I love it. It gave me the Knights Templar Jerusalem vibe, or even that of Rhodes and Malta. A very good capture of a place where faith has been forgotten and decadence is prospering in it's stead. Ever been to Europe? (Hehe)
Plot idea: (PCs need access to divination, sciomancy or similar)
Tears of a Patriarch - His faith are losing its followers, and his city has become a place of corruption. It proved to be too much for the old Patriarch and one day the PC cleric find him cold before the altar, dead, tears in his eyes. Rushing to his aid, the minor priests soon declare that the old man's heart could take no more, he died of grief, mourning the city and faith he loved so much.
His body is interred with much fanfare. The temples get more revenue than usual. Once again the pilgrims flock to the city, drawn by shame and allegiance to a man who did great things.
Problem is the PC cannot forget the old man. Every night he visits the PC cleric in his dream. Each night he seems to say something, but the PC awake sweating before he does. Then, one night, the PC hears the first part of what he says: "Treason...".
The soul of the Patriarch cannot leave, his soul unable to find peace and his God denying him rest before he has righted the wrong committed in his name. The Patriarch was murdered by the council of supreme priests. They blamed him for the decline of the church and knew that his tragic demise would shake the people, for after all he was a man once. A man loved by the people.
If the PCs start asking questions they will get fierce responses from the priesthood. Their inqueries will be met with a cold shoulder and, once the supreme council discovers what they are doing, with assassination attempts.
Should the PCs get the opportunity to perform a medical study of the body of the Patriarch, they will discover a large concentration of poison in his liver and stomach. Unbeknownst to the PCs his tears were of intense and burning pain, no doubt realizing his last dinner with the council was his undoing.
Should the PCs perform a divination or sciomantic ceremony before the altar (not a chance they will get permission for this), the restless spirit of the Patriarch will appear before them, relating the story of their betrayal and directing them to the only one who have the authority to help: His Holiness, the Hermit of the Vault of the Divine. Go to Comment
Alive in the sense of a sentient, self willed creature, no. In the sense of a massive organism that lacks a nervous system, yes. It exists akin to a giant plant like organism, but it feeds on static electricity, and on the ley lines that run through its borders. It can move and respond to stimulus, but it cannot carry on a conversation. Go to Comment