The Rise of The Fallen
La Ville de Notre Dame du Soliel
Notre Dame, The White City, The Holy Seat, The Twin City
Notre Dame is a military and spiritual bastion on the edge of a large canyon that suffers frequent dragon attacks.
- Population: Roughly 78,000, with more living in the countryside around town in small settlements. Most of the residents are human, half-elven, or dwarven, with a respectable minority of Eladrin. Other races live here, as well, but not in significant numbers. These include The Forged, Tieflings, Changelings, and small populations of others.
- Places of Interest:
Gateside is the first neighborhood travelers from Coralton see when they arrive if they arrive by land. It’s the heart of the city’s commerce, a constant flurry of noise and activity. People from all walks of life and all corners of Alrahon can be found here. It’s a little seedy, but vibrant and alive with the flow of commerce.
Templeside is the heart of the city’s religious life, dominated by La Cathédrale de Notre Dame de l’Aube, the largest church dedicated to The White Lady and The Great Church of the Nine Heroes in Elondaron. Around the Holy Seat, professional shops, specialists, and guilds have taken root.
Armyside is the strong right arm of Coralton’s might. The Coralton Royal Army is headquartered in Notre Dame, and much of the city’s population lives here, protected by the floating cannons of The Rock (an earthmote artillery platform).
Wizardside is flashy and eclectic. Both the notorious Sorcerer’s Enclave and the university of Notre Dame are located here, as well as the Villon Market and an enclave of tieflings from far-away Corsasia. magic and commerce mix here.
Fort Montaire Civic District is the heart of the city, where the Council of Nobles convenes in the shadow of Old Fort Montaire. The town square, where public announcements and sometimes executions are made, lies here.
Bridgeside lies outside the city gates, as one heads for Montaire Bridge. A run down, smoky district beneath the pall of smoke from the factories beneath the streets, this area is devoted to travelers but doesn’t show the city’s best side.
The Dragon’s Wake is even worse. A rundown shantytown choked in somke and ash from the foundries below, the desperately poor huddle outside the city gates. Crime is rampant, the watch is corrupt, and turf wars between the two major criminal syndicates occur weekly, if not daily. A wretched hive of scum and villainy, this.
The Catacombs lie beneath Notre Dame, in the sewers and bunkers constructed to shelter the population from the dragon’s attacks. The outcast and the criminal make their lairs here, and there are even a few monsters roaming the darkness. The city’s major necropolis, protected by the Grim Brotherhood, sit here as well, and the battles between necromancers and those who protect the sacred dead can be epic.
Canyonside is further away from the city proper. Here in the hills around Notre Dame, the very rich live in luxury, only rarely deigning to sully themselves with the city their money controls.
The Bastille is a prison floating on an earthmote a mile out in the canyon, accessible only by air or a bridge of magical force. It was built to hold the worst criminals in Coralton, criminals that were either too dangerous or too politically important to execute . Summoners, liches, mass murderers, and dangerous lunatics, all of whom have potent powers, are locked away in The Bastille for the rest of their lives (natural or unnatural).
Montaire Bridge supports a population of around 6,000 people, of a staggering variety of races. It’s a demilitarized zone, part of neither Coralton nor Canyaron. It’s a lawless, rough-and-tumble place catering to travelers and fugitives.
The town of Dulac, thirty miles away, is an important rest stop, pilgrimage site, and stone quarry. It provides limestone for the cement trade, and is one of the largest settlements outside Notre Dame in the Northern Province.
Across the bridge in Calyeron sits Old Notre Dame, Notre Dame’s sister city. The two were once a single city separated by the bridge, but time and changing fortunes have divided the two into separate places. See the Old Notre Dame entry for more information.
- Government: The city is ruled by a Council of Nobles, just
- Taverns: The Ravenblade Tavern,
|“Welcome to the White City, Adventurers! Please, enjoy your stay. Now, while your taxes are being assessed, let me inform you of the few minor rules and laws you will be expected to obey while in town…” —Notre Dame gate guard, standard greeting for adventuring parties.|
1) Notre Dame is the religious and spiritual heart of Coralton, and the second largest city in the country. It was an independent city-state during The Hundred Years Chaos, but was incorporated into the Republic shortly after the Army of Darkness was banished.
2) It began as a fortress garrison, guarding pioneers heading across Montaire Bridge. Originally located on the North Rim, the garrison was forced to relocate across the bridge after the fall of The Kelsenon Empire and the invasion of The Army of Darkness.
3) It grew into a strong power after The Hundred Years Chaos ended, and established itself as a major overland trading route, as going around The Gash is a long, dangerous affair. It was incorporated into Coralton during the First Trade War, after successfully fending off an invasion from Calyeron.
4) Aside from it’s military might, it is known as the Spiritual Heart of Coralton. The Holy Seat of the Great Church of the Nine serves as the headquarters for the faith of The Great Chruch, and The Exalt of the Great Church oversees the entire faith from there. The Holy Seat was relocated to Notre Dame after The Fall of Argius, and contains the most important relic in the faith: St Hywel’s Statue.
5) Nearly a quarter of a century ago, a black dragon attacked the city during the 150th anniversary of Coralton’s founding. Once every seven years since, on Summerend, the dragon has returned, raining death and destruction on the city. No motive for these attacks have been discerned, but the dragon keeps appearing, claiming more lives and property, and then vanishing by sundown.
| “Such a majestic vista…ruined by such squalor. Really, we should just clear these undesirables out of here. We would be so much better without these unwashed masses.” —A noble, commenting on The Gash and the poor who live in The Dragon’s Wake|
|“Mournhollow. That stain is spreading more every day. We must root the necromancers out and destroy them before they kill us all.” —Idle chatter in The Ravenblade Tavern|
1) Old Notre Dame sits right across the bridge in neighboring Calyeron. The two cities have much in common with each other, but have diverged
3) The Bleak Academy of Mournhollow is a fortress located somewhere in The Gash. It serves as a training ground for necromancers dedicated to The Dark Reaper. The Great Church has hunted for the exact location for years, but they have never been able to find it. Undead attacks are a regular occurrence as the amoral necromancers unleash their “experiments” on the city. Many believe the dragon Blackfire is under their thrall.
Important NPCs: “Greetings, Your Eminence. I am humbled to be in your presence. I bring news from the south.” —A courier, to Her Exalted Eminence Miranda DuParis.
1) The Daughters of The Dawn, a pair of Eladrin twins, are the most powerful spiritual leaders in Coralton. Her Exalted Eminence Miranda DuParis is The Exalt of The Great Church, while her sister, Lady Elaine DuParis, is the Grand Champion of the Knights of the Holy Temple, the Great Church’s paladin order. Together they have overseen the Great Church for over two hundred years.
2) Antoine Deveraux is a charming and charismatic half-elf courtier, who keeps his finger on the pulse of the nobility of Notre Dame. He is witty, handsome…and utterly ruthless if crossed. His enemies seem to just “vanish,” when they aren’t found at the bottom of the Gash.
3) No one has had more of an impact on the city than Blackfire, the enraged black dragon that haunts the city. Every seven years for the last half a century Blackfire has descended on Notre Dame, destroying great swaths of the city for no apparent reason. Many suspect the dragon is somehow under the control of the necromancers of Mournhollow and is actually a dracolich. Several adventuring teams have tried to find the dragon’s lair and destroy her, but they have never returned. The great hero
|“You may, perhaps, be correct, sir. slick But know that, as you die, a dragon’s claws, not its fangs, are its most dangerous feature.” —A Dragon Claws assassin to a target.|
1) Montaire Bridge was one of the most impressive accomplishments of the Kelsenon Empire, spanning a full four miles across The Great Gash. It was damaged by the Army of Darkness, but repaired with help of dwarves fleeing Keregorn after the appearance of The Great Beast.
2) The Bastille is a prison located three day’s journey from Notre Dame. It was built on an earthmote and developed to be the most secure prison in three countries. It was built to house the worst mass criminals in Coralton, criminals who are a danger to the population at large but who cannot be killed, either because of immortality pacts, suspicious circumstances surrounding their incarceration, or political connections. Every inmate of this prison is evil, mad, or dangerous to some degree.