Furnace is a subterranean Ophidian city and its surrounding network of caverns that appears in Ultima VII Part Two, occupying the fiery bowels of the mountain range enshrouding mainland Serpent Isle's southeastern peninsula.
Descriptionhumans without magical means. Unlike its counterpart settlements in the frozen north, the city does not appear to have been clearly devoted to the doctrines of either Order or Chaos; however, a temple in its northeastern reaches is adorned with the sapphire icons of the former, and automata, archetypal servants of the creed, remain functional and hostile within the nearby ampitheater.
The Lands of Danger and Despair
As Ophidian philosophy took root throughout the land, these torrid caverns were chosen, along with the Skullcrusher and Spinebreaker mountains, to be the site of a major settlement. While physically isolated from the principal hubs of this civilization in the frigid Ice Plains, measures were taken to secure Furnace's serpent gate from unpermitted thoroughfare, whereby keys of fire and ice, respectively safeguarded by a Hierophant and their trusted advisor, would need to be fused to form a third out of blackrock in order to unlock the brass door leading to the portal.
Despite this, the city did not escape the calamities that befell the rest of the isle during the War of Imbalance. While the exact circumstances of what occurred in Furnace were lost to the ravages of time, the fate of its population was indeed grave, with the remains of a great many Ophidians left scattered throughout the ruins.
New Sosaria and Age of Armageddon
By the time of the New Sosarian settlement of Serpent Isle, the city proper had come to be repopulated by a society of gargoyles who inhabited the area for several generations. While content to co-exist peacefully in their adopted home, the Gargish populace was frequently subjected to violent conflicts with a horde of trolls dwelling in the neighboring tunnels, as well as the knights of nearby Monitor during their expeditions to plunder Furnace of its Ophidian treasures.
Vulnerable also to the burgeoning Imbalance, the Gargish populace had become plagued with a crippling sleep sickness by the time of the Avatar's questing on Serpent Isle. Barely able to stave off this affliction was their ruler, Zhelkas, whom the hero encountered as their travels brought them from Moonshade to the mainland by way of Furnace. The gargoyle leader recognized the Avatar from prophetic dreams observed by his kind while in their deep slumber, which foretold of the Imbalance storms and illnesses scourging the multiverse, as well as the impending rise of the three Banes of Chaos. Having foreseen their prevailing over this spectral triumvirate and restoring Balance to the realm, Zhelkas granted entry to the Hero from Another World and bade them undertake the Ophidians' Test of Purity, three trials each serving to prove one's character, that the ailing gargoyle could be assured of their identity and impart them with the Great Hierophant's Serpent Ring, a sacred artifact discovered by the gargoyles among the city ruins. In completing the Test of Purity successfully, the Avatar would be further granted passage to the surface world.
Navigating the remaining caverns leading to Monitor brought the hero to an encounter against the very troll clan Zhelkas had long struggled to ward off from his torpid subjects. Ensconced among their spoils was the hallowed Serpent Staff of the Great Hierophant, which the beasts had purloined from their gargoyle neighbors with the belief it would grant them the power to purge Zhelkas' kind from Furnace entirely. Also found throughout these tunnels were the remains of venturesome Monitorian knights in varying degrees of decomposition and disembodiment. Spared were but a small band of these local warriors who, should the Avatar stumble upon them, were in such dire need of hydration they would set upon the party in ferocious desperation.
Ultima VII Part Two
- Zhelkas: gargoyle leader
|Cities||Fawn ☥ Monitor ☥ Moonshade|
|Settlements||Inn of the Sleeping Bull ☥ Isles of the Mad Mage ☥ Monk Isle|
|Dungeons||Skullcrusher ☥ Spinebreaker ☥ Furnace ☥ Knight's Test ☥ Mountains of Freedom|
|Ruins||Shamino's Castle ☥ Castle of the White Dragon ☥ Shrine of Balance ☥ Temple of Discipline ☥ Temple of Emotion ☥ Temple of Enthusiasm ☥ Temple of Ethicality ☥ Temple of Logic ☥ Temple of Tolerance|
|Islands|| Claw ☥ Isle of Crypts ☥ Gwani Death Temple ☥ Ice Dragon's Lair ☥|
Isles of the Mad Mage ☥ Monk Isle ☥ Penguin Island ☥ Sunrise Isle
|Interesting Areas||Gorlab Swamp ☥ Great Northern Forest ☥ Ice Plains ☥ Knight's Forest ☥ Serpent Isle Guard Towers ☥ Western Forest|
|Settlements||Argentrock Isle ☥ Daemon's Crag ☥ Tenebrae|
|Other||Carthax Lake ☥ Catacombs ☥ Cemetery ☥ Fishermen's Reef ☥ Hall of the Mountain King ☥ Herdsman's Valley ☥ Plateau ☥ Shrine of the Ancient Ones ☥ Stone Cove ☥ Treasure Cove ☥ Vengeance Bay|