The Destiny Of Dunsany
Dunsany lies in a lightly settled region of the kingdom of Albion. The town comprises barely 1,000 citizens, of which a clear majority are non-human. Arable land is fruitful but scarce, owing to the mostly forested geography. Dunsany could increase its available farmland at the expense of its virgin forests, but for two reasons this is a bad idea.
- Elves (and eladrin) live in the forests. Don’t tick off the elves.
- The elves possess a functioning faerie circle, somewhere deep in the forest. It links up with a settled area of the Feywild, the dimension of the true Fey. Dunsany’s economy is supported by trade from the circle.
The trade works like this: Dunsany sells comestibles to Faerie (bread, potatoes, etc.), and Faerie sells the occasional magical hoodoo object (unicorn tail hair, flowers that never die, etc.) to reality as we know it. In effect, money comes out of a hole in the sky. So far the party has been exposed to two potentially negative aspects to this trade arrangement.
- Human noblemen with more money than sense show up and try to fool around. Dunsany has developed a cottage industry of informants and ‘guides’ to help part the gullible from their lucre, while at the same time trying to prevent most of the major abuses that can come out of such contact (selling of first-born children, aging 100 years in a day, becoming a fey-pact warlock, etc.) from occurring. We’re a magical Tijuana.
- Once in a while the elves show up with trade items that may be more than the current economy can quietly handle. Case in point: the night before the campaign begins, a party of well-armed elves and eladrin have shown up with a enormous quantity of silver dragon scales, presumably all from the same dragon. Dunsany (the baron and his advisors) are questioning whether to allow the sale to move forward, as it may draw unwanted attention to the town (least of all from the slain dragon’s relatives!)
In terms of geography, Dunsany town is in the middle of the map. The elven forest stretches off to the west, and the orc highlands are northward. To the east is a commercially navigable river (as yet unnamed, proposed name: the Dapple) that eventually reaches a major Albinese shipyard, Southport.
While dragonborn currently make up the top heavies of Dunsany’s town guard, sergeants and the like are made up primarily of hobgoblins. They have served the town loyally for several generations.
The dwarves of Dunsany hail primarily from the Valemar Diaspora. Over 50 years ago, the humans of that region successfully wrested control of a rich iron mine network from the dwarves there. There is still a mighty animosity between the dwarves and humans of Albion.
A few streets in Dunsany are known as Orctown. Orcs and goblinoids are the primary residents, and their rich local traditions are on full display here. They generally prefer to police themselves.
In line with its cosmopolitan nature, Dunsany boasts a number of religious structures.