The Scallywags of The Shackles
Test of the Starstone
The Test of the Starstone is a test that anyone can take by attempting to reach the Starstone in the Starstone Cathedral at the center of Absalom’s Ascendant Court district. The Starstone is surrounded by a large, deadly maze containing traps, guardians and wards. The exact nature of the obstacles changes over time, but constant hazards include magic not always working right and prevention of extra-dimensional movement. It is rumoured that no one actually ages while performing the test, and that the obstacles are adventurers who’ve gone mad and have become a part of the test. Those few who pass become demigods, while those who fail usually die, although a select few manage to escape, occasionally with great wealth, but no divinity.
The first known person to pass the test was Aroden, who did so when he took the stone from the bottom of the sea to the Isle of Kortos in 1 AR when he founded the city of Absalom. Since then, only three of the vast number who took the test have passed: Norgorber, whose life prior to the test is unknown, Cayden Cailean, who took it on a drunken bet, and Iomedae, a worshiper of Aroden who became his herald.
Clues to the Test
The Test of the Starstone is mysterious; the only publicly known part of the test is that hopefuls must cross the bottomless pit surrounding the Starstone Cathedral without using a bridge. Crossing the pit is a necessary first step, but not sufficient to enter the cathedral and continue the test, and what has worked for one hopeful may fail for another. Hopefuls have leaped across, flown with magic, or used tightropes, and the spectacle of an attempt nearly always draws an enormous, attentive crowd.