The Creeping Madness
Welcome to Arkoa.
Something is wrong in Arkoa. The city of Ori, the capital of the Empire is a buzz with rumors. People being driven insane in the West Islands.
Details are vague but the Empress had begun to take note. She has ordered an expedition, it left three months ago and two men have returned. They were brought before the Empress’ court and questioned.
The men had terror written across their face as they shared details of a wall of clouds spreading from the ocean and into the dense jungle near Fingerling Bay. They spoke of men walking into the cloud followed by shrill screams.
The men lost composure, so the rumor says, and it took minutes for them to stop crying and then they described men coming out of the clouds, scoring their bodies with their own blades, some of them cutting deep enough to bleed out. The men who went in the cloud would lash out at anyone getting close to them, otherwise they simply babbled and occasionally screamed in terror.
The men had instantly become mad.
The rumor says that at this time a cage was rolled before the empress and a dirty sheet was removed from over it. Inside was the commander she had sent to determine the nature of the phenomenon. He was covered in festering sores and excrement, his once noble uniform in tatters and his arms shackled so that he could not reach himself to do more harm.
The young Empress was visibly shaken and dismissed the courtier, or so the rumor says.