Saturday 20 May 2023

Hex Crawl 23 #140: Lake Dhalluwa

 Seven hexes north, three northeast of Alakran.


Ignore those intriguing icons at the edge of the hex for now. We are at the lonely and untenanted shores of Dhalluwa. The drought that plagues the southern land has not reached here yet; the double lake pooled in a cup of hills holds water year-round, but only in winter does it overspill its western bank in a spectacular 100 foot cliff-face fall, to revive the dry wadi known as the Scrape of Dhalluwa, running westward to join the Shi-Ar.

Why is the lake shunned? It may have to do with history: a carving on another cliff at the far east of the lakes records the rebellion and defeat of the Leper Battalion many hundreds of years ago. Chased to the lake and surrounded on all sides, they fell on their swords and were burned on pyres by their servants (lepers with servants? Then again -- some historians maintain they were not literally afflicted with leprosy, just the recipients of an unflattering nickname). The ashes were sealed in lead and dropped in the lake.

If the cremated unfortunates left any treasure, ghosts, mementos, or prophecies, they have either been ignored or taken care of by the few souls who come here to weep into the lake and gain some small validation of their inner misery.

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