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Tower at Dromund Peak

The Horrors of this tower began with Vhaskus, but they didn't end there...

I've been there, you know.   Dromund.   Yeah, I got held over the summer floods of '81. They do something weird then. I think it's a scare tactic, but it's so hard to tell. When you challenge the Internment Office... Well, they turned the pumps off. You could hear them stop.   Even though the water was over the top of us and there was no way out. They turned them off. They let us watch the water start to rise from the lower floors. And they... They assured us that they'd block off the sections once the water got bad enough. They said the lower floors already had.   When they locked me in, they said they'd unlock me when the waters dropped. Assuming that they did. I... Couldn't take it. I snitched, bailed, gave them everything. They never touched me, but they instilled such a terror.   So yeah, I've been there.   To Dromund.   It's horrible, and I never even got to the lower floors.
— Tales of Dromund
    The Craggy top of the Dromund Peak stares down into it's associated crater. The site of an ancient act of cataclysmic destruction that some say aided in the sinking of the Southern Floodlands. A hole that some say has cracks that rival the depths of the Sea of Hearts. Yet, it has been largely smoothed by time. Within this ancient crater is a tower of some regard.   Built out of the blackest of diorite, the Tower stands tall enough for someone standing on the upmost floor to see over the lip of the crater and for the lowest floor to only see the sun during a brief point of mid-day. Not that someone on the lowest floor could hope of seeing the sky. No, the crater itself is almost constantly filled with a vast amount of water. Filled from run-off and topped off by the Yearly floods, this keeps the majority of the tower submerged and inescapable. The doorways and balconies of the various floors are all carefully sealed against the pervasive elements.     The construction is reminiscent of the many walled cities of Forkden, leading any experienced mason to attribute it's construction to those that followed Vhaskus. In fact, following those rumors finds a bit of truth as records carved in the walls of the Tower attribute it to being built for Vhaskus to coalesce within during his descent into lichdom. And then again as he made his sacrifices to MerGus, the lost thoughts for his blessing of demi-godhood.  
Even while Vhaskus is said to have departed the tower long before the Fourth Fleet of Iwa landed on the shores of the Dytikan Coast, it retained an active Orcish compliment of OwkZugai as an honorary guard. This compliment of warrior-priests kept the tower whole with constant maintenance and use. Setting up new traps as word of them came through the tower and finding entertainment in the region. At least, until Hongden swept through the Southern Floodlands and eradicated those living there. After which, the tower was abandoned to the wastes of the Floodlands. The tower wasn't re-discovered until a survey for a water-proof Rail System passed through the region.
The tribe that inhabited this tower were known as the "OwkZugai". According to recovered records, the Tower was a central location for the organization, where new members grew up and were trained to be the bearers of a long tradition. The OwkZugai were bodyguards, personal servants and consorts to Vhaskus. As well as being devout priests of MerGus, the lost thoughts. Even after the abandonment of the tower, the organization is thought to have existed until at least The Orcish Incursion.
The water-proof rails were never built, especially following the calamity that was the Funeral March and the intense technological recession that followed it. However, the water-logged tower wasn't forgotten. The rooms were cleared in the following years and a small trading community sprang up, mustering the intrigue of the underwater tower to make it a solid community fueled by trade. And it remained that way for the longest period of time. New additions being constructed and new floors and secrets unearthed every so often.   But all good things come to an end. When the orcish tide that made up The Orcish Incursion made it to the depths of the Floodlands, they forcibly reclaimed the Tower, slaughtering the traders and demolishing the inferior additions to the masonry. This new breed of OwkZugai was ousted themselves mere years after as Forkden forced their way in and banished the last of the orcs in their land.   During the incursion, the Internment Offices had lost their main base of operations, and so claimed the Tower for themselves.  

The Sunken Tower that none escape.

The Tower holds it's own in a mix of notoriety and obscurity. Those that know of the Sunken Tower shudder at it's mention, while those that don't think of what those words could mean. For the Sunken Tower is the construction of a Mad Lich, filled with traps and unreal things. Said to contain cells for thousands and torture devices that can make any man scream.   None escape the Sunken Tower.

Outer Architecture

The Tower is vaguely pyramidal in shape, with the base being many times the size of the final top-most floor. Each floor acts as a balcony for the floor above, making a staggered descent capable when the crater is emptied of water. The doors that lead inwards are round, made of metal, and sealed with ancient heavy clamps that keep water from flowing through the tower.   Each level has various fashions of mooring for boats, Airships and other types of vehicles. Only the top-most levels have windows, and those are small and slotted. Built to be impermeable, built to resist the insatiable forces of nature.

Inner Architecture

Those few that have entered the Tower describe it as not unlike a ship in construction. It has holds and various portions dedicated to pumps that lead out of the Tower. Magic lights the hallways and every ten feet there is a bulkhead with a new massive doorway with clamps to seal off the rest of the tower. The floors themselves are labyrinthine. As in, they are maze-like. Built to help defenders defend, or to entrap those within?   Each Level has as many sealed bulkheads as they do open ones. And prisoners are never stored in the same cells twice. The Tower is the perfect prison, impermeable and nearly inescapable.
Alternative Names
The Sunken Tower, The Tower of Internment, The Resort of Vhaskus
Type
Tower, Water
Parent Location
Dromund Peak
Owning Organization
Forkden
Escaping the Tower By the official records, no one has ever made an unsanctioned departure from the depths of the Sunken Tower. However, every lowlife knows someone who claims to have heard of an escape or two.
 

Where are these quotes from?

  The Tales of Dromund were written from collated interviews just after the turn of the 12th century. The government of Forkden issued a comment on the work; stating that it was full of unsubstantiated slander. Of course, that made everyone want to read it.

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Cover image: by HelHeim

Comments

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Sage Dylonishere123
R. Dylon Elder
17 Feb, 2019 23:40

That opening quote alone is worth a like my friend. It sets up how dark the prison can be so well. The spacing is a little off but I think its great. The way you talk about it and its history and the rumors flows very well. It's almost lethargic but still coherent like...hmm..almost like a myth or a fairytale if that makes sense. I loved it.     I like the layout too, you formatted pretty well. Something I did notice that has me all curious is the nature of just how inescapable it is. You say no one escapes, then at the end you say its NEARLY inescapable. I have a feeling it was intended and now I must know lol

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Master Dejers
Dejers Garth
19 Feb, 2019 03:44

Thanks for the comment! I love hearing back from those that read my stuff. It's definitely meant to be a little winding, I'm glad that that seems to have hit the notes I was looking for!   Just because something seems inescapable and nobody ever says they got out and the government agrees doesn't necessarily make it true. ;) After all, would you blather on to your drinking buddy about escaping the secret police? I sure wouldn't.

Sage Dylonishere123
R. Dylon Elder
19 Feb, 2019 03:51

indeeeed. that does make sense lol really curious about that now!

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Siestra
Siestra Towerfall
20 Feb, 2019 00:33

It does feel almost mythical in its description but I can easily see the era of trade that it had as well. Coming across it during its occupation by orcs must have been a frightful sight as well. Then there are the adventures one could have looking for all the things the Mad Lich left behind if one was brave, stupid, or lucky enough to stumble across any of them. Though being locked in the lower levels as a prisoner....well truly i have no words for that description. I could easily imagine this place

Master Dejers
Dejers Garth
20 Feb, 2019 21:24

Mythical was definitely the tone I was going for, thanks for the comment! Glad to see that I've managed to convey enough of my thoughts on it. :D

rathiri
Nikki
20 Feb, 2019 02:55

Very cool! I do feel the opening quote was a little hazy in what the person was saying, but considering they were relating being tortured I guess that makes sense! I do suggest that, since the Internment Office seems to be heavily associated with this place, to maybe give hover text to briefly give context re: who they are? Additionally, I would love to learn more about some of the publicly known (if they are, maybe this Office keeps all knowledge restricted?) traps or secrets you mention that were unearthed through the years!   One thing to mention is, I think the flow would be better if the bottom section was more near the top, and the history was at the bottom instead. Also, I just want to point out a spelling error I noted: In the green box about the orcs, you write "The tribe that inhabited this tribe," maybe you meant 'the tribes that inhabited this area' instead?

Master Dejers
Dejers Garth
20 Feb, 2019 21:27

Mmm, I disagree about the flow. This is just how I format my articles. :D But definitely thanks for the comment! The Quote was definitely meant to be hazy, it's the mood-setter over being the information given. I could definitely add a link to what I have written on the Internment Offices, however, I think that's something I'll approach after the competition. Also be easier once It has it's own stand-alone article. :D   There is a note of OwkZugai appearing out of nowhere. I imagine most of the crazy traps were done with high-level magic. Stuff like ancient warriors frozen until a command signal is given and then unleashed to defend the tower. Stuff like that! However, there's also a word-count to consider.   It's a rather long article already. XD   Thanks for the comment!

20 Feb, 2019 03:59

This article has definitely inspired me to imagine something similar for my own world. The tone really gives me the feeling of the terrifying pressure of this tower above me. I would really like to read more about the Internment Offices. Will they get their own article in the future?   On that note, I noticed that the spelling for the office is a little inconsistent. In the quote at the top and in the tags it is spelt 'Interment' (one n) and everywhere else is 'Internment' (two n). The former connotes a tomb-like ambiance of the tower, which I really enjoy.

Master Dejers
Dejers Garth
20 Feb, 2019 21:30

Happy to have inspired you! The Internment Offices are talked about a little bit in the WIP Forkden article, but, yes! They will be getting their own article much like the Caelfoc Union and the Renai Revenge Court!   Unfortunately, the spelling is Internment. I'm just stumbly from typing out a lot of this on my phone and both of those being valid words so not being caught by my spellchecker. XD   Thanks for the comment!

21 Feb, 2019 02:18

I really like the location, and that half (or more) of it is submerged. It gives a claustrophobic note that matches your writing style. I had problems at first figuring out who owns the tower now, but that is settled: It was constructed by a lich and is now used as a prison by the Forkden right?   Also, just for understanding: If the water is lowered, it would be possible to enter the lower levels? If not they are all on their own? The water can be lowered on purpose from the outside world right?

Master Dejers
Dejers Garth
21 Feb, 2019 13:35

Many thanks! We'll over half is definitely submerged at most times. And thanks for that note!   As it does start with the history, the ownership isn't supposed to be fully apparent from the beginning, so I don't see an issue there. Vhaskus constructed the Tower and it's now in use as the main base/prison of the Internment Office which is a branch of Forkden's Government.   If the water lowers, you can easily enter the lower levels! There are also stairways, etc coming from the higher floors down. However, the lowering of the water is definitely an issue. It's not so much purposeful; as it is requiring a vast amount of resources and time.   Thanks for the comment!

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