Of Kings and Dragons
The Steam Pit
The Steam Pit is an immense and ancient sinkhole, nearly 500 feet in diameter. A dark hole lies at the center of the Steam Pit’s base, from which blasts of hot air and clouds of foul-smelling steam waft up. The scent of this air is quite unpleasant, particularly at certain times of the year, as if whatever lies hidden in the caverns below were following some unknown cycle of repetitive, constant decay. The Varki believe the place to be cursed, and not only because of the foul-smelling air—for the rim of the 30-foot-diameter hole at the sinkhole’s center is inscribed with numerous strange markings that mix Abyssal and Aklo runes in nonsensical combinations. The Varki have erected dozens of rock cairns topped with bear skulls around the Steam Pit’s perimeter to warn intruders to steer clear of the place, but now and then eager adventurers or explorers enter the mysterious depths, never to be seen again.