Settlements and Sites of the Four City-States #56
Feb 25th 2023
Name: The Vanishing Stones
Location: A mesa in the western Tuton Maug south of the border with Noldrune
Population (approx.): None known
Brief: Several days hike into the Tuton Maug mountains, a narrow path climbs a defile between two peaks to reveal a view of a mysterious grass-covered mesa. Most explorers relate that the roughly flat mountaintop is featureless except for single standing stone about 2 meters tall standing about 100 meters from the path. However, others have reported seeing two stones, a distance apart, and histories record sightings of three or more. The stone(s) are a roughly cone shaped, about 1.5 m across at the base, speckled gray rock with a single line of runes, in no locally known language, carved into one side from top to bottom. If one were to stay longer than the typical several hours, a strange progression would begin. The single stone vanishes. Then after a time, two stones appear and then after a number of hours vanish. A shorter time later, three stones appear and then disappear. The numbers increase and the times shorten until for a brief moment the entire mesa is filled with these identical stones, potentially crushing anyone nearby, which vanish en masse. The grass, unmarked by the coming and going of the rocks, is left alone, waving in the mountain winds, until a day or two later, when the single stone re-appears, and the cycle begins anew.
Geography: About 100 miles (160 km) east of Crossroads (#54), the last 30-35 miles being an ascent of the slopes of Tuton Maug, a path leads between two mountains and reaches the mesa. The mesa is about 500 meters long and 200-300 meters wide and featureless except for the grassy covering and variable number of mysterious stones. Anyone sensitive to or able to detect magic will find some present at the site, but the scope and nature requires further investigation.
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