An exceptional example of just how good goblinoid castles can be if they put their collective minds to the task, and hire some amazing architects and engineers from the local dwarven population to make sure it doesn’t fall over in the first stiff breeze, Jordrakenschloss is both a city and a sprawling complex of fortifications, palaces, and government offices. There isn’t a bigger castle in the whole of Slothjemia, but it wasn’t all built overnight.
It took a decade to flatten the top of Mount Draggo, a rocky peak that towered over the fledgling city of Slothenburg when the nation of Slothjemia was still little more than a monster-infested jungle swamp. Once this work was completed the construction of a new capital was begun and over the next two-hundred years work continued unabated as fortifications were expanded, the city began to grow, and more dragons in the military necessitated bigger stables to be carved into the rocky mountain beneath Jordrakenschloss. The massive castle that occupies the perimeter of the city from the western side up and around the north and down the eastern side is actually three different structures planned at three different times under four different rulers. Melded together in a nightmare patchwork maze of doors, tunnels, passageways and halls these are known collectively as Castle Jordrakenschloss (to differentiate it from the city of Jordrakenschloss).
The original citadel sits on the west side of the city and goes up and around the northwest corner. This is the tallest portion of the overall castle, and the design of it influenced the rest of the construction immensely. Gothic arches are the rule of the day, and wherever possible dark stone was used to give the overall look of the place a sinister and brutal appearance. Heavy oaken doors, metal gates, and innumerable defensive positions designed to deter any attacker give the impression that comfort was not high on the list of priorities when the original citadel was designed. As it stand now it houses the Royal Residences, the barracks for the Black Guard, an entire wing that serves as the Phantom Legion lodge, and all of the rooms that any monarch might have need of in the everyday operation of their domain; throne room and receiving hall, grand ballroom, and formal dining hall to name just a few. Directly below the original citadel are the dragon stables for the Black Guard and the storerooms for anything the Royal Family might have need of.
The central portion of Castle Jordrakenschloss is commonly called the Bureaucratic Palace. This is the actual capitol of Slothjemia where all of the civilian governance takes place. Here are the offices for all of the Bureaucratic Council members except two; the Lord High Marshal (who has their office in the military headquarters section of the castle) and the Lord Archbishop (who keeps their office in the Grand Cathedral of Slothenburg). Senior members of the Bureaucratic Council can be found here during the morning making sure all is running smoothly, but in the afternoons and evenings will be in the throne room of the original citadel if the monarch is holding court. The offices are haphazardly laid out as the various officials jockey for better positions politically as well as within the many floors of the Bureaucratic Palace. Directly beneath this portion of the castle are the dragon barracks for the Red Guard. There are also massive archives down there detailing all of the paperwork stashed over the duration of Slothjemia’s existence.
While not directly joined to the original citadel, the next oldest portion of the castle is referred to as the military citadel. Not quite as tall or impressive as the original citadel the military citadel runs along the northeastern and eastern edges of the city. It offers sweeping views of the alps to the east and on clear days people can even make out the city of Jaggerholmschloss on the shores of Jagger Lake. This portion of the castle is home to the office of the Lord High Marshal as well as the offices under his command; army, navy, Inspector General, and Quartermaster General. It also contains the barracks for the White Guard, the military prison, and all of the halls for strategic and tactical planning as well as communications with all of the military units scattered across the empire. Beneath the military citadel are the dragon stables for the White Guard and armories for surplus weapons and armor that the military might require.
There are roughly twelve thousand people that live in Castle Jordrakenschloss at any given time, and during working hours there are upwards of twenty-one thousand people to be found within the halls and offices of the castle, making it the busiest place in the empire per square foot. Although the Red Guard isn’t housed within Castle Jordrakenschloss their barracks is located on the southern side of the capital in a separate citadel, the newest of the fortifications that ring the city. This is called Castle Tochterwache and is only occupied if the Red Guard aren’t on operations. When they are absent the White Guard takes over and mans the defenses here, but do not take up residence.
Anyone wanting to navigate the labyrinthine Castle Jordrakenschloss would be wise to have a chamberlain along for a guide. It is terrifyingly easy to get lost in this seemingly endless series of interconnected buildings. It isn’t unusual for people trying to get from one part of the castle to another to simply exit the damn thing altogether and take surface streets through the city to reenter the castle closer to where they want to be. Asking guards for directions is pointless because they are trained to not respond in order to maintain their diligence. And not all servants will know the details of other portions of the castle they don’t live or work in. If you know nothing else, know what a chamberlain’s robes look like so you know who to ask how to get the hell out of this crazy place.