“Nothing stands eternal, but how will the end come? Will we be prepared to greet it face to face or will it startle us in the night?”
– Elder Keeper Talbot, Adherent of the Night Maiden
Migrant, slumrat, refugee – no matter your background you know that times are hard and earning coin requires you to keep your ears open. Fortunately, you find yourself in the great city of Alacen – a sprawling metropolis of alleys carpeting the land between the Eastsea and the banks of the Revell. People from across the world
unrivaled in size, culture, and advancement across the entirety of the world. Goods, wealth and prosperity flow through this city from inland Khorson to the Eastsea and beyond. Alacen is truly the jewel of the civilized world.
Or so it was.
Fifty years ago, the raiding armies of the Saraven made landfall on the shores North of Alacen. They’d have been just a nuisance for the Imperial Armies, but they were backed by a two sorcerers wielding magic unknown in this world. Soldiers burned, walls crumbled and the Emperor was executed in the street. The Saraven Lords divided up the empire into their own personal kingdoms and have ruled them ever since.
Today, life is difficult. Outside the city proper, taxes border on predatory. A drought has ruined the last harvest leaving many farmers struggling. The Plague has returned after a long absence and several communities to the north are actively dealing with outbreaks. Migrants are entering Alacen in large numbers all in the hope of an opportunity for honest work, but there are simple not enough jobs to go around. Unrest is brewing.
Change is being whispered about in slums and alleyways. Ideas on Alaceni national identity and independence are blossoming and being espoused by small, hidden groups within the city. The Saraven themselves are experiencing unrest in their homeland and have begun to return some of their soldiers back across the Eastsea. A puppet government has been formed, but the Saraven recognize that conditions may force them to quit their Alacen venture.
Something is on the horizon – A bloody transition? Full on war? A return of the sorcerers? The rise of an independent Alaceni state?
Whatever it is, people can feel it in the air and the Alaceni, ever the pragmatists, are preparing to latch onto any opportunities that present themselves. These preparations bring opportunities for work. You’ve heard the city guard is hiring individuals for a temporary job – food and lodgings provided, and a wage that cannot be scoffed at. Work is work, perhaps you should sign up.