Verdith'anath, also known as the Bridge of Death, was the Jaghut vision of the underworld. Predating the Holds, it was a "primal place", a "realm half-born, dead in still-birth". According to the Jaghut sorceress, Ganath, it was "a conceit to believe that death has but a single manifestation. As with all things, layer settles upon layer, and in time the deepest, darkest ones become forgotten – yet they have shaped all that lies above." Although the place lay beneath the feet of Hood, the God of Death, Ganath thought he might not presume to lay claim to it or its inhabitants.
The realm appeared as a bridge made of roughly craved, perfectly fitted black stone wide enough to accommodate two wagons side by side. No guard rails protected the bridge's sides, which were alarmingly worn and deteriorated. Below the bridge and twenty paces in any direction could only be seen grey mists. Objects falling from the bridge disappeared without a sound to indicate they ever reached a bottom. The air was cold and clammy, and smelled of tidal pools. The bridge had a subtle arch, perceptibly rising or falling depending on which direction you travelled.
Verdith'anath was home to numerous entities, long forgotten and buried in antiquity. It bordered the Refugium and Nascent. The Refugium might have been a part of the realm beyond Verdith'anath itself or it might have been a separate, albeit bordering, realm.
As part of the war between the gods, Ganoes Paran sought to free the Deragoth so they would hunt and kill the T'rolbarahl, Dejim Nebrahl. Paran saw Verdith'anath in visions that showed him how to reach the Deragoth's prison in the Nascent. He hired Karpolan Demesand and the Trygalle Trade Guild to accompany himself, the ghost Hedge, and Ganath across the bridge.
Soon after their arrival they were attacked by more than fifty ochre-skinned beast-men, which had seemingly hidden by clinging underneath the bridge. Paran did not think them natives. Escaping the creatures, they travelled another third of a league before discovering an overturned, scarred, and gouged Guild carriage. Karpolan identified it as belonging to Darpareth Vayd, who had been missing for two years. She had brought Guild client Sedara Orr to Verdith'anath to assay the many forgotten creatures found there. Paran determined that the carriage had been attacked and destroyed by Doan and Ganrod, after he had freed the two Hounds of Shadow from Dragnipur. The group pushed the destroyed carriage over the side of the bridge to clear the way, but no sound was heard to mark its fall. While traveling the bridge, Paran concluded that the realm had no ruler or master.
After traveling about a league, they reached a vast, stone gateway covered in moss. Passing through brought them to the Nascent.
Notes and referencesEdit
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 The Bonehunters, Chapter 10, US SFBC p.434
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 The Bonehunters, Chapter 10, US HC p.351
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 The Bonehunters, Chapter 10, US SFBC p.434
- ↑ The Bonehunters, Chapter 10, US SFBC p.444/448
- ↑ The Bonehunters, Chapter 10, US SFBC p.434-437
- ↑ The Bonehunters, Chapter 10, US SFBC p.442-444
- ↑ The Bonehunters, Chapter 10, US SFBC p.444-447
- ↑ The Bonehunters, Chapter 10, US SFBC p.446
- ↑ The Bonehunters, Chapter 10, US SFBC p.448