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Shield of Argus

KEY I5-34A

The congregation moved as one through the cold and sleeping palace. The rows of torches gently flickered as they passed, soft light reflecting on the polished stones of the hallway. The air was still and quiet, save for the echo of their steps. They slithered forward through the corridors until they reached a door, and stopped. It stretched up into the darkness, lit only by the glow of a myriad of blue runes.

A single member moved to the door, and pulled out a small object from their white ornate robes. They pressed it against the door, and suddenly a dazzling light filled the room as the runes grew brighter and brighter, until all light fainted. The once closed doors creaked open, as a gust of cold hair escaped from the other side. The figure placed the key back in their robes and joined the group once more. Together they moved forward through the doors and disappeared into the darkness.

Baseikan Relics

Little is known about the Baseikans. These ancient people have faded from the memories of the land they once lived on, safe for the ruins they left behind. Yet a lingering presence remains, hidden in the myths and legends of the living.

Tales of miraculous artefacts and wonderful weapons fill the dreams of explorers and collectors alike. There are many who would pay handsomely to own such items, and many more who would go a lot further.

As of the year 298 I.A, only few such relics have been discovered. A number of them have seemingly disappeared not long following their arrival, leaving a trail of death in their wake. Others have landed in the hands of private collectors or powerful mages

Shield of Argus

In the year -394 I.A a wandering priest of Argus the Protector, who had been exploring the lands west of Chute, accidentally tripped and stumbled down a hidden cave. The tiefling was looking for a place to establish a new temple for the Lightning Thrower and took the fortunate discovery as a sign from the god himself.

The walls were covered in dull paintings aged by time. Scenes of destruction, people fleeing away from great and terrible beings whose names I could not decipher. The cave itself was no larger than a small room, and quite empty beyond the moss and art that covered its walls. The only notable feature was a small stone podium upon which rested a small shield, hidden beneath dust.
— Day 40 of the Season of Harvest, journal of Jasmin Din

She returned to the cave with a small amount of worshippers. For a while it became their place of worship. The old paintings were renewed, the saviour like wielder of lightning interpreted as Argus himself. When the head priestess passed of old age, the temple was abandoned and the faithful moved to other lands.


They took the shield with them. It had been considered an object of worship, some kind of talisman left by Argus to protect his faithful. It travelled the lands in the hand of believers, carrying countless secrets and worries spoken in hushed words in the dead of the night. Across storms and hardship it served as a beacon of hope, a sign their god was always with them.

The shield never became a famed artefact. It existed only to those who had been gifted with it, or who had stumbled upon it by chance. It was lost and found again by many people, who time and time again felt themselves grow closer to Argus.

Today, the shield is in the possession of the adventurer Amira of the Muhaket'in. She believes that Argus has set that shield upon her path, and seeks to decipher the runes inscribed upon it hoping they will reveal her destiny to her.

Key I5-34A

Warning: the following section contains spoilers about the history of the world.


What many thought of as a talisman had originally been designed by Baseikans as a key. One can imagine such items were common at the time, though few seem to have survived the ravages of time. Key I5-34A was specifically used by a group of Baseikan researchers, and gives access to some of their facilities in which they conducted a wide array of experiments.

Inner Workings

Like much of Baseikan technology, the workings of the key rely on the magic of creatures with an innate connection to the Weave (such as Ikemo or Jinaa). The power of these beings is channelled through the use of the Bassek runes inscribed upon the shield, which in turn will connect to the runes of whatever doors it may open.


Material: Aged silver metal
Size: Palm size.
Appearance: The key is shaped like a small shield with Bassek runes inscribed along its edges. Its surface is smooth though tainted by the passage of time. Under the light of the sun it takes a bluish green tint.

by Ivana Cajina

A Divine Artefact?

Though the key was conceived in a time long before Argus was brought to the continent, the prolonged association between the god and the artefact has transformed the initial nature of the object, as per the Power of Belief.

The shield seems to always find its way in the hands of those who have an affinity with Argus. Its owners claim to feel themselves grow closer to their god as he watches over them.

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Cover image: by Mohammad Ali Berenji


Author's Notes

This took forever to write, god. I still feel like something is missing but f*ck this I'm moving on! Gonna start working on some cities, and also the plant challenge!!

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Sage Dylonishere123
R. Dylon Elder
8 Mar, 2021 20:20

Another awesome article here, changeling! I love it. Lemme start from the top. loved the first quote. Its well written and sets the mood, but i did notice you say As they passed, twice in the same sentence. I do that a lot XD. I would remove one. "As they passed, the rows of torches gently flickered as they passed"     I like how you touch on the relics in general before delving into the shield intself. Its a nice touch that gives depth and history, plus i love the formatting youve done. It just flows so well. I like how argus tripped and fell into the cave. It's like, "ask and ye shall recieve,:" but when the divine has a sense of humor. i actually laughed, though idk if it was intended to be humorous due to the more mysterious side that almost immediately takes over. Maybe i'm just in a lighthearted mood. I liked it all the same.     I also like how someone possessed the shield instead of it being locked away somewhere. It implies it's story is not yet over. That is exciting. OOOOO the plot thickens. The fact that it's a key is just awesome. I realllllllly like that idea. Well done. Im curious as to what one will find if they use it. Awesome work here!

8 Mar, 2021 22:10

Oooh, thank you so much for the lovely comment Dylon!! For starters, thanks for that typo catch, was quite a bit tired when I finished writing this article :')   I'm glad you found the series of event humorous- it wasnt intended as such but I totally see where you're coming from, I quite like the comical aspect you outlined! Glad I got a laugh out of you hehe   And that item is currently in the possession of a PC in my campaign, though she doesn't quite know what it does and why she has it. I'm incredibly excited for her to accidentally activate some things when they go explore some ruins soon, it'll be great!!

Creator of Arda Almayed
Sage Dylonishere123
R. Dylon Elder
8 Mar, 2021 22:24

Yesssss, I'm eager to find out. You be sure to let me know how that goes!

12 Mar, 2021 23:31

I love that the Shield was transformed through the Power of Belief. That's such a cool aspect of your world. :D

Emy x   Etrea | Vazdimet
15 Mar, 2021 13:40

Thank you!! I'm glad to hear you enjoyed it :D!

Creator of Arda Almayed
Journeyman David_Ulph
David Alexander
28 Mar, 2021 17:18

Haha I have to say while this is as usual a fantastic article, TC, my favourite part has to be the spoiler warning. I too always get the urge to hide things with spoilers as "ooh super secret truths" but I'm not writing a book or anything so there's no need?   Other than that, flavour text meshes perfectly with the music choice to really put my mind into the setting? Can't think of the word right now so I'll say immersive if that makes sense! Great writing :-)

Latha math leat! Sending praise from the Hebrides! Check my Summer Camp ramblings out here
28 Mar, 2021 17:45

Thank you for the kind words David!! Yeah these spoiler warnings are complicated lmao, its like these things are core info and I feel like I should have warnings!! But it also makes no sense to write them!   And I'm glad you enjoyed the music! I really love that track, it really pulls me into the world and all and its great that it works for others too :D

Creator of Arda Almayed