Scenic Overlook
   (see below for
    more images)

   Bat, Giant (GMU)
   Borphee Moss (GMU)
   Cruel Puppet (GMU)
   Demon (GMU)
   Dust Bunny (GMU)
   Eldritch Vapor (GMU)
   Frobgoblin (GMU)
   Ghoul (966)
   Horror (GMU)
   Lucksucker (GMU)
   Monkey Grinder (GMU)
   Nymph (GMU)
   Skeleton (GMU)
   Spider, Giant (GMU)
   Surmin (GMU)
   Undead Warrior (966)


Ruins of the once-great city of Pheebor are still visible, standing guard at the confluence of the rivers Phee and Bor. Founded over a thousand years ago, this was a magnificent city with mighty aqueducts and beautiful marble and stone spires. The beginning of the end for this great city-state came when a controversy arose between Pheebor and its sister city Borphee over the naming of what is now called the Borphee River. Borphee won and Pheebor is now infested with some of the worst creatures in the Westlands (not to mention, the only sporing grounds of Borphee Moss). Today the ancient city is covered with broken facades, windswept ruins, crumbling aqueducts, steets with weeds growing in the cracks, and alleys strewn with centuries of debris. A tall a narrow arch in the ruined plaze with an opening shaped like an hourglass, has become one of the chief regions for temporal study.

The ancient and mysterious cult of sorcerers that dominated Pheebor for several centuries before the city's destruction in 398 BE. The Temple of the Zizbits, which was constructed atop a massive crag that towers above Pheebor, was spared from being destroyed with the remainder of the city when it was sealed with powerful protective wards. These enchantments were later removed, circa 957~966 GUE.

The languages of Borphee and Pheebor share the same roots. In the original and most primitive dialect, only three different syllables were used, of which Bor and Phee are two. Common etiquette forbade the same syllable from being used more than once in any word. So the thousands of different expressions came entirely out of the inflection that was used to speak the fifteen possible word combinations.

Many of the reemerging families after the world-wide disaster which heralded in the Frobeolithic Glacier Epozz (c. 3120~2500 BE) were duped into following pseudo-gods. A remant who still followed the ways of The One handed down through his messengers, broke away from these deceived tribes, gradually migrating northward to pitch the rudiments of what would become known as Borphee and Pheebor (c. 1800 BE).

Every school child is familiar with the story of Phee and Bor, the abandoned twin babies suckled at the breast of a babbling brogmoid. The earliest written version of this story can be found in the pseudo-Fizbozian narrative history, part of which is reprinted below. Raised by this caring and, incidentally, terrifically idiotic female brogmoid, the young twins grew to adulthood on the shores of the two parallel rivers that now bare their names. When the mother brogmoid finally succumbed to hunger and lack of blood (she had, according to the sources, been living off her own flesh for some twenty-three years), the twins, now young men, decided to set out into the world and seek their fortune. Stopping along the way to search for food through the occasional pile of boulders, they came at last to the confluence of the two rivers between which they had spent their entire life.

It is at this point, apparently, that history was made. The older brother, Bor, not knowing how to get across the One River, and of course seeing no other options, announced to his younger twin that he intended to stop where he was and build a city. Apparently displeased with his brother's selfishness and lack of consideration, Phee proclaimed his similar intention, and the disagreement promptly led to a physical conflict. When it became apparent that Phee had beaten his brother, Bor turned to leave, but not before handing out a few parting words.  It is here that we turn to the pseudo-Fizboz to describe the next sequence of events:

“A curse! A curse upon Phee! A curse upon Phee for that is all he shalt be! Great gods, whom my fathers hath rejected so! Grant life so long, to mine city below!” So spoke Bor in his anger.

In answer, fourteen corbies, so giant and so black, overhead they didst fly. Fourteen, for the number of Pheebor’s lifetime they did proclaim. And thus, Bor went forth, across the One River, he did, out of Phee’s life, forever and ever and ever and ever and ever.

Historians are left with no other option other than to recount this narrative as one possible explanation for the origin of the two cities.  The only shred of evidence that allows us to repeat this myth and still retain our dignity is the archaeological testimony of the Phee Hourglass. If modern scientists have correctly interpreted the functioning of the Hourglass, then the earliest settlements on the Pheebor site date back to roughly 1800 BE. Conveniently enough, this is almost exactly 14 centuries before the city's ultimate demise, a figure identical to that predicted by the mysterious flying corbies.

In any case, it is here that we can leave the realm of legend and enter that of archaeology. Recent excavations in the area of Pheebor, albeit hampered somewhat by the deathly cold that has descended upon that area of the Westlands in the late 1600s GUE, have given modern historians a much clearer picture of life in Pheebor at its height.

At the point where the various tributaries flow together to form the beginning of the river, was established the rudiments of what would be known as the city of Pheebor. In its most primordial state, Pheebor was nothing but a ring of primitive huts dotted along the perimeter of a glassy forest clearing. Incidentally, this city, as well as the Borpheans, regarded the river with almost godlike reverence. At the time, both cities had called the magnificent waterway the One River and lived in peace, until in 1077 BE, in a tragic fit of self-importance, the two groups would simultaneously decide to rename the river after their own city.

Over the course of nearly seven centuries, Pheebor had grown from a ring of huts into a young and arrogant city. It was during these days, that the entire plaza was filled to capacity with a cheering throng, addressed by an orator of unknown identity. The population of Pheebor reasons that they controlled the source of the One River, so they deserved the right to name it. The only account of this even survives in the diary of the same peasant who recovered the Coconut of Quendor from the Ur-grue in 966 GUE. Using the Phee hourglass, this unknown human travelled to this period and recounted firsthand the final moments of the event:

        I saw the orator still the throng with a wave of his hand. “Our fathers built this city at the Place Where the Great Waters Meet,” he cried. “The right to name the One River belongs to us!”
        The throng roared its approval.

“The infidels from the east control the One River's mouth,” continued the orator. “But we, who dwell at the joining of the Rivers Phee and Bor, we control the source!”

The throng whistled.

“As the daughter takes the name of the father, so shall the One River be known by the place of its birth!” 

“PHEEBOR!” roared the throng. “Hail the River Pheebor! Phee-bor! Phee-bor!”

“We have no quarrel with the city to the east,” claimed the orator (amid shouts to the contrary). “But if they continue to slight our heritage with the wretched name BORPHEE “ (the crowd hissed), “we shall smite them from the face of the land!” 

The throng went wild, and carried the orator away on its shoulders, then dispersed.

I was left alone.

From this account, one could conclude that Borphee was the instigator of the entire crime of claiming ownership to a once universally used river. Regardless of who was the true pompous fool who began the entire tirade, nothing climatic would come of Pheebor’s haughty proclamation until 396 BE.

Seven centuries of selfishness arguing over the name of the One River was enough time for Borphee and Pheebor to offend each other to the point of bloody war. In 396 BE, the conflict was resolved by a massive battle between the forces of the two cities, when the forces of Borphee and Pheebor met in the southern plains of Egreth, roughly halfway between the two city-states. The Pheeborians, led by the irreversible yet tremendously incapable, Prince Foo, stood on the northern side of the deep ravine that contained the One River. The Borpheans, led by the uncommonly clever General Horteus Shplee, took their place on the southern side. The general was a shrewd war strategist, well aware of his subtle tactical advantage. The two armies charged, swords drawn. But the excitement of the moment was quickly doused when both sides reached the river and were forced to dive in and paddle awkwardly towards each other. Instead of meeting in the glorious clash of steel that all had hoped for, it appeared more like a graceless collision of drowning fools. The armies splashed frantically at each other, hardly noticing the effect of the river’s strong current. An effect that General Shplee had been counting on.

The cluster of bobbing heads drifted rapidly downstream towards Borphee, where a battalion of Shplee’s men waited with a stockade of granite rocks. As the soldiers floated by, the battalion tossed the rocks at the Pheeborian army, apparently enjoying themselves enormously in the process and not worrying too much about the many Borphean soldiers that were mixed in with the bunch. This tactic proved quite successful, and is credited with bringing a very quick end to what would have likely ended up being a long and pointless war.

The Borpheans assembled and took arms against Pheebor, quickly sacking and burning the near defenseless city to the ground. Motionless bodies were strewn about the streets by the bloodthirsty swords, and battle trenches filled with corpses zigzagged across the city’s plaza like open wounds.

It was during this final raid that an unnamed peasant from the future (966 GUE) arrived here after implementing the enchanted Phee Hourglass. Upon this peasant’s arrival, the magnificent gray stallion of Prince Foo appeared amid the smoke of the ruined buildings donned with the Phee Helm. Another stallion, black as night, raced out of the smoke. Its rider was one of the more zealous (and buoyant) Borphean knights; his armor gleamed red in the firelight, but this sinister knight’s regal bearing did not disguise his youth.

    “At least we meet, Prince Foo,” snarled the black rider.
      Prince Foo regarded him coolly. “Begone, thou eastern fop!” he cried. “Never shall the River Pheebor yield its scared name!”
    The black rider drew a gleaming sword from his scabbard and promptly beheaded the prince. The head rolled into a nearby trench.
    “The reign of Pheebor is ended!” cried the black knight, galloping off into the smoke. “Foo is dead! The age of Borphee is begun!”
    The gray stallion nudged the prince’s body, and while it whinnied softly, the peasant drew near to the same open trench where the prince’s head had fallen. That peasant had no intentions of mingling within the conflict. At this point, it was impossible to recover the Phee Helm. It was required for the peasant’s quest in 966 GUE, but would be buried beneath hard earth for centuries to come with no way to excavate it until the distant future. In order to lure the peasant’s new pet minx into locating the position of the Helm and digging deeply for it in the future when the earth turned softly, a chocolate truffle (a minx’s favorite food) was preserved in the Pool of Eternal Youth and then thrown into the trench, where it would wait beside the Helm for over 2,000 years where it would be dug up by the pet minx. Just as the deed was completed, a stray arrow struck the prince’s stallion in the flank. The luckless beast shrieked piteously, stumbled into the trench and lied still.
    Cries of “Foo is dead! The war is over!” drifted through the smoke.
    The last thing the peasant saw before returning to 966 GUE, were tattered men racing past and soon all was still as death. But it would be a few days before every nock and cranny of the city was completely raided. So thorough was the Borphean army’s gleeful ransacking of Pheebor, that the entire body of knowledge accumulated by this once great people was completely wiped out.

The revered circle of wizards known as the Zizbits were destroyed in the sacking along with their fabled magic spells and paraphernalia, save a few scattered relics, including a spellbook that would be passed on throughout the centuries. Before the city fell, they guarded their high plateau temple with a protective spell that would not be broken until the tenth century.
All that was left after one night of devastation was a few scattered ruins and a number of unanswered questions, but it would take many centuries before time would soften the layers of dirt and rubble in order to obscure the remains of the plaza. Hence, the people of Pheebor are still regarded with a sense of curious wonder today.

After the pillage and razing of Pheebor, the river became the Borphee River, a very good name. There was one other besides the Borpheans who had been victorious that day—for the entire city-state of Pheebor had brought itself to ruin, falling to conflicts generated by the hatred of Belegur, who had worked its way into the hearts of men for countless generations. From its downfall until today, mistrels sing of the feud between Pheebor and its sister city Borphee over the naming of what is now called the Borphee River.

The ruins of Pheebor play a limited roll in the further shaping of Zorkian history. When Borphee was divided during the Entharion's founding of the Kingdom of Quendor, the ruins of Pheebor became a part of the half-province of Mauldwood until the reign of Pseudo-Duncanthrax (early 660s GUE).

Circa 957~966, two fledgling magicians Moog and Slye stole an ancient Zizbit spell book from which they learn how to form the Triax. They removed the protective circles around the Temple of the Zizbits and used its oracle to weave together all the elements necessary to form the Triax. This magical ritual was completed as the conflux of the Phee and Bor rivers. Unfortunately, any attempts to determine a wider role Pheebor may have played in the cessation of the Triax are doomed to failure because of the poor survival rate of records from that period.

In 966 GUE, an unknown peasant tread the ruins of Pheebor, where at a vast plaza was a tall and narrow arch with an opening beneath shaped like an hourglass. Waves of heat rise up here from the stone pavement under foot. Turning the Phee Hourglass over, the peasant was able to temporal travel into the past and future, but was confined to the plaza. The peasant used this technology in a plot to recover the Pheehelm. Since this redicovery of the Phee Hourglass, which is generally believed to have been constructed by the Zizbits,one of the most promising sites of recent temporal travel research has been the ruins of ancient Pheebor, where the magnificent hourglass monument has offered scholars and adventurers a safe and consistent way to research the past and the future.

During the Second Age of Magic, most of the Great Underground Empire's laws were hopelessly outdated (despite the Analecta Loowitica, the updating committee had never gone through the backlog from Dimwit Flathead's reign). Thus it was still illegal to loot Pheebor, although countless packs of adventurers combed through it. But even if everyone else was scavenging for treasure in Pheebor or Antharia, some were still caught and arrested by the guardsmen.

At the present day (1699 GUE), some seven centuries after the end of the Age of Magic, the Pheebor site has become increasingly inhospitable with ages of windblown dust lying hardened upon frozen earth. As with most of the Westlands, the Pheebor ruins are frozen over nearly year-around, the air consistently touched with an ominous arctic chill, a calamitous effect which began to culminate midway through the seventeenth century. Although it is feared that the Ice Age that is currently encroaching upon the Westlands will affect the surviving outposts of civilization in the east as well, older temporal research does not provide us with conclusive evidence.

From research gathered from using the Phee Hourglass, by 2330 GUE, all of Pheebor will be entirely covered by massive sheets of impenetrable ice. But by 3000, the landscape will change entirely, Pheebor seeing a remarkable rebirth of activity. Scholars from an era before the Age of Science have described “strange mechanisms of metal and glass” of their own accord across a rugged landscape strewn with glacial boulders and massive highways. Such a description, clearly a primitive attempt at understanding the modern automobile, would indicate that the Ice Age will not eliminate all trace of the Age of Science, and that the Westlands will rise again some 1300 years in the future.

However, premature optimism about the future of mankind is tempered by the last era left us by the Pheebor hourglass. The few researchers brave enough to travel ahead as far as 3700 GUE have reported a devastated and ruined landscape. Patient centuries will have eroded much of the topsoil from the landscape. Loose, charred earth will stretch away in every direction. All chronicles referring to this desolate era have called it the Final Conflagration, a deliberate reference to various ancient prophecies that predict all kinds of zorkquakes and fires on the day that the Great Brogmoid finally lies down to sleep. Although most brogmoidists throughout history have been hesitant to predict an exact date for this event, claiming that doing so infringes upon the freewill of the great being, the best guesses of temporal scholars have placed the date at some point immediately before 3690. It will be sometime during this era, that the same peasant from 966 GUE, who was responsible for placing a chocolate truffle in a trench beside the Pheehelm BE, will bring a pet minx in order to unearth the Helm.

Another leap forward into the hourglass brings the user to a temporal void, an exact replica of that which existed before the foundation of the universe.

PHEEBOR, c. 957~966