"All a man can ask for at the end of a hard day's labor
is a good strong fire to keep the chill away."
-Klarion of Winterwolf, Borrellian Tanner
|Ruler||His Ferocious Majesty, Lord of the North Lands, Lord Krodose of the Snow Drifter Clan|
|Demographics||Borrellian 87%, Human 5%, Ogre 3%, Orc 2%, Dwarven 1%, Elven 1%, Grum 1%|
|Languages||Borrellish 50%, Northern 50%|
|Year Founded||2228 CY|
|Currency||Trade and barter|
|Natural Resources and Manufactured Goods||Lumber, wood and bone carvings, medicinal herbs, furs, leather, meat, whale blubber, oil, fish, walrus ivory, seal meat, copper, moose|
|Government Stability||Unstable - frequent clan skirmishes|
|Enemies||Rukemia, Carrikos, Vorrik, Normidia, Arkalia|
|Technology Level||Dark Ages|
|Primary Religion||Grythga and Uthalgrim|
|Other Religions||Kolo, Erylon, The Three Fates, Farzak, Kael|
|Terrain||Mountains, forested hills|
The hardy mountain men of the Malus mountains and the borrellians of the far north find common ground in the frontier town of Ice Gate. This remote unwalled city is built on the western slope of Mount Almar which provides the city a commanding view of the Alkarian Ice Flats, the largest and least dangerous pass into the interior of the Borrellian peninsula. This city is mostly comprised of heavy framed log cabins. A perpetual blanket of snow covers the roofs of the homes. Ice Gate is not an uncivilized place, but the harsh life of the northlands has forged a hard people who do not take kindly to trouble makers or weakling southerners who whine. The citizens of this city are proud of their town and their way of life. Southerners would do well to respect it or chance facing an angry borrellian woodsman.
The citizenry of Ice Gate is a mix of borrellian, human and ogre. About 80% of the population is male and unescorted women in the town are taking a terrible chance. Ice Gate has earned a reputation as being a "safe haven" for criminals since it is so far beyond the reach of most governments. It is likely that dozens of citizens in Ice Gate are escapees or wanted criminals, trading in warm weather for freedom in the icy north.
The Great Northern Hall
The Great Northern Hall is the governmental building of Ice Gate and the hall in which Borrellian chieftains intermingle freely with political representatives from the south. In addition to this, it also serves hot food, offers rooms and stores equipment for the small militia of Ice Gate. This impressive building is built entirely of huge logs cut from northern timber. The central chamber of this great hall is large enough for an audience of hundreds. The enormous throne upon which Lord Krodose sits is cut from a single block of wood, ornately carved and darkly stained.
The House of Three Bells
This large wooden hall serves as the city's market place. The entire market square, small though it is, is contained in a building out of sheer necessity. (It's hard to conduct business if the coins are frozen together). This market sees mostly trade and barter along side the exchange of foreign coins.
The city of Ice Gate does not have an official city guard force. Characters who get into trouble in this city are pretty much on their own. The borrellian warriors of the Snowdrifter Clan do protect the city from invasion from other clans and generally guard government buildings. However, they don't concern themselves with tavern brawls and street duels. For the most part, citizens of Ice Gate look out for themselves.
Ice Gate does not have any large temples or churches. There is one small shrine dedicated to the borrellian god Grythga (a small wooden sign out front names it the Brazier's Flame) run by a single priestess.
Statue of Brentarr
Watching over the largest plaza of the city is an immense 35 foot granite sculpture of Brentarr, he who led the pilgrimmage north and settled the town that would eventually become Ice Gate. Brentarr leans against his axe and looks to the north. A pair of great winter wolves flank Brentarr, each carved in granite and fifteen feet tall. A marker before the statue tells the tale of Brentarr and the pilgrimmage to the north. People often leave flowers or small gifts here before the statue and asks for Brentarr's blessing.
Lord Korodose, once a powerful warrior and a terror on the battlefield, is now aging and fat. Even so, he is still a strong man and can lift and swing his great blade. Born of a strong family, Lord Krodose has the stern gaze of his father, who ruled the Snowdrifter Clan before him. Krodose seeks to build Ice Gate into a respected city of culture.
Ragnar the Half Blood
Ragnar is a well known half-borrellian hunter and trader who travels the north lands extensively. Perhaps to make up for his human half, Ragnar spends more time in the snowy mountains of Borrell than most Borrellians. He tends to stick to the southern half of Borrell and typically goes on hunting trips that often last 2 months at a time. He usually visits Ice Gate 6 or 7 times a year. Ragnar is generally foul tempered and prefers his own company to that of others. It takes a fair bit of coin to hire him as a guide.
Hjoric is a very old and wise hatraddi of the Snowdrifter Clan. He is the only known spell caster in the entire city. Mages and priests from other cultures are barely tolerated in Ice Gate. Some have been killed by the borrellians of Ice Gate while others hide their powers. Hjoric is skilled in herbalism, healing and nature lore.
Bjorn is a tremendously fat borrellian man and a well known skald. He can usually be found in one of the taverns playing various instruments and singing rousing songs about borrellian heroes. Bjorn knows everyone in Ice Gate and is an excellent information source. Bjorn has a long mane of curly yellow hair, watery grey eyes and a friendly face covered in a thick bushy beard. He has a tremendous booming voice which can usually be raised in song or laughter.
|Name and Proprietor||Description|
|Weapons and Armor Store - A small store that sells a variety of weapons and armor. It also offers wagons, horses and miscellaneous equipment useful in surviving the harsh mountains.|
|Brothel - The Dancing Maiden is the name of Ice Gate's only brothel. This small establishment is home to a small group of girls, some borrellian and others southern. The brothel is active as northern men often come out of the mountains without having seen a woman in months. Hadiloch is a tough-as-nails older borrellian woman who takes good care of her girls. Hadiloch is the older sister of Lord Krodose, chieftain of the Snow Drifter Clan, so she has powerful friends.|
|Smithy - The Dragon's Scale is a smithy that specializes in armor. Kalled is a skilled blacksmith who relocated to the north from Duthelm after his wife was killed in a riot. Kalled will make a custom fitted suit of armor for anyone with sufficient funds. Payment is always in advance and Kalled will take precise measurements of the customer before he begins. He makes chainmail, ringmail, plate mail and field plate armor. He doesn't bother with anything lighter than chain.|
|Tavern - The Worm's Tunnel is the most popular tavern in Ice Gate. It offers rooms, good food and a variety of drinks (everything from Goldsmoke Brandy to Thundermead) which Wulfgar goes to great lengths to acquire. Wulfgar is a popular member of the community who can always be found tending bar here.|
|Face of the Glacier
|General Store and Trading Post - The Face of the Glacier is a trading post and general store that serves Ice Gate. It carries a little bit of everything - food, weapons, armor, tools, lumber, horses and more.|
|Tavern/Thieves Guild - The Fire Pit is a tavern which houses a tiny guild of rogues. It is the only organized thieves guild in the distant north and the only place to purchase such items as thieves tools, poison or sharkskin gloves. It's also the only place one can find an assassin. This guild is only about twelve members strong - one leader, one assassin and an assortment of thugs, bandits and pickpockets.|
|Stables - Kempoc is a borrellian of the Snowdrifter Clan and a member of the city militia. He raises and cares for a variety of animals but is known best for the wondrous six legged snowdrifters. He also trains these fine steeds for the militia.|
|Leather Goods and Garment Shop - Run by a tall, powerfully built man with a thick mustache and steely eyes. Haltalf is very good at his trade. He often hunts for his own skins and pelts, brings them back to his shop, tans and cures the leather himself and makes them into a variety of products. Besides leather goods and clothing, he also dabbles in armor (leather armor, studded leather and chainmail). He is an honorable man who charges a fair price is known for never lying. A massive two handed sword hangs on the wall in his small shop. A suit of polished plate armor sits in the back room. It's obvious that when he came to the north some 10 years ago, he came as a fugitive from some distant land. But whatever his story his, he is tight lipped about it.|
|Gambling Hall - A small tavern/gambling hall run by a grum named Topknot. Sociable and well-liked fellow. He is one of the few grum in the city.|
|Inn - A decent inn with a large common room (straw strewn floor, no blankets) which can hold up to 20 people (1 copper for the night). It also has two small private rooms (no locks) which are a silver per night. Run by a half-ogre named Jorog, his Borrellian wife Freyga and their son.|
|Tavern/Inn - A large central hall built around a long rectangular fire pit which is flanked by long oaken benches. This establishment serves lots of hot food (mostly gruel) and hot ale. Run by Bulgar, a borrellian of the Snowdrifter clan, and his large family. One large common room for rent which sleeps 50. No beds, only straw. Large stable.|
|Snow Goose Saloon
|Tavern/Inn - The Snow Goose Saloon is a small establishment with four rooms for rent and a small common room where meals are taken. Sully, a large man from the south, runs this establishment alone. He does all the cooking, cleaning, maintenance and general labor. He tends to the customers every need. It's a labor of love for him. The Snow Goose is known for excellent food. Sully's oatcakes and griddle fried pork patties are well known in town. And he serves them with his signature spiced maple syrup.|
This website was last updated January 6, 2018. Copyright 1990-2018 David M. Roomes.