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272 Riverside

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About this Resource

This resource features the general description of an adventure location for RPG adventures or general inspiration. Not all releases are the same; some may include rules material for Dungeons and Dragons 5e but mechanics are left to a minimum.

These adventure ideas are appropriate for low to mid-level (Levels 1 to 10) adventuring parties. As the DM, you are free to change or modify any or all the information found here. NPC names and settlement names are the first you should consider changing to accommodate any homebrew-world lore.

When monsters are referenced, the creature’s name is noted in bold. Only creatures from the D&D5e Monster Manual are cited.

Background Lore

Sweetwater River is in the eastern side of the region. It goes all the way down to the Blue Sea and it is born in the north, deep in the mountains. The snow from the Mountains melts and gives life to a healthy stream that divides the earth. Sweetwater River runs swift as the wind, bringing nature to life in various cities, towns, and villages. Flora and fauna around Riverside are as vast as they could be; orchids, jasmines, angel’s trumpets, and amaranth fill the town streets and roads, while the river stream is full of algae, mosses, coontail, and waterweed. Fish are plentiful, making fishing one of the main occupations here. A considerable amount of the food that is consumed here comes from the river, leaving farms as a secondary, yet effective, method for gathering resources.

Riverside is encircled by a 15-feet-tall stone wall. It has four entrances, including a barbican in each of them. There are ten towers guarding the walls scattered around the perimeter. Accessing the towers is possible through the ramparts. One of the two bridges in the town is inside the walls. The second bridge is one of the entrances to the city, it leads to the northeast outskirts of town, where most farmers and laborers live.

People in Riverside and peaceful folk. They mind their own business and expect others to do so as well. Problems are not common here; the town is well guarded; its location is advantageous. There are villages and towns in every direction, making it really hard to raid the place without neighbor settlements noticing hostile forces approaching, and the people are kind and peaceful.

Although one day, disaster fell upon Riverside. It has been three weeks since the attack; Riverside had the moon festival celebration, as usual. Food, drink, music, and dancing filled the atmosphere while singing and laughing broke the night’s silence. But then, a mighty sound engulfed all the others, the horrendous screaming of someone being torn apart froze everyone’s hearts. A huge 9-feet-tall hairy beast, claws twice the size of a full-grown tiger, blood dripping fangs, and red demonic eyes had dismembered a farmer who tried to relieve himself some dozen meters away from the Temple of the Moon. The few able fighters present grabbed whatever weapon they could find and tried to kill the monster. No one expected this, so there was nobody well-prepared for a fight. Half a dozen men died before the beast fled. No one dared pursue it as it would have meant suicide. Sir Walton, wiping the blood from his robes, finished the day’s celebrations immediately. They took the injured to the town’s nursery, others removed the bodies and piled them for decent burials the day after. The next morning, he met with the town’s guards and assembled a search party They had little success. Even though they tracked it, they could not find the beast on the fortnight that followed.

Riverside became wary of the next full moon, as the townsfolk thought this would happen again on that day. Just a few days after the attack, farmers started complaining about dead livestock. Some cows, farm mules, and sheep died at night. Other animals disappeared. Rumors of demons, monsters, and werewolves filled the mouths of the everyday gossips. One thing was certain, the next full moon was not something Riverside looked forward to.

Sir Walton is waiting to get help from the region’s administration, but he knows bureaucracy can take weeks, sometimes months. He is hoping for the arrival of mercenaries, or brave adventurers who could help get rid of this monster. He is offering a considerable amount of gold, and to pay for the heroes’ time in town.

Area descriptions 

  1. Town Hall.

This is where Sir Walton Bolster spends his time. The trees in front of the building bring shadow to readers who like to spend part of their days there. The hall is always well lit and warm. There is no lobby inside, but there is a vast conference room with a pseudo-throne. Sir Bolster receives visitors and handles the town affairs in here.    

  1. Bull’s Pub.

Frank Sneijder is the owner of this place. He is a Gnome. He used to be a merchant who traveled around the region selling stuff. One day he had to stay in Riverside for about a week because he was stricken by strong flu. Riverside villagers treated him so well and he felt so welcome that he decided to use all the money he had to buy the town’s pub. He lives here with his dozen cats.

The pub’s name is in honor of the previous owner, Big Bob. A 7-feet-tall human, big as a bear and strong as a horse. Big Bob still has not decided what to do with his life now. He has been living off the pub’s sale for about two months, he is always drinking and having fun at the pub.    

  1. Guild Market.

The market is open every day. Merchants and ambulant food sellers are friendly and always happy to serve visitors or locals. The guild comprehends leatherworkers, craftsmen, fishermen, weavers, boat crafters, and bakers.

  1. The Wild Horse Inn.

Barbara runs the only inn in town. She opted to name it as such because she once had a horse who was as wild as the jungle. It was stronger than other horses, bigger, and had a pitch-black color. No one in town could ever tame the horse, not even Vance, from Vance Horses. Some people even started spreading the rumor that a demon lived inside the horse. One day Barbara decided to set the horse free, accepting the fact that she was never going to be able to control or ride it. Nobody knows of the horse since. Although there have been rumors of sightings of an enormous beast running amok at night, the majority of farmers do not think it is a horse.

  1. Temple of the Sun.

This religious building serves as a church for the people of Riverside. There are several shrines inside the temple to satisfy the different beliefs and deities that are worshiped. People are silent and respectful in here. There are no general gatherings or masses as to not disrespect anybody. People come and go, making their daily prayers and offerings. The town’s treasurer handles the funds and works on improvements and maintenance for the temple’s facilities.

  1. Temple of the Moon.

This temple serves as a community center. Every full moon, the villagers love to gather and meet here. They do not light any torches or lamps, letting the moonlight be the only source of illumination. They bask in the moonlight all night, singing, dancing, and thanking the Gods for another white moon and a month of life.

  1. Sir Walton Bolster Manor.

The major of Riverside decided to build his own house out of the city. He is a fan of horse-riding and a fisherman. When he is not busy working and handling the common folks’ issues, he spends his afternoons fishing and taking care of his horse, Apollon. Apollon is a splendid white beast, with gray spots decorating its skin and mane.

  1. Vance Horses.

The proud owner of the stables and horse master is Vance. The place is very popular throughout the region. Many people from all around the province and beyond have come here to meet Vance and see his high-quality horses.

  1. Riverside boats and fish shop.

Boat crafting is not only well paid in Riverside, but it is also an easy-to-manage business. It is sustainable enough considering the fact that boat crafters also rent their boats. They also have some boats of their own to practice fishing.

Important NPC’s

Sir Walton Bolster.

Town’s mayor and leader. Sir Walton is not originally from here. He comes from the capital and was knighted due to his noble ascendance. He has a stocky, stout body, somewhat obese. He has a baby-face and light, yellowish hair. Around his mid-fifties, Sir Walton prefers fishing and horseback-riding over fighting. Never a great fighter, he is on the lookout for a group of adventurers who can help him bring peace to Riverside again.

Frank Sneijder.

The Gnome who bought the pub from Big Bob. He is a thin-faced little fellow. He wears spectacles although he does not need them. He is a plain, pale Gnome with a thing for cats. His dozen cats live with him in the pub. Stray cats come and go as they please. Frank does not mind and actually foments the arrival of other felines to his pub.

Barbara. She is an old woman. She is scruffy and thin. But she has the grace and kindness of a grandmother. She pays a lot of attention to details and how she serves people. She sometimes exaggerates her manners and politeness, making visitors somewhat uncomfortable.

Vance.

He is usually busy, as his horses are popular regionwide. He is well-built, untidy-looking, and he has black long hair, worn in a ponytail. He has about ten employees in his charge. He does not own a horse himself, stating all the horses he has bred are his mounts. He loves animals.

Big Bob (Robert).

He is the previous owner of Bull’s Pub. Big Bob’s nickname is no irony. He is the tallest and biggest person in Riverside. After selling his pub to Frank, he went on vacations for about a month. He crossed the country and traveled to different towns and cities. On his way back to Riverside, his transport was ambushed by wild wolves. Half a dozen black and gray beasts attacked them. The wolf pack’s leader was fierce and considerably bigger than the rest of the wolves. At the time, he remembered stories of wargs his parents used to tell him as a child. He was never a fighter himself, but his size and strength allowed him to best even the strongest of soldiers. The guards’ armor protected them from the fangs and bites, but Big Bob got bitten on one arm. The Gods smiled on him that day because the few guards and himself were able to get rid of most of the wolves and save everyone.

He came back to Riverside, proud of his deeds and feeling like a hero. Little did Robert know he had just been bitten by a werewolf. Riverside held his usual Moon Festival on the next full moon after Big Bob’s return. And Big Bob, well, there was nothing he could do.

The last thing he remembers is waking up a few miles away from Riverside. Taste of blood in his mouth, and a sore body as if he had worked three full days with no rest. He washed and managed to get back to town unnoticed. Since then, he has been wandering at the pub, drinking and trying to forget what happened. He hopes this is just a bad dream, but deep inside he knows it was him. He is afraid of what might happen to him if the people knew, but he does not have anywhere else to go. Riverside is his home, and it is home to his friends.

If adventurers talk to him, he hides the truth unless he considers the newcomers have a way of helping him. Overall, he wants to avoid killing more people, but he also would not like to be murdered as a monster himself.

General features

Terrain.None of the town roads are paved. Although the main roads are well delimited and the ground is straight and firm.

Light. The wall is always well-lit at night. The outskirts of the city are darker as torches and braziers are present only inside the walls. Farmers usually wake up early, before sunrise, so the use of lamps is reduced to a minimum. By sunset, most of the agriculture life stops, and farmers go home and rest.

 

 

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Published by Derek Von Zarovich
I am a D&D and GURPS player and DM since 2000. I enjoy reading fantasy and sci-fi books. Recently I started writing and creating my own content. I love to share what I write.

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