Old Burlap, as many of the locals call him, tells stories of a time when golden light filled the sky and the lands of Gen were alive with bright greens and flowers of all colors. Of course, no one believes his tales. Everyone knows that grey clouds have always filled the skies above Gen, and all the lands beyond. Still, the village children love to sit and listen as the wrinkled old man passes the hours with legends of times before the grandfathers of his grandfathers tilled the soil.
Gen is a community of farmers. None now live to recall the last traveler to venture through town on the Old Kings road. It has remained isolated for generations. The people here have been content to remain in their valley, living off the land and farming potatoes and other root vegetables. The rains are frequent and the soil is rich. Knowledge of the lands beyond and the old kingdoms has passed out of the memories of all but the Old Burlap.
There are few threats to the people of Gen. Occasionally a pack of wolves, or a wild bear wanders near one of the outlying farmsteads to harass the livestock, but the valley is otherwise peaceful.
Still, there has always been a sense of foreboding looming over the valley. It is impossible to travel in the vale without being aware of the great grey expanse looming overhead. The sky brightens in the morning, and grows dark as the day goes on until, finally the blackness descends and the light flees. Only torchlight and the lanterns lining the streets keep the utter darkness at bay. It is during many black nights in Gen that strange rumblings can be heard far above the constantly roiling layer of clouds. Sometimes faint and distant, other times deafening and dismissed as thunder; the noises have been more common of late. The vale folk have many superstitions about the cloud layer and the rumblings above, but no one has any real answers.