by Nicholas Killewald

The Healing Springs

Far to the north, past the Terakol Kingdom, high atop the tallest mountain in the range, lies the divine Healing Springs of Promalle, Goddess of Mercy. Note that unlike Lineta, Promalle actually DOES exist, and has seen fit to place her divine springs here, guarded by equally divine, effectively immortal centaurs. These springs have been said to have the power to heal any wound, cure any affliction, and even reverse death itself, provided there's actually a body to revive. Hence, obviously, the centaurs. Not that centaurs are the obvious choice, but the fact that someone's guarding them at all, someone immortal and armed with divine weaponry, is obvious. Only the high priests of Promalle are allowed in, with rare exceptions granted to those most deserving of Promalle's mercy, or in certain exceptionally rare cases, breaking in by impossible means.

That said, all of this is terribly confusing to anyone not from the area, because over time, a somewhat loose nation formed in the mountains around the springs themselves, and this nation is also commonly referred to as the Healing Springs. The major Healing Springs nation consists of four mountain peaks around the central one housing the actual springs and the centaurs. Each has its own sub-town carved into it generally in a spiral shape up each peak, conveniently named for their direction in relation to each other (North Spiral, West Spiral, etc, with the peak housing the actual springs colloquially known as Central Spiral). Other outlying spirals of varying populations exist.

Despite the proximity to Terakol, the majority of the population is human. Most dwarves aren't in the mood to traverse the unpopulated mountains to get to the Springs in the first place. That said, though, the Springs do host a diverse population, with only beach elves in scarce numbers. The entire community is exceptionally progressive overall, compared to the kingdoms to the south; most notably, the Springs are governed by an elected Senate rather than a defined monarch. Many are altruistic and willing to help out of the goodness of their hearts, most are open-minded individuals with a desire to advance society, and very few believe in violence as an answer to life's problems.

Though the waters of the actual springs lose much of their power as they run down the mountain, the mineral water the people can collect from far enough down that the centaurs don't bug them is still rather potent. Because of demand for this water in other lands, the Springs area enjoys a healthy export business, making for an affluent population overall. Tourism is also high (though limited by inaccessibility) for this same reason, and for the entertainment in West Spiral's upper district, including the headquarters of the legendary Jarlsen-Barteltran Theatre Company. This combination of affluence and tourism does, however, lead to a certain portion of the locals looking down on the visitors with disdain at times, of course. It can't all be sunshine and roses, there's always going to be a few rich jerks thrown in.

Salthalus hails from the Springs, as do Marzos and Melzos. Once a member of the Senate, Salth left for Landis after the incident with Marzos. Melzos left earlier to seek out a life as a farmer (craggy mountains aren't exactly the most farmable land).

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This comic and all material related to it are ©2002-2024 Nicholas Killewald, except where otherwise noted. Please do not redistribute without permission, which I might give if you ask nicely and aren't a jerkface.