Adventures in Skylar
Strongcliff is a small fishing village situated on the cliff that juts out from the edge of Strongcliff Volcano, at the western end of the Wyrmkeep Mountains. Its proximity to the ocean not only helps its inhabitants to maintain a bountiful supply of fish, but also provides them with trading routes from which they would otherwise be isolated. The village is inhabited mostly by humans and dragonborn.
Although Strongcliff appears at first to be nothing more than a quaint village, it is built upon an area with a far more interesting history.
Hundreds of thousands of years ago, Strongcliff Volcano (then known as Starkfell Volcano) was surrounded by a far larger plateau than the tiny cliff that remains today. This plateau was home to the sprawling city of Starkfell, the stronghold of the ancient Dragon Riders. The leader, or Maekrix, of the Dragon Riders resided in the heart of a grand palace built within the volcano itself, an impenetrable natural fortress that served as a symbol of the Dragon Riders’ formidable strength. However, though the Dragon Riders were strong, they were few in number and concentrated almost entirely within Starkfell. This proved to be their downfall when a great and terrible earthquake around 100,000 years ago caused the city of Starkfell to fall into the sea, leaving only a tiny area of cliff intact. The Dragon Riders fled when their home was destroyed, and they have never been seen in Skylar since.
Over the next few tens of thousands of years the remains of the city crumbled to dust, and the area remained uninhabited, until a tribe of kobolds found a hidden tunnel into the volcano and took a liking to the ruined palace they found inside. Kobolds have lived inside the volcano ever since.
Not long after the kobolds moved into the volcano, a group of human and dragonborn settlers from the areas north of the Wyrmkeep Mountains discovered the clifftop and decided that it would make a fine place to live, as the great cliff would protect them from any invading monsters. In addition to this, the enormous stone staircases that led from the cliff to the ground below were both easily defensible and highly intriguing, a hint that the area had a past to far outshine its bare and bleak appearance. The settlers stayed there and named their new home Strongcliff in praise of the protection given to them by the volcano. This was before the villagers discovered the kobold tribe living within the volcano, but as these kobolds remained the only threat a small group of guards was typically enough to protect the village from their raids.
From here the village’s history is peaceful but uneventful, until six months ago, when an enterprising thief named Verris began to rally Strongcliff’s once-meagre Thieves’ Guild into a disciplined and terrifying force. Verris and his lackeys seized power over the village in everything but name by instilling fear into the townspeople and extorting money from them wherever possible. When Verris secured an alliance with the kobolds of the volcano, the ruins within appealed to his decadent tastes despite their state of disrepair, and the volcano quickly became the headquarters for Verris and his Thieves’ Guild. It is thought that Verris had grand plans that extended far beyond Strongcliff, but fortunately Sariel and Rolenn put an end to both his operations and his life.