The Witchfire Trilogy
About 100,000 souls call Corvis their home, and more arrive every day. Corvis is an island of civilization in the roughest part of northern Cygnar. The next closest major town is Point Bourne about eighty leagues down the Serpent’s Tongue River to the west. In Corvis, trade is all about the rivers. With the swamp the way it is, they’ll never get a train in this city. Most of the folk in Corvis are human, but there are some Rhulfolk dwarves living here, and you might spot the rare elf from los if you look close enough.
Points of Interest
The swamp has swallowed many of Corvis’ original buildings. The Undercity, as the locals call it, is a treacherous subterranean maze. Many of these passageways are ancient buildings and streets entombed in the damp earth. Others are natural passages or recent excavations by the inhabitants. As sections have begun to sink, citizens will often take exhaustive measures to shore up walls and prevent water from seeping inside the buildings, allowing them to persist underground. Some sections seem to hold together of their own accord, preserved by what the locals consider to be unnatural forces.
The center of the city is a large cobblestone clearing over 100 yards on a side. The Quad is usually packed with merchants, and it is a popular spot for both tourists and natives of Corvis. Many of the river merchants will set up shop here for a few days before moving on, so there is always something new to see. At night the Quad slows down, but it does not stop. About half of the merchants will stay open, and often the wares for sale change once the sun sets.
The docks and warehouses used by the merchants are in what is undeniably the worst part of the surface city. Despite the best efforts of the watch, the waterfront is nothing but trouble. Naturally, the best bars and gossip are found there too. It is also where the characters can see the mighty steamjacks at work. These mechanikal giants help drive the economy of Corvis by providing tireless labor loading and unloading boats under the direction of the harbormaster’s office.
Law and Order
Corvis prides itself on being a bastion of law and order, a city where anyone can take a walk in the middle of the night with no fear. Unfortunately the politicians who propagate this view are delusional probably due to their bodyguards and gated homes. Corvis is a rough town, and it has cut more than a few tough folks down to size. Corvis is still beholden to the laws of Cygnar. However, it is a city far from the capital left largely to its Own daily governance.
Criminals at large sometimes earn the dubious privilege of wanted posters with their likeness put up around the city. Depending on the crime, the city may offer a reward to any citizen who catches the fugitive. Often the offender’s corpse will be good enough to collect the reward. A skilled bounty hunter can make a decent living in Corvis.
The City Watch
Locked in constant battle with the criminal element is the city watch, an elite group of guardsmen. The watchmen are guards, constables, detectives, and on occasion even judges and executioners. Not every body found in the harbor come morning was put there on account of a criminal dispute—sometimes it is criminal justice. Compared to some cities, members of the watch in Corvis are very well equipped and trained, generally outfitted with a pistol, a halberd, a sword, and good armor. Only a fool or a powerful criminal will voluntarily cross the watch.
Crime and Punishment
- Improper speech
- A night in the stocks. No bounty.
- A night in the stocks. No bounty.
- 10 lashes on the spot. No bounty.
- 20 lashes & a week of labor on the docks.
- Bounty 2 gp.
- Major theft
- 40 lashes & 1 month of labor on the docks.
- Bounty 5 gp.
- Price fixing
- Not a crime in corvis
- Not a crime in corvis
- Hobbling and exile.
- Bounty 15 gp.
- Branding, a severe beating and exile.
- Bounty 25 gp.
- Death. In Corvis, the traditional way to put a person to Death is by drowning.
- Bounty 35 gp.
Merchants of Corvis
As in many cities, several merchants of Corvis have arranged themselves by specialty. Some of the more notable merchant quarters—or “bourgs” as the natives call them—are:
- Grocer’s bourg: This bourg is home to the finest foodstuffs outside Caspia. Salted meats and hardtack for the thrifty can be found as well.
- Armorer’s bourg: Almost a dozen weapon and armor smiths will compete for your gold in these narrow streets. The few shops that repair steamjacks can be found here as well.
- Jeweler’s bourg: These merchants are tucked away in the spires of the southern city. Moneychangers and moneylenders are also here.
- Merchant’s bourg: This is a catch-all district where merchants of various sorts have gathered over the years. Technically, the Quad is part of this bourg.
This does not mean all the armorers are to be found in the armorer’s bourg, for example, but a good many will.
Tucked away in a misty corner of the merchant’s bourg, Garworth’s is known as one of the finer arcana emporiums in the city catering to local wizards, alchemists, and arcane mechaniks. The owner Burrman Garworth has a talent for keeping high quality items in stock—fine glassware, fresh reagents, reams of fine paper, gears of various sizes, accumulators, conduits, cabalic crucibles, and anything else an alchemist or mechanik may need.
Far from selling only blades, Bodak’s is a full-service armor and weapons emporium. The merchandise is good quality though unremarkable. The shop is known for selling quality gear at a fair price, and it has become one of the most popular in the armorer’s bourg. The shop’s owner is Hamil Bodak, a human of about 50 summers. Word on the street says he used to be a mercenary who saw action across a dozen kingdoms.
This is a quaint two-storied shop that handcrafts pistols and rifles for those who can afford to pay for quality. The proprietor Angmar Pitt has worked hard to earn the reputation as the premier gunsmith in Corvis, and his work demands top prices. Pitt is on good terms with the Corvis watch and is generally hired to supply their firearms. He is assisted by a skilled young gobber named Gortralokanomok “Gort”.
Engines East caters to the owners and operators of steamjacks. The legendary iron constructs are expensive and complex; it takes special expertise to keep them in working order. Engines East has steam engine specialists, metalworkers, and arcane mechanics on call to keep any type of steamjack in good working order. Their work is top-notch, and their prices reflect it. The reputation of this shop extends throughout Cygnar, and its chassis designs have been prominently featured in the Cygnaran military. Most of these true warjacks are only designed in Corvis. The plans are sent to Caspia in order to be manufactured at the Cygnaran Armory.
If the party has need of a steam engineer, the staff of Engines East will sometimes freelance after hours. The shop’s owner, a dwarf named Gamack Redhammer, allows this practice but he prohibits them from working on steamjacks on the side—only boats, mills and other such steamworks. The shop’s excellent reputation keeps the engineers as busy as they want to be after work hours.
The Merchant’s Guild
Without a doubt, this is the most powerful Guild in the city. No cargo enters or leaves the city without passing through guild-affiliated hands. Guildsmen own most of the docks. Guild warehouses store cargo. Guild elders make large contributions to city elections—and so on. The guild can stop nearly all trade in Corvis to further its political agenda, and it has done so in the past.
Founded in 595 AR, the year after Vinter the Elder fled into exile, this group has grown to become a prominent employer in Corvis responsible for shipping goods by river and wagon across Cygnar and beyond. The organization enjoys a healthy relationship with the Corvis watch and also the Church of Morrow, recognized as a reliable and legitimate organization. Through ties to the Corvis Merchants Guild, it has become the foremost handler of merchant transport contracts into and out of Corvis. Due to the sometimes dangerous nature of these trips and their valuable cargo, the Caravaneers Guild frequently employs courageous adventurers as guards.
Fraternal Order of Wizardry
Corvis is home to a small branch of the Fraternal Order of Wizardry whose headquarters are in Ceryl. This affiliation of skilled wizards has established a reputation across the southern nations for including the most skilled and powerful arcanists. However, they are disliked for being elitist, chauvinistic, and too bound by stodgy tradition. As a group they are actively involved in politics, both on a local and national level, and the Court Wizard of Cygnar is a member of this fraternity. As the name suggests, the Fraternal Order does not allow women in their ranks although more from blind tradition rather than any particular antipathy toward women.
Steam and Iron Workers Union
The armorer’s bourg in Corvis includes Chapter #18 of the Steam and Iron Workers Union. They are an influential and powerful group of engineers, steamos, and mechanics. Almost anyone involved in smithing, steam engines, or steamjack construction belongs to this group, which helps to ensure their membership is given fair wages for their work and that they are trained properly in their chosen field. The local shop is willing to provide workspace and access to certain tools to members, but it requires they be in good standing with dues paid in full.