NEWTHRONE — The town of Whitecliff is on the verge of being overrun by Dragonborn, Lizardfolk and Kobolds said Whitecliff’s mayor in an urgent missive seeking aid from King Sebastes ir’Kesslan.
“We are a proud, hardy people, but make no mistake: We may not survive the month,” said a letter from Mayor Karala Thautram delivered by courier on Zol. “Thousands upon thousands of troops are on the march not more than a few days from our beautiful city. They have raided and destroyed all outlying settlements. Even dragons have joined their numbers and soon I believe the coming army will attempt to destroy our city! Only through the Silver Flames strength we will be able to resist the advances of the primitives and their unholy union, but it will not be for long. I besiege you to send support as soon as humanly possible. Praise the Flame!"
Travel in the north has been rendered impossible, Thautram’s letter also said. Outlying settlements have been destroyed or evacuated, with all able-bodied soldiers enlisted to aid in the coming siege of Whitecliff.
Courtiers speaking on condition of anonymity said King Sebastes would issue a decree of support tomorrow morning and send a column of soldiers northward to break the coming siege of Whitecliff and force the natives back into the jungle. He also mentioned that an emissary would be dispatched post haste to the Argonnessen embassy in Sharn to seek council on why this unholy union of evil threatens the peaceful people of Whitecliff.
Among the troops marching north will be a contingent of Riedran infantry, sent to Q’barra last year as a goodwill gesture from the Inspired leaders of that nation across the sea.
Newthrone is a port city on the mouth of the whitecliff river, where the river empties into adder bay Newthrone is the largest city in Q’barra. Its also the seat of government for King Sebastes ir’Kesslan, and the community of New Galifar. Like all New Galifar communities, NewThrone is heavily fortified; over the past thirty years, it has repelled multiple attacks by Lhazaar pirates and the lizardfolk of the Cold Sun Tribes. While the city contains outposts devoted to many of the dragonmarked houses, more travellers and merchants hail from the Lhazaar Principalities and Riadeira than from the inland nations of Khorvaire. Although not as grand and full of history as the great cities of the Five Nations, NewThrone has been built to replicate the architecture of old Galifar. In some ways, it looks like a small portion of Cyre or Breland has been picked up, polished and dropped in the the Q’barran jungle.
Points off interest:
The undercity: The swamps have swallowed many of the NewThrones original buildings. The undercity the locals call it. An treacherous subterranean maze. Is inhabited mostly by vagrants and criminals. A chance of running into variations of undead and sinister otherworldly creatures summoned by strange cults.
The Quad/merchants quarter: The centre of the city. A large cobblestone clearing. Packed with merchants from near and far. At night it slows down. But it doesn’t stop. About half the merchants will stay open. Often the wares changes once the sun sets. Illegal items are often for sale, but the PCs will need to work extra hard to find them.
The waterfront/docs: Is undeniably the worst part of town. Despite the best efforts by the city watch the area is nothing but trouble. Is also where you need to go if you are looking for: hired muscle, boat transportation, and odd jobs. Naturally, the best bars and gossip are found here too. The more shabby and tough the PCs look the better they will fit in at the waterfront.
Law and order: NewThrone prides itself on being a bastion of law and order. The politicians who propagate this view are delusional, probably due to their bodyguards and gated homes.
The city watch: An elite group of guardsmen. They are guards, constables, detectives, and occasion even judge and executioner. Only a fool or powerful criminal will voluntarily cross the watch. A skilled bounty hunter can make a decent living in NewThrone. When the watch apprehends a criminal, the justice is swift and harsh. Trials are conducted as quickly as possible. For lesser crimes the courts will hear the case in 1d4+1 days. More serious crimes are heard in 1d3 days. Prisoners have little rights and are considered guilty until proven innocent. Minor crimes don’t get a trial at all.
Taxes: Wearing a brass medallion and tricolour hat. The taxmen carry out their orders with precision. Keeping careful track of each business in their district. Evading payment or meddling with the affairs of a tax collector are serious crimes, punishable by months on the docs. Its an open secret that the taxmen are rotten as three day old fish.
The merchants: Grocers ‘bourg: home to the finest foodstuffs. Armorer’s ‘bourg: weapon and armor smiths and warforged repair shops. Jewlers ‘bourg: money lenders and changers can be found here. Merchants ‘bourg: a catch all district, the Quad is part of this ‘bourg
Garworth’s: One of the finer arcane emporiums in the city. Anything a wizard, alchemist or ritualist needs. Though a young man, Garworth is known to be a wizard of formidable skill, and his shop is said to be safeguarded by all manners of spells and rituals. Keeps a frog in the window, said to once have been a would be thief. The story is true. Supplies of any ritual or alchemical component up to level 5 is readily available. Above level 5 dc=10+1/level above 5. If the roll saves a new roll can be made the next day, with a +1 modifier for each day. After three failures the product cannot be found for at least a month.
Bodak’s Blades. A full service armour and weapons emporium. Known for selling quality gear at fair prices. Owner is Hamil Bodak. Word on the street is that he used to be a mercenary. Doesn’t talk about his past. Especially that mystery scandal that ended his promising career in the city watch almost 10 years ago. Or his ongoing feud with Captain Julian Helstrom. Make magic arms and armour of up to level 5 on order. Takes 1d6+1 days to make one. Also possible to hire muscle. DC: 20 appropriate skill. DC increase by 5 for every hireling that dies under the PCs.
Engines east: Caters to the warforged population and owners of other magical machinery. Their work is top notch, and their prices reflect this. Does most of its business with the houses, wealthy business owners and the local government.
Guilds of NewThrone:
House Kundarak/merchants guild: The most powerful guild in the city. Guildsmen own most of the docs. Guild warehouses store cargo. Guild elders make large contributions to city elections. It is said by some that the membership fees the Guild collects are barely enough to pay off all the crocked city officials they need to bribe to maintain their system. Primary interest lies in business-to-business transactions. All the major import/export houses are guild shops, and they only do major business with other guild members.
Thieves guild: There is no one all powerful thieves guild. Three groups stand out and exists with an uneasy truce.
Wizards guild: Propper name is “the fraternal order of wizardry”. Membership is only open to men. New members must be sponsored by old members. Many dark rituals and 1d4+1 years of application is necessary to become a member. Also has the library for arcane and religious knowledge in the area. Access is impossible without the help of a member.