them a threat and did away with them.

Rereth named his fortress Urgalroth - supposedly after his first successful half-golem creation. In the beginning Urgalroth consisted of a tower over his labs and a ring of walls around it. After the first ring of walls and towers were made, the last passage of Rereth's final journal reads:

The walls and towers cannot stop them, they find the slightest crack or hole, and come in. The golems cannot stop them, for even they seem powerless in their presence, perhaps even aiding them by doing nothing. The end is nigh. I have lived three centuries longer as a half-golem, so whatever evils I have committed was worth the coming reckoning.

- Rereth, from Rereth's 17th Journal, "End is Nigh"

Rereth's death did not end the building at Urgalroth. The golems continued to expand outward with rings of towers and defenses, each taller than the last. The construction did not stop until all the golems were destroyed from accidents, lost to the swamp, or being taken out by something tougher than it. Those golems that were not completely destroyed, were buried under a wall or used as fill for a wall, and those lost as the walls and towers went deeper into the swamp slowly sank into the mud and over months and years became lost to the waters and vegetation.

Urgalroth was made with mottled green stone common in the highlands bordering the northern edge of Ilorath. The stone is often referred to as Urgalroth Stone. The castle has sixteen rings of walls and towers, with the outer ring still uncompleted. This outer ring is five miles in diameter - if it had been completed it would have had walls three hundred feet high and towers of one hundred to one hundred and fifty feet higher. Some have said that it would have been impossible for constructs to build such a massive fortification on their own without guidance, leading some to speculate that they were following Thyrms Blueprints. The Bloodbeards have trade relations with the place's current owner, and they say that the place's self-proclaimed queen told them that the Book of Orinite had something to do with guiding them in their tasks.

In 1280, the night hag Thryunkian arrived at Urgalroth and turned to clearing the hostiles of the ruins and making it her new home on Bal-Kriav. Since that time she has taken claim to the entire marsh around the area and proclaimed herself the Hag Queen. She is very powerful with a retinue of black dragons, trolls, troll hounds, crimson deaths, vampires, werewolves, will-o-wisps, and a host of other evil minions at her beckon call. As a result, nothing but terror and rapine flow from the environs of Urgalroth. Even when trading with the Bloodbeards or the Orchish Empire, merchants take a great risk on entering the lands of its fickle ruler.

In the 1800s, the fortifications and surrounding swamplands became frequented with deluges of rain and swarms of insects. These effects are unnatural, seeming to having started at Urgalroth and then expanding outward and backward like waves. Black Wood, self-proclaimed ruler of Maegorion, is rumored to have given Thryunkian some device that is responsible for these torrential rains and insect swarms.

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