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At the Gallows

"We stand, our fates uncertain, at the gallows."

It is the year 1247 and the Empire is experiencing the golden age of prosperity. It has recently overcome a troubled history. Memories have faded of the Emperor Hawthorne's system of exiling dissidents to the caverns deep below the surface. Towns destroyed during the Vahnatai plagues were rebuilt long ago. Very few realize the significance of Vahnatai Crystal Souls. Only the secret areas of the Empire Archives contain this information, but access is on a need to know. Some history books tell of the Empire being an omnipotent tyrannical force, but most regard this period as a footnote in the grander scale of the Empire's positive achievements. They emphasize how the Empire has provided a peaceful rule for the past few centuries -- a Pax Imperia.

The Empire's wealth and power reaches every corner of the planet. Now the Empire is governed by several smaller sectors overseen by the central government at the heart of Pralgad. The days of true absolute authoritarianism have long since expired. The Emperor is little more than a symbol, representative to the countless bureaucrats and elected officials who maintain the Imperial fabric.

An epic battle against a mighty sorceror

It is the time of a magical renaissance. Magic is seen in more practical uses throughout the Empire. Portal teleportation has been developed to transport large quantities of food and minerals. Some areas have means of long distant communications (some even have a visual aspect). Many magic based technologies lost during the ironcladian rule of the Empire are being rediscovered. Yet still, many scholars speculate much remains hidden.

The hostilities of past have long been forgotten and peace (for the most part) has reigned supreme for over a century. And yet the Empire still maintains a large military of well trained soldiers, mages, and priests. Its function is mostly two-fold now. One is internal security and the other is ceremony. The great wars and conflicts are now a thing of the past. Being soldiers in the Empire means routine, routine, and more routine. Very few truly ever experience real action these days. For instance, the Troglodytes on Pralgad have been acting up lately, but that is about the extreme.

Save a town from lunatic cultists!

Unfortunately, your group is stuck in Ag land, far away from any hostile Troglodyte. Your luck seems to be changing though. After spending two years as soldiers in an agricultural sector in Pralgad, you may finally see some conflict. The past few months have been witness to the rise of a strange group of cultists. At first the Empire ignored these as mere deviants. However, the band has increased in size and ferocity.

So, your superiors have decided to assign your group, of all the others available, to supplement the guard of a town that has recently come under assault. Up until now, the cultist's activities have been limited to raiding a few of the local farms or even looting shops. You doubt that this new turn will produce much more excitement.

Meet new friends and foes

So who knows? This change in routine may lead to action, adventure, and a chance to be free (for the most part) from some paper pushing superior.

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Special thanks to Jamie Clark who helped compile this information. All content, except where noted, is intellectual property of Stareye and may only be reproduced with his explicit permission. Blades of Exile 1997 is a registered trademark of Spiderweb Software and this site has no official relation to Spiderweb Software. 2001