Beginning April 12, Shady Falls is a City Lost in Time.
Shady Falls was a small, immigrant city along the coast in southern Virginia. And though the little city was rumored to be located closer to the lost Roanoke colony than official records might indicate, it would have been a surprise to those locals left behind when the struggling urban center simply vanished one day, just as that original colony had been rumored to do. Or, it would have been a surprise - if they remembered. They didn’t remember. No one did. Those immigrants who were lost were simply gone to families on the other side of the Atlantic, or seemingly vanished to those here. In time, all trace of those who once struggled through World War I along with their more “American” counterparts was simply lost.
The unfortunate city no longer exists except as a question mark on old maps, but odd and unusual happenings mark that part of the mid-Atlantic coast, even to the present. From time to time, vacationers or travelers in that part of the country go missing. It is said that on misty evenings, phantom sounds fill the wooded areas above the sand dunes and that on certain, moonless nights, you can almost see the outlines of misty buildings in the dark.
But, the citizens of Shady Falls aren’t gone. Those travelers who have vanished over the decades aren't gone. The original settlers aren't gone, nor are the Native Americans they first met, or the many, many unfortunates who have stumbled upon this little wrong place at the wrong time over the centuries. They aren’t gone. They aren't vanished and they aren't dead. The residents of Shady Falls, along with those of the Colony before and all those others - and even some that seem to have randomly gotten lost at other places and other times, still walk cobbled streets and rest beneath roofs of brick and mortar. Beyond the veil, beyond time, lost in a city that some residents call Purgatory and others Hell, these lost denizens of time struggle and wait, some of them trapped for hundreds of years, some of them newly arrived – all of them dreaming of the way back home.
Life isn’t easy these days in Shady Falls. In this town beyond the veil, resources are limited and most filter out through the control of those who live beneath the city – those known to the residents simply as “Them”. Who “Them” are isn’t exactly clear. Them are a tall people, mostly over 6’5” in height and willowy in structure. Other than those known as “Deputies” (named thus by Shady’s early residents) , Them rarely come above ground. When they do, they wear black, hooded masks that completely conceal their features from view – and when they do, those above take heed. Them run the city, these days. Some worship Them and some revile Them. Some think Them gods or demons, while others think them aliens or time travelers. Small scale wars have been known to break out amongst the humans above over exactly what Them are. While gangs and coalitions struggle for power and control above ground, all are aware that it is Them, with their access to resources and control of arrivals, that ultimately decide their fate.
Of course, humans struggle. In a city populated by mostly Americans - a few of whom even remember the Revolutionary war, guerrilla warfare, actions taken against those seen as collaborators, spying and sabotage are not unheard of in the lost city. Newly arrived immigrants may find themselves taken in by various groups or gangs, or left to the vultures, enslaved or worse until they can find a way out. Even so, life goes on. A vibrant, often frantic nightlife and frenzied sense of celebration are not uncommon in the various neighborhoods of the Falls. Burlesque, gambling and copious amounts of terrible alcohol produced by the stills left behind from the original days of Prohibition make for a strangely celebratory contrast on those nights when Them are quiet. Violent crime, once controlled by governments past, is now only limited by what the gangs deem fit – or more often, when those they protect are its focus. No one in the Falls dies of old age or illness, but violence sizzles in the balmy air.
What does this mean for playing in this new Shady Falls?
It means that in Shady Falls, you might have a Civil War veteran having a conversation with a flower child. In this strangely populated land, you might find a religious discussion between an actual original Quaker and a cultist who believes in demons and ritualistic worship. People are often dressed as they first were when they arrived - many cling to traditions and habits of their own time, while others adopt those of other cultures and time frames. Your character may be from any time in the late 1600's until 2013 and can be from anywhere in the world. Modern conveniences pulled through from later times, are highly valued and can fetch high prices or lead to extremes in violence as gangs and those with power strive to possess them. Slavery, while reviled by many, is not uncommon - though sometimes its simply not called by that name to soothe those with objections. Indentured servitude by new denizens is common as they seek shelter and a place in the odd society they've found themselves thrust into.
What races can I play in the new Shady Falls?
You can only play an adult human in the new Shady Falls. The Them will be playable at first as NPCs for anyone who wishes to play them and a group of players will determine events and stories for the Them to pursue.
What time and/or place can I be from in Shady Falls?
You can be from any time up -until- 2013. That means you could be a Victorian who somehow got pulled through from London or you could be a WW2 veteran driving through Virginia when it all went wrong. You could be a 1920's gangster (and the majority are likely to be from the 20's, since the whole town got taken then) or you could be a 1950's executive - or a flower child from the early 70's. You can bring through the equivalent of one suitcase full of clothing and other stuff. What you bring is up to you.