Wonders of the Ninth World: Crucible of Spires
Heavily adapted from (aka, ripped off) the Knights of the Night Actual Play Podcasts on Numenera Episode 148 – http://kotnwod.libsyn.com/kot-n-actual-play-podcast-148-numenera-serenity
In the northern edge of Matheunis, the Cold Desert, sits a strange set of floating structures above a large hexogonal pit that is home to 10,000 people calling the city Vox Mutaal. The only other city in Matheunis aside from Nihliesh, Vox Mutaal has thus far evaded the grasp of the Empress of Pytharon, but not for lack of attempts.
Vox Mutaal is known for consuming slaves and producing salt, and serves as a gateway for many merchants going into Matheunis who don’t care about receiving or are capable of avoiding the ire of the Pytharon Empire.
The hexogonal pit, known as The Below, is where the majority of the people live. The Below is a confusing maze of open-air tunnels and cambers divided by an unknown material. If the turns and twists don’t deter a visitor, the ever-present fog will. The main streets are lined with a series of lights that help guide people from one major part of The Below to another. While the fog tends to make things feel damp and is always cool, it is much warmer than a wind in the Cold Desert and makes it possible to grow plant-life that few places in the Ninth World can support easily.
Surrounding the edge of The Below is a walled section of city intuitively named The Rim. Merchants who pass through typically spend their time here collecting supplies and peddling a few lesser wares. Those who wish to access The Below or the Granter of Mist can catch a ride on platforms that move up, powered by ancient technology, or down, powered by slaves.
Three floating platforms hover above The Beyond. Collectively known as The Mirages, each platform resemble desert oasis with lush tropical trees and clean, flowing water that originates in a fall that stretches from the top-most Mirage and collects in a basin in the lower platform. The lowest-level Mirage, called the Granter of Mist, is a hub for “upper-class” services such as clothiers, furniture, and a truly luxurious collection of services for sale. The middle platform, Granter of Prosperity, houses several noble families and provides safety to travelling and visiting dignitaries. Granter of Prosperity is only accessible by a special machine from the Granter of Mist. The upper-most platform, known as The Overgranter, is the source of the column of water in The Mirages and is home to the Visier of Vox Mutaal, although people in The Below whisper in bars that no one, even from Granter of Prosperity, has ever been to the top level.