The Qestarius River is well-known as the major tributary to Marty and as a northern border to the Plain of Brahang, but is often sidestepped in conversation because of the "eerieness" and "deathly still" attributed to it. This unease is chiefly traced to its northern passing through the land of Alezan, its link with the mysterious disappearances in the Vale of Serdoch, and a number of other disturbing traits discovered over its lifetime.
Back in -500 EC, when the river meandered further south than it does today, it didn't carry as much negative connotation. Thungerbarg, now Iganefta-on-the-Sea, fished the river's nearby waters as well as the those of the Dagger Sea it empties into. The river's calm movement powered waterwheels, arching trees provided springboards for excited and sweaty children, and rafts were used to quickly move supplies between the now-abandoned villages that sprouted along its edges.
In -473 EC, things changed. Children reported a slightly oily feel to the water, supply rafts took twice as much time to get to their destinations, and waterwheels no longer provided enough output for their continued upkeep. The river began to recede at an alarming rate, causing the Stream of Oddbag to dry and become the Vale of (now preferably known as the "Vale of Serdoch" in an attempt at disassociation from its' Alezanian influence.)
In -446 EC, elders from the neighboring fishing villages of Shepenor and Thungerbarg met to discuss the taste of fish harvested from the river. After thirty minutes of deliberation, along with taste tests from dishes prepared by their finest cooks, both villages agreed that not only was the river changing, but also the river's inhabitants. Although the village of Shepenor didn't much like the increased traffic and competiton, both villages agreed that it'd be in Thungerbarg's best interest to harvest fish only from the Marty sea.
Nearly a century and a half after the Looliers disappearance at the Vale of Serdoch, Lord Glosfordshier started transforming Thungerbarg into Iganefta-on-the-Sea. One of his first declarations was that a dam be built to block river inhabitants from entering Marty. This was decided after his first "resort" meal of contaminated fish, which disgruntled cooks fed him as payback for taking over and changing their lifestyles. Disgusted with the taste and fearful that crossbreeding would affect quality Marty fish, he proclaimed the dam a "savior of Marty by Glosfordshire", ensuring its waters would be untouched by riverlife. The clogged dam filters are regularly cleaned by EctoMechanauts, though where they dispose of the filth is currently classified.
Nowadays, the Qestarius River has receded even further, petering off somewhere in the northern part of the valley that Odlucia and the Odlucian Library share. Generally, the feeling towards the river is a "hopeful respect" - nature will take its course (later rather than sooner) and the river will continue to dry itself into innocence (or, at the very least, obscurity). It is still blamed for continued corruption, however, from bad crops to mysterious smells and even as far as the root cause for Harv Gretborn's infamous character (something about improper and experimental toilet training in the river).
--Morbus Iff 16:22, 4 Feb 2005 (EST)