Friday, July 1, 2016

Celeste Hill

A view from Tomehall
Name: Celeste Hill
Region: Coastal
Brief: Originally built by the Elves from a previous era, Celeste Hill is a combination of village and library that is secluded from a lot of the world in order to provide privacy, reflection, and some safety from the rest of the world. The Hill isn't completely isolated, cities such as Seaside are only three days ride from the hill, it's just that scholars are uninterested in moving any closer than they are to civilization. The town is built along the coastal cliffs overlooking the vast sea.

Places to see:

Tomehall: Serving as the foundation of Celeste Hill, Tomehall is the sight of a former Elven keep that was built atop the tallest bluff on Celeste Hill. The keep is built both atop, in, and around the cliff with open air stairways that run through the keep and around the cliff wall giving the walker an excellent view of the distant ocean. The main hall is the repository of Elven spellbooks, Human tomes of history, Naga pictograms, and Dwarven runebooks. Outside of keeping and protecting precious knowledge, Tomehall also functions as a artificer's workshop and store. It is a literal magic shop where weapons, armor, and items can be enchanted at a price.

-The Hall is maintained by the Esoteric Order of Scholars. The Scholars are sages and are often casters. They allow trusted folk to maintain other buildings in the area in order to provide a level of support to the hall in the form of craftsmen, supplies, and an ability to get news out to the greater part of the world.

-The first founder of Tomehall, Acererak of Rathmer is both celebrated as one of the great scholars of the Order and as a foul traitor for fleeing while absconding with several books on Necromancy. In the portrait hall, his canvas spot is reserved but does not bear a canvas of his likeness.

-The Current head of Order is Torvald II, a burly human of Northern stock who sports the scars of battle. He doesn't say much of his past, only that he had seen some combat during the Great War before becoming a scholar. It is said that Torvald smuggled dozens of Elven spellbooks from North Kingdom fires while making his way into the Borderlands and to Celeste Hill.

"Would you like to try the scones? How about a baked pretzel? I really think you should eat something before I launch into my briefing. I'd hate to think I'm sending you out there to die on an empty stomach." -Ferdinand Stack, Gnome Wizard-Sage

Ferdinand Stack is a lay member of the of the Esoteric Order of Scholars and also serves as a link between the Order and the Felhammer Clan who maintain an embassy on the Hill. His job consists of aiding scholars by handling outside requests to browse a book, assigning work to adventurers to recover missing items, and sending messages from the Order to the Embassy.

-He is a former member of the Felhammer Clan. Because he parted on amicable with the clan in favor of the Order, he is counted upon to serve as an unofficial ambassador for the Clan to the Order. Despite pledging his allegiance to the Order, he does have strong ties to his former Clanmates.

Grey Lady Meadery: Is a tavern on the edge of town near the walls of Celeste Hill which both serves as a relaxation spot for scholars off-duty and by adventurers looking for a place to stay while on the coast. The Meadery is famous for putting little umbrellas in the drinks. Helena Fairground is the owner of the bar and security is provided by her husband Mulcahy and a a pair of Felhammer clan dwarves, the Axemaker Brothers.

-Despite being called "Grey Lady" Madam Felhammer is a buxom red-head. The name actually comes from the previous sign post which depicted the silhouette of a lady made of metal near the door and painted grey.

Felhammer Embassy: Serves as both a surface passage, barracks, and embassy for the Felhammer Clan to the Borderlands. The Felhammer Clan is the largest clan in the Borderlands, with connections to the Dragonspine Mountains and is comprised of Dwarves, Gnomes, Kobolds, and smaller enclave of Goblins. The staffing of the Celeste Hill is made up of Dwarves and Gnomes, with few of the other races present in the Embassy.

-The Embassy is overseen by Balnir Felhammer, an official member of the Felhammer family who has given the assignment due to his status as a distant cousin. This is the only chance to prove himself worthy of moving up. He is interested in establishing closer ties with the Esoteric Order to get preferential treatment when it comes to their artificer workshop and access to their Dwarven runebooks.

Alban's House: Alban is a local "swamp rat" not a species, but rather a term used for explorer, adventurers, or mercenaries who specialize in the unforgiving environment of the swamps just north and west of Celeste Hill (known as the Great Salt Marsh). He is in-between jobs and using the downtime to accomplish some home repair projects.

-Has a specialty for cooking alligator and crocodile meat. He also sells skulls and bones, which are a value to alchemists, witches, and mages.

-Is also known to take on jobs and hire adventurers to hunt dire alligators that live in the center of the Marsh.

Threeclaw General: This is a general store that sells mundane items that are typically imported from Seaside or surrounding bands of Goblin and Grippli who live in and around the swamp area. Like the Grey Lady, the general store is located near the walls of Celeste Hill as they cater to the traveler/adventurer crowd more than the scholars.

-Serves as a boarding house for smaller patrons. Owner favors Goblins or Grippli who travel with the wares they sell to him.

"And over here I have some lovely cuts of gator meat. Smell that? That's the piquant of spices and sauce I use. Really you can't tell the difference between it and that spicy chicken that Ratfolk serve." -Vilmer to a customer about eating one of his alligator delicacies.

Vilmer Threeclaw

Vilmer is a Goblin formerly of Seaside Township. He runs Threeclaw General as a cook, shopkeeper, and rumormonger for the surrounding area. His particular expertise in rumors comes from the Goblin bands that live in the area. Any troubling news, like possible attacks by Saurian raiders or Red Knife bandits is reported to the Felhammer Clan and the Order to keep on their good side, most other information has to be purchased from the Goblin.

-It is rumored that Vilmer was previously a Thief while living in Seaside, furthermore, he has connections to the area Black Market, which he uses to procure exotic items for clients in the know.

-Is a Greenskin Goblin, which means he is less likely to have magical potential. He is known to be handy with an alchemical kit and doesn't mind throwing alchemical agents at unsuspecting stick-up men.

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