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Cove (City of Cider, the Watchmen)

“Cove by the sea… A place of peace and serenity…”

Location: North central Britannia, northeast of Britain, west of Vesper, upon southeast shore of Lock Sea.

Virtue: None

Government: Simple family structures, village Elders make decisions regarding the Community. Britain garrison forces are under Britain Military Law.

Imports: Weapons and Arms, Crafted Items

Exports: Cider


A golden tower on a red and blue diagonal striped shield.


Cove was built upon the shores of Lock Lake against the eastern flank of Mount Defiance. Prior to the Great Earthquake of 101 A.C., travel from Lock Lake to the Great Sea was impossible in ships, cataracts and protruding rocks prevented travel up or down the river by ship. The Great Earthquake caused changes to the course and depth of the river. The effects of the earthquake caused a sinking of the bedrock underlying the river’s course. This sinking caused the sea waters to flow into the lake, flooding the surrounding area and allowing easy travel by boat to and from the Great Sea. Deposits of iron bearing ore provide adequate resources, although crafted arms are imported.


Cove is in a temperate zone, the mountains provide adequate protection from the tempests of the Great Ocean. Seasonal storms from the north bring cold weather and hard driving rains, at these times the sea can be a very hazardous place to sail.


The region where Cove was a feared region in the early days following the Cataclysm. Rumors told of whirlpools that would pull ships down into unknown places that swirled in the lake’s waters, and one of the largest armies of Mondain’s, consisting mostly of orcs, settled near the mountains of the region. They survived, forming a new tribe from their numbers, and made habitual raids upon Vesper and Britain’s encampments to the north.

In 26 A.C., the orcs of the region joined in G’kar’s hordes, hoping to claim all of the northern steppes and plains for themselves. Unfortunately, after five years of fighting, they lost, and after Malphane obtained reinforcements, he quickly marched south to rid themselves of the threat. The orcs fled from the southern shores of the lake, and onto the Peninsula, where the foliage and treacherous paths made it impossible to be pursued. Malphane instead ordered a fort constructed at the shoreline in 33 A.C, so that the orcs would be trapped there, and contained.

Fort Defiance remained manned diligently for many decades, until 100 A.C., when Malphane recalled all forces to the Plains to meet Yavituk’s horde. After the horrific battle, Lord Robere decided to pull the exterior borders of Britain in, and elected to abandon it. This was due to the destruction caused to the region during the Great Earthquake, and the loss of most of the marine life in the waters due to the exposure of the fresh-water lake to salt, which was the primary diet of the soldiers quartered there.

In 109 A.C., a large group of colonists from Vesper arrived in the area. Tired of the constant attacks by hordes of monsters from the northeastern regions, and the increasing bureaucracy and intrigue that ruled Vesper, they sought to return to the simpler life they’d known decades before. They explored the newly altered region, finding ore deposits that provided the iron for their tools and arts. Wood was in ample supply for housing, and the old fort was a perfect place to setup camp. The lack of fish only meant they needed to sail around and south, towards the mouth of the sea, where the larger fish could be caught, and hunters made up the rest. Thus, the village of Cove, named for its location in the lee of the mountain, was formed.

The village enjoyed a few decades of peace, until the orcs, living wretched lives upon the Bone Peninsula, learned that the watchful soldiers were gone, and sheeplike peasants had taken their place. The first raid in 123 A.C. was horrific, many were killed in the process of driving the orcs back. The fort’s walls were easy to maintain, however, and the orcs next raid was repelled swiftly.

A few years later, though, the people of Cove were shocked when orcs appeared on Lock Sea, sailing around to the north, circumventing the walls. The attack was repelled, although the casualties were horrific. The result of this was the construction of the Watchtower upon the northern shores, which kept watch for enemy ships. Coupled with the wall upon their eastern flank, the city was as secure as it could be.

For many decades, the orcs were a minor nuisance to the residents of Cove. There would be the occasional theft of livestock and the even more rare raid upon the farms and ranches. During these raids the orcs would just take the metal tools, food stocks and clothing. The watchtower was constantly manned and gave a commanding view over the entire region. The orcs were usually spotted far enough away to give the farmers and ranchers time to move their families to the safety of the stockade.

By 160 A.C. the frequency of orc sightings had diminished greatly. The occasional cow or sheep would disappear, but that would as likely be blamed upon wolves as upon the orcs. As the years passed the residents grew lax in posting the watch upon the tower, and in 173 A.C. in order to aid their fisherman coming home at night, the villagers converted the watchtower into a lighthouse. This was favorably received by both Britain and Vesper, each of whom had lost ships in the treacherous sea, and was a great boon to the village and the fisherman, who depended upon its beacon to guide them home on late nights.

The Dark Years were hard upon Cove, but not nearly so much as the larger cities. Already self-sufficient, they simply made without crafted items, and refused to trade with merchants who sought to cheat them with cheaply minted coins. The orcs, stymied in their efforts to take Cove, concentrated upon raiding passing merchant ships, an easy task in the period.

Cove’s troubles started again in 212 A.C., when the city-states of Britain, Trinsic, and Serpent’s Hold declared war upon Buccaneer’s Den. Not long afterwards, three ships sailed to the dock in Cove, carrying Captain Dagg, a ruthless pirate, and his crew. The village was taken by surprise and without a fight, not expecting enemies in a human form, and Dagg declared himself ruler of the village. He started to use Cove as a staging point for raids upon both Vesper and Britain shipping lines.

The Covians silently fought back, however, sending messengers by fishing boats to Britain and Vesper to warn of the attack. Vesper declined to aid, but Britain immediately dispatched a large force by land to retake the city. Through clever use of beacon flashes from the watchtower, the Covian Resistance was able to time the attack just right, when Captain Dagg was away on a raid in Britanny Bay, and the village was reclaimed, and Captain Dagg and his crew executed upon their return. In order to prevent Cove from being taken by any side during the war, the Britain forces left garrison troops behind when they left in 213 A.C. The remainder of the war years passed quietly for Cove, the orcs dared not even raid when Britain’s finest were on watch.

Following the ending of the war in 223 A.C., the garrison forces were recalled to Britain, although many elected to remain, having made lives and families in the new community. In 247 A.C. the stairs to the lighthouse collapsed after unseen rot had eaten away at its supports. During the weeks it took to repair the stairway, children would carry a bucket of coals through the darkness, past the rotted remnants, and stay the night within the lighthouse to ensure that the flame remained lit.

Cove had its share of disasters, like any city. In the winter of 259 A.C. a very severe storm came out of the north and caught a fleet of 15 fishing boats on the open waters of Lost Lake. A lightning strike upon the lighthouse destroyed the beacon’s shelter exposing the flame to the driving rain. With the fleet of boats being driven towards the rocky coast, several heroes braved the gale force winds and crashing lightning to shelter and re-lit the beacon in time to signal the incoming boats. Of the 15 fishing boats only 3 were lost to the storm, none were lost upon the rocky shore thanks to the heroic efforts of the men and women of Cove.

Some decades later, in 282 A.C., another severe gale roared from the North. As the ships sailed into the cove reports came of a ship that was seen floundering in the waves. Fedrick captained the ship named “Sweet Maggie”. Fedrick’s wife, Maggie, was heavy with child and had gone into labor during the storm. As is wont by the fisherfolk of Cove, many brave captains turned their boats about and headed into the teeth of the storm in search of Fedrick. After three hours of searching they came upon the capsized hull of the “Sweet Maggie” with a near frozen Fedrick clinging tight. Brought back safely to Cove and shivering beneath a wool blanket, Fedrick beheld his first born son and his beautiful wife.

The year 294 A.C. bode ill for the residents of Cove. An unusually long and cold winter delayed the planting of the spring crops and the severity of the weather prevented the fisherfolk from setting sail as frequently as they had in the past winters. Ten days into the spring plantings terror came boiling from the caves and caverns of Mount Defiance. Up from the depths of the earth came a horde of vile orcs. They first attacked the garrison stockade on the western peninsula. Overwhelmed the garrison retreated to the boats and sailed for Cove. One boat was sent to Britain to gain assistance from the garrison. It took 4 hours for the boats to reach Cove. As they rounded the lighthouse point they could already see the smoke rising from the outlying farmhouses. Their ranks bolstered by the arriving solders they waited upon the stockade walls for the attack to come. The first assault was driven off and the orcs retreated back into the wood line. With the coming of darkness the commander of the troops knew a nighttime attack was imminent. Knowing they could not hold the wall he retreated behind a makeshift wall at the base of the lighthouse. For their safety the women and children were loaded into the boats and sailed for Britain. As darkness covered the cove the warriors could here the orcs coming over the stockade wall. Soon they saw flames erupt from the homes and stores in front of them. In the fire lit night they could see the orcs advancing towards them. For a week they held off sporadic attacks by the orcs. On the eighth day the troops from Britain arrived by ship to find Cove in ruins but the defenders still alive behind their barricade. At the sight of the arriving ships of war the orcs had fled back into the mountain taking what goods and livestock had been left in the village. It was decided not to reoccupy the western garrison and the rebuilding of Cove behind a new stockade began.

In 293 A.C., following Minoc’s admission into the Kingdom, the Covian Elders discussed doing the same, but to their shock they found a new enemy, Lord Blackthorn. Lord Blackthorn opposed the admission of Cove upon the grounds that the Orcs of the Bone Peninsula had equal or greater claim to the region as they, being the original settlers. Opponents to this have argued that the area falls under Malphane’s Dominion, but the resulting confusion and gridlock has left Cove an undecided issue. As their problems have increased over the years since, Vesper has been making overtures to the besieged village, and some have began to listen…


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Last modified: December 30, 2011

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