Grobje was built on the remnants of an ancient mound used for the burial of the dead for as long as you can remember. Makeshift buildings are found on every flat piece of ground available on the hill and many homes have been made from the tombs themselves. Below Grobje is a large relatively unexplored catacomb which stretches deep below the ground. A single gigantic purple tree grows from the top of the hill which stretches out over the valley. Soaring above Grobje protecting it is The Dome, an incandescent purple dome which covers both the village and several miles surrounding it. Although it does colour the view of everything outside the dome it does not affect the colour of the light within the dome.
You don’t recall a time before living in Grobje, but far below the tree in the distance you can see the tell tale marks of civilisation. What once appeared to be a large prosperous city, now ruins, broken walls, and rubble, a thick layer of ash covers everything. Sometimes on long Summer afternoons you would climb out along the furthest branches of the tree and sitting gazing at the town below, the sunset cutting through the purple glow of the bubble and the haze of ash outside. You often wondered what it might have been like to have grown up in one of the previous worlds, but daydreams are for children and this is your world.
No one ventures into the Wastes beyond Grobje, those that do are quickly beset by the Char Blight, well no one except The Grey Guard, a close knit band of scouts who protect the borders of the village. It is the greatest honour to be called upon to serve as a member of the Grey Guard. They take their name for their shabby hard-wearing clothing which some joke is held together by the permanent crust of dust that appears to cover every item of clothing. No one makes this joke within spitting distance of one of the guard though.
Your community is small, less than three hundred strong. Mostly human, but there are a few well known mutants in town and even one or two Visitors, but compared to other places in the land it is a hive of activity.
The Grey Guard are the protectors of Grobje. They patrol the town’s borders and watchtowers guarding against any intrusion into the little haven the townsfolk have built. They are named after the heavy grey cloaks they wear at all times whilst on duty. Only the Grey Guard know how to travel ‘safely’ in the Char Wastes.
The Wastes having a withering effect on any that are caught in the elements for even a small period of time without the use of Char. Char is the only way to survive and it is created by collecting the ash which lies over everything outside the dome, this is then mixed to create a paste, though the exact recipe is a secret closely guarded by the Grey Guard. When smeared over the skin this protects the wearer from the toxicity of the wastelands.
- Council of Elders. Chaired by Old Nan
- Grobje Hearsay:
Locals say that deep in the catacombs below Grobje you can find the root of the tree above which dominates the village. Some believe if you eat of this root without cutting it you become immune to the Blight and can travel outside the dome with no ill effects.
There is a rumour that the town’s undertaker has gone mad, he talks to the dead, and has started to believe they are following him even after their internment.
The bouncer at The Soaring Hapax (local inn) has lost his job and is looking for another. Though he is telling people he quit.
One of the Grey Guard who was not born in Grobje is suspected of bringing contraband items into the dome. Some people think he is a spy from one of the many tribes which are looking upon the haven of Grobje with envy.
- The Weird of Grobje:
Char is a grey ash which lies over everything outside the Grobje dome. Synonymous with the mixture that the Grey Guard rub over their skin and clothes before entering the Wastes which surround the village, and the only protection against catching the Blight. This is different to the drit. There is a tale that more than a thousand years ago there was a disaster which created the Char and laid waste to everything outside the protected dome of Grobje.
Char Blight, often referred to simply as The Blight. When people are exposed to the Wastes without using Char, the Blight sets in very quickly, starting with an unusually shaped rashed in their armpits and groin which eventually spreads all over the body. Being very contagious and always resulting in death anyone who contracts the Blight is not allowed with the Grobje dome. People who die of the Blight outside the dome quickly turn to ash. However this does not happen with the dome and the bodies remain extremely contagious. Anyone who dies of The Blight within the dome is removed before being burnt and returned to the Char.
- Points of Interest:
There is a stream which flows along one corner of Grobje, it appears relatively normal, providing fresh water and fish to the inhabitants. The Grey Guard know that this stream does not exist outside the dome, though a dried riverbed can be found.
The gigantic purple ‘Name Tree’ looms over Grobje from it’s solitary hill and graveyard. So called because people carve the names of their loved ones into it’s incandescent bark. The tree is worshipped by the locals as the lifebringer and sustenance which allows Grobje to exist in the midst of the Char Wastes.