It was called the White City for a reason, and a very good one. Not because it's buildings were white- in fact the architecture of the city tended to be of the dark, glossy stone found nearby, and almost exclusively of a gothic style, favoring high flying buttresses, stained-glass windows, and other magnificent but foreboding makes. The pallid light of moon and stars tended to make it look dark, brooding, almost threatening, mixed with a terrible but beautiful and glorious aspect. The buildings spoke of shadows, they spoke of intrigue, they spoke of power, and they spoke-quietly but perceptibly- of grimness.
Nor was it called the White City because of the moral righteousness of its inhabitants. This was no shining city on a hill, no place of light and cheer, no utopia. There were less beggars or homeless persons on the streets then other cities, but that was primarily due to the fact that in such a climate and such a city, such people inevitably did not last long.
No, simply, it was called the White City because of the snow. There was always snow in the region about the White City and almost always inside as well. The trees that dotted its few parks and the country outside were tough, cold-resistant things, generally evergreens. Even the flowers had evolved to bloom regardless of snow. The rare crops had become too tough for the frost to kill them and had evolved ways to suck the moisture out of the snow itself, and draw their life from the light of the stars.
It has always been night in the White City, and most think that it will always be so, regardless of anything, for night is its essence and its life. The city is not a natural one. It is a small world, a microdimension consisting of the city and its surroundings. No one knows exactly when the White City came to be, and few have explored its surrounding countryside too greatly. The city is a dimensional crossroads, a lawless place where persons from many different worlds mingle. However, while the city itself has no laws, one shadowy organization, the Gatekeepers, control the exit from the White City. Almost no one comes there by design. They wind up there accidentally, and once they have arrived, it is unlikely they will leave for a long, long time, for the Gatekeepers relish their power and drive hard bargains, ones that few will willingly take. Worst of all, it seems impossible to age beyond maturity in the White City, so deaths from age are unknown, as are disease or hunger. One can suffer, as suffering is common there, but one cannot die save by being slain, and even then, your hapless ghost haunts the place, no matter what horrors you may experience.
Creatures of all races, creeds, and status live in the White City, and nearly all want above all else nothing more then to get out. Murder, theft, rape, hideous cruelty, and torment are commonplace, everyday occurrences. Money to buy food, weaponry, clothing, and raw material is rare-though the odd wine and alcohol brewed outside seems everywhere, causing alcoholism- and desperately sought and battled for between rival factions or small parties. The City is a place of horrifying wealth and terrible poverty. Creatures make alliances they cannot possibly do outside of this place, for they find in their common suffering a bond that can grow to trust and friendship. One needs friends very badly in the White City. The City has been the cause of many unlikely conversions from darkness to light and light to darkest evil. That is the way of the White City, and perhaps the one truly good thing the place has ever caused.
And now you have arrived. It does not matter how, or why, you got here. The Gatekeepers do not care. The price they will demand, inevitably, is too much for you to pay. Now you must wait, and try to find a way to sacrifice something of sufficient value for the Gatekeepers to be content. Or maybe there is another way. Whispers speak of almost anything being able to be found in the White City, if you look hard enough, and know where to look...
((I will not be 'gming' for this, as there is no 'overlaying' plot beyond simple survival and escape. Basically this will consist of sub-plots created by characters. Whomever is running the subplot at the moment will be GMing. In addition, this is designed to be fantasy-oriented. You MAY include more high-tech weaponry, but it MUST be balanced-I want no super-lasers or nanomachines, as you must be equal to your fantasy-oriented counterparts. Any and all races are open, if you can come up with them, and two members of the same race might be from different worlds and considerably different.
Secondly, I want complex characters. I do NOT want a simple character design. While the White City is not Hell (you did nothing wrong) it is not a happy place, and in general those who live there have complex motivations in the outside world. I would like to have 'apparent age', 'gender', 'race', 'appearance', and the 'price' that the Gatekeepers want of you. It MUST be something unspeakable to your character; that is how the Gatekeepers work. Notably, I would prefer it if characters, while powerful enough to get by, are not on the upper scale of power. Though you can't die of hunger or disease or thirst, you can perish quite easily from a knife to the throat, and it's meant to stay that way.))