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Riverfront Community

Riverglen is a small river-front town with a population of several hundred inhabitants (400-500 depending on the season) located along the far eastern border of Karameikos near the southern foothills of the Altan Tepes mountain range on the Highreach River (a.k.a. Volage River). The soil is rich, as such livestock and produce has become the mainstay for economic support followed closely by fishing. Dwarven prospectors have also found numerous deposits of tar and oil in the neighboring vicinities, so growth can be expected once this boom gets underway.

The bad news is heavy orc and goblin populations nearby, roughly 25 miles to the south for the former and about 50 miles west for the latter. Many locals firmly believe several tribes of each inhabit the legendary Caves of Chaos, such beliefs are readily supported by frequent night time sightings along the main road. To this end, a Keep has been constructed to protect this final frontier between Karameikos and Thyatis.

River merchants make frequent stops on this final leg of the Highreach, offering wares from as far south as Specularum. Trade also flourishes with a neighboring Shire (West Hills, named for the hilly region west of the mountains) populated by roughly 300 halfling families divided among six to nine different clans.

Riverglen is divided into four quadrants. South of the main road holds the largest assortment of structures, early residents were quick to scoop up the riverfront properties. Centered on the river's bend is a warehouse and docks, adjacent to that is a shipwright yard that can construct, repair, and maintain any craft up to a river boat in size. North of the warehouse is a courthouse made of stone, east of the warehouse is a tackle & net shop. Northwest of the warehouse is a two story tavern frequented mostly by the fishermen and farmers of Riverglen.

The southwest corner is the largest conglomeration of trade buildings, including a farmers' market on the main road. The buildings south of that (along the west side of the road) include, in order: a provisioner, locksmith, bait & tackle shop, wilderness outfitter, and a grain mill. North to south on the eastern side of the road is a tailor, potter, and a weaver who sells fishing nets for the most part. Farms, fishermen's homes, and other private residences extend further west along the shoreline. The grassy area north of the shipwright is an outdoor bazaar area, where numerous town events and trading meets take place on a regular basis.

The southeast quadrant is dotted with more farms, fishermen's homes, and private residences along the shoreline with the only noteworthy building being a live fish pen. Plans for a new chapel are being considered, which will be located north of the courthouse.

The northeast quadrant is occupied by a constables' office and jail (stone building), north of that is a lumber yard with a woodcutter building along with the yard owner's home, who dabbles in furniture as well. North of the yard is a wheelwright (east building) and carpenter shop (north building). Just east of the lumber yard is a carpet maker's shop, and south of that is a stone mason. More farms and residences dot the land further east.

The northwest quadrant is largely undeveloped, but current projects include a multi-tiered watchtower at the crossroad and a tournament grounds, both of which are currently in the initial stages of construction. An innkeeper is building an exquisite structure that overlooks the tournament grounds, and a jeweler is also rumored to be interested in a piece of land near the tower.

Travelling east and west on the Highreach Road leads to numerous farms and private residences that get more scarce the further away you travel from the junction. The road north winds a quarter of a mile up into a rocky area, poised atop a jagged growth of slopes and ravines at its end is the Keep. Further west leads into some lavish rolling hills, home to several halfling clans. Going east leads up into the Altan Tepes mountains, and the Caves of Chaos are reputed to be somewhere along the way.

(click on thumbnail for larger high-res image)

Pictured below is a typical merchant vessel encountered along the Highreach River. With eight rowers and a pair of rotating officers being the maximum crew, these small but sturdy craft run supplies back and forth along the mighty river between Riverglen and Specularum. Despite the heavier loads they bear, their shallow draft permits easier movement upstream (against the current).

Some of the more successful merchants utilize a covered cargo area, as depicted. With folding planks fore and aft of an enclosed cabin area, the upper deck permits a better vantage point to view approaching traffic, not to mention the partial cover it provides defenders against those that seek to plunder their wares.

Crew - rowers:8 (may double as marines depending on pay scale), sailors:2 (typically includes a captain/owner)
Passengers: up to 8, applicable to total cargo weight
Dimensions: 28'L x 12'W x 2'D
Armament: upper deck provides partial cover (+2 AC bonus) for defenders vs missile fire
AC: 8
Hull Points: 30
Movement: 36/18 miles per day, 60/30 feet per round*
Cargo: 30,000Cn; covered cargo area
Cost: 5,000gp

* larger number is downstream speed, smaller is upstream speed