"Nothing arises from the Ashen Sea"
- Aswanar Proverb
Mount Durrodis is the great volcano at the center of the Ashen Sea. This volcano rises out of the Sea of Ash as a great smoking island of immense size. It is the home to Tolkarus, a terribly powerful arch-mage that has constructed a vast fortress in the heart of the volcano on an island at the center of a lake of fire in the belly of the great mountain. This is an active volcano and the lake of molten lava and fire is always bubbling and churning. It is said that the volcano is kept dormant by the sheer power of Tolkarus.
A dragon known as Radergrim dwells in a cavern in the side of Mount Durrodis. This dragon is likely controlled by Tolkarus as well.
The Sea of Ash is the name of the vast lake of ashen mud and water that surrounds Mount Durrodis. This foul concoction is water mixed with volcanic ash, clay and soil. It is a thick, gritty liquid much like soupy mud or quicksand. The ash mud has a powerful “burnt” stench. The ash mud is warm as it is heated by geothermal energy from the lake bottom. Huge vents along the lake bottom occasional spout poisonous gases which explode on the mud surface in giant bubbles. Although it occasionally bubbles, the ash mud is too thick for waves to form and is usually quite calm. Occasionally, strong wind storms will whip the ash mud into a frothy rolling mess. It is difficult to swim through the ash mud and it has a tendency to suck swimmers and objects down into it. "Nothing arises from the Ashen Sea” is a common Aswanar proverb. Bodies and other things are often thrown in to be forgotten.
The Sea of Ash is home to a number of animals that have adapted to life in it. A number of bottom feeding fish live by straining the mud through special gills and extracting nutrients. Others feed on the unique plant life that grows in the silty bottom. The ash shark, a large predatory eel like shark, is a fast and dangerous predator that feeds on everything else in the ash lake. Ash sharks are long sleek predators that grow to 20 feet long.
The Aswanar consider it taboo to venture into the Salt Marshes or the lands beyond (the mountainous region surrounding the Sea of Ash. The region is wild and dangerous. Predators hunt on the slopes of the mountains. The mountains around the Sea of Ash are a desolate region where few people live. There are the encampments of humanoid soldiers that serve the arch-mage Tolkarus. There is the occasional hermit. And there are a few small tribes of aswanar who defy the archmage, risk his wrath and make war with his servants. Most settlements in the region are small and mobile.
There also exist a race of giants here descended from the Secambru giants of old. They are known as Ash Giants and many of them have been enslaved by Tolkarus. However, many more live free in roving bands that hunt throughout the region.
This website was last updated November 30, 2023. Copyright 1990-2023 David M. Roomes.