“We are playing a tabletop RPG. There is no room for imagination.” – Ben.
And so our story begins. The PCs arrive for the happy festival.
Sunday, Rova 1 (the first day of autumn), 4707 AR:
As one approaches the town of Sandpoint, the footprint of civilization upon the Lost Coast grows more clear. Farmlands in the outlying moors and river valleys grow more numerous, and the blue-green waters of the Varisian Gulf bear more and more fishing vessels upon its surface. Passage over creeks and rivers is more often accomplished by wooden bridge than ford, and the Lost Coast Road itself grows wider and better-kept. Sight of Sandpoint from either approach (south or east) is kept hidden by the large upthrust limestone pavements known as the Devil’s Platter or the arc of rocky outcroppings known as Whistler’s Tors, but as the final bend in the road is rounded, Sandpoint’s smoking chimneys and bustling streets greet the traveler with open arms and the promise of warm beds, a welcome sight indeed for those who have spent the last few days alone on the Lost Coast Road.
The sight that strikes all visitors to Sandpoint at first is the ruins of the Old Light. The Old Light rises from sea level and is built into the face of a 120-foot-tall cliff , the tower extending another 50 feet above that level to culminate in ragged ruins.
From the south, entrance to Sandpoint is governed by a wooden bridge, while from the north a low stone wall gives the town a bit of protection. Here, the Lost Coast Road passes through a stone gatehouse that is generally watched by one or two guards – the southern bridge is typically unattended. Aside from the occasional goblin, the citizens of Sandpoint have traditionally had little worries about invasion or banditry – the region simply isn’t populated enough to make theft a lucrative business. Hanging from a bent nail at both the gatehouse and the southern bridge is a sign and a mirror – painted on each sign is the message: “Welcome to Sandpoint! Please stop to see yourself as we see you!”
The Swallowtail Festival begins promptly, as scheduled, on the first day of autumn. The square before the church quickly becomes crowded as locals and travelers arrive, and several merchant tents featuring food, clothes, local crafts, and souvenirs are there to meet them.