This Exile is not the aforementioned POV character “The Exile”. It also stands for a landmark in the southern nation of Sola. It is the name of the westernmost mountain of the Cloud Tops, and for the immediate surrounding lands at the foot of the mountain.
Beneath Exile lies a labyrinth of natural dark tunnels both large and small, ancient man made catacombs, crypts, cave pools, and one or two huge cave chambers. All of it is sealed off from the outside world, the old entryways purposely collapsed. To enter Exile now is to take a one way trip.
It was given the name Exile because it was (and still is) where most of the worst criminals were thrown into, never to be seen again. The handful of existing entrances around the mountain are nothing more than chutes and drop-offs. Crime beyond a low-level act is not tolerated in Sola.
Even though there has been no recorded escape to the surface from Exile, the mountain and surrounding area is still viewed as an ominous place and so it is completely avoided. The public fear of Exile comes less from the common knowledge of the extremely dangerous criminals, murderers, and thieves that dwell below, and more from the superstitious belief that the area is haunted with generations of their ghosts. It has been said that at times one can hear faint screams and echoed voices coming from the ground.
No one knows exactly what lies within, if it is pitch black or if there is indeed some light, what creatures lurk in the caverns, or how long those who are thrown in last. Some rumours suggest none live past starvation, others say they eat each other to survive, living off of rats and the countless bodies that must certainly litter the caverns, while a few even suggest that it is possible to live down there, and the criminals do so in a savage underground society that strives to reach the surface and exact vengeance.
© 2013 FOTS Fantasy