Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Neighborhoods: The Nobel Quarter Pt. 3 Seawillow House

The tallest and most respected noble house in Stormhaven, the members of the Seawillow elf family are spellcasters of unquestionable wisdom and power, whose influence continues to shape the city’s destiny. However there is a saying amongst Upside Nobility that warns, “Beware the shade provided by Seawillow praise”.

The Outer Wall: Seawillow House is ringed by centuries old willows spaced 50 feet from each other as well as a permanent wall of force between them serving as a 10 foot high outer wall. There is no gate to allow entrance into the estate, but a war horn alerts the nobles within, so that any one of them can lower the wall of force with a word, to allow passage. The word that lowers that wall has been a long sought holy grail amongst the criminal families of the Driftdowns and certain guild leaders in Upside.

The Grounds: The grounds of the Seawillow estate are a fantasy land of clear ponds and canals flowing around islands of weeping willows and stone statues. The hanging branches are magically sculpted to form delicate arches, their tips just caressing the water. When the fancy strikes her, the priestess Senevessa Seawillow writes messages in elven script on the arches using alabaster blossoms. Tiny goldfish flit through the water, feeding on fallen flowers. The goldfish are so tame that they cluster around fingers dipped in the water and will eat food from an elf’s hand. The canals that criss-cross the grounds are never more than six feet deep, their waters sluggish and warm to the touch. The flow of the water is directed by subtle magics that also serve to replenish and purify the streams, so that the water level never fluctuates.

The Main House: The main house is built into a copse of willow trees, their trunks shaped by sorcery into dozens of rooms, branches transformed into decorative pillars and spiraling staircases. The willows blossom all year round, their petals slowly changing from icy white in the winter to bright blue at summer’s height. These petals are so unique that many Stormhaven dyes, perfumes, and potpourri are considered exotic luxuries everywhere else in the world. It is rumored that some of these petals are used in unique alchemical creations, as well as a few poisons. The decorations of Seawillow house reflect the families loving ties with the ocean, with several rooms completely dedicated to displaying the many cultural artifacts family members have found during their voyages. Among these treasures are the war flag of Sulemon the Pirate King, the golden anchor of the fabled treasure barge Colossus and the cursed treasure map Kingkiller, of which its ever changing markings lead only to the grave. The main house is currently occupied by eight members of the Seawillow family, fifteen servants (all elves) and fifty guards trained in magic and armed with masterwork longswords and longbows. This particular order of warrior/wizards claims an ancestry from an ancient city in a jungle from a time before the sun.

1 comment:

James said...

James loves this post! Auge hates it except for some certain willow trees. (rubs hands greedily together)