Far below the dark majestic, treacherous jungles of Xenthropa in the Ninth World lies the remnants of a once awe-inspiring humanoid-like civilization.
Nearly a century ago, the Byaralaunts’ knowledge of gravity-defying architecture, and symbiotic relationship with the strange rock and plant environment around them produced the marvelous subterranean city of Zoramantathine.
The city’s people lived for generations in harmony with the unusual, and often times sentient life forms that also made their home in the fascinating underground kingdom.
Unfortunately, the technological and biological wonders of the great city came to the attention of a trio of automaton kings known as The Twisted Emperors of the Savage Steel who wanted to harvest a giant plant that grew around the Byaralaunts’ city.
The twisted mechanical robots claimed they wished to “save the denizens from a catastrophe” involving the plant.
The people of Zoramantathine were unwilling to allow the emperors to collect the giant plant known as Iorthatam and sought the help of outsiders in protecting the sentient life form.
Quazerdale, a mysterious adventurer who frequented the city, offered to help the Byaralaunts after claiming to have heard of a plot by the emperors to introduce a virus into Zoramantathine which would slowly decay its inhabitants. Quazerdale, who claims to be a scientist of sorts, concocted an anti-virus that quickly spread throughout the whole living city to protect it from the machinations of the steel emperors.
Unbeknownst to Quazerdale (although there are whispers from many he was well aware), an ambitious and malcontent Byaralaunt scientist known as Kabrian was swayed by the steel emperors to thwart Quazerdale’s efforts. Kabrian introduced an undetectable agent into the anti-virus which slowly began to devastate, or in some cases horrifically corrupt most of the organic life in the city.
Blame fell unto Quazerdale who denies any wrongdoing and asserts that he has been looking for a cure for the living city and its denizens since the incident. Many are still questioning how his attempt to save such a great city ended in a great catastrophe.
Quazerdale is one of the NPCs that players may encounter in my Numenera RPG campaign, The Paranoid Automaton. He figures prominently in the chapter devoted to the deadly jungles of Xenthropa where players must find a guide in order to traverse safely through the perilous and inhospitable land.
At certain points during the adventure, questions of trust begin to come into mind regarding Quazerdale and his true nature, which is briefly touched upon, but never fully revealed.
Quazerdale will tell extraordinary tales of himself including his origins.
By his account, he is not of the Ninth World, but comes from a previous age and world which he is desperately striving to get back to – where a wife and daughter await him in a floating glass utopian city that floats in the sky.
However, his goal of getting back to his beloved home of his namesake may inadvertently lead to the undoing of certain creatures or even civilizations of the Ninth World.
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