Fallcrest

Fallcrest

Fallcrest stands amid the Moon Hills at the falls of the Nentir River. Here travelers and traders using the old King's Road that runs north and south, the dwarven Trade Road from the east, and the river all meet. The surrounding ridges shelter several small valleys where farmers and woodsfolk live; few are more than six or seven miles from the town. In general the people outside Fallcrest's walls earn their living by farming or keeping livestock, and the people inside the walls are artisans, laborers, or merchants. People with no other prospects can make a hard living as porters, carrying cargo from the Lower Quays to the Upper Quays (or vice versa).

Population: 1,750 adults with another 900 or so live in the countryside within a few miles of the town. The people of Fallcrest are mostly humans, halflings, and dwarves. No dragonborn or eladrin are permanent residents, but travelers of all races pass through on occasion.  Races of Fallcrest and the Nentir vale

Government: The human noble  Faren Markelhay is the Lord Warden (hereditary lord) of the town. He is in charge of the town's justice, defense, and laws. Town Council to advise the Lord Warden on matters concerning the citizens of Fallcrest.

Defense:  Fallcrest Guards number about ninety warriors, and perfom the duties of constables as well as guarding the town gates. The Lord Warden can call up 700 militia at need.

Fallcrest's Hightown is guarded on two sides by a wall (the river and the bluffs protect the other two sides). It consists
of two parallel barriers of stone block with a few feet of fill between them, and stands about 20 feet tall. Every
hundred yards or so, a small tower strengthens the wall. Two pairs of sentries (Fallcrest guards from the castle) walk
the wall tops at night, but unless danger is imminent, the towers are left locked and aren't manned. The gatehouses
are permanently garrisoned.

Economics: Fallcrest imports finished goods from the larger cities downriver and ironwork from the dwarf town of Hammerfast, and exports timber, leather, fruit, and grain. It also trades with the nearby town of Winterhaven.

The surrounding hills hold several marble quarries that once produced a good deal of stone, but the area has little demand for ornamental stone these days, and only a few stonecutters still practice their trade.

Inns:   The Silver Unicorn is pricier and offers better service; the Nentir Inn sees a more interesting clientele.

Taverns: Blue Moon Alehouse; Lucky Gnome Taphouse; Nentir Inn taproom.

Supplies: Halfmoon Trading House; Sandercot Provisioners, Ironthews Armoury.

Temples:

  • Temple of Erathis also includes shrines to Ioun and Moradin;
  • Moonsong Temple (Sehanine) also includes shrines to Corellon, Melora, and Avandra;
  • House of the Sun (Pelor) also includes includes shrines to Kord and Bahamut.

History

Key Locations

Fallcrest is divided into two districts by a steep bluff that cuts across the town. The area north of the bluff is known locally as Hightown. This district survived the city's fall in relatively good shape, and it was the first area resettled. To the south of the bluff lies Lowtown, which tends to be newer and poorer. In the event of a serious threat, people retreat up to Hightown-the bluff and the town walls completely ring this part of Fallcrest, making it highly defensible.

1) The Tower of Waiting – This old fortification was built on a small island in the Nentir to guard the city from any waterborne attack from the north. It fell into ruin even before the sack of the old city, and now is little more than an empty shell overrun by mice and birds.

2) Upper Quays – Boats proceeding down the Nentir must stop here and offload their cargo, which is then portaged through the town to the Lower Quays and loaded onto boats below the falls. Likewise, cargo heading in the other direction is carried up to these quays and loaded aboard boats bound upstream.

3) Five-Arch Bridge – Dwarf artisans from the citadel of Hammerfast built a fine stone bridge over the Nentir two hundred years ago. Although the bridge was destroyed when Fallcrest fell, the great stone piers supporting it remained intact, so a few years back the people of the town laid a new timber trestle over the old stone footings. A small toll house guards the western side of the bridge. Five Fallcrest guards under the command of Sergeant Thurmina watch this post. They collect a toll of 1 cp per head (and 1 sp per mount) making use of the bridge in either direction. The river current begins to pick up on the south side of the bridge. Boats (or swimmers) venturing far from the banks are in danger of being carried over the falls.

4) Nentir Inn – A fine new building constructed of fieldstone and strong timber, the Nentir Inn stands on the west bank of the river. Merchants from Winterhaven or Hammerfast make up the clientele, along with travelers who happen to be passing through. A good room with two single beds goes for 5 sp per night. The Nentir Inn also boasts a lively taproom, which is popular with the folk who live in the vales on the west bank of the river. The proprietor is a charming half-elf named Erandil Zemoar who showed up in Fallcrest one day about two years ago, bought land, and built an inn.

5) Knight's Gate – Gate, because the Lord Warden's riders normally come and go from the city by this road. The gate consists of strong outer doors of iron-reinforced timber and an inner portcullis between a pair of small stone towers. The portcullis is normally lowered at sunset, and the gates close only in times of danger. The gatehouse barracks accommodates five Fallcrest guards plus Sgt Nerith , who commands this gate.

6) Silver Unicorn Inn – For many years, the Silver Unicorn has billed itself as "the Pride of Fallcrest," charging high rates for its attentive service and well-appointed rooms. the owner, a stern halfling matriarch named Wisara Osterman runs the place with efficentcy. A room in the Silver Unicorn costs 2 gp per night

7) Halfmoon Trading House – The Halfmoon family is a large, far-flung clan of halflings who keep small trading posts in several settlements throughout the Nentir Vale. This is the largest and most important of those establishments. It's under the care of Selarund Halfmoon, a friendly halfling who dispenses a never-ending stream of advice to his customers, such as, "It never rains but as someone gets wet!" or "A nail ain't afraid of a hammer with no
handle!" No one knows what he's talking about most of the time, but Selarund is more sly than he lets on and
keeps a close eye on events all around the town. The Halfmoon Trading House is an excellent place to buy any mundane tools, gear, supplies, or clothing.

8) Moonstone Keep – The seat of Lord Warden Faren Markelhay, Moonstone Keep is an old castle that sits atop a steep-sided hill overlooking the town. The outer bailey includes barracks housing up to sixty Fallcrest Knights. At any given time about twenty or so are off-duty. Other buildings in the courtyard include a stable, an armory, a chapel, a smithy, and several storehouses. The keep is the large D-shaped building at the north end of the castle.

9) The Tombwood – Along the southern slopes of Moonstone Hill grows a large thicket that has never been entirely cleared. Within its tangled paths lies the old castle cemetary (now heavily overgrown) as well as a battle-mound dating back centuries.

10) House of the Sun – When Fallcrest was a larger city, it supported several good-sized temples located in the Hightown districts. With the town's depopulation, several of these were abandoned, including the House of the Sun, a temple dedicated to Pelor. The place also includes shrines to Kord and Bahamut. Recently, a zealous dwarf priest
of Pelor named Father Grundelmar  came to Fallcrest from Hammerfast and reestablished this old temple. Father Grundelmar is loud and opinionated, a real fire-breather who goes on and on about smiting evil wherever it might lurk.

11) House Azaer – A small, well-off trading company, House Azaer is owned by the tieflings of the Azaer family. They
import goods (including arms and armor) from Hammerfast, Harkenwold, and the lands to the south, and organize caravans up to Winterhaven several times a year. House Azaer is an excellent place to purchase nearly any mundane equipment, although its prices are a little on the high side.

12) The Nentir Falls – Here the Nentir River descends nearly 200 feet in three striking shelflike drops. On the small island in the middle of the falls stands the statue of an ancient human hero named Vendar, holding up his hand as
if to challenge enemies approaching from downriver. Local legend tells that Vendar slew a dragon whose lair was hidden in caverns beneath the falls.

13) Temple of Erathis – This large, impressive stone temple is finished with Fallcrest's native marble. Its chapel is a large rotunda with a 30-foot-tall dome. The temple of Erathis is the largest and most influential temple in town. The place also includes shrines to Ioun and Moradin. High Priestess Dirina Mornbrow oversees two lesser
priests and several acolytes-townsfolk who spend part of their day tending the temple.

14) The Bluffs -Fallcrest is divided in half by a great cliff snaking northwest to southeast across the town. The bluffs
average 150 to 250 feet in height. They are not strictly vertical, but are too tall and steep to be easily climbed.

15) The Catacombs – The limestone bluffs between Hightown and Lowtown hold a number of caves and a catacomb used earlier in Fallcrests history. It is here that the group went on their second mission for Fallcrest, to recover the lost sword of Aranda Markelhay Moonbane. Below Fallcrest the party discovered a dark hold of Orcus and was able to rid it of its head priest, to say the least, their venture met with success.

16) Moonsong Temple – The third of Fallcrest's temples is devoted to Sehanine. It also includes shrines to Corellon, Melora, and Avandra. The Markelhays regard Sehanine as their special patron, and over the years they have given generously to the temple. The temple occupies a commanding position atop the bluffs, and its white minarets can be
seen from any corner of Lowtown. The leader of the temple is High Priest Ressilmae Starlight, a wise and compassionate elf who finished adventuring decades ago and retired to a contemplative life. He is a musician of great skill who happily tutors the local children, even those who are poor and can't afford to pay for their lessons.

17) Fallcrest Stables – Lannar Thistleton owns this business, providing travelers with tack, harness, stabling, shoeing, wagons, and just about anything dealing with horses, mules, or ponies. He keeps a larger corral about a mile outside of town, and at any given time Lannar has several riding horses, draft horses, or mules in his paddock near Wizard's Gate. The halfling is an excellent source of rumors, since he sees the travelers coming or going
by the roads. He is a friendly fellow of about forty, with a large brood of children at his home out in the countryside.

18) Wizard's Gate – Fallcrest's eastern city gate is known as Wizard's Gate, because it's the gate most convenient to the Septarch's Tower. The road to the east travels a few miles into the surrounding hills, linking a number of outlying farms and homesteads with the town. The gate resembles Knight's Gate in construction, and is similarly watched by a detachment of five Knights and a sergeant. The leader of this detachment is Sergeant Murgeddin.

19) Naerumar's Imports – Considered the finest of Fallcrest's retail establishments, Naerumar's Imports deals in gemstones, jewelry, art, and magic trinkets. The owner is Orest Naerumar, a tiefling who displays impeccable manners and discretion. Orest corresponds with relatives and colleagues in several towns and cities outside the Nentir Vale; given a few weeks, he can order in low-level magic items or other items of unusual value. Similarly, Orest purchases interesting items such as these, since other dealers in distant towns or cities might be looking for them.

20) Kamroth Estates – This is the home of Lord Vito Kamroth, a wealthy landowner who collects rents from scores of farmers and herders living in the countryside nearby. His father, Armos was a brusque, balding man of about fifty who made a show of loaning money in good faith and exacting only what the law allows-but somehow he has quietly bought up dozens of free farms over the years and turned their owners into his tenants. The Kamroth estates are currently looking for a buyer, as Vito is currently living on the di'Witt Estate.

21) Moonwash Falls – A small, swift stream known as the Moonwash flows through Fallcrest to meet the Nentir River. The stream is rarely more than 20 feet wide or 5 feet deep. The town's children love to play in the pool at the base of
the falls in the summertime.

22) Septarch's Tower – This lonely structure is a tall, seven-sided spire of pale green stone that doesn't match anything else in the town. In the days before the Bloodspear War, this was the seat of Fallcrest's mages' guild-an order of a dozen or so wizards and arcane scholars. Defensive enchantments prevented the orcs from sacking the tower, but the guild's members died fighting for the city or fled to safer lands. The tower is now the property of Nimozaran the Green, an elderly wizard who was once apprenticed to the last of the old guild mages. Nimozaran considers himself the "High Septarch of Fallcrest" and master of the guild, whose membership now includes only himself and a rather unpromising male halfling apprentice named Tobolar Quickfoot. Nimozaran expects any potential new guild members to pay a hefty initiation fee, and so far none of the few other arcanists living in or passing through Fallcrest have seen reason to join.

23) Blue Moon Alehouse – This brewhouse on the banks of the Moonwash Stream is the best tavern in Fallcrest. The owner is a nervous, easily flustered fellow of fifty or so named Par Winomer. The true genius behind the Blue Moon is the halfling brewmaster Kemara Brownbottle. She is happy to let Par fret about running the taphouse, while she spends her time perfecting her selection of ales and beers. The Blue Moon is popular with halfling traders whose boats tie up along the Lower Quay, well-off town merchants, and the farmers who live in the countryside
south of Fallcrest. The old dwarves Teldorthan Ironthews and Sergeant Murgeddin hoist a
tankard or two here on frequent occasion.

24) Teldorthan's Arms – The dwarf Teldorthan Ironthews is the town's weaponsmith and armorer. He is a garrulous old fellow who spends his time trading stories with his customers with a pipe clenched in his teeth, while his apprentices (two of whom are his sons) do the work. Make no mistake-Teldorthan is a master armorer, and under
his supervision his apprentices turn out work of exceptional quality. Teldorthan has in stock (or can soon manufacture)
just about any mundane weapon or armor, although he advises beginners to try a hammer: "If you can drive a nail, you can kill an orc! You can drive a nail, can't you?"

25) King's Gate – Fallcrest's southern gate was destroyed in the attack that devastated the city long ago, and it still has not been entirely rebuilt. One of the two paired towers is nothing but rubble, and several large gaps remain in the town walls south of the bluffs through which anyone could enter the city. Despite its lack of functionality, the King's Gate is
still used as a guardpost by the Fallcrest guards.

26) The Market Green – The majority of Fallcrest's folk live above the bluffs in Hightown and walk down to do business on the streets of Lowtown, which bustle with commerce. This wide square is an open, grassy meadow where Fallcrest's
merchants and visiting traders do business in good weather. The town's children gather here for games of tag or kick-stones.

27) Sandercot Provisioners – The largest general store in Fallcrest, Sandercot's deals in just about anything-food, clothing, stores, rope, tools, gear, leather goods, and more.

28) Lucky Gnome Taphouse – The Lucky Gnome is widely regarded as the cheapest and coarsest of Fallcrest's drinking establishments. It caters to the porters and laborers who work the nearby docks, and fistfights are a nightly occurrence.
The owner of the Lucky Gnome is an unsavory character named Kelson

29) Lower Quays – Keelboats and similar craft put in here to unload their cargo and portage it up to other boats above
the falls. As described above for the Upper Quays, the porters' guild jealously defends its monopoly on moving cargo around the falls, and it frequently attempts to intimidate local merchants into paying for portage services-whether needed or not. Boats belonging to a number of different travelers tie up here, the most common of which are the keelboats of the halfling Swiftwater Clan. The Swiftwaters carry cargo all the way down to the Nentir's mouth, hundreds of miles downriver. They're more than willing to take passengers for a small fee. Irena Swiftwater is the matriarch of the clan.

Fallcrest

Shadow Deeps WhiteTiger