You begin to see the markers as you approach: the holy symbols on every lintel or inconspicuous place, the ward glyphs carved in the paving stones, and chill that strikes the air - that can touch the very soul. At the "Luine", there is a sign telling you that you are entering a Dark Holde. (It looks to be written in blood, but it is actually paint). It is right there above the silver ward disk set in the sidewalk here. These disks are found all along the luine/ line, with extras at easy crossings.
The other side of the disk does not look that different from the city side. They are similar buildings with a similar street. At first glance, even the carts and inhabitants look much the same.
Of course, looks can be deceiving.
Those that live and work near the Luine are the most comfortable with humans and their world. These Dark Kind emulate them in manner. Most can even pass for human with the right clothes or touch of glamour. Unless of course, you look into their eyes. Then you know they are, ... different.
The architecture becomes a bit more morbid on their side, with skulls, bones, and darkglyphs replacing the holy symbols, in slight mockery of those made by the nervous humans on the other side.
There is even a sign, on the other side, written in silver and blue fancy script, warning those that they are leaving the Holde and that they must be careful.
In fact, there are darkpour disks mirroring the silver glyphs. If someone "charged with holy energy" or totally innocent steps on them, they spout out green hellfire, like a magical landmine. The Dark Kind say they are their for their protection, just like the Humans say the wards are there for theirs. (Of course they will fire if a demon killer comes near them. Sometimes they just go off near people because they are perverse.)
The sky darkens as one goes deeper in the Holde. At first it is as over cast clouds threatening rain, but towards the middle of the Holde the sky appears to be a night without stars or moon. The presence of green burning hellfire braziers along the streets further into the Holde, give light to see by and make those who miss the hellpits of home more comfortable.
The Holde used to be part of the Humans city, so the buildings and the basic structure of the city area are still there. The current tenants have added... embellishments. They have added macabe and gothic touches. Carvings of bones, skulls, spiders, bat, ghasts, and the occasional intricate glyph mural (mocking a summoning circle) adorn the buildings. The lightposts made of metal are shaped like an flayed open human. One is unsure if the gargoyles staring down from the rooftops are statues or lesser Dark Kind.
As one goes deeper into The Holde, one will see those who are uncaring about "fitting in" and wear their macabe Dark Kin forms with pride. It becomes an odd mix of human (appearing), human artifacts and clothing, and monster forms.
In the center of The Holde is a blasted and burned out area. It was where the fighting was most intense. The buildings are in ruins and never repaired. There are hellpits, or what passes for them here, around the area. The carnal smell is too intense for most people. The framework of the old DarkGate still stands, but is cracked and inert now. The local Duke, pulsating and tentacled, refusing to conform to this reality, holds court in an old throne pulled up to the DarkGate. He alternates between being bitter about his exile here and melancholy about "the old days" of corruption and feasting on souls.
Near the Luine (border region) there are businesses that cater to both kinds. Taverns, Brothels, and places of sensation cater to Dark Kind and more jaded humans. There are stores that provide "hard to find" items here. There are also many bookstores here. Many are quite innocent in their stock, as Dark Kind seem to like books, fiction/ story books especially. Many Dark Kind with skills in magic or miracle ply their trades from storefronts and offices. And the lawyers and scribes, some of the finest in the city have offices here. Keep in mind that one or two of them are Humans. The other lawyers, scribes, translators, and magic users, in the city tend to have offices on the world side.
Since the trade of soul energy is technically banned by The Pact, transactions are paid for in gold or favor.
Those Dark Kind who would travel to the world side unmolested would buy HeartKind bands. (And would try to look mostly human). These show the Dark Kind is one of good faith and will not harm others (directly) or trade in soul. In fact, a large number of clerks through out the city and a few actors are HeartKind banded Dark Kind.
The Dark Kind do sell HeartKind bands for humans who enter into the Holde.
They don't do anything, but they are pretty. Demonic skulls are engraved into the silver hearts.
The Dark Kind find delight in selling them. They like the look on the scared human who realizes they are useless, just before they are harmed. Some Dark Kind even respect the Human for "following the rules" and try not to harm them.
There are only six streets still open in and out of the Holde. The rest have been bricked over. Still, if one breaks through a wall, one can get out of the Holde. Also if one can fly, they can get out.
The Pact limits their abilities out of the Holde. It also prevents wholesale warfare and trading in souls or bodies. If The Pact is broken, the Dark Kin must give back all Holdes and things of this realm, reducing them all to immaterial blobs of shadow. Wishing to avoid this underpowered state, they maintain The Pact.
*Note The Gate does not lead to a DarkWorld anymore. However, for the right price, the gate can be magicked to transport things and people to any Holde in the world.
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? Responses (6)-6
There are a number of stubs related to this stub (so follow the links). I am planning on making some related subs that would use the same information.
This submission is solid, if somewhat lacking in flare. The concept is a good one and the linked stubs hold it up well. I can see the Holde district being inhabited by all sorts of things, not just material daemons. Vampires, intelligent undead, and humans who have tainted blood would gravitate here, as would anyone who is naturally opposed and hunted by demon hunters, the forces of good and whatnot.
One of the reasons for the vagueness is that you could install any "creautres" or variations you want in the space. It is the idea that is important.
Dark Kind is just an example. However, they mythos I am developing for it, has just humankind and darkkind. Insert supernatural creatures at your whim though.
It is an okey submission, the idea very usable if dark forces happened to have a war in your world... which seems to be quite often in your generic fantasy setting. :)
Plus I like the ironic addition of 'unholy' symbols by the locals. That was a good one.
I like this idea - places hallowed by evil in the middle of civilized areas...