Where are those rats?
Richemulot is one of the Domains of Dread of Ravenloft and is ruled over by the Darklord, Jacqueline Renier. Richemulot is a domain plagued with, well plague. Much of the time, the cities operate like ordinary cities, people live, work, eat and die. But sometimes, just a few weeks will pass by or months, but inevitably, rats will begin the infest the cities, spreading disease and the city gates will close, quaranting those left inside. It is this cycle through which Richemulot must suffer and survive with the darklord and de-facto leader of the domain, Mademoiselle Jacqueline Renier, barely holding the entire nation together.
Information About Richemulot
|Domain Characteristic||Domain of Disease, Isolation and Wererats|
|Genre||Disaster Horror and Gothic Horror|
|Hallmarks||Contagion, crumbling infrastructure, martial law, rats and vermin, wererats|
|Races||Mostly human, some halflings|
Characteristics of Richemulot
The cities of Richemulot are large and vast, with accommodation and buildings that could support populations vastly larger than the ones that live there. The constant cycle of plagues have decimated the lands’ population to just a threadbare few in comparison to what there used to be. The city’s police force, the Casques Silencieux watch vigilantly for signs of a new epidemic, responding with a harsh martial law upon the nation’s denizens. The city gates are closed, a strict curfew is in place and families must fend for themselves with no support or aid in food coming from elsewhere.
Locals refer to this deadly disease as The Gnawing Plague or “the Gnaws”. The Gnaws is always preluded by rats pouring out of the sewers and leads to the inevitable, unbearable wait of the people staring out of slatted windows, wondering when the torturous wait will end. The Gnaws killed off Richemulot’s Royal family some time ago, now Jacqueline Renier has become the de-facto leader as the wealthiest aristocrat in the land. She works tirelessly to bring her domain back from the brink of total collapse.
Darklord: Jacqueline Renier
Once, long ago, Richemulot was a thriving nation. The wealthy lived in luxury and spent their coin lavishly. This spending lined the pockets of the middle class; the merchants, craftsmen and other skilled labourers, creating a wealthy middle-class. It was Jacqueline Renier alone among the aristocracy, and even among her own noble family, that recognised the dangers of a burgeoning middle-class to the luxurious lifestyles of the nobility, recognising the power that the middle-class were beginning to wield.
Jacqueline began a search for like minded souls that could help her fend off this problem as her family would not support her in this endeavour, preferring to let the nobility sway with the times. After years of searching, Renier came across the highly secretive True-blood Council. She spent a fortune chasing after this secret society and seeking entry into their membership until she was eventually invited to attend a meeting.
Jacqueline was confused at first when asked to meet with the society in the sewers of Pont-Au-Museau. She went anyway, desperate to find like-minded souls but instead she found a throng of filthy commoners rather than the underground masterminds she’d hoped to discover. It wasn’t until they revealed their true selves as wererats that she recognised the use for which these people could be and agreed to join their ranks as a wererat herself.
Now as a member of Richemulot’s original inhabitants, Renier turned her spite away from the lower-classes and instead directed it towards those of non-wererat status. She converted her family first of all to wererats though her twin sister, Louise, was the only one to refuse, for which, Jacqueline disfigured her and cast her out. Now with her family behind her, Renier turned her attention to the rest of Richemulot. She and her wererat allies concocted a plague from the filth of Richemulot that would kill most people that are not wererats. This was distributed first among the nobility but soon spread to the rest of the people of Richemulot as well.
The plague achieved Jacqueline Renier’s desires, the nobility were decimated leaving a huge power vacuum in Richemulot’s society, one that Jacquline quickly assumed as her own. She was now the highest born aristocrat and the de-facto leader of Richemulot. The lower classes begged their new leader for aid but she was disgusted by such lowly beings, unworthy of her help due to the nature of their birth and the lack of coin in their pockets. She refused aid and oversaw the death of all the non-wererat population of Richemulot. As the last soul died from the plagues, the mists of Ravenloft encircled Richemulot, taking the entire nation into the new Domain of Dread.
Locations in Richemulot
Pont-A-Museau is the capital of Richemulot, sitting along the Musarde River. It’s vast number of buildings could hold a population of 20,000, but barely half that now live in the city. The architecture of these buildings also looks distinctly foreign leading to many rumours that the current inhabitants are not the original settlers of the city. Rats fester throughout this city and lurk everywhere. The people have become used to their coexistence with these wretched creatures. Many suspect that they are spies for Jacqueline Renier; a suspicion that is likely true considering that anyone spouting such rumours in the presence of a rat is soon found dead under mysterious circumstances.
On an island in the centre of the Musarde River is the Chateau Delanuit, the family estate of the Renier family from which Jacqueline Renier rules the domain. While she hosts many meetings and audiences from here, her private residence is viewed by very few. However, it is below Chateau Delanuit that the true epicentre of Richemulots politics occur as it stands above the Inverted Court, a downward spilling palace that leads into the sewers where the wererats of Richemulot dwell.
When Jacqueline Renier first ascended to the throne, Saint Ronges petitioned for independence, this was granted with the concession that the government of Richemulot would not support the city or its inhabitants. Unfortunately for Saint Ronges, the plague, for some reason, hits harder here than in any other city causing even greater strife and struggle for the people. Of course, the truth is that Jacqueline Renier sets the plague upon the city more aggressively than on the other cities. The people of Saint Ronges have appealed to Jacqueline for support, though she still continues to consider their requests as more and more die each day.
Mortigny is both the smallest and most overcrowded of the cities of Richemulot. Buildings have been built upon other buildings and shanties have been built all around the outskirts of the city. The place is the ideal breeding ground for the Gnaws and as such, the city is quick to order lockdowns on its people at the first sign of the plague. ANyone is allowed into the city, even during quarantines, under the provision that they understand they will not be able to leave.
With such a large population requiring medical aid, Mortigny is home to the most medical practitioners in the domain who work tirelessly to cure the sick and find cures for the disease. The best of these healers work under the tutorlage of Dr Simone Temator, though many others turn to increasingly unorthodox methods of treatment.