The Firseid Sandbox
Stonewatch is a large town that grew up around a stone circle that lies an hour’s journey east of the town.
Stonewatch enforces druidic belief as a requirement of residency, and balance is enforced by a rigid code of ethics and laws. It is not uncommon for children that grew up in the community to move away as soon as they are of age, but many of the remaining residents claim that the structure given to their lives makes Stonewatch a pleasant place to live.
However, the druidic counsel of Stonewatch claim that the laws of balance are necessary to “hold the world together.” Many in Stonewatch believe that the stone ring is a place of power. Most from outside the town, of course, think it is nonsense or a way to attract pilgrims and tourists.
The leadership culture of Stonewatch is a peculiar mix of Freiburgian and Illanëan, and clashes over the use of magic in daily life, the activities of the Freiburg military in the area, and Freiburgian taxes are common among the population. Although not inhospitable to outsiders, many residents in positions of power expect visitors to “pick a side,” and the town, despite its large size, can suddenly feel a lot smaller when half the town wants nothing to do with you!
The stone ring is a holy site among worshipers of numerous deities who favor the Arcane arts, and it appears in folk tales of several cultures in the region — as well as the legends of King Arcus — as a magical focal point of the world. The actual purpose of the stone ring is debated among scholars, with the prevailing theory being that it’s simply a calendar. A large number of pilgrims visit the site each year in advance of the winter solstice, and the late fall is typically a very busy time for the taverns in Stonewatch for pilgrims who don’t wish to camp in the fields surrounding the ring.
The ring holds a different significance to the druidic orders of the Northern Reaches, who perform a summer solstice ritual at the site every year. Given the secrecy of druidic orders, most can only speculate about the significance of the site, but it’s thought that the primary purpose is to provide a balance for the prayers said during the winter solstice.
Demographically, the town is similar to the rest of the Northern Reaches with a large elvish population, but the power structure of the town is mostly human.
Law enforcement in the town is accomplished mostly through social pressure, but a sheriff and a few of volunteers are employed by the town counsel when needed. A small militia lodge, as well as a 20-soldier barrack of the Middle Kingdom army, provide some additional security against magical beasts and fey that occasionally wander from the forests to the north and south.
Stonewatch also has a robust textile and logging trade thanks to its advantageous position halfway between two major cities, but the town is not particularly wealthy despite its size.