Delglath’s current policy is to gradually convert all ordinary folk into zombies. Skilled artisans and the like he must keep alive, since zombies are useless for skilled work, and of course people with adventuring abilities are important to his armies. However, Delglath is not wholly mad. He knows full well that the Rinloru Light Regiment, elite infantry, are important to any campaign of conquest, and their morale will hardly be improved by seeing all their families turned into zombies. Thus, Delglath concentrates on foreigners, orphans, the poorest folk of the city, and the like as initial targets. With about 3,000 zombies in the city already, he is making good progress.

What has happened to those surviving is the result of intense shock and a paradoxical passivity reaction. One might think that, faced with a charnel house of a city and the priests of Nerull in control, people would go to any lengths to flee. By now, exactly the reverse has happened. Many folk think they are virtually living dead, eking out the days until their turn comes. Their fate is inevitable. Resistance is futile.

Obviously, little trade flows through Rinloru now. What comes from the west detours southward to avoid this horrific city. Balancing this is the city’s diminished need for money and food (an advantage of having undead legions as armies). Very few approach this place now.

Delglath has 25 priests of Nerull occupying the major administrative posts in the city. His human army commanders are all wholly cowed into submission, waiting for the next set of orders. Delglath makes it plain that a military campaign will ensue in late summer, though he does not reveal where the armies will march. So, Rinloru has an extraordinary atmosphere where despair, desperation, unmanageable tensions, and sheer gut-wrenching terror are all part of the mix.

Undead are everywhere here, mostly mindless, but with ghasts and attendant ghouls posted at strategic points. Delglath has not ordered the city plundered yet, and there is certainly gold and good reward awaiting any who enter and begin to loot the richer residences. The city’s buildings are stone, with typically thick walls, and are highly defensible; this was a fall-back garrison city after all. The most extraordinary building here, of recent construction and walled off separately from the rest of the city, is the famed Sand Castle.

The Sand Castle was built to evade the Castle Tax in the previous century. Since it is not made of stone, it was not liable to that tax. The ruler of the time didn’t care that
it cost 10 times as much to build as a stone castle, even with the tax element; he just wanted to spite the overking. The Sand Castle is constructed of sand magically treated to render it as hard as stone, together with great sheets of heat-fused sand (which looks like black opaque glass) treated with glassteel spells to toughen it. The resulting hybrid is a part-sandy, part-glass four-towered structure with a massive wooden gate and an extensive fortified inner keep with dungeons. This is where Delglath currently resides, and the lowest level of the keep has been decorated as a parody of the magistrate’s chambers where judges of the sessions held court and gave judgments.

Rinloru and Winetha, The Twin Cities


Greyhawk Samaryllis Samaryllis