Bloodright : Rise of the Border Princes
Shadowfang - "Pebble"
Support Manor of "The Stone"
The village of “Pebble” is now an active market village once more.
The few stone walls with chimneys around its central well and watchtower of this ancient village, have been rebuilt with fresh timber, wattle and daub interior walls, and thatch and bark roofs. Many of the ruined houses have been salvaged to provide stone for the old walls, creating a patchwork of houses and shops, with some timber buildings built on the foundations of the old ruins. A cobblestone path down the central street still bears its central trough, and marks its central market where all the chief craftsmen once more gather to do business. The remnants of an old shrine dedicated to Nolom, since rebuilt and dedicated to Korg, God of Agriculture, remained mostly intact, though it too was sacked and burned. From the market, a stone-cobbled road rises south towards the fortress of Stonefist – Gateway to The Mark.
Perhaps most importantly, the village’s extensive pear-apple orchard remains mostly intact beneath the castle. Originally the edges of the orchard were hacked and pillaged to provide the Hateful Wars army of giants and orcs with timber for the coming siege, but the orchard proved too close to the walls, and many casualties resulted, with the invaders abandoning their efforts. When the castle finally fell in 1042 TR, they seemed less interested in destroying the orchard, and so it survived. At its heart, lies a natural spring, that gives the entire forest of fruit trees cause to flourish.
Prior to the Fierce Creatures disappearance, they had managed to incorporate numerous Norish Apple sprouts given to them by The Phooka, who instructed them in how to nurture them. They grow and bear fruit only in the cold of winter, and these efforts saved the village during the year of hard winter that followed, as their fruit proved nourishing and kept them all from the brink of starvation. in particular, the local tavern has begun experimenting with producing a wine from the fruit, that bears the potential for strong healing properties.
North of the village is a shadowy forest of dark pines that suffered great harm during the siege, but has recovered over the last decade. The forest is filled with straggly, dark pine trees, and the ruins of a the camp of the orcs and giants. The remnants of siege weapons are everywhere, along with ruined and rusting weapons, and large piles of bones and moldering offal. Combined, it has made the forest a place haunted by wandering skeletons and large, predatory rats, who find the ruin almost “homey”. The Band of the Red Hand has founded its camp north of this forest, and is systematically cleaning the desecrated woodland for food and firewood, which has inadvertently become a boon to the local settlers, as the hobgoblins eradicate wandering skeletons, giant rats and remove the dangerous, thorny brush and trees.
Founded as a support manor for the fortress of Stonefist – Gateway to The Mark, the village operated mostly independent from the castle, and rarely interacted with the keep unless it was tax or harvest season. Its position along the trade road between Cygnus – The Swan Kingdom and The Mark – Land of the Iron Dragon had ensured the village remain an important market town.
With the Hateful Wars and the storming of the village by a large army of orcs and giants, the handful that managed to make it safely to the castle only died a few months later when the Stone fell to the rampaging hordes. No one from the village is rumored to have survived the attack, alive.
With the opening of the new year in 1049 TR, the Fierce Creatures had settled new colonists into the ruins, and the dozen or so families had begun rebuilding efforts, despite the continuing snows. While they tend to regularly visit the fortress above the village, with its ample firewood, ease of shelter and supplies of food, they have built their future lives in the village below. These colonists represent a wide spectrum of skills and abilities, and show great promise, as long as they are fostered properly. The recent influx of various small holders to the village has given it a basis in agriculture to support these craftsmen and strengthen the community.
On the 21st of Flamos, 1049 TR, the _Fierce Creatures entered a Shadow Gate into the Courts of the Shadow Elves, in a bid to convince them to relinquish their claims on the realm, and potentially end the winter storms plaguing their realm. They returned a year and a day later, on the 22nd of Flamos, 1050 TR, quietly amid a festival, to discover the true length of their separation from their chosen home. They quickly regained control of their realm, finding matters much in their favour, especially with the sudden end of Winter’s claim on their valley and the full fury of a Summer storm. The population had attracted many trappers and small farmers from the outskirts of Fort Bloodthorn, seeking the safety The Band of the Red Hand had granted the village, more than tripling the village’s population.