Wilderlands Skull and Shackles
Things Kiya Knows
What follows are things that are known to Kiya Soniel, an elf swashbuckler, because she formerly served under the infamous pirate priestess Captain Tevenida Aiger. As you know, Kiya now serves aboard the Sea Reaver under the infamous pirate sorcerer Captain Milo the gnome and his equally infamous officers. The crew of the Sea Reaver has just learned that Captain Milo plans to sail for Eastgate Key in search of Tevenida’s sword, Aiger’s Kiss. Perhaps some of this information would be useful to Kiya’s current commanders and, as a result, be a positive factor in any upcoming performance reviews…
The Tale of Tevenida Aiger and the Black Tower
Several decades ago, a mysterious slender tower of black stone suddenly appeared upon Eastgate Key, a previously uninteresting islet situated between Rallu and the Isle of Ethereal Bells. The Free Captains of Rallu soon discovered that this tower was the work of a powerful mystic theurge and cleric of Dagon, the demon god from the Outer Darkness. The Free Captains never learned the true name of this cleric, but she became known as the Shrouded Queen, due to her penchant for dressing funerary shrouds, bound to her body by coils of rope. For years, the Shrouded Queen’s mastery over ocean currents, weather, and strange monsters rendered the nearby seas dangerous for any pirates seeking to plunder the lucrative shipping lanes between the Fingers and Tarantis and Malikarr.
Frustrated and frightened, a dozen or more Free Captains joined forces under the flag of one of Rallu’s most powerful Pirate Lords, Tevenida Aiger. Armed with the legendary sword Aiger’s Kiss, she led her allies on a brazen assault on the Black Tower and its foul mistress. Despite the facts that no one knows what happened to Captain Aiger or her sword, and that not a single pirate returned from the mission, during the next few months the seas calmed and the weather around the island returned to normal. Whatever had happened, it appeared that the Shrouded Queen had perished.
Some whispered that the whole situation with the Shrouded Queen and her tower was an elaborate Viridian trap, set specifically to ensnare Captain Aiger. Nevertheless, soon after, many captains eagerly launched their own expeditions to the island, determined to plunder the tower’s supposed treasures and recover Aiger’s Kiss for themselves, yet none of them emerged from the mysterious edifice either. As the Black Tower’s fame grew in the years to follow, increasingly few have dared to set foot upon the island. Were it not for this year being the twenty-fifth anniversary of Aiger’s assault on the Black Tower, few would be talking about the legend today at all.
About Tevenida Aiger, Her Sword, and Her Family
In addition to being a notorious Pirate Lord and member of the Council of Rallu, Tevenida Aiger was a priestess of the Black Circle of Margonne, god of secrets and evil schemes. Her specialty was the capture of Viridian warships, particularly those employing devils or other extraplanar defenses. Her success in these endeavors was, in part, attributable to her legendary sword, Aiger’s Kiss. Rumored to have been given to Captain Aiger by Margonne’s herald as a reward for an unknown task, the sword is said to have been a particularly potent weapon against outsiders.
Before her rise to infamy among the Free Captains, Tevenida bore a son by an elven gigolo. A whiny brat, the half-breed boy, named Valerande used to run amok on the decks of Captain Aiger’s flagship. Valerande was only 13 at the time of his mother’s disappearance. In the years since, he has become a Free Captain in his own right. Nicknamed “Barracuda” for the fact that he filed his own teeth into a row of fangs reminiscent of the toothy fish, little has been heard of Captain Valerande of late. Many suspect him of being but the latest fool to go missing in the Black Tower, while others muse that he’s fled the Shackles completely, the better to shed the shadow of his famous mother and the shame of her loss.
About Eastgate Key and the Black Tower
Eastgate Key was little more than an uninhabited jungle-covered rock before the Shrouded Queen raised her home from its heart. During the Shrouded Queen’s time, hundreds upon hundreds of humanoid skeletons littered the island’s beaches. These have remained and serve to warn off potential explorers and settlers. The island itself is roughly kidney-shaped, about 3 miles from end to end, covered with dense jungle, and 120 feet above sea level at its highest point, where the Black Tower is found. Standing over 400 feet in height but measuring only 30 feet in diameter, the tower looks more like an impossibly tall black pin sticking out of the center of the isle, as if some vengeful god had pierced the island from above with a gargantuan needle.