The Forgotten Throne
A Brief History of Halftown
Tyndolion Lanothar was a renowned elven scholar and eccentric whose dabbling in the timber industry had made him a wealthy man in the years following the Re-Discovery. True to his eccentric nature, he invested his small fortune in a modest fleet with the intent of transporting himself to the Forgotten Continent to continue his scholarship there. He crewed his fleet with the usual assortment of peasants and pilgrims, but unlike most other expeditions he devoted his manifest as much to his allies as he did the peasantry. He sought out churches, universities and respected mercenary companies, and offered their members berths on his ships if they would offer their services as needed when they arrived at the other side. Many agreed, and so the Lanothar Expedition was launched.
The expedition was also rare in that it had a specific destination in mind. Using his knowledge of elven history and having a rough idea as to where the Visage of Xillian had been seen, Lanothar had made a few guesses about which elven cities might still be within reach of the coast. After a lengthy journey, Tyndolion’s estimations bore fruit… sort of.
What the expedition discovered was half of a small city. It sat on the very edge of a low cliff overlooking the ocean, and looked at though someone had simply cut the city in two with a great knife, leaving one half sitting on the edge of the cliff and the other half being cast off elsewhere.
None the less, the battlements appeared intact from the ship, and as they sailed past the crew could see a variety of building still standing within the walls. A landing party was ordered and the crews went ashore to inspect the ruins. From the outside the city looked in much the same way as many southern cities that had endured the Vile War – the walls showed the scars of lengthy campaigns and assault by monsters. The front gate was gone, and the places where it had been hinged appeared to have been violently shattered.
But to everyone’s surprise, most of the buildings inside the battlement were intact. Years of rot and neglect had taken their toll on some of the smaller buildings with wooden frames, but much of the city appeared to have been dwarven and elven stoneworks, which had lasted through the ages with remarkable stability. What once had been a small city was now more like a large town, but save for the gaping hole in the rear of the battlement the ruins were perfectly serviceable as a base of operations.
It quickly became clear that the city had been evacuated before whatever had ripped it in half. There were no humanoid remains, nor many valuables to be found as the ruins were inspected and secured. But despite the lack of treasure Lanothar was quite pleased by the find. He found what had clearly been the mayor’s residence and moved himself in, inviting his allies and comrades to do likewise.
True to his word, every organization that had allied with him were given one of the larger buildings as a new outpost. Meeting halls were given to the holy orders for conversion to churches, and old barracks and small estates were given to the schools and mercenary companies. The lands nearby were surveyed and peasants were given title to lands meant for large grain and corn fields. They also discovered a marshland that was easily drained, and within the year a couple of the more industrious adventurers had turned it into a productive rice paddy (and in the process, founded the Village of Gambleright).
In the mean time, the adventurers Lanothar had brought were kept busy scouting the region. The nearby range of mountains was the first scouting objective, and it was met fairly quickly. There seemed to be far fewer Dire Beasts in this region, and the mountain proved to be a natural barrier against the arrival of more once the adventurers located a few long-abandoned watchtowers on the mountainside overlooking the slope and the fields below.
But their first setback came when they sent a party of a dozen adventurers out to scout beyond the mountains. None returned. Fearing the worst, the expedition agreed that for now the mountain range would serve as the limit to their exploration, and they would focus on solidifying the colony. It was a good choice – no sooner had they completed the new stonework for a rear battlement and begun construction of the docks for larger boats then other ships began taking note. Their ruins, now colloquially known as “Halftown” soon became a popular port of call.
Oweing it’s allegiance to no particular nation, but being administered by civil people is enough to make any foreign port a welcome one, and the presence of respected institutions (and a few guilds of home-town mercenaries) kept the businesses professional and the threat of piracy fairly minimal. So the city has grown, and in a few weeks the town will celebrate it’s 25th year with a grand celebration.
And what better way to celebrate that to re-open applications, both to local talents and adventurers from abroad, for adventuring parties to explore beyond the mountains?