The origins of Ringwell are not known, but it is believed that Octavius Maximus, the last of the Caelian emperors, quested into it during his youth. When Maximus realized that the Caelian Empire would soon fall, he decided to use Ringwell as a hiding place for his vast collection of powerful artifacts and lore, known collectively as the Wards of the Last Emperor.
One of Maximus's allies, a Solar named Sunlight Reflected in a Lover's Eyes, agreed to be sealed within Ringwell in order to establish the Forbiddances, a number of powerful magical effects that sealed Ringwell not only from discovery and intrusion, but also from living memory. Living beings who knew Ringwell's secrets forgot them, and books detailing its location had their texts become warped and unreadable. But the name remained, and the hunt for Ringwell and for the Wards of the Last Emperor continued for centuries.
Approximately 1500 years after Ringwell was sealed, something happened that caused the Forbiddances to fail. Sunlight Reflected, having gone mad from his confinement, wandered out onto the streets of Capital and began to inadvertently cause death and mayhem until being killed by the Chain of Acheron. Just before his death, Sunlight Reflected telepathically spoke his last words to Slim.
- “The forbiddances Fail! The seals are broken! The emperor must restore them!”
- — Sunlight Reflected in a Lover's Eyes
With the aid of Copper's Primeval Awareness, the Chain was later able to trace Sunlight Reflected's path out of Ringwell, which led them to an abandoned butcher's shop.
Behind the Scenes
Ringwell is Matt Colville's personal megadungeon, which he has been developing since 1985.