The Nightmare Before the Dream
Endenmere at night
Endenmere (once known as Bloodsteps) is the former capital of the orcish kingdom of Blackreign. When King Roderick claimed the city for his own, he renamed it and made it his seat of power. Endenmere was given the title “The Final City” as it was the last and most glorious victory in Roderick’s war for his kingdom.
The city is a massive maze of buildings set at the foot of a tremendous peak. The poorer citizens of Endenmere are gathered around the mountain’s base, while the nobility has taken to constructing opulent estates into the mountain’s sides. At the peak of the tor lies King Roderick’s palace – a collection of arches, towers and bridges that stand behind high walls. The surviving members of the Inner Circle all keep quarters on the palace grounds, though it’s rare for any of them (save Edward Courtland) to be present there.
Endenmere occupies a site of geographic importance, tucked into the lone pass through the Grueling Range and perched upon the Lakerun River’s main tributary. The city’s position allows it to capitalize on most of the trade that flows across the continent from the turbulent, frozen waters of Icen Reach to the comparatively calm expanses of Blackdepths Ocean.
Despite Endenmere’s apparent wealth, poverty still exists. The Base District (as those quarters built at the mountain’s foot are known) is a collection of slums and ghettos populated by poor peasants and over-worked servants. Endenmere’s guards (known as Keepers) though present, have far too much ground to cover to be truly effective at preventing crimes such as burglary or theft. However, murder and other violent offenses are kept to a minimum even in the most destitute neighborhoods.
The Base District’s most notable feature is a massive circular arena dubbed “the pit” (or “the howling pit” to those unfortunate enough to live nearby). The pit is a center of gladiatorial combat, where experts in physical conflict compete in mock battles, team skirmishes and (the most popular and rewarding) one-on-one duels. These contests are rarely fought to the death and the most talented gladiators earn tremendous livings. Endenmere’s small orc population has a significant presence at the pit. Both the arena’s current champion (Waarot the Feasting) and it’s proprietor (Naffgrod) are orcs.
The Climb (as the wealthier districts upon the mountain are known) is far safer and serves as the hub of human culture. Most of the Kingdom’s artists, politicians, and educators keep at least one home somewhere within Endenmere’s Climb. The Climb also houses the city’s centers of learning, the college of magic being the largest and most famous amongst them. It’s rare for anyone not born into wealth to practice wizardry. This fact has served the college well, and it has grown into a powerful political and economical force as a result. The college of magic oversees all other educational centers and it even boasts a member of the Inner Circle amongst its ranks ( Pinnacle Kevon Linwood).