The Drowsy Arbor

The Drowsy Arbor is an old building of immense proportions built on a hill overlooking a river. It's original purpose was as a monastery, but has since been converted in to a tavern and rest stop for travelers.


Long ago, the warrior scholars of the Tiefling nation Na-Duhr were well respected. These monks lived quiet lives of meditation, advancing themselves in the arts and sciences as well as honing their martial skills. Kings and queens sought their sage advice, while generals looked to harness their combative prowress. In line with their philosophies, however, the monks kept to themselves and stayed away from politics and war as much as possible.
While many of the faithful spent their lives traveling the world, the order was centered at the enormous monastery known as Vera Suhl. The original monastic compound encircled a large hill, nearly one mile in diameter, with a low stone wall. Inside this wall the monks studied, prayed, trained and lived in numerous small buildings that dotted the South side of the hill. Atop the hill sat the only permanent building, the monastery itself. Measuring approximately one hundred twenty feet in diameter and rising only fourty feet at its domed peak, the monastery offered a grand view of the river valley and its surroundings. Meanwhile, the building also plunged deep into the hill itself with several sublevels, basements, storerooms and a series of catacombs. A few of these sublevels have rooms with small windows that look out of the sheer North side of the hill and were used as bed chambers for some of the more prominent monks of Vera Suhl.

The Vera Suhl monks travelled, and their order grew as people learned of their skills and philosophies. At its height, the monastery grounds was the home to over a thousand of the faithful at various stages in their studies. However, this golden age for the monks did not last long. Lords sought their advice and even their martial prowress on the battlefield. The Vera Suhl monks held to their position of non-involvement in the affairs of states and nations. A few did break from the order to serve as advisors and even generals, but these renegades were excommunicated from the Vera Suhl. The perpetually neutral stance of the true monks offended and enraged many kings and queens, leading to an outlawing of the Vera Suhl in many lands. This in turn lead to a decrease in their popularity and the order's numbers shrank.
In a few generations, the Vera Suhl monastery was virtually empty. Only a few abbots remained to teach the novices, while most of the order continued the tradition of wandering the land. With fewer and fewer initiates petitioning to join the order every year, the splendor the monastery also waned. Buildings fell in to disrepair and crumbled, as only the large temple building was maintained.

It was at these bleak times that the lord of Na-Duhr, young and newly crowned, came to visit the monastery. He was in awe of the once splendorous temple and monastery and offered to fund a restoration. The monks were invited back to his palace for a feast and celebration in their honor. The monks stayed at the palace for three days and even demonstrated their martial skills to the lord and his vassals. All enjoyed the newfound friendship and it seemed that the monastery would enjoy a rebirth. Unfortunately, this was not so. One of the lord's vassals planned to overthrow the lord in a bloody coup during this time. The visiting monks were still at the palace during the attack and defended the lord, stopping the coup.
Once again the lord was astonished at the abilities of his guests. After the attack he begged and pleaded for the monks to stay with him as his personal guards, to train his armies and give him counsel in political affairs. The Vera Suhl declined, sticking to their traditions of neutrality, thanked their host and headed home. The young lord sent messenger after messenger for a year, repeating his offer and each time the monks declined. Finally, the young lord sent only a gift to the monks, a large bronze statue of toad. While this puzzled the monks, the gift was accepted and placed inside the temple where its beautiful craftsmanship could be admired by all who visited.
That night, through mystical incantations cast upon the statue, it released a poisonous gas that permeated the temple building. Many of the monks died in their sleep, while some awoke in time and fled. Outside the temple grounds the young lord's soldiers waited to cut down the weakened Vera Suhl. After the attacks, the soldiers tried to burn down the monastery, but the poisonous fumes smothered the flames and prevented the soldiers from continued attempts. After that night, the Vera Suhl monastery was uninhabited for over an age. Rumors say the some of the wandering monks returned, but upon seeing their temple ruined set off again to travel the world as hermits and aesthetics.1

Recent History

Roughly forty years ago, the Vera Suhl monastery received its first inhabitant in nearly a thousand years. The lonely hill top building intrigued a local adventurer who was looking to settle down. Upon investigating, Grindol Silverbough claimed the monastic grounds to be his and began work on repairing the ancient building. The main temple now sees many visitors, as Grindol restored it not to a holy building, but rather renovated it to a rest stop and inn and named it 'The Drowsy Arbor'. Here Grindol lives with his wife and two children. Due to the enormous size of the building, the Arbor often serves as a great hall for the nearby town of Greenvale. Meanwhile the first two sub-levels have been converted into guest rooms for travelers and the upstairs in to the Silverbough's private living space. The lower sub-levels, basements and catacombs have all been sealed off, with Grindol attesting that he found the place this way and saw no reason to disturb it.2

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