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A broad river feeds Yaralet, whose eastern influence is apparent in its minarets and temples. Located just as Koth's temperate climate breaks into the wide desert, the city has seen its share of battle and conquest. It has been said that Yaralet is “the thrice built city”, having been sacked and burned to the ground at least that many times. It is a city of hardy people and brave souls... or, at least, it was.

In recent decades, a pall fell over Yaralet in the form of what denizens call a curse. Doors slam shut at night, bolted more than once from inside. Neither guardsmen, torch-bearer, nor even skulking thief walks the streets once the sun falls, for something stalks the city — something not of this world.

Its very visage is said to drive men mad, and caravans now rarely spend the night. Yet the populace largely remains, keeping their secret to themselves. “Perhaps Prince Than can save us?” mewls a frightened voice into its wine jack — yet the prince has not saved anyone. The more pragmatic folk say instead, “Perhaps no one can save us.”

Despite the darkness fallen on the city like tainted snow, Yaralet persists, as they did against invaders so many times. But for how long? One day, the caravans may not come at all. The merchants may forsake this stop on the river. The people may leave en masse. For where darkness plays the better game, mortal man cannot hope to win the final hand.