In brainstorming things that we could do to help Cypher System GMs out there, the idea occurred to us that one of the things that a Cypher GM has to manage is putting together set-pieces for their players to explore. We’ve started putting out NPCs to help, and there are both more NPCs and other things on the way. But here is the next thing. This is a fantasy city that you can drop into your campaign anywhere you wish. It would pair very well with Bruce Cordell’s Gods of the Fall or Ganza Gaming’s Mortal Fantasy (or both). It is provided here 100% free for your use. All we ask is that if you post it anywhere else, you attribute Angel’s Citadel. So without further ado, I present to you the city of Timberchurch. For the NPCs that go along with this post, check out THIS page.
Population: Approx. 840
Demographic: Primarily Human, with <2% Dwarf, Elf, and half-Orc
Ruler: Lord Keric Periand (Level 3, Health: 16, Armor: 1, Attacks as Level 4; Positive Social Interactions as Level 5)
Situated on the River Alduín where logs are floated down from the large Norian Forest to the North, Timberchurch was, as its name suggests, founded around a church, a wooden one. Centuries later, that original church is now a stone temple, but the worship of the Goddess of Hearth and Home is the same as it ever was. Out here on the frontier, there is not much more that a person desires than the safety of a home and the warmth and belonging that comes with it, and in Timberchurch, while not everyone is welcoming, most realize that their future rests on the other people around them and the few souls that Lord Periand has managed to bring in to bolster the town militia in protecting them from the occasional monster incursion.
1.) Periand Keep – Generational home of the Periand family for the last several hundred years, Periand Keep is a medium-sized manor house surrounded by both an inner wall and the city wall. Staffed by a dedicated team (hereditary) of 6 servants, who also live at the manor and are well-taken care of, Lord Keric Periand, his wife Bettina and their three children lead, as has most of their family before them, the city in justice and equity.
2.) Temple of Frisyr (Fry-zeer) – The temple in Timberchurch to the goddess of Fertility, Hearth/Home, Love and the Moon is led by Abbot Lyran Hollyant (Elf, Level 4, Health: 15, Healing as Level 6). Assisted by two deacons, Hayleigh Kimbar and Ryeth Arian, they work to shepherd the citizens of Timberchurch both spiritually and materially. Usually the instigator of charity and community-led assistance, the temple of Frisyr stands as a rock that the citizenry can lean against that promotes unity, community, and goodwill.
3.) City Barracks – This sturdy building is where both the city’s small (12x – Level 2, Health: 14, Armor: 1, Attack as Level 4) permanent guard force and militia (made up of the able-bodied citizenry, Level 2, Health: 8, Attack as level 3). Lead by the half-Orc Sergeant Garth Jirand (Level 5, Health: 16, Armor 2, Attacks as Level 6), the group is in charge of both law enforcement in the city and the surrounding area as well as protection for its citizenry from outside forces.
4.) The Whispering Brook Tavern & Inn – Though not the only tavern in town, it is the only one with an attached inn, and such, sees the most business from outsiders. Owned and managed by the fiery Elana Morrell (Level 3, Positive Social Interactions as Level 5), the Whispering Brook is a welcome respite for the weary traveler. Offering well-cooked food for reasonable prices and well-kept, though old, rooms for a little more than you would find them closer to civilization, the Whispering Brook is a friendly, and reasonable option for a place to stay and eat.
5.) Verym’s Mill – One of the first buildings constructed in town, it has actually been rebuilt twice over the years, though in portions, not all at once. Owned by the same family that built it originally, Zenia Verym, a fierce, dark haired woman (Level 4, Might-based tasks as Level 5) currently manages the business that started the town. Using the river to receive wood from the forest upstream and to power the mill, Zenia employs a significant number of the town both in the mill and in the warehouse just to the north that she owns as well in crafting construction lumber that she then ships down river, via shallow barge, to the large city of Ordeth to the South.
6.) The Gypsy Street Market – Hailing from points west, the Gypsies, wandering families who trade craft, labor, and expertise, set up market in town square when they are led there by (currently) their leader Brannus Ferrick (Level 3, Health: 10, Negotiations as Level 6). Lovers of life and freedom, the group can often be found with their children playing about among the shopfronts. They have an agreement of protection with Lord Periand that is hereditary. It is not widely known, but his wife Bettina is from one of the Gypsy families.
7.) Church of Pyrsurur (Peer-soo-roor) – A much smaller building with a much smaller flock than Frisyr’s temple, though never in conflict, the Church of the god of Healing, Justice, the Sun, and Wisdom is led by only a single cleric, a man named Isthyn Serim (Level 3, Health: 12, Positive Social Interactions as Level 4, Healing as Level 5). No one is entirely sure where he came from before he arrived in Timberchurch, but he claims to have been led here at the behest of Pyrsurur Himself. Often found working alongside Abbot Hollyant, Isthyn is a serious, contemplative man, though not without his warmth for those who take the time to truly get to know him.
8.) The Split Mug Tavern – While, like much of the town, this establishment is frequented by mostly friendly folk, it is, more rough and tumble than most with, perhaps, the exception of the tavern near Verym’s mill. The building has, what is almost a permanent scent of pipe smoke and ale to it. Run by a gruff, but amiable dwarf named Thekk Broadhammer (Level 4, Health: 16, Attacks as Level 5), it seems like not a week goes by that there is not some sort of drunken altercation. Somehow, he always manages to have it resolved before the city guard arrive, however, and the bar is filled with laughter and drunken singing once more.
9.) Timberchurch Mausoleum – The city mausoleum is maintained primarily by Abbot Hollyant, but Isthyn Serim helps out as well with both some small funds and time. Tradition in the city is for the dead to be cremated as it prevents issues with both undeath and space. The mausoleum is a two-story building with a spacious basement. It is well organized and has a small “chapel” area where those who wish can come and light candles for the dead, offering to whatever god they believe in worship on behalf of the deceased.
10.) Porta’s General Store – Easily the best-stocked store in town, Porta Highfield (Level 4, Health: 14, Negotiations as Level 5, Identifying and Appraisal as Level 6) moved to Timberchurch nearly twenty years ago from the city of Ordeth after having made a small fortune adventuring. She purchased the failing general store and began to expand it. Now both a simple store and a thriving import-export business, Porta does business with towns and cities all along the River Alduín with her own regular caravan teams and guards moving her shipments where they are needed and will sell best.
Happenings in Timberchurch
1.) Lord Periand is looking for able-bodied adventurers to serve as caravan guards and escort the city’s traders to Gault to the North and back in the next couple of weeks.
2.) Sergeant Jirand is always looking for help with patrols around the city surrounds so that his guards and the militia can stay closer to home as-needed. He pays a fair wage and the area is not known to be extremely dangerous.
3.) Abbot Hollyant is requesting assistance on behalf of the Forsythe family. Their youngest son brashly left to explore some nearby ruins to the West and has not been seen in nearly a week. They are looking for someone or a group to go and see if they can determine the boy’s fate.
Rumors in Timberchurch
1.) Dorran Harr, a farmer on the outskirts of the city has noticed some of his crop missing recently. Half-eaten vegetables have been left in piles. It has always been in a portion of the fields closest to the woods.
2.) On one night a month, but never the same night, people have sworn they have seen a ghost leaving the mausoleum, circling the temple of Frisyr once while bowing to it at the cardinal points, then returning to the mausoleum.
3.) On three consecutive nights, the guards have had to arrest people for erratic behavior. They claim that they tried some mushrooms that someone has gathered from the forest, but none of them can remember who it was that gathered them or where to find that person.
You can download a PDF copy of the map for your personal use only, HERE
- Josh Walles
Map Designed using ProFantasy’s Campaign Cartographer 3+ software available from https://www.profantasy.com/.