Tahl'Maran (Tall Mah•rahn)

"No one questioned the wizard, Asandromere, when he suggested those eight other-worldly portals led straight back to Orr. It made it seem that our humble world was at the center of the universe, but Salem argued this wasn't so; it was merely the center of the Nexus, and that alone was dangerous enough.   His observations struck fear in the hearts of leaders — far and wide — whether human or dwarven, giant or elven. Even the wildest of the Faefolk paid attention. Silently, they all listened to his plan."
— Student observer present at the N9 Symposium


Mostly, it's just illusion — smoke and mirrors to trick the eye. Anyone looking through a rift from their side of the universe sees nothing more than a rough-hewn wall of granite. Anyone who understands rifts, however, and how their open-ended portals work, knows they are flexible. They can expand, or be nudged a few degrees in any direction — at least on two axes.   Even long before the destruction of Ahn Jaleen, some ancient culture had carved the gateways into the walls of the cavern, one for each rift that it represents. There are eight of them here. Beautiful, delicate designs hand-hewn with hammers and chisels mimic stone bases and stylobates upon which their colonnades stand. Each portal is flanked by two columns, one on either side, with delightful scenes etched into the stone behind and between. These columns rise at least ten feet high and are capped with intricately carved capitals and friezes that tell stories in compact, base relief.   The portals shimmer and ripple like vertical pools of water. If the lighting is just right, one can see through the passage and into the other world. It is suggested that all of these rifts are subterranean, bound together like spokes on a wheel, with our world, Orr, as the hub. Beyond this world, though, no one is certain about the worlds in the Filament, caught in the spaces in between. Exploration is a slow, churning machine.     The cavern itself is subterranean with a wide, circular apex a quarter mile above, which would seem as though it were a man made and intentional oculus were it not for its coarse and craggy ridge. The wide, winding path within is, however, consistent with man made efforts, and wide enough to allow the passing of three horse widths across. It is the theory of some archaeologists that this was created by invading forces sometime around the Sacking of the World. Aside from this causeway, there are three other tunnels that enter the Tahl'Maran, two of which are passable only by the much smaller denizens of Orr. The last leads into a network of subterranean tunnels that have yet to be fully explored.   Carved into the granite underground of the Tahl'Maran is a series of quarters intended for comfort, fed ostensibly by one or more underground springs and a waterfall from above. There is a receiving hall, a banquet hall, and the grand parlor where Salem Asandromere made his home during his explorations. Deeper into the tunnels are military quarters, and even places to house livestock.  


The wizard had placed his stone monoliths strategically, each one six feet from its respective portal, and the space between them is only as wide as a man is tall. Outwardly, their faces remain rough and bland, a means to dull the attention and suggest to others beyond that there is nothing of interest awaiting them. The monoliths, inward facing sides, as he had suggested, are carved in keeping with the ancient structure, but also leave behind a message about the Tahl'Maran, about the Nexus of Nyn, and all the worlds he believed are captive in between.   The ruins of Ahn Jaleen surround the Tahl'Maran entrance at the surface, and despite its dilapidated, overgrown image, still houses the remnants of that great city colloquially referred to as the "Rabbit Riders of Ahn Jaleen". This combined civilization of sprites, pixies, and fairies are more than rabbit riders. Indeed, most of them train and ride hares, red-eye ravens, and falcons. With their aid, Salem Asandromere was able to erect the extensive defense system, known to us now as the Labyrinth of Ahn Jaleen, which they maintain to this day. It should be noted, that — quite by accident — the wizard, Salem Asandromere is responsible for the accidental founding of the "City on the Rim" or Crescent City, most known as just the "Rim". From all corners of the world, citizens of Orr have answered the call in defense of the land and have gathered here, on the Rim, in organized efforts, from all cultures (including the most passive of creatures), to join at least one of the current organizations responsible for the safety and well being of Orr.
Room, Natural, Cavern
Parent Location
Tablets of the Tahl'Maran
Item | Oct 8, 2022

Cover image: by JustBirch


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