Here are some things that are commonly known about the Black Road:
- It runs from somewhere in shadow, to near the foot of the mountain of Kolvir in Amber.
- When the Road goes through a shadow, it corrupts the place, turning it dark and twisted.
- Armies marched into Amber from shadow, using the Black Road.
- Only creatures of the Road can use it to get through shadow (regardless of direction).
- The twisted life on the Road, including plant life, can be extremely dangerous.
- It is possible to become Marked by the Road via contact with tainted creatures and the like.
The Road's Retreat
It's commonly known that the strength of the Black Road has been diminishing. Here are some things to keep in mind about the Road's retreat, although they might not be things you know IC:
- The Road itself remains, but, at least in Amber, Golden Circle, and other nearby shadows, it is not spreading, and in some cases, it is physically diminishing, with life slowly returning to once-blighted areas.
- The Black Road armies have been cleared out of these near-Amber environs. While pockets of troops remain, these are stubborn holdouts, stragglers, or "lost legions", not threats of army scale. For instance, it's possible to have a handful of Black Road soldiers, separated from their unit, show up in a plot, trying to seize an item of power which they hope will help them to return home.
The staff has asked the propcos of Golden Circle shadows to think about the following:
- The Black Road is mysteriously weakening, and this is an opportunity for things to change on an epic scale.
- The Road isn't going to go away completely for good, but it can be more or less driven out of some places, and it might flee into other places.
- What happens to this shadow? Will you push the Black Road away? Will you become a haven and harbor it? Will you come to terms with it, and make it part of your world in some way?
The propcos have the freedom to decide the ultimate fate of the Road within their shadows, though such stories should be focused upon the end of the Road, not fresh assaults.
Exploring the Black Road
If you are planning on trying to explore the Black Road, here are some things to keep in mind. These are not things that your character would know unless he's learned them from direct experience with the Road, or has been told them by someone who has that experience, but the information is provided here so you can run your own scenes.
- You'll need a shadow-walking power. You can't simply travel the Road through shadow.
- The Road is not linear. Walk shadow and you'll find the Road in many places.
- The Road goes through many shadows, which it has twisted and corrupted. If you are looking for adventure, it is certainly appropriate to play out variations on a theme of corruption and decay and things generally going to hell in a previously pleasant and idyllic shadow.
- What you encounter in shadows touched by the Road will generally be native to that shadow. It is possible that creatures from the Road have come into the shadow and been responsible for havoc (either one-time or ongoing).