This plane is suffused with despair, anger, and madness. It is a place that makes one feel paranoid, because the Denizens of this realm make The Bleak into a place of sadness, terror, and suffering. It is the home to much darkness and evil, as well as rumored to be the place to which the Dread Powers That Be are tied, though their prison itself crosses other planes to seal them.
Half dead, ruined, blasted, The Bleak is a world that would likely be our lot should the Fairywilde ever gain the ability to conquer that the Hell has. The air is tinged with red, is gritty, rough, abrasive, and there is always a hot wind blowing. The world of The Bleak has no winter, and no rain, and water is a precious commodity. Centuries ago, some great effort breached the Veil, and since then the Devils of Hell have had near free reign. There are a thousand tiny kingdoms here, always at war with one another, the nobility always being a devil.
This arrangement does not please either the Hags or the Demons, who are forever causing havoc in an attempt to create their own breach – attempts which often have led them here to Wyrlde.
The layer of Hell is the home of Devils, who seek flesh and corruption. Hell is sulfurous in smell, the skies are thick and black clouds with red and yellow flashes, the landscape is barren. Hell’s main landscape rises in a ziggurat like vast mountain that has a flat, broad top, the size of which is like unto a vast empire of its own. Beneath this immense mesa, arranged in broad rings, lie the seven hells themselves, each having many smaller sections, often dedicated to specific forms of torture and corruption, of subjugation and experimentation. Between each ring and the inner one is a deep and wide crevasse, pitch black even when light it thrown in, that leads to a bottomless pit. Above, the Hell above it stretches a thousand feet, and even the lowest level stretches a thousand feet above a vast field of always boiling lava and worse, the sea of doom and horror stretching to the horizon around this immense and hard to believe mountain of despair.
Each ring is of equal size even as they expand out, and from atop the great mesa, one can look down and see all the horrors. Within each Ring there is a Duke, and above them all sits a Prince, and beneath them are assorted nobility of Earls, Counts, Barons, and more, thought these names for such are the ones they use.
Each Duke has several nobles attending them, sworn by complex bonds of magical and other bonds that are meant to ensure loyalty among a people whose entire world is built on the idea of corrupting a soul so that it is sweeter when it is consumed. Backstabbing, betrayal, and distrust are the normal order of things in Hell. Hell thrives on those captured and taken from other planes, with the people struggling to live under the brutal and cruel leadership of the Legions. Since the conquest of The Bleak, they have been slowly stripping it of all things and this is likely why the Bleak is seen as the afterlife of those who were cruel and evil and unjust.
The three most powerful of the Dukes are Asmodeus, Astaroth, and Samael, occupying the second, third, and fourth rings. Accounts are confused about who the Prince of Hell is. The lower hells are forever squabbling and shifting and changing in leadership, but it is believed that one particular Devil is beginning to become a very strong force – strong enough to possibly challenge even Asmodeus if she can keep her wits about her.
The Abyss is a vast world without sun or moon, stars or comets, a vast and unending eternity of simple absence that stretches forever away from an immense world size cylindrical pit that stretches off eternally. From any place on the surface of the vast world of the Abyss, when you look directly up above you, all you can see is the rest of the Abyss and if you had the time, you could walk around to it. To see the black void, you must look past only the two edge horizons, for the inside of the cylinder is the abyss, and the outside cannot, and many say will not support life.
Like the Feywild, the Abyss as a place is alive, and thinks and plots and punishes.
When standing on the surface, the curve is only visible at the furthest edge of the horizon, and it is only the strange massive spires, broad at their base and narrowing into needlelike towers, that provide light, each equidistant from the rest in a pattern that can be seen to be staggered when you look up, so that there is always light somewhere in sight – even if your great Spire is currently dark as the furnaces that power them are cleaned. The furnaces are fueled by the corpses of those who fall into the hands of a powerful demon and are always those that are of no longer any use.
The abyss is cold, and when a wind blows it is bitterly cold, though there is never snow and rarely ice, and little is going to be allowed to stop the ongoing farming that all the lesser beings are responsible for. In the Abyss, the farms are filled with strange, worm-like things, always wriggling in their upright position, always rooted in the soil, and all of them suffering and broadcasting the emotions they feel to the demons that work, rule, and thrive on the consumption of emotions and dreams, on the possibility and potential, f each of those tiny, sapient, living things grown like wheat in a field. Each of them is a living being from somewhere else, reduced to a lemure in torment, and held for as long as possible until they have finally passed – at which point they go to serve in the great furnace spires.
The Abyss has no rulers, no government, and is very much an everyone for themselves realm.
Here, Power and Fear sustain all. It is the planar home of the Dread Powers of the Host. This is the realm to which the Hags were banished.