Tipping the Balance
The castle itself and its catacombs housed the Rivenroar family (living and deceased) long ago. Some other local families of note used the catacombs as a place of interment as well. These families and the Rivenroars had more than one thing in common, but now only those who know what they’re looking at as they journey through the catacombs can figure it out. Now the castle and the catacombs house a much different set of inhabitants than those who built it long ago might have envisioned.
The Rivenroar catacombs were constructed over the course of only about a decade, so its architecture is remarkably consistent.
Doors: None of the doors lock, though all have simple sliding latches accessible on both sides. They exist merely for the privacy of those visiting their ancestors—the countermeasures against grave robbers are more lethal. The doors swing in both directions, and they baffle sound better than most doors.
Floors: The floors are made of flagstone—slightly slippery because the catacombs are damp, but not dangerous.
Ceilings: Thick wooden beams hold up the ceilings. Most are 10 feet off the ground at the walls and 15 feet high at the center of the room.
Sarcophagi: Many of the rooms have stone sarcophagi. Most have a family name engraved on them and year of death that indicates they were buried about 300 years ago. Some have a likeness of the deceased carved into the lid, while others have abstract designs. The skeleton inside each sarcophagus is moldy due to the damp, and most burial garb has long since rotted away.
Alcoves: Niches in the walls are another common burial technique here in the catacombs. The skeletons are in the same bad condition as the ones in the sarcophagus. Each alcove goes 2 to 3 feet into the wall. Sometimes a section of wall has three alcoves (high, middle, and low).
Stairs: Other than the iron spiral staircase between rooms 8 and 9, all the stairs are made of flagstone.