Saturday, April 4, 2015
House of the 5th Meridian
The Fifth Meridian is based on the harpoon that pierces diagonally through several of the Tarrasque’s ribs, into the liver, and other vital organs.
5th House is led by the Binder-Lady Kuolemita; daughter of Odsfall, son of Dofen. Historically, 5th House has been one of the richest. Due to their access to various vital organs of the beast they’ve been able to sell high priced alchemical reagents, with many of their early successes focused on providing Tarrasque derived options for life extension. A large minority of alchemists and apothecary shop owners belong to 5th House, with nearly all the others
genuflecting to as it has a near monopoly upon a variety of important alchemical reagants harvested from the Tarrasque. (Note: Not every reagent comes from the meridian controlled by 5th house, and even the ones that do may sometimes be acquired via smugglers – many of whom are Marrow Miners.) The house has developed numerous proprietary formulae that they make available only to those who can pay their steep licensing fees.
The House’s early interest in life extension has expanded into experiments in necromancy for which 5th House courtiers have managed to secure a dubious legality. Within the last two generations, 5th House ranks and coffers have been swelled with the addition of numerous ghouls which are recognized as citizens in Salt in Wounds.
5th House Secrets
On a personal level, Kuolemita finds necromancy disdainful and wishes to move the houses fortunes away from the practice. Moreover, her grandfather Dofen is currently in a long hibernation (of unknown length) as part of his plan to become a lich. In life, Dofen was an accomplished necromancer who manage to transform 5th house into a veritable cult of personality and the patriarch had no desire to give up his power for something as ‘preventable’ as permanent death. He chose the path to lichdom as it had the fewest limitations and vulnerabilities of the undead types.
While it is likely that Dolfen’s ‘rebirth’ would gain acceptance by the city at large, it is a near certainty that he would attempt to seize power from Kuolemita; something the young Binder-Lady has little desire to see. Still, Dofen loyalists (including the oldest ‘legal’ ghouls of the city) are a significant force within 5th house. While Kuolemita assumes she could win a power struggle, she knows that such a fight would only weaken 5th house and so she is currently seeking a way to prevent the resurrection of her grandfather while preventing 5th House infighting. Her current plan is to contract or convince a group of adventurers (preferably good aligned) to break into Dolfen’s secret crypt and destroy the hibernating former Binder-Lord before he has a chance to wake. She would most likely then slay them after they’ve accomplished the task in order to alleviate suspicions of Dolfen loyalists.
In addition to the intrigue around Dolfen’s transformation to lichdom, ghouls are suggestible and controllable by necromancers – a vulnerability that 5th house’s alchemists seeks to extend and enlarge in the ghouls they create.
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