Central for Venutian governance is the Conclavum; a huge mountain fortress of red rockcrete built high on top of Ishtar Terra, a plateau highland on the planets storm-ridden north pole, chiefly named after Ishtar, the mythical Terran goddess of political power whose primary symbol was the lion, which is often embellished in old Venutian architecture and arcane family heirlooms, mainly within the families of the Conclave Venutiae.
The Conclavum is perpetually shrouded in thick, yellowish clouds of mostly sulfuric acid that trap heat, causing a runaway greenhouse effect. Here, behind its massive walls and immense cooling systems, which act as barriers to the toxic atmosphere of the surface, the Conclavum often lies dormant for decades, its outside walls battered by unbearable heat and storms while its interior halls are eerily silent.
The Conclave Venutiae congregate in the red halls of the Conclavum only in times of change when the need to select a new Doxii di Venutiae, Doge and Chief Magistrate of Venus, arises. The title of Doge is a lifetime honour and for the last century – almost to the day – House Tenebrosus has held the title and ensnared the planet in its web of dark secrets, political intrigue and power play.
But now is a time of need and great urgency!
The Horned Ones have been called to the Conclave. Coinciding with the fast approaching celebration of the 243-year transit of Venus, marking the superior solar conjuction of the planet where it is farthest away from Terra, the Tenebrosii Doge has been found dead. Rumour already abound in the Venutian palaces, where everything you have been told is a lie, that the Tenebrosii Master of Lies has been poisoned, assassinated by unknown perpetrators, in his most secluded and private chamber of the Nest.
The Doxii is dead! Long live the Doxii!
+ The Tenebrosii Funeral Procession +