From the Great Lakes Tribune at Ultima Online Roleplaying Community - Great Lakes Shard: Traders returning from Ilshenar have been reporting that the area known as 'East-Central Ilshenar' is now inaccessible to foot traffic. This area contains the Ver Lor Reg gargoyle's Shrine of Singularity, the Savage Fort and the Juka-and-machine-controlled 'Castle Blackthorn.' The traders say that each of the three passages into this area has been subject to major rockslides. Central Ilshenar These claims were investigated late this afternoon and found them to be quite accurate. Travel from the Roma encampment just south of the Compassion Shrine was completely impassible as large boulders obscured the tunnel eastward. Several residents claimed to have heard rumbling earlier in the day, immediately prior to the rockslide, but were unsure of the cause. Backtracking to Compassion, the route to the West-Central Ilshenar through the mountains just north of the Honor Shrine remains open. Thus traffic to Ver Lor Reg is unimpeded. It was found that the northern ravine which leads to the eastern section was also blocked by rocks. The only way to surmount this obstacle is with a simple teleportation spell. At first glamce, there was nothing obviously amiss with the eastern section. Several savages patrolled a small camp just southeast of the ravine and the fountains at the Shrine of Singularity to the northeast glistened in the afternoon sun. However, to the south, the imposing form of the castle which had dominated the valley for decades was no more, only shattered chunks of dark stone remained where it once stood. Mechanical monstrosities roamed about the ruins with highly agitated-looking Juka, while ashen-faced controllers stood in a daze. As it is generally known, they are quite inhospitable to outsiders, therefore information was not forthcoming. Venturing to the southern end of the valley, it was noted that the Savage Fort seemed unaffected. However, none of the inhabitants known to be sympathetic towards Britannian citizens were found. Ergo, no information was available. The southern ravine between the eastern and western sections had suffered a rockslide, confirming the trader's reports of inaccessibility. Here again, a teleportation spell is a necessity. Considering the link between the ruined castle and Exodus, the "Sleeper," as it is called locally, needed further investigation. Its lair appeared intact and guarded by the usual contingent of evil minions. Deep within the structure, the great machine itself seemed eerily quiet but otherwise functional. As it had stirred towards the end of the war with Virtuebane, perhaps this old enemy was dismissed too quickly. Leaving Ilshenar, there were more questions than answers. What happened to the castle and why? What does it mean for the inhabitants of Ilshenar, or for Sosarians as a whole? Did Exodus awaken and lash out in anger over old failures, or is there a less apocalyptic answer? Only time and further investigation will tell.