The Spine

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A tunnel in the Spine, one of many that allows travel across Ja’luhhor’Alotha via tram system.
Another tunnel in the Spine, noticed that some of the other tunnels are fully enclosed and protected from the external environment.
Jakrenezzor, the largest Spine station. A good example of the appearance of one of the Spine’s many stations.

The Spine is Ja’luhhor’Alotha’s primary transit system. It was originally constructed millions of years ago, and as such it is often decrepit and outdated. A majority of the tunnels are inoperable and collapsed, and yet despite this the Spine serves as the heart of transportation for the vast majority of Ja’luhhor’Alotha’s inhabitants. It sprawls across every Ja’luhhor’Alothian realm, and it appears to “grow” across new areas. Alike the roots of a plant, the tunnels and stations of the Spine are ever increasing in number. While it does appear architecturally identical to that of Aesoteric architecture, it appears to vastly predate them. This possibly suggests that the previous creators of the Spine had their architecture mimicked by the Aesoteric, or that the Spine transcends time and space and simply is.

The Spine is sentient to some degree, it has a primitive nervous system and feels pain and sensation. It will also manipulate its tunnels to protect itself; if an enemy of the Aesoteric uses the Spine, its tunnels will curl until traversal via tram is impossible, or the raiders are crushed. While it is possible that the Spine is remotely managed by Aesoteric operators, it’s more likely that the Spine itself is sentient and mobile to some extent. There does appear to be multiple outposts in which Aesoteric supervisors manage the trams and their movement, although this appears to be unrelated to the Spine’s architectural anatomy.

As the Spine appears to grow and writhe, it’s possible that the structure is actually an Organ. As the Spine does not produce the Dread Aura of other Organs, it is possible that this Organ is the one that the Great Old Ones conquered; causing the Arbiter to awaken and begin the Xothpurge.


The Spine’s general origin is unknown, as it doesn’t appear to have been constructed by any society predating the Aesoteric. Despite this, analyzed pieces of the structure date it millions of years back into Ja’luhhor’Alothian history. This long predates the Aesoteric as a whole, and even predates that of the Godlords. The Spine was at the least mostly formed around the middle of the lost age of the Great Old Ones.

As of modern age, the Spine is docile to travellers, Aesoteric or otherwise. The Aesoteric have created thousands of switchchambers leading to the many different stations of the Spine.

Tunnels of the Spine

A gore-coated tram about to be connected to a tunnel in the Spine, and venture to another land.

The winding tunnels of the Spine are the primary way travellers and traders locomote across Ja’luhhor’Alotha. Their internal tracks, which wind across the ceilings of every tunnel, connect to circular trams that move at a rapid pace. Upon these trams reaching a station, they will abruptly cease movement and their doors will open, allowing either entrance or exit from the station. Many dozens of these trams are located in vast storage complexes connected to the Spine’s tunnels.

The many tunnels of the Spine are vast in diversification, some resemble ophidian skeletons, while others are fully enclosed. Each function identically, transporting passengers.

Sadly, a large amount of the Spine’s tunnel network is collapsed and inoperable. Both bioerosion and enemy forces have caused a multitude of the Spine’s highways to collapse or erode to a point at which the trams cannot function. Even now, a large amount of the operating tunnels suffer from catastrophic damage, and the only most recently grown are truly safe to travel upon.

Stations of the Spine

Jakrenezzor, the largest Spine station.

The vast stations of the Spine are rapidly increasing in number, alike its many tunnels. Settled over mammoth chasms, there is a vast amount of space for impatient passenger’s trams. Each station can connect to thousands of Spine tunnels, all of which are accessible via trams — whose destinations are identifiable via the pulsing runes above their circular entrances.

The stations of the Spine can be found throughout Ja’luhhor’Alotha, they can be stumbled upon in random environments, connected directly to Aesoteric arcology, or accessible exclusively through the Spine’s tunnels. The largest of the stations, Jakrenezzor, is directly accessible by foot via the Great Chasm.

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