[i]As the Artificer's Clock struck 11:59 it seemed the entire City of Towers was holding its breath. The New Year celebration was always a big to-do in Sharn. People mingled more freely between the upper and lower towers. Parties were happening in every tower, every plateau, even the City of Dead where Sharn's deceased lay in state was said to be crawling with socialites (many of them necromancers and followers of the Blood of Vol Sharnites would whisper). On this night even the most uptight monk of the Silver Flame could be seen getting off his hassock and leaping with jubilation. This night would mark the second new year celebration since the signing of the Treaty of Thronehold in 996 YK. And if you thought last year's "First Year of Peace" theme was fantastic, you were ecstatic with this year's "Wine, Women, and Warforged" theme. All the crazies were out, and no one seemed to mind. But at this moment, a hush had fallen over the city as the Artificer's Clock, large and clearly visible from all the highest towers of the city, ticked ever closer to the new year. The illusionists of the City of Towers had brightened the second hand on the Artificer's Clock for this specific moment. All you could hear was the soft murmur, almost a chant, as people the whole city round joined together to count down the final seconds of the clock's ticking. Five, four, three, two, one...
And then it happened: a deafening and raucous cry of celebration rang out through the City of Towers. The cheers of "Happy New Year" were so loud, people would swear you could hear them across the Thunder Sea. And why shouldn't they? A quarter million people all crying out in unison was certainly a spectacular thing to hear. But as bottles of Aundairian champagne were popped and merry-makers hugged, danced and sang, a blood-curdling scream pierced the din. It was soon followed by more screams of the same nature and the reason quickly became obvious to all. A dark cloud had passed over the night sky, revealing for the first time a terrible sight, a blood-red moon in full color sitting there high in the sky. Everyone knew Eberron's twelve moons, Zarantyr, the Storm Moon, Olarune the Sentinel, Therendor, the Healer's Moon, Eyre, the Anvil, Dravago, the Herder's Moon, King Nymm, the Eye of Lharvion, Barrakas, the Lantern, Rhaan, the Book, Sypheros, the Shadow, Aryth, the Gateway, and Vult, the Warding Moon. The months of the Galifaran calendar were named for the moons and each shines a bit brighter than the others during the month of its name. But this new moon, this blood-red moon, bright and ominous, had never appeared before. There were legends about it, of course, generally boding terrible and dark things, and its appearance was an ominous sign that drove most to panic.
Almost as soon as it had begun, the party was over. People fled to their homes and hid themselves, afraid to be caught in the light of the blood-red moon. It was easiest for those in the Cogs and the Depths, who were so far down they could barely make out even bold Zarantyr when it was ascendant. And there were far more shadows than bright places there. But for those high up, and particularly for those upon the floating district of Skyway, terror ensued. For the appearance of a thirteenth moon was a menacing omen, threatening uncertain times at best, and a resurgence of war, death, and suffering at worst. It had taken the continent of Khorvaire over a hundred years to make peace after the Last War had begun, and the omens of that conflict were far more subtle than a blood-red moon. For the moment, the entire City of Towers was gripped with fear.[/i]
The Thirteenth Moon is set in the world of Eberron and most of the events of the campaign occur within Sharn, the City of Towers. The City of Towers is rife with intrigue, political machinations, and plots within plots. Numerous important characters rub elbows with even more numerous less important characters as political factions, criminal organizations, the dragonmarked houses, and more all vie for power within the sprawling city. Heroes are regularly called upon to assist these organizations but direct confrontation is rarely the preferred method of problem-solving. Countless inquisitives, investigators, and private security firms provide a level of subterfuge that is layered many times over and is the norm in such a diverse city.
The appearance of the Thirteenth Moon is a worrisome omen to be sure. And it is certain that the meaning of this ominous event will be investigated by many individuals and organizations. Independent adventurers and adventurers from the city's two adventurer's guilds will often be called upon in these investigations until some sort of conclusion can be reached as to the nature of this event and its ramifications for Sharn and Eberron at large. But even once the true meaning of the event is discovered, the adventure has only just begun.