Dunn Dierdiere Bog
This location has been one that is to be avoided by the majority of travelers and explorers alike. Rumors of terrible weeping spirits and strange lights in the night that lead the unwary into their doom are popular folk tales and legends among the people familiar with the realm, but for those small pockets of refugee Seanachaisians that make their home here, it is a safe haven and a chance to build something from the ashes of what once was.
The swampy mire that dominates the vast majority of this enormous expanse is the largest of its kind in the world, and predates the Blight significantly. The Bog has been many things in its time from a sacrificial dumping ground for primitive cults, a source of peat, and for a short time the site of a scientific outpost connected to the University of the Lighted Way. Within its borders are vast expanses of marsh and swamplands, and a delta bayou that runs along the coastal regions at the edge of the Blight itself.
While a great deal of mutations have occurred here since the Blight in both flora and fauna alike, it remains unique in all the land due to the way the relationship between the water table and the trees of the bog process the toxicity of the Void energy that saturates the areas in the north. As the salt water of the Ephemeral Sea filters into the brackish water of the Bog, the salts seem to absorb a large portion of the toxic elements and as they move further into the fresher waters of the southern regions, the saturated salt water sinks to the bottom, separating in a way and isolating much of the negative effects as the Void elements are pulled into the hydric mud and sand at the basin of the waterways. From there the cypress and mangrove trees that make up a large portion of the woodlands that remain soak in much of the essences and filter them into themselves. While this causes a wide variety of mutations in these trees, most of them seem to be fairly benign and the trees continue to thrive through the changes that occur to them. Since these trees make up the northern portions of the bog, this further protects many of the remaining hardwood trees that are hidden towards the heart of the swamplands. It is in this region that the Seanachaisian settlements are located. The southern regions of the swamp are dominated by the dead remains of old oaks, but are primarily covered by a multitude of dead sea grass, marshmallow, cattails, dead bushes and patches of tainted sugarcane and bamboo. Unless one knows how to navigate the locations within the Bog well, it is easy to get lost quickly as what little light there already is fades quickly to darkness as you enter the overgrowth, and there are many dangerous creatures which call this location home, more than have been properly documented.
The Bog gets its name from the countless sightings of the Weeping Woman or the Sister of Sorrows as she is sometimes called. It is said that to see her is an ill omen of a death to be, and that she weeps because she sees every soul that comes across her vision in their last moments, the weight of that knowing the cause of constant sorrow. This is another reason so many avoid straying too close to the Bog, though the inhabitants view her existence as a thing to be respected and even cherished, as many believe her to be a spirit of one of their own, weeping for the loss of her people.
The location fluctuates in temperature often, though stay roughly around a temperate 25 degrees, though these temperatures do drop significantly in winter, dropping down to freezing levels and causing much of the waterways to become locked in ice. The rains are fairly regular and constant, worsening during the spring months, but the overgrowth and thick tree canopy in the inner regions keep much of the direct downpower funneled from the leaves and branches and down the trucks of the trees where it is deposited into the waters below.
Fauna & Flora
Many trees can be found within the Bog, though all of them are heavily tainted and unable to be used for very much aside from the natural purpose within their ecosystem. Maple, willow, aspen cottonwood, ash, elm, water oak, and birch are all fairly common in their interior, though most are now solid black or grey in color and their leaves misshapen. The hardwood trees also have a common tendency to show the damage to their interior vascular systems through the tumorous grows on their trucks, roots, and branches, and their often twisted and uneven growth patterns. These mutations grow far more drastic as one moves further north towards the delta regions, there the cypress and mangrove forests a re filled with trees bent at odd angles, bark and leaves of a wide variety of violet and black hues, and on occasion even exhibiting animated qualities, forming strangely humanoid features such as eyes and mouths. These horrifying mutants are to be avoided at all costs. The animal life is incredibly varied, though much like the trees and other plant life, it too remains mutated and changed by the saturation of the Void energies in the homes and food of the native creatures. Much of the original fauna perished quickly following the blight, and even more that remained is incredibly dangerous. Alligators and snakes that drift along the waterways just below the surface, now black with the stain of the Void and twice as viscous as they once were, biting and venomous insects that carry lethal diseases, and even fish that have become aggressive and dangerous. The changes that occur here are impossible to fully document, though certain standards of life remain. The Seanachaisians that inhabit the location have found a type of symbiotic harmony with the life here, and have, over the years, become quite adept at both avoiding danger, and utilizing as much of the wildlife as possible in positive ways such as medicine and even food.
Originally known as the Tindall Wetlands, so named for the explorer that first discovered them, they were deemed too environmentally unstable for habitation by civilized people by the far less developed Becht Empire of the time. Some attempts to utilize the resources such as peat and the hardwoods further in were made, but the terrain and the animal life that inhabited the place was far too difficult to navigate and to tame, so most of the endeavors were abandoned and the location left to its own devices. A small scientific outpost was established in 22 AR, but there was an incident during the first year it was inhabited that led to the deaths and serious injuries of all those that lived and worked within. Details of what caused the calamity were sparse and jumbled, but it appears as though raiders from the interior attacked during the night with the intention of robbing the residents and holding those that survived for hostage, however, something intervened and slew the raiders and most of the staff indiscriminately, and the survivors that were recovered were unable to describe it, all claims telling of something different from one to the next. Many suspect that an unknown disease or toxin was introduced into their food or water and the resulting delirium caused them to turn on one another violently. The Blight and many years that followed left the bog ignored, though as the War of Human Attrition waged on across the lands south of it, it was during this time that the stories of the Weeping Woman began to first surface, troops claiming to see her weeping at the edge of the Bog as they marched to battle, and often believing her presence to be a portent of an upcoming defeat. As the wars began to wind down, several Seanachaisian refugees, desperate to find safe places to hide and recover took it upon themselves to breach the unfriendly borders of the swamplands and explore deeper, hoping for a miracle, and indeed, a miracle is what they discovered. Thanks to their ingenuity and patience, the skill of those initial explorers allowed them to not only find their way to the heart of the swamp, but to craft the first of the tree houses of Soliloquy . This small success was one word of spread quickly to other Seanachaisians, and before too long, paths through the waterways were mapped out in secret, and small skiffs built to ferry families into the interior through the winding bayous. While the dangers of the location could not ever be entirely circumvented, and there were a number of people and even families that did not make it to their destination, those that did quickly adapted to their new surroundings and the strange life that grew around them there. Today, Soliloquy hosts approximately forty or so people, though the number fluctuates and there are small single family dwellings that exist outside the borders of the settlement too, opting for the further safety of isolation. Even these will come out for social events and gatherings however, and occasionally, should one wander close enough to the borders of that place, they might hear the rising sounds of distant and ancient songs spinning out of the darkness.