The Forge of Souls is former holy site of Ko'suth
cursed by The Red God
at an unknown time during the Second Age. The exact form of the Forge is variable, though it usually appears as a well or large basin and is always filled with jet black, liquid fire. The Forge is the progenitor of numerous powerful magical artifacts (see below), however the creation of these always comes at steep cost; most commonly, the Forge demands a mortal sacrifice. The Forge commands unusual power of its own, including the ability to translocate
itself at-will; thus far, the Forge has never been found in the same place twice.
In the Second Age
In the Forge's original incarnation, it was a site of holy power guarded by Warrior-priests of Ko'suth. In this holy form it is unlikely that the forge required souls as payment, and thus the holy site likely went by a different, yet unknown title. This blessed forge operated with pure-hearted purpose and spoke only with good-aligned figures in great need of a weapon to vanquish true evil.
In the Third Age
A murderous cult of the Red God assaulted the forge and corrupted the blessed site with a single drop of the Red God's blood. In its corrupted state, the Forge of Souls exists purely to tempt dark hearts to murder and guide them to a path of greater evil. The dark heart and evil powers of the Forge grow with each soul fed to it, and so too do they grow as its weapons bring more and greater evil to the world of mortals.
Prophecy of Purification
"For years, diviners and prophets have pieced together prophetic visions and omens in attempts to cleanse the corrupted forge. To write the words of prophecy here, naturally, would rearrange one's mind in such violent fashion as to make one wish for rapid expiration yet it seems improbable that these prophecies refer to anything but the corrupted Forge. The heart of the matter is simple however: one who is truly pure of soul (and surely lacking sense) can drink from the unholy black fires of the Forge. This rather unenviable soul must swallow every drop of hellfire, surely giving their life in this miserable process. So far, none yet have had the constitution to survive a single sip; the entire basin seems is likely a sight more unpleasant."
An excerpt from Histories of Things Dark and Curious, penned by Lord Pengrove, Master of Histories
As the Blessed Forge
Hammer of Creation
As The Forge of Souls