Bones of the Dead Eleven
The Market District
From the eastern marketplace to the western wall, and north to the river, is the Market District. Like the Artisan District, it contains many storefronts, but also includes a great many warehouses, as well as the Rider Garrison and many other military buildings.
Craftsmen of common goods and services are more likely to be found here than in the southern Artisan’s District, but this is not a strict rule. Scribes, lawyers, and governmental offices and buildings related to trade and commerce are most common along the south part of High Street.
Since most of the craftsmen of the area (including dwarves) live out of the same building they work from, it is also a heavily inhabited area.
Within the Market District is an area called ‘Small Town,’ where dwarves, gnomes and halflings have formed communities of their own.
The Dock Market
The main city docks butt up to the market directly, and it is not unusual to see a ship being unloaded and the goods taken directly to a booth where they are then sold to buyers. Both areas are loud with sellers and filled with the smell of cooked food and exotic spices.
Folk exploring the docks meet a large number of laborers, not all of whom are laboring. The busy traffic looks unorganized, but the docks have their own rules of etiquette when it comes to walking through the area, so strangers are advised to watch and ask before moving through the lanes of travel. Missteps can cause heavy boxes to fall on the offender— sometimes by accident.
The Great Market
The huge Zoan marketplace stretches from Sinking Bay all the way to the Circle of the Gods. Most of the market consists of small tents or booths, though a few permanent buildings do exist on the perimeter. The Hall of the Coin connects the north end of the market to the Circle of the Gods. Moneylenders and moneychangers do business out of this temple. Businessmen and merchants who can afford the tithes and tariffs demanded by the Parish also set up small booths in front of the Parish in the Circle of the Gods.
Goods and con men of all kinds fill this place every day except Godday, when trade there is forbidden. Buyers can find exotic creatures, specialized material components, magic items, poisons, the canons of evil faiths, and goods of every known material, no matter how rare. Given enough time, a prospective buyer can find nearly anything here.
Pickpockets, jugglers, evangelists, beggars, and every sort of tradesman or merchant compete for the buyer’s attention. The atmosphere is carnival-like in its spectacle and its noise. Shields patrol the dirt avenues in search of thieves and trouble-makers. Four stations throughout the market allow the Shields to see across the market.
Although it seems chaotic at first, the market is designed as rows of vendors, between which foot traffic flows. Merchants vie for the more visible corners and angles and some pay the entertainers a few coins to draw traffic to their stalls. Some of the merchants have more-or-less permanent wooden frames set up in their accustomed site, while others set up tents or sell goods directly from a wagon. Some hawk their wares from a wheelbarrow or a hand-cart, while the very poorest place their goods on blankets or in wicker baskets.
The Rider Garrison
The large walled compound in the Market District is the garrison, including a spacious stable for the warhorses. The garrison is large enough to hold the entire company of 100 cavalry, but only about 40 are stationed there at any given time. The Riders enjoy the company of about 100 grooms, cooks, and other personal servants. Because the spacious stables would otherwise go unused, most of these wealthier individuals also keep a riding animal here in the city.
This official center of police activity is the central focus of the hundreds of Shields that patrol the city. Entry into the building is free to all, but the stairs leading to the higher floors stay behind locked doors and armed guards. During the day, the main entry room is filled with the injured, frightened and sleepless with complaints about assaults, burglars and barking dogs. Late at night, the room is still open, but the atmosphere is far more subdued.
The Shieldhall is inside the courtyard northeast of the garrison. It’s the large building at the end of the small road.