As some of you may know, we're working in the background on a campaign setting called Fractured Worlds, and this week we want to bring you a preview of one of the many realms/nations you can encounter on the Silver Sea of the Fractured Worlds campaign setting.
Please note that this is not the final as it will appear in the Campaign Setting, though many details will likely remain the same.
We hope you enjoy. :)
The not-island, freshwater haven
Capital: Aquaris (1,260)
Notable Settlements: Gateway (200)
Total Population: 20,702 (40% merfolk, 25% aquatic elves, 10% sahuagin, 10 merfolk, 5% bullywugs, 5% kuo-toa, 1% aboleth, 4% other (surface-dwelling creatures and others))
Exports: coral, food (mostly fish, but kelp and algae as well), freshwater,
Imports: lumber, metal, stone
Ruler: The Underking
Government: A council of the undersea races (no non-aquatic creatures are allowed on the council), who vote once per decade for the Underking (called this regardless of gender).
Languages: Aquan, Common, Elvish, Merfolk
Religion: The Waterlord, Dark-Trench-Means-Danger
The Bubble is an oddity even in the Fractured Lands. Where the rest of the areas are islands resting on the sea, the Bubble is an enormous bubble of water, some 50 miles in diameter (in all dimensions), that rests upon the sea itself. Where it rests, a few hundred meters sit upon the water's surface, serving as the only entrance into the area, for anyone unable to either sail or fly. The area of the Bubble that sits in this area is heavily guarded by patrols of merfolk and aquatic elves, working together under the leadership of a few aboleth “captains” to ensure that any outsiders passing into the area are checked and pay any appropriate taxes, in a similar manner to most of the other islands and countries.
Here, in the Bubble, the races work together, to ensure that the aquatic races are kept in control against the more numerous air-breathers. As such, it is not unusual to see aboleth mingling with aquatic elves, as their mutual need for protection overcomes the normal restrictions on working across racial borders.
The current Underking reigns supreme, having been voted into power for the last several hundred years (one of the few facts that the residents of the Bubble remember from before the Bubble arrived on the World Ocean). His reign is nearing an end however as he, and the other aboleth within the Bubble, are struggling with the concept that THEY do not remember what happened before the arrival on the World Ocean. Their racial memory seems shot - they remember the world that was. They even remember the multiverse that came before the previous one, and how that one ended. But the end that came upon the multiverse before the World Ocean remains a complete blank, and they are worried that this is the END of all things. Not just this multiverse, but all multiverses, and it is slowly eroding the mind of the current Underking, something that the other members of the ruling council all see slowly creeping in.
The Bubble itself is an oddity. Not only is it a giant blob of freshwater, floating upon a saltwater ocean, where the waters somehow never mix, but within its confines are floating reefs, and cities where the aquatic races make their homes, hunt (or even breed) fish, and live their daily lives, well aware that any threat which the Bubble might face is well protected by the fact that most airbreathers would be unable to function there, within a matter of minutes. Even so, their borders are guarded jealously, by strong patrols to ensure that their borders remain safe.
The Forgetting Depths
The Underking mind has begun to deteriorate rapidly, and it has become a grave concern for the ruling council. They seek a group of skilled adventurers to embark on a perilous journey into the depths of The Bubble, where they believe an ancient artifact lies dormant. The artifact is rumored to hold the key to restoring the Underking's lost memories and preventing the loss of society as the aboleths and others know it.
Unexplained incidents of fish turning foul and freshwater turning brackish have plagued The Bubble's territories. The aquatic races suspect foul play and fear an unknown enemy threatens their livelihood. The council wants to hire a group of capable heroes to find and confront the source of the blight. At the heart of the corruption sits a horribly twisted and mutated creature, an ancient qlippoth/obyrith lord.