Zeno

map of Zeno

Small Town, population 1,947 (79% human, 9% half-orc, 5% elf, 3% halfling, 2% gnome, 1% half-elf, 1% dwarf)

GP Limit: 800 gp

Cash on Hand (Total for City): 77,880 gp

Imports: Ale, armor, beer, books, cloth, grain, salt, tools, weapons, wine.

Exports: Fish, fruit, hides, livestock, river ships, spices, wood.

Community Authorities

Marchioness Belda Grimilon (LE female human ari 3); Master of Horse Maeric Dorn (LN male half-orc war 6).

Military Formations

House Grimilon Retainers (Commanded by Master of Horse Dorn): 19 troops—3 fighters (1 2nd-level, 2 1st-level), 2 rogues (1st-level), 14 warriors (1st-level).

Militia (Commanded by Lady Belda): 97 men (noted below by class and level).

Other NPCs

10 adepts (1 2nd-level, 9 1st-level); 10 aristocrats (10 1st-level (10 militia)); 7 barbarians (1 4th-level, 2 2nd-level, 4 1st-level); 7 bards (1 5th-level, 2 2nd-level, 4 1st-level (1 militia)); 3 clerics (1 2nd-level, 2 1st-level (2 militia)); 1,713 commoners (1 9th-level, 2 4th-level, 4 2nd-level, 1,708 1st-level); 7 druids (1 6th-level, 2 3rd-level, 4 1st-level); 60 experts (1 7th-level, 2 3rd-level, 57 1st-level); 3 monks (1 2nd-level, 2 1st-level); 3 paladins (1 2nd-level, 2 1st-level); 1 rangers (1 1st-level); 5 rogues (1 6th-level, 2 3rd-level, 2 1st-level); 7 shamans (1 4th-level, 2 2nd-level, 4 1st-level (1 militia)); 3 sorcerers (1 2nd-level, 2 1st-level); 82 warriors (2 3rd-level (2 militia), 80 1st-level (80 militia)); 3 wizards (1 2nd-level (militia), 2 1st-level).

The town of Zeno is the second-largest settlement in the Kingdom of Enteria, and the seat of power for House Grimilon, a family of human aristocrats that has remained in alliance with the House of the River since nearly the founding of the kingdom. It exists primarily to serve the Alrinegard citadel, one of the lynchpins of the kingdom’s defense against foreign invasion, but its shipyards provide a majority of the kingdom’s river-borne vessels. Orchards controlled by House Grimilon are the source of a major export commodity.

All of this wealth is the result of House Grimilon’s generations of loyalty to the crown . . . and of centuries of back-breaking labor on the part of Grimilon’s serfs. Small farms are interspersed throughout the forests of Lady Belda’s demesnes, and her seneschals and sheriffs see to it that they pay their taxes on time and in full, in addition to extorting a little for themselves. The lady takes little interest in the day-to-day administration of her lands, occupying herself with a salon of artists and poets, a handful of illicit lovers and a variety of schemes against rival houses.

Commoners in and around Zeno are better off than many of their brethren elsewhere in the kingdom, if only because of the fertility of the lands on which they live and work. Foreign shipping usually heads further up the river to the capitol at Entera, but the few that call at the docks of Zeno help to provide a release mechanism for unhappy serfs—a serf can always try to stow away on a seagoing vessel if they’re truly desperate to escape Lady Belda’s rule. Between this and the iron-handed tyranny of her underlings, the serfs of the region are thoroughly pacified. There has not been an uprising in several human lifetimes.

Adventurers in the town will find that Lady Belda’s officials, despite their willingness to skim from collected taxes, are implacable foes of the bleak banyan cartels. Parties acting against the cartels’ interests will find House Grimilon’s functionaries remarkably cooperative and willing to tolerate erratic behavior connected to their efforts (provided the adventurers otherwise remain within the boundaries of the law). In a similar vein, the foresters employed by House Grimilon are all too willing to provide advice and a patina of official respectability to adventurers interested in hunting the twisted aberrations that sometimes wander into the province from the rainforests nearby.

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