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Of Portals and Pillars
*a shimmering figure in a red robe appears, a smile across his face*
Ah, you have selected Portals! A wonderful subject, these strange tools permit us to travel vast distances in very little time. We know little about their creation and even their operation has proven difficult to decipher. What we do know is…
*the image of the smiling robed man transforms into a serene beach with stone ruins strewn across the rolling sands and under the crystal blue waves*
Here we see the portal to the north of White Moon Cove. Located just to the south east of the portal stone is a pedestal with 3 slots. Inserting three of the passkeys in the correct order results in a portal appearing.
*the image again shifts, now taking a view looking into the stone archway as portal appears, shimmering in a color that you can’t quite comprehend*
Stepping through the portal will whisk you away in a mere moment to the destination determined by the order of the passkeys. Be warned though, your first few times through the portal can be quite…hurtful. You will be subjected to fearsome colds until you pass through a few times, eventually growing used to the movement. It should be noted that the portal will remain open for roughly 1 minute after a creature enters the portal for the first time. During that time, do NOT try and return back through the portal from the other side.
We do know that the portal sends you to another plane of existence, as it prevents magic from passing through that cannot go to another plane of existence. The nature of that plane is, at present, unknown to us. Additionally, there does seem to be some form of time dilation that happens. Whereas only 1 minute would pass for a creature traversing through the portal, waiting for it to close, and then returning from the other end, for creatures waiting on the original point of departure, approximately 5 minutes would pass. Again, we know little about this effect and recommend further study.
Take note, it may be possible to explore unknown destinations with the proper magic. Use of a hearty enough beast’s senses could perhaps allow a spellcaster to view a destination without exposing themselves to the dangers that likely await. Given that the portal takes 1 minute to shut down and then you need to insert new passkeys to return back to your original destination, you would need to survive whatever awaits for at least that amount of time.
Now to the interesting parts!
*the image shifts, turning into a small clay tablet, roughly the size of a human hand, with a strange rune inscribed on the surface in the Primordial language. Eventually the image shifts, as the runes morph into the letter “A” in Common. After a time, the view zooms out, showing another clay tablet side by side with the original. The new tablet has a slightly differing Primordial rune, which then morphs into the letter “B” in Common. After a few seconds, multiple clay tablets begin appearing, covering the entire Common alphabet. Then a new row of tablets appear, made of a black obsidian, bearing runes in Infernal, which also slowly morph into the Common alphabet. Lastly, a third row of tablets appear, made of Mithril and with runes of Celestial.*
Here we have the passkeys. Each tablet corresponds to a particular letter of the common tongue. There are 3 sets of tablets, one in Primordial, one in Infernal, and one in Celestial. The Primordial tablets are made of clay, the Infernal made of obsidian, and the Celestial made of Mithril. The set in total weighs approximately 50 pounds, so they are not easily transported en mass. We have determined, at least with a reasonably degree of certainty, that the tablets themselves are not magical. Hopefully our industrious blacksmith is capable of creating working copies, though we are still waiting on the results.
To activate the portal, you must insert 3 of the tablets. At present, the known combinations are:
|ISP||Ishah Plains||Cleared||Known||Home of White Moon Cove|
|LAS||Lake Of Songs||Cleared||Known||Home of Ruined Oak|
|FOT||Port Mirandia||Cleared||Known||Home of Port Mirandia|
|DOF||Desert of Flies||Cleared||Known||Home of Shashotep|
|WHI||Unknown||Cleared||Unknown||Home of Briggsdarrow, Island North of Katashaka|
|GQE||Unknown||Cleared||Known||Northwestern Peninsula of Katashaka|
|UIF||Known||Cleared||Known||Near Trader’s Bay, requires double teleportation or extended flight to reach safely.|
|SQW||Unknown||Cleared||Unknown||Home of a glistening desert, Southwest of DOF|
|DRM||Unknown||Cleared||Unknown||Swamp of twisted luck. Crits turn into fumbles, full of aberrations.|
|SLG||Sliver Grove (speculation)||Uncleared||Unknown||???|
|ZHT||Unknown||Uncleared||Unknown||Home of a frozen forest|
|MID||Formerly Port Mirandia||Cleared||None||Deactivated. Utilize at your own peril.|
Each combination starts with the Primordial tablet, then the Infernal, and lastly the Celestial (or PIC for short). ISP brings you home to the White Moon Cove portal, while LAS takes you to the portal near Ruined Oak. Other combinations are to be tried only under extreme caution and supervision. The last adventures that tried an unknown combination…never returned.
Once you insert the passkeys and activate the portal, you may remove the tablets and bring them with you, or leave them in the pedestal at each portal entry. In case you are wondering, activating and portal and not entering seems to leave the portal open for an indefinite period.
*the image reforms to the smiling red robed figure*
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