Memories of Connor's Adventures

Orlando the Adventurer pulled a Scimitar from beneath his Robes and smiled...

Wednesday, 28 September 2016

Exploring Mystara: The Key Islands

Background Located  some  two  weeks  sailing  across  the  Sea  of  Dread  at  a  bearing  sixty  degrees  west  of  south  from White  Island  in  Ierendi.  The  Key  Islands  were  discovered  by  chance  by  the  Navigator  Fester  Fenswick, a  Gnome  previously  of  Hillforge.  The  location  is  passed  word  of  mouth  though  Fester  Fenswick  is said  to  have  marked  the  location  on  two  bronze  keys. The  Key  Islands  consist  of  a  larger  island  known  as  Settlement  Island,  and  a  smaller  island  known  as Bird’s  Nest  Island.  While  Bird’s  Nest  Island  is  precisely  what  it  sounds  like  –  a  grass  covered  island about  ten  square  miles  in  area  and  populated  by  numerous  bird  nests,  Settlement  Island  on  the  other hand  is  a  somewhat  larger  land  dominated  by  mangrove  swamps.  It  teems  with  life.  Giant  Mud-crabs, Fish.  Consistent  rainfall  ensures  a  year  round  supply  of  drinking  water  allowing  its  only  colony  to survive.

Hidden  in  the  Mangroves  is  the  single  settlement  of  Pensel  (a  gnome  word  meaning  Swamp Settlement).  Its  made  up  of  the  decks  of  wrecked  sailing  ships  stilted  above  the  swamp  on  broken ships  masts.  The  three  hundred  Gnomes  currently  in  residence  are  a  resilient  lot  subsisting  on  the Island  food  supply  between  the  occasional  Gnomish  resupply  vessel. The  Shipwreck  Bore Between  Settlement  Island  and  Bird’s  Nest  Island  is  a  vicious  whirlpool  that  continuously  eats  ships dragging  the  vessels  and  their  unweary  crews  to  the  sea  floor.  Most  know  how  to  navigate  the  Bore but  a  few  visitors  were  caught  unawares.  Consequently  the  Bore  has  claimed  several  vessels  which litter  the  gap  between  the  Islands.  There  is  treasure  in  the  wrecks  but  the  Islanders  don’t  like  strangers looting  that  which  they  regard  as  their  own.

For the DM
The islands serve as a  vital stop over for anyone seeking to cross the Sea of Dread. They are strategic in their position.

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