The Golden Compass

World of Storm and Fury: World Facts and Lore: The Golden Compass
The Golden Compass is an ancient story from the morass of legend and myths which enshroud the fallen Empire of Man, in Central Oortesia. As with most semi-mythical devices from days of yore, many ancient records refer to this as a gift from the gods. However, some descriptions of the Golden Compass suggest it is of elfish origin, though scholars have yet to find this substantiated in any elfish records, either in Arundel or Kin-Darys.

Exactly what the Golden Compass does, or did, is not at all clear. However, it seems not to have been an ordinary compass in the sense of indicating north, but rather, it was able to point the direction towards some very specific destination, or destinations. In some tales which include the use of the Golden Compass itself, or alternatively the use of a device which seems to have effects simlar to those ascribed to the Golden Compass, and which appear to originate from the correct time period, it is said to have pointed to locations where great treasures lay, though many scholars argue the word 'treasure' may have been used in a more general sense of something of great value, which the translators took to mean treasure.

Whether actual treasures can be located with the Golden Compass, if it even exists, the very idea has been the impetus behind many expeditions to Central Oortesia. Often it is sought in the ruins of the ancient cities, yet there are several sources which suggest the last known location was on a riverboat headed down the Mist River. Thus, various more recent ideas have put the likely location in one of Borfranten, the Privyet Marshes, or Kin-Darys--though obviously these are extremely large areas to search. There is also a fragmentary Skylding story, reportedly written by a Nairn, which suggests the Golden Compass may have been taken to Skylding Vorhooven.

In any event, this tantalizing group of stories remain a source of scholarly introspection, as well as real world treasure-hunting.
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