- "The best slaves are those who do not know they are slaves. Look at Under-Altdorf. This city has grown to be the most powerful in all the Under-Empire… except for Skavenblight itself, of course. It has prospered so not by fighting the humans, but by using them, growing fat off their labour and industry. The Horned Rat favours cunning, favours those with vision. Skaven such as me, and you, Grey Seer Thanquol."
- —Grey Seer Thratquee, Religious Head of Under-Altdorf[2b]
Under-Altdorf, known by its heretical title as New Skavenblight, is the second largest and most powerful stronghold within the Under-Empire. The city is built beneath the Imperial capital of Altdorf and boasts the second largest Skaven populations in the Under-Empire, but the lack of available Warpstone ensures that it will never rival Skavenblight as the Skaven’s greatest city. Control of Under-Altdorf is split between several clans, with Skryre holding the lion’s share of power.[1a]
Under-Altdorf, like many other strongholds, has underground rivers which flow directly into large ports and harbor carved into the face of the rock. Second only to Skavenblight in activity, large numbers of rickity trade-barges can be seen plying the harbor docks. The city itself is so large and powerful that it boast its own Council of Thirteen.[2a]
Under-Altdorf started out like many other Skaven strongholds beneath major Human cities; as rallying points for a potential invasion of the surface. Yet, despite their enmity for surface dwellers, the city has grown wealthy, due in part because it steals the wealth from surface Altdorf.[2a] One particular event which cost Under-Altdorf dearly was when Council representative Grey Seer Thanquol was ordered by the Council of Thirteen to locate the Wormstone, a powerful magical artifact of Clan Pestilens within the sewers of the city. In his effort, not only has Grey Seer Thanquol almost singlehandedly thwarted the Council's plans but also destroyed nearly a tenth of Under-Altdorf's population in a great flood which he perpetrated, resulting in Under-Altdorf being setback for decades to come.[3a]
- "My agents tell me that a tenth of Under-Altdorf’s population was killed in the flooding of their warrens, that the damage inflicted upon that upstart burrow will cripple its growth for generations. It will be a long time before they dare think themselves as mighty as Skavenblight!"
- —Paskrit, Warlord-General of Skavendom debriefing on Thanquol's failed mission[3a]
The council of Under-Altdorf, in imitation to the Council of Thirteen, is met in a large hall called the Supreme High Leader Nest. It was extravagantly ornamented with a motley collection of marble blocks and granite columns stolen from the human city above. A riotous array of colourful tapestries drooped from the walls, some of their human subjects crudely disfigured to resemble triumphant skaven warriors. The floor was a tiled mosaic of different coloured bricks while a crystal chandelier swung from the roof overhead.[2a]
Like the true ruling council of the Under-Empire, that of Under-Altdorf boasted thirteen seats, yet unlike the Council of Thirteen, no seat is reserved for the Horned Rat. Instead the positions of authority had been shared out between the city’s most important clans, with the exception of Grey Seer Thratquee’s own seat. One chair was held by Skrattch Skarpaw, the Shadowstalker of Clan Eshin, with a further two seats held by his subordinates. Another chair was held by Fleshtearer Rusk of Clan Moulder. Pontifex Poxtix was the Clan Pestilens representative on the council. Other seats were held by the warlords of Clans Skab, Skaul and Mors.[2a]
The remaining seats were held by Clan Skryre, a potent display of their influence and power in the city. Warplord Quilisk was the highest ranking of the warlock engineers, a sinister figure with a lower jaw sheathed in metal and a riot of tubes and pipes running from a complex iron pump into his chest. The other Clan Skryre representatives were clustered around him and in obvious fear of the local clan-leader. A final, non-voting seat, was reserved for a Clan Sleekit fleetmaster, a fat, sleepy-eyed ratman with thinning fur and the smell of weirdroot about him.[2a]
- 1: Children of the Horned Rat (2nd Edition Fantasy Roleplay)
- 1a: pg. 56
- 2: Thanqoul and Boneripper: Grey Seer (Novel) by C.L Werner
- 3: Thanqoul and Boneripper: Temple of the Serpent (Novel) by C.L Werner
- 3a: Chapter 1: "Shadows of Skavenblight"