“THE PLAINS OF LACC”
The Shadowfell is a dark reflection of the natural world, a haunting plane where fear and death rule. Yet, within the gloom are countless lures for adventurers seeking fortune, glory, and more. It is the dark echo of the mortal world, a twilight realm that exists “on the other side” of the world and its earthly denizens. Legend has it that an otherworldly dimness arose around the remnants and tatters of the raw stuff of creation. Over time, these shadows coalesced and assumed a form similar to the natural world, but darker, more ominous, and thrumming with a strange and unexpected power. This murky land spawned beings of its own and drew others from different parts of the cosmos. It came to be filled with a diverse population of creatures, fair and foul.
Scattered throughout the Plane of Shadow are places hidden behind thick walls of mist, places ruled by dark and deeply troubled beings bound to the plane by dreadful curses. These isolated pockets within the Shadowfell are called domains of dread. A creature that passes through the curtain of mist into a domain of dread becomes trapped there—a prisoner of the dark lord who rules the domain.
Each domain of dread has a dark lord—a powerful creature with absolute hold over the domain and limited mastery over its shape and disposition. Similar to a fey demesne, a domain of dread bends to the will of its master, reflecting his or her dark mood in various eerie or disturbing ways. Some domains of dread are quite small, such as a lonely castle on a hill. Others extend for miles.
Escape from a domain of dread is tricky and usually requires one to slay the dark lord, break the dark lord’s curse, unlock the secret of the dark lord’s power over the domain, perform a dark ritual, or accomplish some other difficult goal.
It is to this place that our Heroes traveled when they entered the one-way Portal within the Forgotten Temple. They crossed from their own Prime Plane to the Shadowfell, or at least a small part of it on the Plains of Lacc.
The Dread City of Lacc has existed for centuries, drawing worlds into its shadowy darkness and consuming them, transforming them into a pale reflection. With the Doomsday Cult of Lolth seeking to consume the suns of a thousand worlds, they have tapped into the Shadowfell and started using Lacc as their homebase.
Still rather unwitting, and following only the smallest of clues, out heroes continue to seek the answer to the gathering darkness in their world. They were shocked to meet … copies … of themselves hailing from alternate worlds. Although the “mirror” Rippin survived his battle, the “other” Chak, Waldamar, and Xe layed dead thanks to the cruel poisoned blades of Drow Warriors. They also met the High Priestess of Pelor named Aleena who they had seen through the portal earlier, and Greybeard had honestly mistaken for the legendary “Paladin in Hell.”
The “other” Rippin explained that they could easily depart the plane by using a device he had found several years before called “The Well of Souls.” He promised to take the group to its location after a time of rest. He also promised to explain to them how his group of Chak, Xe, Greybeard, and others attempted to destory the demon Shuluth on his home plane, failed their mission, and witness their world be consumed by Lolth’s Darkness.
The Shadowfell is one of the more accessible planes. In fact, on rare occasions, travelers have stumbled into it by accident. Places where the boundary between the world and the Shadowfell are thin are known as shadow crossings. Some intersections are naturally occurring, the result of ancient planar conjunctions or catastrophes. These crossings often occur in low-lying, deeply shadowed spots—forested hollows, mist-blanketed bogs, or the bottoms of caverns and ravines. Other junctions form in places where the forces of death are prevalent—graveyards, battlefields, and other places that bore witness to mass death.
Sages claim there is a tome called The Book of Lacc that contains lore about these shadow crossings that intersect on the Planes of Existence. The book has been lost for centuries, hidden by a order of monks known as the Golden Flame.
The Well of Souls is one device which allows for transport into other dimensions through the shadow crossings. When active, shadow crossings permit travelers to shift from the mortal world to the corresponding location in the Shadowfell (but not always back again). Few shadow crossings are continuously active. Most activate only under the right conditions, such as certain times of day, certain days of the year, or when various celestial phenomena take place—eclipses or new moons, for example.
With this information gained, our heroes were ready to begin their quest anew