My name is Razul Al-Resah. No doubt you’ve heard of me? I am the premier historian and scholar of the great city-state of Vigil. Before you lays the compendium of my knowledge concerning this place and it’s denizens. It is my life’s work. This knowledge is, as many have appropriately remarked, unusually comprehensive. After all, the doors in this city that are well and truly shut to me can be counted on a single hand.
The city, as you surely already know, has been built up around a mysterious chasm, which we now refer to as the Breach. Many generations ago a great and terrible tower rose up from the The Breach and from it poured forth the legions of Hell itself. The whole of humanity flooded to meet this threat. They were joined by a renegade species of demon who now refer to themselves as the Sera, and an enclave of wizards called the Cult of Locus, who had long ago traded away their humanity for power.
The war continued on for nearly two centuries. Camps and cities formed around the maw of the breach, were destroyed, rebuilt, and destroyed again. The forces of humanity and their temporary allies successfully contained the forces of Hell while the Lost Prophets fought a battle within the tower itself. When they finally emerged decades later a city consisting of various fortresses and war camps had coalesced around the wound in the earth. The tower collapsed soon after into the vapory abyss.
That is how Vigil began. After nine generations of terrible and costly war, people continued to flock to the site and over time it became a thriving metropolis. Both the Sera and the Cult of Locus maintained a presence in the city along side humanity. The three of them have an equal say over the laws, much to the chagrin of the ever expanding human populace.
In truth, Vigil is a dangerous and often terrible place for mankind to exist. With the imminent threat from the breach seemingly gone, the Cult of Locus and the Sera would like very much to do away with one another. To this end, humanity are often pawns at best. Being too near to the breach itself for a prolonged period of time has been known to cause madness, death, or worse. And who knows when the trumpets of hell will again sound and the tower will rise out from the abyss once more?
So why do people continue to crowd the city? There are many theories on this. Perhaps it is because adversity breeds greatness. Vigil is home to some of the finest artists, musicians, and craftsmen in the world. The inventors, scientists, and wizards that reside here are without equal. Nearly anything can happen here at any time.
Some say that humans can sense the danger to the very fabric of existence that the breach causes and will continue to flood to the site until the danger is well and truly gone, similar to the way white blood cells flood the site of an infection. Others postulate that the breach itself draws people to it so that it may one day harvest the bounty of souls that now surround it. There is some evidence to support this; it is not uncommon for perfectly ordinary men and women to just stop whatever they’re doing and walk to the edge of the abyss and jump in, whistling all the while.
I have my own theory on why people come here, but I’ll not share it here. Perhaps, dear reader, if you managed to find me in a tavern or street fair and our conversation were amiable I could be persuaded to tell you. Perhaps, perhaps. But let us not concern ourselves with that now. I have a great many things to show you…