Before Restoration (c. 957~966)

After Restoration (c. 957~966)

    Egreth Castle, Second Age of Magic

Egreth was, and still is, reputed to be the most dangerous and deadly locale in the kingdom. Perched on a rocky outcrop, the castle overlooks the Great Sea. Its towers rise above the steep cliffs to afford a marvelous view of the meadow to the west, and beyond that the twisted Egreth Forest where dwell the night gaunts. To the north is the mighty Fort Griffspotter, which stands atop a cliff where the turbulent Westlands Frigid River pours into an ocean that stretched out of sight to the east. Its local rivers are populated by vicious river sharks.

The walls of this castle have witnesses many battles, for boundless love, fantastic wealth, and absolute power. Egreth Castle served as the seat of royal power from the reign of Duncanthrax (who moved the capital from Largoneth in 660 GUE) through the reign of Dimwit (who moved the capital to Flatheadia in 771 GUE). Protected from hostile invaders from the sea by Fort Griffspotter in the northeast, Egreth also happened to be the major sight in the Westlands of the vast tunneling project implemented by Duncanthrax to move the Empire underground. In the caverns near Egreth can be found the famous Glass Maze, Bozbarland, and the Great Underground Highway #2. In the decade just before the end of the First Age of Mgaic (966 GUE), the ruined castle was restored to its former glory.

It is of slight historical interest to note that Egreth was best remembered in the magical community for the famed Coal-Walkers of Egreth.

Swarms of bloodsucking locusts so thick as to blot out the sun like a black storm cloud, gather in the meadows to the west of the castle, where they pick adventurers clean to the bones. Also in the vicinity are hellhounds and three-headed boa constrictors.

Long years had caused Largoneth to be disused. Instead of reigning from the capital, one of Pseudo-Duncanthrax’s first acts as king was to move the government of Quendor from Largoneth to Egreth in 660 GUE, where the seat of power would remain for over a hundred years. The castle was to be moved as well. The people were pleased by this decree, but they absolutely swooned when he insisted that the job be done without disassembling a single piece of the castle. On several occasions during the moving process, entire legions of workers were crushed beneath the awkwardly moving mobile palace. So within the first six months of his rule, Pseudo-Duncanthrax had caused more unnecessary deaths than the entire Entharion Dynasty combined. Because it would be impossible to reign comfortably from the moving castle, the capital was temporarily located at Borphee.

Despite this tremendous move, Castle Largoneth still remains there to this day which has baffled historians for many generations. While the underground caverns that still held the Great Terror were not touched, it is unknown whether the levels of the castle that are seen today are remnants of the original, or merely a reconstruction upon the same foundation.

Another grandiose project of Pseudo-Duncanthrax was the Glass Maze, built on a whim in the same year, to amuse his friends and torture his enemies. This labyrinth of 27 cubicles, full of devilish pitfalls, is still today located underground near Egreth Castle, just off the western branch of the Great Underground Highway #2.

When Pseudo-Duncanthrax founded the Frobozz Magic Construction Company on Arch 19, 668, he began expanding downward in both the eastern and western lands. New caverns and passages were dug in the western lands, chiefly in the vicinity of Egreth Castle and Borphee. This outset of this entire underground project would later become known as the Great Labor.

After the authentic Duncanthrax was reinstated upon the Quendoran throne, he retired with his Queen Esmerelda to the castle at Egreth in 670 GUE. Throughout the remainder of this king’s reign, Egreth Castle was a lively place, the site of daily tournaments, brave knights, daring feats, beautiful princesses, banquets, orgies, and other diversions of the lusty, rowdy king. Great feasts and extravagant parties were held with suckling pigs, berry tarts, and mead. After Duncanthrax’s death in 688, the new owners were not keen on Egreth and the castle fell into gradual decline.

Frank Lloyd Flathead got his big break at the tender age of 17, when his father, King Mumberthrax, commissioned him to design a new wing for Castle Egreth, circa 758. The resulting wing was breathtakingly impressive. As Frank Lloyd himself wrote, “the conjunction of space and time seems to interface in a pre-subjected instantiation of the underrepresented whole.” Frank Lloyd became, overnight, the hottest architect in the Kingdom. The new wing of Egreth collapsed two years later, killing over 4,000 royal guets and was credited to a miscalculation on the stonemason’s part. He was summarily executed.

In 770, King Dimwit Flathead the Excessive decided to move the capital of Quendor from Egreth in the Westlands, to the little-known colony of Aragain in the central Eastlands (which was renamed to Flatheadia). Once the entirety of the new castle was completed, the seat of government was officially movedfrom Egreth to Flatheadia on Jam 14, 771. There it would remain until the fall of the Empire in 883.

Egreth was abandoned, and collected dust, at least until the all sorts of awful creatures moved in. The gradually decaying castle became a place of ill omen, inhabited by trolls, grues, goblins, and even horrible old hobgoblins. Without any people around to drive them out, they had the entire place to themselves. But this free reign did not last long, for soon a bunch of evil magicians practiced their horrid magic spells in the royal rooms and made the creatures their slaves. A succession of magicians continued to use the castle for their black magic until the last of them, Radnor, was defeated during the tenth century.

During the mid-tenth century, the once proud home of King Duncanthrax was no more than a crumbling ruin and a place of ill omen and rumored to contain a greater part of the evil of Quendor. The drawbridge was severely rotted, the moat filled with vicious-looking creatures (the castle' automatic moat-filled was still fully functional), only a single turret was still standing.

Radnor, the last and most dreadful of the black wizards lived within Egreth during the mid-tenth century, surrounded by his monstrous servants, including the night gaunts. Originally, these creatures all lived freely in the Egreth forests. When Radnor took over Egreth Castle, he enslaved these creatures with phychic chains of evil enchantments, binding them with hard work and little food. Summoned incessantly by the evil warlock's mind powers, the night gaunts were quick to mindlessly obey for they feared him greatly.

Sometime between 957 and 966 GUE, a group of adventurers, consisting of Dirinthrax, Lia, Frobwit the Fair, Ryker, Acia, and Gurthark the Stout managed to oust Radnor from Egreth by imprisoning him within a crystal ball. With Radnor defeated, the spirit of Thorman the Red-beard (one of the former occupants who had been defeated by Radnor), told Dirinthrax that he was the true heir to Duncanthrax and the rightful ruler of Egreth and all of Quendor. Lia became his Queen. Thorman then resurrected the crumbling hulk of Egreth Castle into its former glory. The transformation affected even the night gaunts that dwelled within, breaking the powerful hold that Radnor had had over them. Although the night gaunts offered their service to King Dirinthrax and Queen Lia, she dismissed them to return to the forests and live free.

The two magic users set to work making Egreth Castle livable once again. Clearly, in an age dominated by the might of the guilds and the ever-growing power of Syovar, very few people would ever notice this quiet reincarnation of the Flathead dynasty. Dirinthrax and Lia for their own parts never seem to have made any efforts to enforce their claims to royal authority. Having few friends, fewer subjects, and no military of any kind, the two seem to have been content with absolute dominion over their own empty castle, occasionally taking trips to the nearest village to replenish their larder as necessary. Although it is not known to any degree of certainty what fate awaited the two pretenders, various oral traditions from the Egreth area claim that the devastating events of the end of the Age of Magic were barely felt by the castle's owners, and that the last pair of Flathead monarchs lived well into the 11th century, when they finally passed away in silence and obscurity.

During the Great Monster Uprising of the Second Age of Magic, Egreth Castle was again filled with slavering monsters. It was claimed that within, adventurers could be devoured by no less than twenty-two different kinds.

The backside of the Zm1 copper coin has an image of Egreth Castle upon it.