Village Backdrop: Edgewood 2.0 (5e)
A 5e Compatible GM's Resource by Mike Welham
The thriving village of Edgewood stands in the very shadow of the Shadetimer Forest. For a century, it has prospered. Wars, droughts and pestilence striking other nearby settlements never seem to affect the village, and yet tragedy mars life in Edgewood. For every year, terror stalks the village and its inhabitants die seemingly random, but horrible and gruesome, deaths. Thus, despite its prosperity, Edgewood remains a small place, and few travellers remain there for long.
Most of the village comprises normal homes. A few locations, however, are of interest to adventurers.
- Edgewood Inn: Sitting on the only road leading through the village, Edgewood Inn is a charming, cosy destination for travellers. The inn is renowned for the wonderful dishes cooked by its owner, the half-orc Quinna Poul, and is usually busy; it is the last place for travellers to rest their heads before daring the Shadetimber forest.
- Eternal Lovers: A pair of centuries-old oaks has entwined starting twelve feet from the ground, creating a massive home for birds and squirrels. Weddings are held in the trees’ shade.
- Sacrifice Square: The fallen paladin Cleauregard spends most of his time here at this shameful reminder of a time when the villagers thought they could control what (or whom) was culled each year.
- Storage Houses: Warehouses, protected from the heat and humidity, hold harvested goods ready for trade and sale. With the village’s incredible bounty, the storage houses are normally full to bursting.
- Honey Haven: This gnome-run tavern and brewery caters to visitors to the village and offers a fine selection of mead. Honey Haven offers no food or accommodation; locals also frequent the tavern and it is frequently busy.
- Bailiff’s Office: Ostensibly the village bailiff, Barth Poul, works here but this office is usually unoccupied. He is rarely troubled by crime—those who commit crimes in the village invariably suffer the consequence of their actions when they leave Edgewood. He is responsible, though, for cleaning up and burying the attacks remains so travellers are not put off visiting the village.
- Mayor’s Hall: Velendra Arrisse has her offices here, but she usually wanders about the village and along the forest’s bounds. The half-elf does not enjoy being confined inside and so is rarely here.
- Festival Grounds: Here, brightly decorated stalls stand around a small tournament ground. A previous mayor decided to celebrate Edgewood’s prosperity and commissioned the building of this area, which hosts major festivals after harvests which see the population of the village increase as travellers arrive to buy the village’s bountiful wares. Otherwise, the festival grounds remain empty.
- Beehives: Pasmarie Clee oversees her druidic beekeepers as they tend a dozen hives; the druids render the bees relatively docile before collecting their honey. The bees have been thriving of late, and Pasmarie plans to soon establish a 13th hive.
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Cut from a chunk of local limestone and set above the tavern’s front door, the luridly carved face of an orc identifies this place as the infamous Orc’s Head. Notorious throughout the duchy as the haunt for adventurers preparing to dare Gloamhold’s depths, the Orc’s Head is a place of tall tales and hard drinking. Decent folk rarely venture inside.