Palace of the Vampire Queen
For three centuries the peasants of the dwarvish island of Baylor have feared the raids of the Vampire Queen and her minions. Sweeping down at night from the palace in the shrouded peaks of the island, they range ever farther in their search for blood. And not only blood – the children of dwarf peasants often disappear if they are so unfortunate as to be out at night. Even the cities are no longer safe. The most recent victim was the Princess of Baylor, daughter of King Arman, who was taken in a midnight raid on the capitol city of Ar Toe within past weeks. King Arman has offered fabulous riches to the person or persons who can brave the stronghold of the Vampire Queen and return his daughter to him alive and well. But, in truth, he holds little hope. For even King Arman, ruler of Baylor, defeater of the Ten Orc Tribes, is afraid in his heart to face the Vampire Queen.
Storytellers say that long ago the Vampire Queen was shipwrecked on the island – barely alive and all but drained of blood. Shipwrecked with her were her guards and ladies in waiting – all her jewels, her rich clothing and her crown. But none of these things, nor the love that her subjects bore for her, had the power to save her, and she died that night.
The guards and ladies in waiting mourned. They took her body into the mountains to build her a majestic tomb to house her remains and all her earthly possessions. No one can say for certain if the tomb was built for they were never seen again. Except at night.
The road the people took was steep and hard, but the road is there. Children talk of how they will conquer it when they grow up. Their parents huddle at the fire and pray that their children will live to grow up. Brave men have tried to end the reign of the Vampire Queen, but none have ever returned. Rumour says that there is a place high in the mountains and that it contains great riches. But rumour also says that it contains great dangers – greater than mortal men can hope to face and win.
The people wait in fear at night. The king wonders his royal palace, so empty now without his only child. Neither the king or his people have hope left that a hero or group of heroes will come to rid them of the Vampire Queen. For surely the Vampre Queen lies deep within the forbidding mountains, protected by her subjects, vengeful with hate for all truly living things and constantly thirsty for humanoid blood on which to feed.