VILLAGE OF SPANDREL
The area surrounding the tiny village of Spandrel is nestled at the base of the Sarel mesa and is the gateway to the Ruins of Sarel. The word Sarel refers to mountain, the plateau and the ruined city. There are only a few ways to the top of the steep mountain and only one of them, called The Great Stair, is relatively safe.
THE FOOT OF THE GREAT STAIR Spandrel lies in the shadow of The Great Stair that leads to the top of the mountain. The lifeblood of the town is the frequent Iounian pilgrims that visit the town on their journey to the Pillar of Mother Cassian.
There are around 20 families in Spandrel and their homes are situated together for sociability and defense. The land surrounding the small village is designated as communal farmland. About a dozen families live further out of the town on private farms.
Each year, citizens voluntarily donate to the town’s coffers. The five citizens that contribute the most are appointed as the town’s council and serve as the executive arm of the village government. The council appoints a bailiff, who acts as tax collector, treasurer and clerk. The current bailiff is Danel Sertanian who has held the office for the last ten years. The bailiff hires a professional town guard, currently led by Sergeant Jame Hooley.
Crime, beyond the odd crime of passion or opportunity, is relatively rare in Spandrel and few transgressions warrant more than a day or two in the Guard Tower. More serious crimes are broken into two categories: property and violent crimes. Property crimes, such as burglary, arson or theft, are settled by the town council. Violent crimes, such as murder, assault or robbery, are adjudicated by Father Brenneman of the Temple of Ioun. Citizens convicted in these courts are generally exiled instead of imprisoned.
Until recently, Spandrel had no protection against the deadly, but infrequent, orc and goblin raids. The merchants of the village have come to an agreement with the Founders of Erathis to construct a wall around the small town, providing a protected gate to The Great Stair.
TOWN FEATURES AND BUSINESSES
Blind Man’s House—This sprawling inn serves as hostel to the pilgrims and public house to the locals. The only thing you can’t find here is a good game of dice (you’ll need to visit the Groom’s Stable for that vice).
The owner is Daniel Draper. The rates are reasonable and the food is excellent. Draper is very pleased that the party rescued his prized cook (and sometimes companion) Mirtala. He offers the party free room and board in Blind Man’s House when they are in town. During the peak of the Holy Season, this may end up being less comfortable accommodations but he works hard to show his appreciation.
The Temple of Ioun—Father Brenneman is the aging priest that tends to the temple and surrounding library with his young acolyte, Jahlissa. Although his fingers are permanently stained with black ink, his white robes are always immaculate. He is the most knowledgeable man in town and his collection of scrolls and tomes is immense and well-kept.
Father Brenneman also serves as part of the judiciary arm of the village’s government. Brenneman is the most powerful ritual spellcaster in the town. Father Brenneman opens a linked portal between Spandrel and King’s Landing twice a week.
Jahlissa is Brenneman’s great-niece and has recently taken her vows to join the priesthood. Although wants to remain single to dedicate herself to the teachings of Ioun, she’s having a hard time coming to terms with her romantic feelings toward her rescuer, the Paladin Matthias. She’s taken the recovery of the Spirit of Ioun as a sign from her goddess to pursue Matthias romantically.
The Hall of Heroes Danel Sertanian is the curator of the Hall of Heroes. This small shop is a combination of curio store, museum and pawn shop. Sertanian is always interested in any items found in the ruins and will pay a reasonable price for them if they seem to have historical value.
He’s created quite a collection of items, including a few pieces that radiate powerful magical auras. Danel is probably the most appreciative of the rescued villagers and is eager to buy anything that the party used in the rescue of the villages.
He recently gave the party Blackstone’s Demon Bottle, saying that they should only open it when circumstances are “most dire”.
Sedunar Herbs—Rena Sedunar runs this small, cluttered apothecary for her mother, Zerriska. Rena isn’t much of an alchemist, but has a keen sense for business. Zerriska is an aging woman with a thick foreign accent and is possibly the most skilled alchemist in the region.
After being rescued by the PCs, Zerriska gives the party a 25% discount on potions. Always the matchmaker, Zerriska tries to match her daughter to one (or more) of the PCs. Her current plan is to match her with Fred the Ranger.
Groom’s Stable—Amos Byler (known to almost everyone in town as “Groom”) is a quiet, bald and bow-legged man, but he has the best eye for mounts in the region. His stable is a pretty impressive enterprise that includes a cave for keeping the Sage Knight’s gomera.
Groom’s stable is also one of the most popular “after hours” locales for the locals. He always has an ample supply of Red Monk whiskey on hand (he trades with the Sage Knights) and he runs a fair and honest game of dice.
Since the rescue of the villagers (especially Mirtala), Amos is willing to loan out mounts to the group without a deposit. He always has six well-trained riding horses and four gomera available. He’s also willing to stable any of the party’s mounts for 25% of the normal cost (as long as the party is willing to let him advertise the fact that mounts belong to the “heroes of Spandrel”).
Chokeberry Forge—The master smith Whelm Goodmountain owns and operates the this well-respected forge. He’s currently the only dwarf in town (and has created a strong bond with the Foehammer Camp as a result).
Word around town is that Whelm enchants everything that comes out of his forge with “powerful dwarven magic”. This does everything from guaranteeing that a horse won’t throw a shoe to making stew taste better. His items (all marked with the Chokeberry Forge maker’s mark) are highly sought after.
After his rescue, he becomes quite warm with them and offers to repair any damaged equipment free of charge. Many items he can repair with a simple touch of his hands, but badly damaged items may require a few hours in the forge. He’s able to enchant (or improve the enchantment) of any melee weapon, shield or armor (medium and heavy only) up to level 8. He’s recently discovered the process of creating layered masterwork plate armor, but hasn’t yet mastered the process.
Guard Tower—Until the village walls are completed, the only fortification in the town is the squat Guard Tower. This is a simple three-story stone and wood tower that is used to garrison the town guard and hold prisoners awaiting trial. The current Sergeant of the Guard is Jame Hooley, who still walks with a limp from his injury by the hobgoblins who captured him. He is supported by his cousins, Blough, Peachy and Burk. These three can be found at Groom’s Stable when they are off duty.
After he and his son, Thurran, were rescued by the party, he sees them as all-powerful heroes. If they are in town and anything bad happens, he dispatches one of his guards to find them. LEGENDS AND RUMORS
King of the Ghouls—A few miles west of town is a ruined crypt that is said to house the King of the Ghouls.
The Healing Rock—There’s a persistent legend of a cave in the hills between Spandrel and King’s Landing of a cave that can heal mortal wounds and rejuvenate the sick.