The City of Slithering Vines lies in the center of the Tashtan Coast, right in the middle of the Tashalar Basin. Built on the inner slopes of a flooded caldera that serves as the city's harbor, Tashluta is a natural port, a wealthy mercantile city, and the capital of the Tashalar. The Stormwall, a thin, curving island, protects the harbor from the storms of the Shining Sea. Stormwall Keep runs the length of the island's ridge, protecting the harbor against pirate raids and naval assaults. The depths of Tashluta's harbor are unplumbed, and the flooded lava tubes of the ancient volcano are said to stretch all the way down into the Underdark.
Tashluta's skyline is dominated by sprawling edifices along the ridges of the ancient caldera. To the west lies the temple of Talona known as the House of Night's Embrace, and to the east lies the House of the All-Seeing Orb, a temple to Savras, and next to it stands the castle-like House of the Warding Hand, a temple to Helm. Along the southern ridgeline stand the mansions of Tashluta's mercantile elite, and below these are the smaller homes of Tashluta's middle and lower classes. In general, proximity to the harbor is regarded as a mark of low status.
The capital of the Tashalar is the common port for visitors to the Chultan Peninsula because only here do the locals learn many foreign tongues. Tashlutans enjoy playing jokes - usually involving incredibly spicy food - on foreigners. Because the populace is ever fearful of encroachment by the yuan-ti, snakes of any sort and most other reptiles are immediately killed.
Tashluta itself is governed by a group of seven ostentatiously rich noble families called the Dawn Council, each representing one of the city’s seven districts. Likewise, each district has a common church or faith shared by many of its citizens.
Azure District wraps around more than half of Tashluta’s waterfront within the steep walls of the caldera. Consisting of two sections, Azure District also houses many of the city’s slums and lower-class citizens, although they aren’t quite as desperate a catch as those forced to live in Shadowshore. The western section of Azure District is where Tashluta’s small but growing slave market can be found, which often features captured lizardfolk or Chultans from the jungles to the west. It’s also home to day labourers and beggars, while the eastern section is home to the city’s booming whaling and fishing industries.
Azure District’s representative nobles are the Islarans. The family has held the post of harbormaster for many generations, although rumour holds that old Kelte Islaran’s getting on in years and none of his children particularly want the job when he passes on. Rumours also hold that the Kellani family has designs on this post, but with relations between these two families being as choppy as they are these days, it’s unlikely that such a transfer will occur while old Kelte still lives.
Pets and GuardiansEdit
While the majority of Tashluta’s trade occurs in the Merchant District, Azure District remains a close second. In particular, the trade of exotic animals is a lucrative (and often dangerous) facet of this district’s West Market. Most of these creatures are destined for lives in the north as pets, but a few of them are more dangerous. This trade is one of the few the Azure Watch monitors (after a particularly tragic incident involving an escaped wyvern) - as a result, the black market and smuggling trade for dangerous animals does a booming business.
The Azure Watch is concerned primarily with keeping Tashluta’s whaling and fishing operations running smoothly. Whalers are generally allowed to get away with more as a result; the watch figures that they’re at sea most of the time anyway. An arrested whaler is almost always returned to his captain’s ship for punishment or confinement there rather than taken to the district’s undersized jail. Members of the Azure Watch tend to be a bit more strict with other criminals, but transfer them to Sunrise Garrison if they require long-term punishment.
If you’re from Azure District, you probably spent a fair portion of your youth at sea. You have friends or family that work in the whaling industry, and may have spent some time on a whaling ship yourself. You may offer prayers for safety at the House of the Vortex, a busy shrine dedicated to Umberlee (goddess of the oceans), though most do this out of fear than any love for the malicious deity.
^Belwe Daskeral (male Tashalan human): The high-priest of the House of the Vortex, Belwe is a sly man who tends the district church along with his four acolytes. Belwe is known to have a powerful temper.
- Captain Indwik (male Tashalan human): Master of the Whaler’s Guild, Captain Indwik is a gruff , grizzled man who made his fortune as a whaler. Now too old to captain his own ship, he represents the whalers and fisherfolk of the city.
- Heldra Kellani (female Tashalan human): Matroness of the Kellani family, Heldra was once an adventurer (some say a pirate) who is thought to have not quite abandoned the questionable pastimes of her youth. She is rumored to be quite ill.
- Kelte Islaran (male Tashalan human): Lord of Islaran Manor and representative of Azure District on the Dawn Council, Kelte is an aging noble whose children have either gone missing or have no real interest in continuing the family’s traditional post as harbormaster.
- Degdarak (male gold dwarf): This obese and almost maniacally cheerful dwarf runs the Dredger’s Guild, the organization charged with keeping Tashluta’s harbour and entranceways clear of obstructions and filth.
- Rowyn Kellani (female Tashalan human): Eldest daughter of the Kellani family, and the most likely to take over control of the estate when her mother Heldra passes on.
- Tormagal Gred (human Illuskan male): Tormagal is a friendly man always ready to share the latest joke and is the ranking priest of the church of Shaundakul, at least until his wanderlust strikes again, as happened to the shrine’s previous high priest.
Religion and FaithEdit
The city of Tashluta is perched on the edge of the known world, the last stop before the endless expanse of the jungles of Chult. It is a hub of trade, and home to more than twenty thousand souls, a bastion of civilization in a realm haunted by piracy, disease, violent weather, and monsters. Built on the inner slopes of a flooded caldera, the skyline is dominated by sprawling edifices along the ridges while the lower slopes are home to the less affluent. The harbour is protected by Stormwall Keep, built along the length of a thin island outside the harbour entrance. The Tashalar – the surrounding verdant coastal areas – produce many of the best wines of Faerûn, which go exceedingly well with the spicy local cuisines.
This campaign assumes your starting character is a Tashluta native, and as such you can expect to know a fair amount in advance about the city. This document presents everything you’ll need to know about your new home town, from an exhaustive list of every major shop and tavern to the names of famous locals and the rumours currently circulating in the streets and taprooms. Perhaps your character isn’t from Tashluta originally, but has spent time in the city – it is the busiest port for some distance, and people from all over the Realms pass through on a daily basis.
Tashluta (Large City): Conventional; AL CN, N, NE; Population 21,650; 40,000 gp limit; Assets 43,300,000 gp; Mixed (87% human [Tashalans 74%, Calishites 14%, Chultans 4%, Shaarans 2%], 4% half-elf, 2% dwarf, 2% halfling, 2% elf, 3% other).
Champion’s District extends to Tashluta’s western skyline, a district of soldiers, gladiators, and mercenaries who follow in the footsteps of the city’s first lord-mayor, a priest of Tempus named Teraknian. Champion’s District has a not-so-friendly relationship with the Noble District, and citizens see themselves as the true and rightful leaders of the city.
Champion’s District’s representative nobles are the Lomposos, old blood who have been established in Tashluta nearly from the city’s foundation. The family’s patriarch, Neldrambe Lomposo, is generally thought to be a bit too scheming for his own good. The Lomposos have recently clashed with Cudgel District’s Jalamba family over ownership of Thunder River Lumber. Closer to home, they’ve been at odds with another Champion’s District noble family, the Wasats. Rumour holds that the source of the conflict between the Lomposos and the Wasats has something to do with the Smith’s Guild.
Also of note in Champion’s District is the Fortress of Might, a grandly named temple of Tempus (god of battle) overseen by Trusted Sword Anteki Alresian and run by his twelve aggressive acolytes. The clergy is deeply intertwined with the city’s history, and many local heroes are entombed below the well-worn paving stones of the temple.
The Tashluta Arena is the largest building on the rim of the cauldron encompassing the city. It’s also one of the more popular entertainment venues in Tashluta. Fights are scheduled at minimum once per week by an organization of mercenaries, hunters, and explorers known as Zelkarune’s Horns. Fights in the Tashluta Arena are generally not to the death, but are often used to settle debts or conflicts between people or organizations. At other times, Zelkarune’s Horns sponsor what are known as “Dragon Challenges,” in which local heroes and mercenaries fight against dangerous creatures. The Horns are said to be preparing a yearly event that pits numerous teams of gladiators against each other, modelled after the world-famous “Champion’s Games” held yearly in Calimport across the Shining Sea to the north, although they have yet to announce a date for the first competition.
The Champion’s Watch are the most militant of the seven watches. Their members patrol the streets of Champion’s District in full uniform on regular schedules; their presence in the district is as much for show as for law enforcement. Members of the Watch are expected to take part in Arena events monthly, with any winnings being split with the church of Tempus. The Champion’s Watch looks down (literally and figuratively) on the Shadowshore Watch, regarding them as little better than the criminals they know populate that district. Of the seven watches, the Champion’s Watch comprises the most loyal and incorruptible members; their high pay and morale render internal corruption all but unknown.
If you’re from Champion’s District, you may belong to a minor noble family, and have probably been to the Tashluta Arena several times. You might know someone who has fought in the arena, and may have desires to test your mettle there yourself someday. Alternately, you may be interested in exploring the Chultan jungle to try to gather trophies (living or dead) for Zelkarune’s Horns.
Anteki Alresian (human Calishite male): Anteki is the highest ranking priest at the temple of Tempus, with the title of Trusted Sword. He maintains a civil and respectable veneer, but has occasional outbursts of fearful rage. Neldrambe Lomposo (human Tashalan male): Lord of Lomposo Manor and representative of Champion’s District on the Dawn Council. Neldrak has a reputation of being canny and scheming. Urik Wasat (human Tashalan male): Master of Wasat Manor and owner of the Smith’s Guildhall in Merchant District, Urik is a popular figure who’s made a name for himself in staged fights at the Arena. Atuar (human Chultan male): A likable (if intimidating) barbarian, Atuar runs the group of hunters and mercenaries known as Zelkarune’s Horns.
Cudgel District Cudgel District is primarily a residential district. Due to the vigilance of the local watch and the church of Helm, it’s also the safest district in Tashluta. The citizens of Cudgel District know this, yet they are not a soft people; they remain ever vigilant to the threat of attack from without in the form of serpentfolk or pirates, or from within in the form of thieves and traitors.
Cudgel District’s representative nobles are the Jalambas. Although they’re hardly the oldest noble family in Tashluta, the Jalambas are easily the richest. Their ownership of Thunder River Lumber has ensured a constant inflow of profit for hundreds of years. The current patriarch of this noble family is a man named Kalmadar Jalamba. A recent scandal involving his older brother, a noble of the nearby city of Lushpool, has done some unfortunate damage to the family name, and Kalmadar’s primary concern today is to repair this damage in any way he can. As a result, he’s been spending a lot of time away from home visiting his brother’s family.
Dominating the area’s skyline, the House of the Warding Hand is a temple dedicated to Helm, the god of guardians and protection. Overseen by High Watcher Gewar Laro, the temple staff and faithful form an important part of the city’s defence.
Although Helm’s is the official religion of Cudgel District, a smaller shrine has been attracting a fair amount of attention lately. This is the mysterious Church of the Whirling Fury, located in lower Cudgel District on the aptly named Fury Street. The front doors of this church bear a set of chains fixed with a padlock, and there are no windows in the church’s stone walls. Locals say they’ve seen people entering and exiting the church using silver keys to unlock the chains, but no one’s been brave enough to investigate further. Rumours of demon worship, live sacrifices, and worse circulate about the church, yet the priests of Helm remain curiously close-lipped about the matter. High Watcher Laro says only that he’s keeping his eye on the Church of Whirling Fury, but that it does not pose a threat to the city.
Allied with the House of the Warding Hand is the much smaller shrine of Anachtyr, god of justice. Known as Tyr in northern areas, adherents to this faith exhibit the same righteousness as their northern counterparts.
The people of Cudgel District are a watchful, laconic lot. They have little patience or tolerance for the rough and coarse lifestyle led by most adventurers. Merchants, innkeepers, and bartenders in Cudgel District often charge up to 200% over normal prices for customers dressed like adventurers (typified by openly wearing weapons or armour).
City Watch In some ways, the Cudgel Watch are similar to the Champion’s Watch. Both are closely tied to their district’s official faith (in this case, Helm), both present regular patrols in uniform, and both are fiercely loyal. Yet the Cudgel Watch is more concerned with preventing criminal activity than any other watch in Tashluta, to the extent that they sometimes overstep their bounds. Tales of wrongful imprisonment abound here, although the Cudgel Watch maintains that such cases are rare as a result. The citizens of Cudgel District are the least flamboyant and outgoing of the people of Tashluta, making the district a draw for those not as interested in the bustle of city life. Criminal activity in Cudgel District is more prevalent along the borders between Cudgel and Azure and Merchant District. Of the watches, the Cudgel Watch is the most likely to pursue criminals into other districts or meddle with another district’s watch affairs, making them the least-liked district watches.
Citizens If you’re from Cudgel District, it’s possible you’ve never left Tashluta. Indeed, it’s possible you’ve never even left Cudgel District. The outer world is a place of mystery and perhaps fear for you, yet you may be equally intrigued by its lures. You likely worship Helm, or perhaps Anachtyr. Another church exists in your district, the Church of the Whirling Fury, but chances are that even if you’re curious about what they have to offer, you haven’t figured them out… yet. If you’re a ranger, your favoured enemy is probably humanoid (humans), as you’ve learned that humanity has the greatest capacity for evil and treachery. Of the seven districts, the citizens of Cudgel are the least likely to seek an adventurous lifestyle. Those who do become adventurers are viewed by family and neighbours as black sheep.
Notable Locals Gerai Silwe (human Tashalan male): Abbot of the peaceful House of Violets, Gerai admits few visitors to his monastery. Those few who have visited tell tales of a place of serenity, shielded from the bustle of the surrounding city by magical curtains that block sound.
Kalmadar Jalamba (human Tashalan male): Lord of Jalamba Manor and representative of Cudgel District on the Dawn Council. Kalmadar is possibly the richest man in Tashluta. Gewar Laro (human Shaaran male): Father Gewar Laro took up the mantle of the high priest of the church of Helm after the recent death of Father Ilthan Forn. Gewar is kind, young, and energetic. Tenkar Stoneshield (male gold dwarf): A gregarious and barrel-chested dwarf, Tenkar is the leader of the Stonemason’s Guild. He and his fellow stonemasons are tasked with the upkeep of Tashluta’s city wall, and as such are one of the more powerful guilds in town.
Merchant District Tashluta’s heart, and perhaps even its soul, is lodged firmly in Merchant District. The district most visitors find lodging in, it’s often the only one they need ever explore. Merchant District shops run the gamut from simple grocers to specialized buildings like potion emporiums, dagger sellers, exotic pet dealers, and extensive bazaars.
Merchant District’s representative nobility are the Arabanis. Lady Anwyn Arabani is an eccentric noblewoman who has a strange fascination with elves, and even claims to have elven ancestors (though her features show no sign of this). She’s quite popular, as she goes above and beyond to ensure the people of Merchant District have fair representation in the Dawn Council. She entertains many suitors, but has yet to settle on a single person to share her estate.
City Watch The Merchant’s Watch is perhaps the most efficient of the seven watches. Corruption appears here and there, but the leadership is honest and does its best to maintain a crime-free environment. This is the busiest district in the city, and minor crimes are generally ignored, allowing the watch to focus its attention on larger problems. The Merchant Garrison isn’t the largest among the seven watches (that honour goes to the Champion’s Watch), but it’s one of the busiest.
Citizens If you’re from Merchant District, you could be from anywhere. You may have grown up in Tashluta, or you might have only recently come to the city on the decks of a ship from anywhere else in the world, in which case your reasons for staying can be as varied as your actual homeland. Natives of Merchant District likely come from merchant families, or grew up the children of innkeepers or bartenders. You’re probably a very social creature, and the thought of isolation or the natural world fills you with nervous fear.
By far the largest temple in town is the House of Night’s Embrace, dedicated to Talona (goddess of disease and poison). Though she is an unpopular deity in the wider Realms, Talona’s temple has proven decisive to the city’s survival many times over the years. The fortified temple-palace in Tashluta is the largest in the Realms, commanded by the heavily tattooed Lady Doom Thalaera Indlerith. Defended by black-masked guards assisted by gargoyles and golems, poisons and antidotes are crafted in the deep, dank tunnels that wind below the temple. Agents of the temple are popular among the wealthy and noble houses of the city (and far beyond!), posing as purveyors of fine wines and perfumes, though their true calling is an open secret.
The Goldenhalls, a small shrine of Waukeen (goddess of wealth and trade) can also be found in the Merchant District. Since her disappearance over ten years ago during the Time of Troubles, the goddess’ large following has dwindled, with many defectors now attending the House of the Northwind in Azure District.
Notable Locals Alma Telvanta (female Mulan human): An exotic and intriguing woman, Alma runs the prestigious Telvanta Dance Academy.
Anwyn Arabani (female Calishite human): Lady of Arabani manor and representative of Merchant District on the Dawn Council. Blisker Tittertop (male rock gnome): Blisker is the master of the Alchemist’s Guild; his mark can be seen on half the potions or alchemical items sold in Tashluta. Dhavife Misotho (male Tashalan human): Lord of the Merchant’s Guild, Dhavife is a gifted public speaker. Felbai Selvan (male Tashalan human): Felbai is the soft-spoken caretaker of the Seeker’s Lodge. He is often gone from Tashluta for months at a time on adventures. Lavinia Vanderboren (female Chondathan human): Thrust into the responsibilities of nobility, young Lavinia’s parents perished in a terrible fire and her brother has vanished from the public eye, leaving her to tend to her estate’s needs all on her own. Lirali Woarali (female half-gold elf): Keeper of the shrine of Waukeen, Lirali’s congregation is small and slowly shrinking, but she is a warm and friendly woman. Velan Wasat (male Tashalan human): Eldest son of the Wasat family, Velan runs the Smith’s Guildhall.
Noble District Noble District has traditionally been thought of as the city’s ruling district, even though Castle Teraknian isn’t technically a part of this district. Yet Tashluta’s trust in its rulers has been shaken (see Tashluta’s History below), and nowhere is that loss of faith more evident than in this district. Today, the citizens of Noble District spend too much time bickering with those of Champion’s District and trying to organize their district into a self-sustaining society. Idle talk of seceding from Tashluta is commonplace in Noble District bars. The other districts increasingly view the Noble District as a place of decadence and vanity, and eagerly await the district’s fall under its own excesses.
Noble District’s representative nobility is the Lidu family. With the end of the Teraknian family line over 100 years ago, the Lidus became the oldest noble family in the city. The family patriarch, Worrin Lidu, is a commonly seen as a kind-hearted noble who may be too gentle and forgiving to succeed in Tashluta. His major concern today seems to be the reconciliation of the peoples of Champion’s District and Cudgel District.
Tashluta's History No district is more aware of Tashluta’s history than the citizens of Noble District. The first settlement on the site was founded over 1900 years ago, in the year –583 DR by pilgrims from the north and east. This group was led by a Calim priestess who died in the heroic act of defending the pilgrims from a black dragon named Zelkarune. Her lover, a Tashalan named Teraknian, founded a shrine to Talona in her honour. Over the next few centuries a series of settlements arose on the site and were destroyed by monsters from the surrounding jungles, disease, or pirates. By -189 DR, the area was effectively controlled by lizardfolk armies headed by yuan-ti, but this enslavement came to a close in 10 DR when popular revolts drove the lizardfolk back into the jungles.
Tashluta enjoyed a brief period of independence before the powerful Shoon Imperium from across the Shining Sea established rulership over the city and surrounding lands. Eventually the empire collapsed, and a powerful merchant’s consortium known as the Rundeen assumed control. The subtle influence of the serpentfolk had never completely left the area, and gradually the city fell under the control of the yuan-ti once again.
Things reached a breaking point in 1142 DR during the Rage of Wizards. In a season-long series of mighty spell battles, a group of Tashalan and Lapaliiyan archmages slay many of the yuan-ti rulers and much of their lizardfolk armies, in the process inflicting wanton destruction on most of the cities and towns in the area. A Rundeen-led rebellion finished the job, chasing the few survivors back into the impenetrable Black Jungle to the south. To this day, many of the towns and cities destroyed during the Rage of Wizards remain in ruins, and many inhabitants of the Tashalar are deeply suspicious of arcane magic because of this.
At first greeted as saviours, the Rundeen soon turned their hand to pillaging as many resources as possible. For over two centuries, the Tashtan Coast was neglected as the merchant consortium focused their greedy attentions on the much more profitable cities to the north. During this period the population of the area slowly declined and many lands were lost to the ever-encroaching jungles.
The Treacherous Stab is the name given to the operation in 1349 DR when a group of Harper agents killed several leaders of the Rundeen and many more of their organization. Their hold on the city weakened, a popular rebellion aided by the temples of Talona and Savras drove the remainder underground where they no doubt remain to this day, seeking the right moment to reassert their control. During the last twenty years of freedom, the city has been rebuilt with astonishing speed and every year continues to prosper more.
City Watch The Noble’s Watch are masters of subtlety. They do not patrol the streets of Noble District openly, as the local citizens have long since made clear their distaste for seeing guards in public places. As a result, the Noble’s Watch do their jobs undercover, posing as travellers, entertainers, merchants, or even petty nobles as the case demands. Newcomers to Tashluta seeking a place to ply criminal acts may be tempted by the seeming lack of guards in this district, but the Noble’s Watch wastes no time in dealing with crime as it appears. This, combined with the fact that anyone nearby could be the law, makes Noble District one of the safest in Tashluta.
Citizens If you’re from Noble District, you’re not necessarily the member of a minor noble house, although if you’re not, you probably have friends or associates who are. You may be from the middle class, in which case your family serves one of the noble families in some regard. If you do hail from a wealthy family, perhaps your adventuring lifestyle may have effectively put you out of their social circles. Citizens of Noble District are clean, cultured, and eschew physical labour, preferring to hire muscle to take care of tough jobs.
Many inhabitants of the district are apprentices at the House of the All-Seeing Orb, recently graduated (or worse, flunked out) from higher education. A large temple of Savras (god of divination and fate) run by Annah Teranaki, it is also home to the Celestial Observatory and the College of Divination – an excellent and much sought-after school of divination magic that draws students from across the Realms. Though Savras spent hundreds of years imprisoned by another god, his recent release resulted in a surge of popularity that saw his church restored to its position as one of the leading temples of Tashluta.
Notable Locals Annah Teranaki (female Calishite human): Annah is the shrill and aging high-priestess of the temple of Savras. A recent scandal involving her protégé Embril Aloustinai in the city of Calimport has tarnished the church’s reputation.
Kiva Willowtop (female Strongheart halfling): Kiva is the mistress of the Cartographer’s Guild. Nylaria Absalee (human Calishite female): Nylaria, the manager of the Tashluta Opera House, is a huge woman who takes advantage of her ample frame to display outlandish dresses and hair styles. She fancies herself everyone’s friend, even though the feeling is not always mutual. Worrin Lidu (human Tashalan male): Lord of Lidu manor and representative of Noble District on the Dawn Council, many worry that Worrin has grown too soft in his advancing years to be an effective leader. Zebula Merevanchi (human Calishite male): Zebula is a minor noble whose family’s interests run to the decadent and extreme ends of entertainment.
Shadowshore District Although relatively small, Shadowshore is perhaps the most notorious of Tashluta’s districts. This strip of land nestled along the waterfront in the shadow of Noble District has long been a haven for thieves, thugs, and criminals of all kind. Generally, the only people who live here are those poor enough that their homes hold no attraction to thieves or those who can ably protect their property by wit or muscle. The city watch has all but given up on Shadowshore, and as long as nothing particularly destructive arises from the district (such as fires or riots) they generally leave it to govern itself.
The representative noble of Shadowshore changes more often than any other, as the post is traditionally held by the family (or even the individual) strong enough to protect it from his enemies. Currently, the holder of this title is Emil Dracktus - certainly an assumed name. Rumour holds that the Dawn Council would rather have someone less crude and more reliable in this post. Someone like Vico Bevenin of the Chultan Trading Concern, perhaps. Yet for now, no one (Vico included) has made a move on Emil.
The Black Market While Tashluta’s markets and shops feature a wide range of goods and services, some are not offered in the light of day. Those seeking hard drugs, dangerous animals, evil magic, or cheap (and probably stolen) goods won’t find them for sale in sight of the city watch. Yet this does not mean these goods and services aren’t for sale.
Tashluta has a strong black market, with venues located in all seven districts. In order to gain access to the black market, a character must first make a DC 20 Gather Information check to learn the current location of that district’s black market. In Azure District and Shadowshore, this is only a DC 15 Gather Information check, while in Champion’s or Noble District, it’s a DC 25 check. The black market is all but suppressed in Cudgel District - it’s a DC 30 Gather Information check to find an outlet there. Failing this check by 5 or more indicates that the district watch hears of the character’s interests in obtaining illegal goods and services; the results of this failure depend upon the nature of that district’s watch.
Although the black market has no restrictions on the type of its goods or services, it is still bound by Tashluta’s gold piece limit of 40,000. A character who wishes to buy something in excess of this value must either travel to a larger city or enlist the aid of an agent or importer to have the item purchased and delivered from elsewhere. An agent typically charges a 5% finder’s fee for such services, which usually take 14-21 days.
Thieves' Guilds A staple of most large cities, Tashluta is unusual in that it currently does not host a large, well-organized thieves’ guild. In the years before the Rundeen took hold of the city, a guild known as the Artful Parrots was Tashluta’s largest band of robbers, cutpurses, and criminals. The Artful Parrots were also among the first victims of the Rundeen, and within a year of their rule beginning, this guild had been obliterated completely.
During the Rundeen rule, oppressive laws made thieves’ guilds impossible to form. Now that Tashluta has regained her independence, though, the city is seeing a renaissance of organized crime. At this point, the dozens of small guilds are more interested in fighting each other for dominance, and the city watch keeps a wary eye on the activities of these groups but does little to intervene as long as they don’t endanger the city’s citizens. Word on the street, however, is that one group in particular has managed to establish itself as a force to be reckoned with - the Lotus Dragons. While the Lotus Dragons, if indeed they do exist, have yet to make their presence known to the city watch and civilians of Tashluta, the fact that minor guild activity has been tapering off over the last year lends validity to these rumours.
City Watch The true slums of Tashluta, Shadowshore is where the desperate come to hide or die. The smallest of the districts, it’s easy for citizens of other districts to look the other way at the trouble that commonly brews here. Members of other watches who prove too unruly or insubordinate are often reassigned to Shadowshore - more of a punishment than anything else. Corruption is rife among the Shadowshore Watch, who only patrol the shoreline and are known to be in the pocket of the ship barons of the district. Only the most blatant of crimes (arson, public assaults, and other highly-visible offences) are acted upon, making Shadowshore a haven for Tashluta’s criminal elements.
Citizens Shadowshore is where the dregs of Tashluta seep to. If you grew up here, you had a rough childhood, and may have been forced to kill someone in order to survive. You’ve certainly seen your fair share of dead bodies; they turn up often in the alleys or under the piers. If you’re not the thuggish type, you either spent a lot of time hiding or developed a knack for fighting dirty. You may have been taken under the wing of one of the few semi-legitimate businesses to operate here, but more likely you’re a true child of the streets.
Open faith is hard to come by here, but hidden cults thrive amongst the squalor and violence. The most widely known (and accepted) is the Shroud of Night, a semi-hidden shrine of Shar (goddess of night, secrets, and loss) attended by five priests. Other less acceptable cults among the drooping slums include those of Cyric (god of murder and lies) and Velsharoon (god of necromancy and undeath).
Notable Locals Emil Dracktus (human Tashalan male): The reprehensible Lord of Dracktus Manor and representative of Shadowshore on the Dawn Council is little better than a bandit lord.
Greear Skoto (human Tashalan male): Master of the Shipwright’s Guild, Greear has somehow managed to maintain control of the family business and interests despite generations of trouble with local roughs. Vico Bevenin (human Chultan male): Why one of Tashluta’s richest men lives in Shadowshore is a mystery to everyone but him. Vico owns the Amedio Trading Concern, the most successful import/export firm in Tashluta. Canneth Mostana (human Calishite male): Runs the Shroud of Night and is rumoured to have good connections with the city’s underworld.
Sunrise District Like Cudgel District, Sunrise is primarily residential. Yet the citizens of Sunrise are generally a bit better-off than their neighbours, in no small part due to the fact that many of them have stakes in the numerous plantations that dot the region surrounding Tashluta.
Sunrise’s representative noble family is the Calaudra family. Unlike the nobles of the other districts, the Calaudras are elves. Lord Aniphastus Calaudra and his family have taken the preservation of the region’s wildlands to heart, and the foundation of Sunrise’s Standing Stone Park is one of their proudest achievements.
The only shrine in the district is the Rose Tower, positioned so that every morning the sun’s rays strike this building before any other. Though staffed by only three Dawnbringers (so the priests are known), the faith has attracted a large following.
City Watch Like Cudgel District, Sunrise is primarily residences, although the presence of the lumberyard and proximity to Shadowshore make its edges a bit more active. The Sunrise Watch are affiliated with the church of Lathander, but for the most part are left to their own devices in keeping the district safe. Their organization is the largest of the seven watches, and as a result it’s more difficult for the commanders to keep everything in control. Corruption is fairly common here, yet the guards can generally be trusted to do the right thing.
Citizens If you’re from Sunrise, you pride yourself on your even temper, your friendliness, and your optimism. There are certainly a lot of rowdy folk in Tashluta, but most of them avoid Sunrise for one reason or another. You may have a healthy interest in the natural world, in which case you’ve spent long hours exploring the safety of Standing Stone Park. Many who live here work for one of the plantations in the surrounding lands, either in the fields earning an honest day’s wage or in the plantations themselves as servants or specialists.
Notable Locals Aniphastus Calaudra (moon elf male): The Lord of Calaudra Manor and representative of Sunrise on the Dawn Council has lived in Tashluta longer than most every other citizen.
Basar Fivinn (human Tashalan male): Basar represents the various plantation owners who live outside the city walls when these industrious folk are not present. Lux Seoni (human Chultan female): Lux is the head Dawnbringer of the Rose Tower. She views the vices of Tashluta as unfortunate, but rather than crusade against them she appeals to the city’s decent folk, offering options to the debauchery and crime that plague the city.