Oringard is a large town nestled against the south bank of the Pernan River, across from the Scarlands. The town is built around a crossroads, with Dekan Keep overlooking the river from a rise to the east. A poorly maintained stone bridge crosses the river into the blighted lands and a heavy wooden palisade helps keep marauders at bay. This past year construction of more permanent stone fortifications was ordered, and already the new wall stretches down the hill between the keep and the new Eastgate.
Prior to The Maddening, this was the seat of a minor barony, a fortress built to watch the river crossing, and entrusted to the Dekan family. In the aftermath many refugees from the chaos made their way here, and were offered shelter by the current baron, Orin Dekan. Four years after the cataclysm, the town had become a permanent collection of houses and shops strung along the roads below the castle. While many other such refugee settlements crumbled under the weight of divisive politics, hunger and raiding monsters, Oringard thrived, due in part to the strong leadership and protection of the Baron and his house guard, and due to the relative ease of trade along the river.
Dekan Keep (1)
On a rise within bowshot of the crossroads stands the ancestral home of Baron Orin Dekan, reclusive ruler of Oringard. The castle also contains barracks and offices for the town guard, and various government bureaucrats. Most everyday business is overseen by Watch Commander Grestol, who also serves as the baron’s chief steward.
The baron is known to be an intelligent man in his middle years, still as skilled with his mind as a blade. He entertains rarely. Those who have met with him recall that he speaks simply and with little concern for etiquette, befitting a minor noble from the frontier, long away from the niceties and intrigues of court.
Commander Grestol has a powerful presence, decisive and intractable, long accustomed to giving orders and having them followed. He has proven to be an efficient steward however, and there are few people who would not be glad to have him at their back in combat.
Temple of the Sun (2)
Prominently located on the west edge of the central plaza, this temple is frequented by those who still follow the old faith, and has also integrated several of Corellon’s tenets with those of Pelor. Luminon Lexoth, an elderly tiefling with an air of supreme serenity leads the temple. During the harvest festival, the temple takes centre stage, when the region’s farmers gather to thank the lords of spring and sun for the year’s bounty.
Havenite Shrine (3)
One of the resurgent faiths that have arisen since the return of the gods, the Havenites believe that they must struggle to rebuild and preserve civilization, following the combined teachings of Erathis, Moradin and Kord. They openly compete with the Temple of the Sun for followers, finding many interested in their message. Down the hill from the keep, they have constructed their fortified shrine under the guidance of Master Crafter Nela Orden.
Wayfarer’s Shrine (4)
Few river traders offer greater reverence to a divinity than that they grant Avandra, and shrines in her honour are frequently found in villages and towns that rely on the traders for survival. This shrine is the project of an old priest named Imer, who jokes that he needs the excuse to keep an eye on his ‘children’, a group of foundlings who accompanied him when he arrived five years back, and who have grown into well regarded citizens. Many who stop here to make offerings also leave small gifts to Melora, for safe passage through her wilderness, and the shrine has expanded over time to suit this dual purpose.
Stone Flagon (5)
The Stone Flagon sells the strongest beers in town, expensive stuff imported from the dawrfhold of Kolinter, improving the mediocre food to make this one of the three most popular taverns in town. The proprietor, Huron Geldar, also rents out a number of rooms, and provides brokerage and message services for the dwarven traders that stay at his establishment. A table near the back is reserved regularly for card games run by Oddjob Marlo. These games can be a great source of local gossip, as they are very popular with a wide variety of residents, likely due to the half-orc’s skill at filling his opponent’s purses.
The halfling traders who ply the length of the Pernan River have a love of good food as deep as their love of freedom and travel. It is a rare night when the captains and crew of the riverboats don’t descend on the tavern near the north gate to indulge themselves with a proper meal and the swapping of stories. Helen Linseed probably knows more than anyone in town about travel on the Pernan, and possibly more than some of the captains. Waterstriders does not rent out rooms, as most of their clientele prefer to sleep on their boats, the better to keep a watchful eye on their goods before setting sail with the dawn.
Wolf’s Rest (7)
The Wolf’s Rest Inn caters to no particular group, but it is a favourite with travelling skalds, for they find their skaldgeld honoured with hot food, good drink and a comfortable bed. It is owned by Alice Ilekham, who seems to have little interest in operating the place, leaving the bar to Trad Hesburn. However, anyone stepping through the door is welcomed warmly, and a friendly atmosphere puts guests at ease despite this slight oddity.
Southgate Supplies (8)
Those looking for general equipment are usually directed to Southgate Supplies, which provides a wide variety of basic goods in demand by craftspeople, farmers, traders and explorers. The selection and reasonable prices keep customers happy, something Lorn Phelgrif, a hawk-faced man with a perpetual scowl and sour disposition would be hard pressed to do on his own.
The Landing (9)
The Landing is the Oringard public market. An open square between the north wall and a series of wharfs and jetties along the river it sprawls out to the east of Northgate. Any particular day it bustles with activity, with the different travelling merchants setting up shop, as well as many local craftspeople and farmers who don’t own a regular storefront.
Trade Winds (10)
The eladrin Carlion Astonmar represents the Trade Winds Merchant Cartel in town. The Trade Winds are a widespread merchant network, claiming to still have trade with the imperial capital. While their claims are doubtful, it is known that Carlion can acquire almost any strange and unusual object given sufficient time and funding, and is also always on the lookout to buy such things that are unwanted.
Wyra Salinous is easily recognized in town. There are few dragonborn here, and even fewer whose scales are coloured like flames. It serves as good advertising for her business, running the town’s best smithy from a forge just outside the castle gate. While most of her products are of the everyday variety: nails and horseshoes, barrel hoops and decorative ironworks; she also provides the town guard with repairs and replacements for their weapons and armour.
Other Notable Inhabitants
Marius the Learned (12)
Marius is a veritable font of knowledge. The venerable fey elf has lived for many years in Nerath and knows much of its past. In his youth he traveled extensively, but now spends his time reading, thinking, and acquiring old records and books that happen to pass by, trying to rebuild an extensive library lost during the Maddening Days. He is known to have a dislike for Baron Dekan, the result of an old disagreement between them.
Fron Evindier (13)
Rumoured to have once had connections to a powerful underworld syndicate, possibly the Shadow Crows of Zeran, Fron seemed to have turned away from his past, and it was a significant surprise to many when he vanished under suspicious circumstances. His disappearance, and suggestions that he might have been in contact with some less retired men of dispatch, have fueled the local gossip mill since.
Marlo ‘Oddjob’ Tarek (5)
This half-orc is a fixture at the Stone Flagon, where he runs a gambling table regarded as the most profitable, for challengers, in town. He frequently runs up a sizable tab at the bar, but he brings in the customers, and pays his bill somehow, so the dwarves don’t begrudge his presence. He’s a good natured guy, that people get along with easily, and is always in the know.