The Spiral is the outcome of an accident in the Academica Magicka based in the capital of Ganguk.
It is a perfect circle twenty kilometers in diameter and goes down deep into the earth, with winding roads at the sides of it, leading down into the ground, giving this horrible abyss the name it bears: the Spiral.
The Spiral reaches around five kilometers into the ground, piercing different layers of soil and stone. The Spiral is tapering slowly so the winding roads will eventually meet and leading into the last big cave where the world of mortals meets the world of the Unknown. Some of the Mortal Gods came back with stories of it.
On the side of the winding roads the now native inhabitants have built their homes and lairs and stockrooms. Some of them use them as forward operating bases (FOBs) to engage the Black Fortress, others for science, magic and generally to live in this - for them - foreign world.
The grand cave at the bottom of the Spiral is a wonder you want to see and afterwards you want to forget it all.
The Crimson Cave is the biggest and last chamber at the bottom of the Spiral. Whatever happened as the ritual performed in the Academica Magicka went horribly wrong, it created some kind of gate and connected to another similar location in a different realm. Which made the inhabitants quite angry.
The Crimson Cave is formed by stone and a crimson crystal which gave the cave its name. The formations reflect a light which has no direct source and the so called "demons" are emerging from something which resembles the old Academica Magicka but in a very different way. It is twisted and broken and houses the portal to the other realm no one has seen before.
Alongside the winding roads in destroyed homes and laboratories and ruins the Mortal Gods and other entities with a wish for a glorious death - and maybe loot - will find artifacts, books, tomes, spells and other things the cataclysm brought up from the other realm and from the ruins of the Academica Magicka and the surrounding city.
The Spiral was created during the accident which led to the creation of the sinkhole which would be the Spiral.
Jochiwon as the capital was home to both the Academica Magicka and the Academica Manufactorum. While the Academica Magicka was responsible for creating new types of spells & rituals, the Academica Manufactorum was responsible for every other kind of non-magic usables like drills, quills, military warfare and everyday objects.
Both parts of the Academica worked frequently on projects to bring magic together with more or less common technology. This was the reason why in the depths of the Academica Magicka something went horribly wrong. The scholars and mages were trying to create a new drill to dig deep into the few mountains behind the city of Gwangseong so that they can reach the deeper lodes of iron and other precious things nested into the stone and earth.
The few survivors which didn't got sucked into the portal tells a tale no one wanted to hear and wasn't able to picture it beforehand: the runes used on the diamond tipped drill were a little bit too good and had unexpected side effects. The drill started doing its intended job and opened on contact with the soil the portal into the other realm, "digging" through the fabric of the realm.
The drill couldn't be stopped, it consumed an energy not provided by the researchers and drilled through everything in its way, sucking away stone and metal and wood and people. Slowly the Academica Magicka got sucked in, then the Academica Manufactorum and meter by meter the surrounding twenty square kilometers.
No one knows why it stopped. Why the destruction was not bigger then that. Estimates were that the drill has drilled itself into another world or that someone on the other side of the portal destroyed it.
These "someone" were inhabitants of the other realm. Coincidence or not, on the exact same spot they had built something like an Academica themselfs, which also got destroyed and they are really, really mad at the human world. They flew out and destroyed everything in their wake, causing havoc and sorrow.
After the first waves an army emerged out of the Spiral. It brought more destruction then the lands had ever seen, even during the Times of War.
This army got destroyed after fiery fought battles, sieges and skirmishes. Every country agreed that they can't let it happen again so they built the Black Fortress on the edge of the Spiral.
The Black Fortress is armed to the teeth with poisoned spears, catapults, slingshots and multi-shot ballistae on top and within the thick walls. A bridge spans over the Spiral, the Winged Cut, guarding from above, delivering death on a daily basis.
The Electorial Congregation is the organisation which is now responsible for maintaining the Black Fortress and the Winged Cut. It is divided into two departments: the Black Fortress Sentries and the Congregation of Approval.
The Black Fortress Sentries are tasked with guarding the fortress itself and will bring in new reinforcement and supplies, negotiating with states, merchants and other organisations.
The Congregation of Approval has only one purpose: to test new Mortal Gods applicants and giving out the title of a Mortal God if the applicant survive the test. Yielding will not grant the title, the test has to be done once more.For further information this way:
Tales of the Spiral
The Crimson Cave
"What is the Crimson Cave, you ask? Well, it is a really crimson cave. The light comes from everywhere just like those...things. Winged, with claws, sometimes entirely human until they open their mouths. - The loot? Well, lets say I could buy your tavern and have enough left to squander it for years."
The roads at the side
"I never saw the Spiral before. I just heard tales until becoming a Mortal God and venturing the winding roads into the depth of it. I stank, I was stenched with blood and other liquids before I even got to the bottom. Thinking about, I probably never will. The wonders and terrors in this... place are to great for me to bear."
On loot and other things
"We don't know how and why coins, tomes, weapons and artifacts appear out of nowhere. I asked Gylawn why he raids only the fourth storage and he shrugs with only a few words coming out of his normally chatty mouth: Because there is always something in it.
"If you venture into the depths of the Spiral, keep in mind that your fellow Mortal Gods are as strong or powerful as you, sometimes less, sometimes more. Assume they are all more powerful than you and you are on the safe side. I have seen horrors and unjust actions performed by fellow Mortal Gods on one another. Depending on loot and appearance. Keep a dagger at hand or prepare to speak a deadly spell everytime."