|Ware the Swan|
Precis: House Stillwater is actually a criminal group working Scarabae created by a mother, her daughters, and a few associates. The House is known for it's top leadership being female.
Prominent members include...
Mother Flo, The Godmother
The middle-aged Florence Stillwater is the matriarch and leader of the house. Her past is a little hazy (as a lot of Scarabae residents) but it is believed she arrived pregnant with a husband who was a money lender and not quite threadbare himself. He supported her until her birth came to term. As soon as she was able to return to work she did so- he lent the money, she made sure the money was collected and was willing to take limbs off for late payment. Florence has slowed both as age and becoming a widower has taken its toll, but she still has a sharp mind when it comes to managing the loansharking and protection rackets the Stillwaters control.
The Witchspawn, Sorceress Stillwater
Though she might not look it with her arcane enchanted hair and purplish glow to her eyes, but Meriweather is the direct child of Florence and Robert Stillwater. Meriweather's birth was said to take place on the stroke of midnight which perhaps might explain her talents in the arcane arts. As the eldest, Meriweather serves as a councilor and bookkeeper for her mother and the family. Though growing into adulthood, she has still yet to leave the family compound or sought a different place in the world. She is firmly in her mother's camp.
The Gnome, Potionbrewer
Phillipa is a Scarabae native from the artisan quarter of the city. Like several members of her family, Phillipa took to the apothecary trade with a talent of concocting elixirs and balms that might have set her down the road to a middle-class life. It was by fortune perhaps that one of her first clients was helping a very pregnant Florence Stillwater through her birthing process. Grateful for the help and impressed by the Gnome's knack for healing, Florence recruited the druggist and healer into her House as a so-called 'shock healer'. Phillipa serves the House by providing alchemical and medical care to injured members. She maintains an apartment nearby and is known to casually date Gnomes and Halfling men.
The Minotaur, The Shootist
Sallie is an enforcer and gunslinger for House Stillwater. Like a lot of Minotaur in Scarabae, Sallie immigrated with many families from the western frontier searching for a better life and finding generally welcomed (if rough) and opportunistic atmosphere in Scarabae. One of her first jobs, the one that put her in touch with the Stillwater, was providing cover during a risky collection run with her long barreled rifle. Since then, Sallie has served as one of the Stillwater's enforcers and is depended on when cover is needed. She is married to Slorn Banethorn, an associate level mercenary within the House (non-member, but helps and is respected in the House).
The Other Stillwater Girl, The Iron Fist
Born two hours after her eldest Meriweather (past the point of the witching hour, if one believes in witching hours). Lizbeth Stillwater is the youngest of the Stillwater family and took to her mother's point of view of things - she liked to use weapons and fight over being a sorcerer like Meriweather. Lizbeth is another enforcer within the family. She is also the member who often deals with associates or mixes it with enemies of the House.
While the Stillwater's do engage in protection and loan sharking, the group also sees themselves as protectors of the community. They make it their business to keep ruffian street gangs and rival crime groups out of their territory to make business accessible to everyone. While the reputation for losing a limb to the family is probably true, the Stillwater family do carry on the 'rule of notification' they make it very clear the penalties for trying to stall or avoid paying them their money- perhaps not the most altruistic mindset, but in a cutthroat town like Scarabae, sometimes the best kindness is warning someone to not get over their head. The Stillwaters constantly are looking for associates and agents and serve as patrons and NPC help.
Still, player character groups with aspirations of cleaning up the city will recognize the Stillwater as a crime group. They could be viewed as an exploiting people's livelihoods for their own gain and are not above maiming or killing to keep what is their territory... their territory. PC's could quickly find themselves in conflict with the House if they disrupt a collection run or serve one of the rival groups who are against the Stillwaters.