Link to More Developed OOC The Map Viystea, a land torn asunder by the meddling of the Corvus in eons long past. The West trudges on as warlike clan spills the blood of warlike clan in the long shadow of the twin nations that still cling to the ideals of the Old Empire, but even they twist and writhe in webs of conspiracy over petty differences. It is now, in the Third Age as the frost creeps back northward that the realms of mortals once again wring their hands in plotting, shields and axes are taken off the wall and life returns to normal. Although, there are machinations afoot that put the most complex webs of lies and betrayal to shame in the realm of Viystea. Zheng Feng, a famous Ling author, archaeologist and adventurer traveled to the Aunthayavon Peninsula in search of new species and new experiences for a new book. Above all, more than the great serpents, the giant insects and the bat-men, he sought the Old Men of the Mountain, of which tales and rumors abound from the highest courts of Ling to the seediest taverns at port. The Old Men of the Mountain are but a recent discovery by all, and not even the Corvus, who know more than most about Viystea and its nature are baffled by their surfacing. The peninsula of Aunthayavon has always been a wild land with jungle so thick few have braved them and fewer have returned from such foolish endeavors. Zheng Feng, experienced and uncommonly lucky adventurer seemingly vanished, the last anyone knew of him was that he wanted to speak to the Old Men of the Mountain. He set out with his goal and the only thing to show for his effort was a torn and wrinkled journal, soaked through with jungle rain in most places save for a few pages. "Tall, deliberate[...]always cloaked in robes of the same black as a cave you can not see down." This excerpt is the only real proof of the Old Men of the Mountain and their appearance, found three weeks after his voyage from Ling, his arrival and his disappearance. Three days after, an Austhalti merchant fleet never returned from its voyage to Ling. The sea was supposed to be calm around Austhalti and the rest of the Western Seas. Rumors from sailors come to port in Austhalti's port towns and trade posts tell of black masses, creeping mists and night skies of unnaturally black pitch. The coasts are more sinister, fishermen bring up death in their nets and the sea smells of wrongness. These foul sights and treacheries beyond comprehension have pinned several nations' scorn and distrust firmly on the Corvus, the crowmen of the Southern mountains, as their meddling into a mysterious plane of existence is what had brought magic into the world so many eons ago and tales from travellers and Corvus alike speak of their fixation of studying the effects and anomalies of this plane they refer to ominously as "The Far Side". Not long after emergence of the creeping darkness around Austhalti, a Corvus scholar came across a mysterious artifact while searching for the cause of phenomina attributed to The Far Side to seal it off at the source. The scholar, Fenron, had attempted to create a Seal about the artifact and find a way to remove it without disturbing the rift it seemed to be causing between Viystea and The Far Side as if it were an obstruction blocking a gate from closing. Before he could find an answer to what it was or how it got there, an Austhalti fleet happened upon the cave and apprehended Fenron and ceased the artifact, despite the Corvus' urgent warnings. Upon the second night of the voyage, the artifact awoke from its dormancy and some otherworldly power consumed the fleet. Of the twenty ships that had set out in search of the source of the darkness, only three returned, including by chance the artifact. It now lays in the hands of the Austhalti, and what they decide to do may very well determine the fate of Viystea. Never before in history has any nation possessed such a dangerous artifact, not since the Corvus first breached the boundries to The Far Side so many years ago. Now suffering the scrutiny and malice of the world at large, the Corvus are trying desperately to locate and contain the artifact and prevent forces that do not understand the powers they are tampering with from causing a cataclysm that could once again change the world... or end it. A travelling Ling scholar, Xi Hao, has caught word that one of the Austhalti generals is proposing that the artifact, now a great state secret, be used as a weapon against their eternal enemies of Andvalt, the other great elvish empire. Knowing the importance of acting quickly, she rushed to the booming port city of Summerhold with a plan. Calling out for adventurers, mercenaries, and any and all seeking fame, glory, and riches, she set out to gather a small, diverse team that would be unbound by law or tradition to reclaim this artifact and preventing it from reaching the apex of its potential; there is no knowing the devastation that would be unleashed upon the world. Meanwhile, unbeknownst to the world at large, there are stirrings in the dreaded Aunthayavon Peninsula. The Old Men of the Mountain are set to become more than just ominous whispers of wary travelers and scholars; their machinations are unknown, but almost certainly sinister. It won't be long until Viystea knows a terror unlike anything it had experienced before. ~~~ STANDARDS ~~~ Whispers From the Mountain is a dark-fantasy, low-magic, Early-Medieval fantasy RP that takes place in an era comparable to our own world’s 900-1000 AD timespan. This RP holds its players to a high writing standard (few typos, grammar errors, the ability to write at least three paragraphs per post, which is only 12-15 sentences, really) and we express the right to deny those that do not meet the standards the GMs have set forth. The GMs would like players to have the ability to create believable, interesting characters or to work with them to achieve that standard. Furthermore, prospective players should have passing knowledge on Early Medieval society or the willingness to ask the GMs about the subject. The GMs are more than willing to help anyone asking for assistance in anything the player would need. Although the RP is set in a world that jumps around in timespans, with 900s-1000s clashing with the 1500s at times with Corvus, Viystea itself has its own lore, some created by the GMs, but most created by the players themselves as time goes on from anything from backstories in the character sheets to mentions of historical events, legends, etc. As implied by some of the plot written above these standards, this RP shares some themes from Lovecraftian or "Cosmic" horror, and is influenced by the insanity-inducing mythos of H.P. Lovecraft and other writers in the same vein. As per the wishes of the GMs and the atmosphere of EXTREME HOPELESSNESS AND DESPAIR player death is a thing. Don't worry, they won't be arbitrary or random. Do something that'll get your character killed and he dies. Whether it be city guard or the otherworldly horrors from beyond the veil-between, your character is mortal. Overall, the GMs of this RP would be happy to work with those willing to join us on a dark, gritty adventure through an original land where players get to have a large role in creating its lore and explore the world. Now that we have given you what we think will get you interested, feel free to voice your interest and any questions here. Thank you!