The Sundered Sea - A 5th edition Dungeons & Dragons campaign
Rune Tree Ward
The Rune Tree Ward is a collection of gardens, orchards, and plant nurseries spread across the upper northwestern portion of Sunderhold. While most wards in Sunderhold tend to feature some specific thaumium relic, nearly the entirety of the Rune Tree Ward itself functions as a relic. The soil and stone in this portion of the city is suffused with power and energy, forming a hyper-localized, stable climate. This allows for plants and trees to grow throughout the year and despite the season, though limitations on space similarly limit the yields.
Wealthy individuals and noble houses within the city tend to patronize an enterprising horticulturalist, forming a lively “competition” – patrons competing for the most talented growers, and the gardeners competing to develop a novel kind of fruit hybrid, or a beautiful new kind of flower – often naming the new creations after their patrons to bring them public prestige and attention.
The wardbaron of the Rune Tree Ward is Kinswell Gray, a half-elven master cultivator of the Gardens. When not engaged in her own research and projects, she oversees the other gardeners and ensures no dangerous crossbreeding or hybrids are being experimented with – the risk of a seemingly benign fruit with a lingering poison spreading throughout the city, for instance, is too dangerous a possibility to entertain.
- The Rune Tree – Serving as the center point of the Great Gardens, the Rune Tree is a sprawling, 65-foot tall tree, resembling an oak or a maple, around which a plaza has been constructed. The tree is one of a kind – explorers and researchers have been unable to find a similar variety across the Waning Isle or Ur’duryn. The tree never sheds leaves or wilts – it is unknown whether this is the effect of the Ward on the tree, or vice versa. Any cuttings taken from the tree wither in minutes, making cultivation or hybrids of the tree impossible. Inscrutable, runic carvings are peppered across the trunk of the tree – often appearing, disappearing, and reappearing at random.
- The Great Gardens – A sprawling open-air market, featuring a dizzying array of flowers, herbs, fruit, tree cultivars, and eager agriculturalists selling and advertising their latest creations. Patrons will often commission a delectable, unusual new fruit or flower – the “unveiling” of which is often a great social occasion.