High Ilvarandin is the vibrant heart of the mostly deserted vault of Ilvarandin in Orv. Creatures of many races and types live here in apparent harmony. However, appearances are deceptive. Almost all of the intelligent races found here are hosts for intellect devourers. The main exceptions are vegepygmy and salamander slaves.1
Intellect devourers and hosts
The host bodies inhabited by intellect devourers normally "wear out" within a week or so unless magical means are used to extend their life. This is not an issue in High Ilvarandin, as the intellect devourers have used powerful necromantic magic to ensure no corpse ever rots within the confines of the city.
The intellect devourers have long sought to lure victims to the city, in order to maintain a steady supply of new host bodies. However, the setbacks they have suffered in their war with the neothelids of neighbouring Denebrum has greatly increased the demand for hosts, requiring ambitious new measures to ensure a steady supply. Chief among these is the spread of the drug midnight milk on the surface world, used in conjunction with the artifact known as the dream lens.
High Ilvarandin is bisected by the Irikusk River. The intellect devourers are keen to acquire luxury items, and so maintain trade links with the outside world. Their most notable trading partners are the Denizens of Leng, whose black ships are a common sight on the river.
The southern section of the city, which houses the dream lens, is now protected by a thirty foot high wall on three sides; the river itself is considered sufficient protection to the north.
Unwanted river traffic is attacked by intellect devourers whose hosts are enormous crocodiles, elasmosauruses and water orms. Land routes are equally well guarded, typically by patrols of intellect devourers with giant insects as hosts.1
In order to become one of the city's rulers, an intellect devourer must be powerful enough to convince at least 400 of his brethren to cede authority to him in a process known as melding.
The city generally has up to 20 rulers at any one time.2
Features of High Ilvarandin
The city boasts a number of places of interest.
Archive of Ages
The intellect devourers built this combined museum and mausoleum as a monument to their greatness. Its halls are packed with the relics of the most talented of their hosts, and the preserved bodies of the hosts themselves. Some of these records date from before the Age of Darkness.
Historian Caerilant is the head of the Archive.
The intellect devourers are devoted to physical sensation, and the bathhouse is a popular site for wild parties. Vegepygmy and salamander slaves maintain the various hot and cold baths, springs and gardens.
Furnace-Keeper Laerxniyzon runs the bathhouse.
The Coliseum once featured all manner of gladiatorial contests, as intellect devourers pitted their hosts against one another in front of a baying crowd of their peers. The war with the neothelids has put an end to this, as there are too few hosts to use up in this way.
Arena Master Dakreyos is in charge of the Coliseum.
The menu of the feasting hall changes daily, and it can cater for up to 500 guests. The speciality of the house is sapient creatures, slowly eaten alive. As a result, its storerooms are more like dungeons than larders. The intellect devourers use their healing magic to ensure the victim survives as long as possible.
Lord Feaster Ralnisham is the proprietor of the feasting hall.
The Grand Spire is possibly the tallest building in the city, and it is the location of the dream lens. The building resembles a pink-veined marble obelisk, and is completely lacking in windows and doors. However, from the inside the walls are transparent.
Lens-Keeper Tiluatchek can often be found here, working in his laboratory.3
The city's "Ossuary" is actually a gigantic pit filled with bones. It is home to over 100 ghouls. Chief among them is the ancient Bereshkhani, who is arguably one of the city's most dangerous denizens.4
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 Tim Hitchcock, Brandon Hodge, Michael Kortes, Jason Nelson, Russ Taylor. (2011). Lost Cities of Golarion, p. 9. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-272-2
- ↑ Tim Hitchcock, Brandon Hodge, Michael Kortes, Jason Nelson, Russ Taylor. (2011). Lost Cities of Golarion, p. 12. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-272-2
- ↑ Tim Hitchcock, Brandon Hodge, Michael Kortes, Jason Nelson, Russ Taylor. (2011). Lost Cities of Golarion, p. 9. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-272-2
- ↑ Tim Hitchcock, Brandon Hodge, Michael Kortes, Jason Nelson, Russ Taylor. (2011). Lost Cities of Golarion, p. 9–10. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-272-2