Rise of the Demon Lord
Deep in the Feywild, beyond the swirling residuum storms of the Plains of Valdrennai, stands one
of the most magnificent cities ever constructed by the eladrin: Mithrendain. The city’s name is derived from the elf phrase “wall of the fortress,” but the word has become synonymous with the beauty and longevity of the eladrin. Home to nearly 40,000 people, almost all of them eladrin, Mithrendain is a beautiful city resplendent with soaring towers and graceful architecture. In addition to its proper name, Mithrendain is often referred to as the Autumn City, since most of its towers are colored like autumn leaves, with yellow, gold, and bronze being common.
Mithrendain was founded several hundred years ago in the waning days of the eladrin empire. During a particularly brutal campaign against the forces of the fomorian kings, a contingent of eladrin soldiers discovered a place in the Feywild where the fomorians had carved a path from their deep kingdoms to the surface, creating a large hole that allowed thousands of vile beings to flow upward from the Underdark each day. After a bloody battle between the eladrin soldiers and the fomorians, the surface forces pushed their enemies back through the opening and into the Underdark once more. With the help of powerful wizards, the eladrin sealed the hole to the Underdark, shutting off one of the fomorians’ main avenues to the surface. Unwilling to trust that the massive opening would stay closed on its own, the soldiers founded a fortress on the spot, building the main citadel up around the barrier to guarantee that it could not be used to escape the Underdark without the eladrin being aware of it.
At first, the fortress stood vigilant over the barrier, with soldiers guarding the passage to make sure nothing would disturb it. Over time, secrecy surrounding the barrier (for the builders of Mithrendain did not want its existence to become common knowledge) caused knowledge of the true purpose of the fortress to fade from the minds of subsequent generations. Soldiers brought their families to live in the fortress with them, and children were born in Mithrendain with no knowledge of the barrier at the center of the citadel. Within a few decades, the small fortress was bursting with families, and these families built homes for themselves outside the walls of the fortress. With no attacks on the fortress, and no attempts by the denizens of the Underdark to shatter the barrier under Mithrendain, the fortress became a village, then a town, and within a few more decades the sprawl had become a city.
Years came and went, and the original generation of soldiers who founded the fortress moved on to the next life. As the centuries passed, the secret beneath the Citadel Arcanum (as the original fortress came to be called) was forgotten by all but a handful of city leaders, who then passed the secret knowledge of the barrier down to their successors. With no more threats from the Underdark (at least, no more than any other eladrin city), Mithrendain flourished and prospered. Eventually, the influence of soldiers waned and scholars, artists, and artisans became the new lords of the city. As the golden towers of Mithrendain grew ever taller, the militant history of the city faded into history.
In modern times, Mithrendain retains little that would suggest it was once a military outpost guarding the surface from encroaching forces of the Underdark. Soaring towers of burnished bronze and shining gold reach for the clouds, and the streets of the city are filled with eladrin who have no idea that at the heart of their city is one of the largest passageways into the Underdark in all the Feywild.
More on the city of Mithrendain can be found HERE