In the Shadow of Elsport

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Elsport Map.png

In the Shadow of Elsport is a play-by-post campaign of the RPG Blue Rose. The GM is Nick the Nevermet.

Starting Premise[edit]

The regional noble in Ellsport is looking to recruit individuals to help investigate and neutralize the increasingly powerful gangs that dominate the docks and lower wards. It is unclear how the Silence, the near-mythical crime syndicate, exists behind the gangs, but it does certainly does. And what of the lost tomb of Delsha Artanis, slowly poisoning the earth and souls of the city?

Recent Events[edit]

Over the last year or two, crime dramatically increased. The authorities don't really know what's going on, but it seems like crime in Elsport suddenly became much less organized, and gangs are fighting each other. One of the Judges, Fetigurn "The Returned," has decided that a thorough investigation is necessary, above and beyond a specific criminal investigation. As such, he has begun hiring people to investigate what is happening with the gangs. They are doing so outside the normal parameters of the city watch to give them more discretion in their behaviour, and this is justified by stating they are collecting contextual evidence for a sentencing hearing.

Who is Judge Fetigurn the Returned?[edit]


A generation ago, Fetigurn was one of the Sovereign's Finest, travelling far and wide, independent of the local authorities to promote justice throughout the kingdom. Unfortunately, something occurred that is know as "The Village of Ash Incident." Details of the case are hard to come by, though fantastic rumours are easily available. A few things are agreed upon in all versions of the story: Fetigurn and his companions entered a small village, where they found a shadow cult and a dark fiend. Within a few days, the village was burned to the ground, many had died (including most of his companions), and Fetigurn stank of corruption. Fetigurn does not willingly talk about what happened, and he knows whispers about him will follow him through the rest of his days

It took Fetigurn years to remove the corruption from his being, and in the meantime he was encouraged to resign his commission among the Finest. Eventually, Fetigurn found himself a councillor to a regional noble in the Northern Pavin Weald. Having already redeemed his soul, he redeemed his reputation when Jarek the last Sorcerer King attacked. He was able to organize his noble's holdings for defense, and helped negotiate an agreement with the Trebutane where they helped connect the Finest to resistance cells within Kern. As a reward for his efforts, he was granted a title, and became a regional noble of Elsport. Specifically, a judge, and he was immediately drawn to understanding the rising crime and shadow within the city.

The City Watch is designed to keep the peace and arrest criminals, but Fetigurn has long been of the opinion it lacks the training or the structure to investigate something like The Silence. Thus, after months of wearing them down, the City Council agreed to let him hire an investigative team on the premise that they would uncover evidence that would help contextualize known criminal activity. When it became obvious that the resolution would pass, the Lord Mayor encouraged a unanimous vote in favour of it. The advantage of this was that it created a symbolic act of solidarity and support for the Judge. The disadvantage is that it is not entirely clear who truly supports his efforts and who does not.

House Rules[edit]

  • Stunt Die. When rolls are made, the final 3rd die is the stunt die.
  • Multiple rolls. If multiple rolls are made...
    • the 1st 3d6 is always for a PC.

The Player Characters[edit]


Elsport from Witcher3.jpg

Elsport is a small city at the southwestern end of Aldis with a deep natural harbour that was enhanced by the Old Kingdom. If Gernet is the gateway to the Central Valleys from the sea, then Elsport is the gateway to the Scatterstar Archipelago and the oversea routes to Jarzon and the exotic Wyss. Indeed, many smaller ships constantly dart between Elsport and Garnet, where large ocean-going vessels take advantage of the harbour to prepare for long voyages in open water.


During the Old Kingdom, there was a grand city here named Ellendar. Using shaping arcana, the Old Kingdom create a massive breakwater wall around the harbour, rising at least 20 feet above the waves. Under the Empire of Thorns, Ellendar was the seat of the Tidewitch, a lieutenant of Delsha who was charged with controlling the Scatterstar Archipelago and the Seafolk. When Delsha died in -387, the spies of the Tidewitch secured Delsha’s remains and brought them to Ellendar. It was the Tidewitch who built Delsha’s tomb and created the urn of pure citrine.

For a time, the Tidewitch’s realm did quite well during the Shadow Wars, but eventually she was defeated when a Sorcerer King known as Coombwail attacked Ellendar with an avalanche before attacking with his mountainous darkfiends. They killed the Tidewitch and her regents, enslaved a portion of the city, and left the rest of starve in the burnt ruins of the city.

For the remainder of the Shadow Wars, the ruins were controlled by a tribe of Merrow who took up residence in the harbour. During the Great Rebellion, a force of Rhy-fen and Sea Folk laid siege to the Merrow there. At the same time, Roger Feyfriend and his allies destroyed Coombwail and the Darkfiends of the southern highlands.

Rikin was the first Sea Folk King of Aldis, and he founded the Guild Council. Late in his reign, he was interested in developing sea trade. This lead him to an interest in rebuilding Ellendar. Unfortunately, most of the ruins were a corrupt place, due to the work of the Tidewaitch, the Merrow of the Harbour, and Combwail. He committed resources and adepts to begin the process of clearing the taint from the land and reclaiming the harbour for a new port. The Sea Folk adepts were relatively successful at purging the bay of corruption, but the ruins remained in shadow.

The eccentric Queen Larai continued Rikin’s work. After various negotiations, the Fey Lord of the Peaks agreed to sent Baron Plunge and a contingent of fey down to the ruins of Ellendar to purify it and remove the corruption from the land. It took a generation, but eventually the ruins of Ellendar had been retaken by nature, and then allowed the mortals to build a new city, Elsport. In exchange, Larai agreed to cede a portion of the highlands to the Fey, creating the Faerie Peaks. The small communities at the base of the peaks became masters of understanding the ways of the Fey, and how to appease them.

Elsport Today[edit]

Though not as wealthy or as large as Garnit, Elsport is nevertheless an active port city. It is the political and economic hub for the Scatterstar Archipelago and most of the Southern Coasts. Additionally, it has become a staging ground for the Kingdom’s navy as it attempts to keep track of threats such as pirates and Jarzoni privateers.

Neighbourhoods of Elsport[edit]

Elsport City Map.png
  • The Castle is the center of Kingdom business, both administrative and military. The Regional Noble of Elsport has their official quarters here, along with several other high ranking officials. The Outer Garden is open to the public, and the Ballroom is sufficiently lavish to satisfy most official celebrations.
  • Many of the richest Guild families of Aldis keep a presence in Elsport, and most of them have estates within the walls where the scions of trade contemplate new avenues of profit.
  • The Docks are always busy, and always well guarded as the city tries to limit crime. Nothing seems to work, however.
  • Sailor Town is the neighbourhood of inns, taverns, and businesses that cater to sailors and travellers. The streets toward the docks are more affordable (and possibly more dangerous), while the ones closer to the Guild Houses are more opulent.
  • The Market is a grand open plaza in the heart of the city. All but the illegal and excessively expensive are overtly for sale here.
  • The Temple is the center of religious life in the city, and it has a large library. Due to the proximity of the Scatterstar Archipelago, Gaelenir features prominently in its iconography. The Priests of Gaelenir are the tutors to the elite of Elsport.
  • As one moves North through Elsport, the wealth of the citizenry declines. The poorest of Elsport are pressed against the Northern Wall in cramped, poorly maintained buildings. More than one epidemic has begun here and swept through the city.
  • The small communities outside the walls are often at least as poor as Northern. One area, often called "Nightville" is a community of Night People who work in Elsport and who live together for community. While there are no laws separating them from others, enough of them have met prejudice over the years that they have decided living together in an enclave may be safer.

Elite of Elsport[edit]

Elsport is home a fair number of nobles.

Regional Nobles[edit]

Elsport is governed by a council of fifteen regional nobles:

  • The Governors
    • Leonar Waterdawn, Senior Governor and Lord Mayor, who presides over the council.
      • Sea Folk Female Cepia. Pirate
      • Calling: The Emperor- Temporal Power
      • Destiny: Seven of Chalices- Practical
      • Fate: Five of Rods- Complacent
      • Lord Mayor Waterdawn has spent most of her life living in and around Elsport, and she loves the city dearly. Once a seagoing member of the Finest, she was eventually selected as a noble, and is now the most senior member of the Council. She has an undying faith in Elsport's ability to come through any crisis.
    • Taylen of Shariven, Junior Governor
      • Human Laevvel. Diplomat
      • Calling: The Star- Artistic mastery
      • Destiny: King of Pentacles- Resourceful
      • Fate: Page of Pentacles- Wasteful
      • Taylen is a brilliant artist and polymath and loves their role of being the official patron of the arts in Elsport. Their crowning achievement was commissioning the sculpture of Queen Hulja waiting for the ship to return from its voyage across the Western Ocean.
    • Alvus Stampede, Junior Governor
      • Human Male Caria. Champion
      • Calling: Death- Creating Change
      • Destiny: Seven of Rods- Adventurous
      • Fate: Nine of Rods- Domineering
      • Alvus the Stampede is a loud, boisterous man who is hard to dislike. Still undoubtedly a powerful warrior, his age (and girth) has moved him off the battlefield and into a role governing Elsport. He enjoys his reputation as "the common man's Governor" with his usual bombast.
  • Three judges, in charge of justice and interpreting contracts
    • Gosuntha Scaler, Senior Judge
      • Human Female Cepia. Noble
      • Calling: Temperance- Mediation of Extremes
      • Destiny: King of Pentacles- Resourceful
      • Fate: Ace of Swords- Cowardly
      • Judge Scaler is a cautious, measured lawyer with years of experience. She knows the law better than anyone, and is impartial to the point of often coming across as bland in even regular conversation.
    • "Common" Thomas, Judge
      • Human Male Cepia. Diplomat
      • Calling: The Tower- Lowering the lofty
      • Destiny: Six of Chalices- Reflective
      • Fate: King of Chalices- Reactionary
      • Common Thomas is a man of the countryside. He does not like change, and he is suspicious of anyone with power. On more than one occasion, he has tested the patience of Scaler with his strong political beliefs.
    • Fetigern Returned.
      • Human Male Cepia. Noble.
      • Calling: Judgment- Atonement
      • Destiny: Perceptive
      • Fate: Cold
      • Judge Fetigurn has returned from corruption, the death of his friends, and the loss of his reputation. All that is left now is the Law and protecting the citizenry from threats. Though his judgments are well argued and fair, people are waiting for him to reveal himself to be a merciless hanging judge.
  • The Holy Tribunal of the Elsport Temple
    • Joao of the Lamps, The High Priest of Elsport
      • Vata-an Male Caria. Shaper
      • Calling: The Hierophant- Spiritual or religious power
      • Destiny: Six of Chalices- Reflective
      • Fate: Page of Swords- Insensitive
      • Brother Joao is a deeply spiritual man who cares deeply for the souls of city. At his best, this gives him insights into what the people need others lack. At his worst, he overlooks the materials needs of the people.
    • Margida Ever-Ink, The Master Librarian
      • Human Female Cepia. Seer
      • Calling: The Adept- Mastery of the arcane
      • Destiny: Three of Rods- Industrious
      • Fate: Two of Swords- Indecisive
      • The youngest member of the council, Margida is enthusiastic about eccentric information. Seemingly without end to her energy, she has undertaken the herculean task of cataloguing and organizing the Temple Library.
    • William Goodrest, The Head Arcanist
      • Human Male Cepia Healer
      • Calling: The Sun- Championing the everyday
      • Destiny: Five of Swords- Humble
      • Fate: Five of Rods- Complacent
      • Brother William is reserved almost to the point of being shy. He cares deeply for people and their wellbeing, and is a gentle soul. He often is an ally of Governor Alvus and Judge Thomas in arguing for the needs of the people.
  • Military
    • Carolina Knightwave, The General of the Aldin Guard and the Knights of the Blue Rose
      • Human Male Cepia. Commander
      • Calling: The Fool- Adventure and excitement
      • Destiny: Page of Pentacles- Inquisitive
      • Fate: Page of Chalices- Deceptive
      • General Knightwave made a name for herself hunting bandits near the borders of Kern and Reza. She views being stationed in sunny, warm Elsport as an unwanted semi-retirement.
    • Elspeth Virinniel, The Chief of the City Watch
      • Human Female Caria. Commander
      • Calling: Temporal Power
      • Destiny: Dedicated
      • Fate: Stubborn
      • Chief Virinniel has had an admirable career, and is one of the mothers to Mathis Virriniel (Muskrat's PC).
    • Goncal, The Admiral of the Aldin Navy
      • Human Male Cepia. Commander
      • Calling: The World- Exploration and Discovery
      • Destiny: Page of Pentacles- Inquisitive
      • Fate: Page of Chalices- Deceptive
      • Admiral Goncal's father was an officer on the voyage across the Western Ocean commissioned by Queen Hulja, and he dreams of one day being involved in adventure like that one. As he grows old, he realizes with some sadness he may not achieve that dream. Nevertheless, he looks for excuses to travel with his fleet out of Elsport, and he is a prominent supporter of the idea that the Kingdom should fund more exploration.

  • The Voice of the Rhydan
    • Recarred Mosseater
      • Rhy-Rat Male Caria Spy
      • Calling: The Exarch- Trickery or uncovering the same
      • Destiny: Three of Swords- Stalwart
      • Fate: Three of Swords- Treacherous
      • Recarred is in the running with Judge Fetigurn for the member of the council with the worst reputation. A rare Rhy-rat, Recarred is a powerful adept who has a habit of knowing many secrets. His loyalty to the Lord Mayor is beyond question, but one worries what secret knowledge and schemes are known only to him.

Travelling Nobles[edit]

Additionally, six Travelling Nobles regularly come to Elsport for supplies and news:

  • The Travelling Noble of the Barren Islands
    • Sea Folk Male Cepia. Sacred Warrior
    • Calling: The Hanged Man- Inner peace
    • Destinty: Nine of Pentacles- Appreciative
    • Fate: King of Pentacles- Sneaky
  • The Travelling Noble of the Southern Start and Ambar Island
    • Night Person Female Cepia. Swashbuckler
    • Calling: Justice
    • Destinty: Queen of Rods- Curious
    • Fate: Queen of Swords- Petty
  • The Travelling Noble of the Road to Garnet
    • Human Laevvel . Berserker
    • Calling: The Priestess- Oneness of Spirit
    • Destinty: Queen of Swords- Exacting
    • Fate: Ace of Rods- Overzealous
  • The Travelling Noble of the Feypeak Highlands
    • Vata-an Female Caria. Sharpshooter
    • Calling: Strength- Physical perfection
    • Destinty: Ten of Chalices- Joyful
    • Fate: Page of Chalices- Deceptive
  • The Travelling Noble of the Near Steep Coast
    • Human Male Caria. Bard
    • Calling: The Empress- Protection of nature
    • Destinty: Ace of Swords- Courageous
    • Fate: Two of Pentacles- Narrow-minded
  • The Travelling Noble of the Far Steep Coast
    • Human Male Cepia. Outrider
    • Calling: The Wheel- Wealth
    • Destiny: King of Pentacles- Resourceful
    • Fate: Eight of Pentacles- Mercenary

Guilders of Elsport[edit]

The following guilds comprise an advisory council for the nobles. Power of the council depends on how much a given guild can raise in dues:

  • The Lawyers
  • The Cloth Merchants & Dyers
  • The Wool manufacturers
  • The bankers
  • The healers and apothecary
  • Furriers, Skinners, & Tanners
  • The butchers
  • The Blacksmiths
  • The Shoemakers
  • The stonemasons
  • The tailors
  • The vintners
  • The Innkeepers
  • The Salt & provision merchants
  • The Locksmiths
  • The Armourers & Weaponsmiths
  • The Carpenters
  • The Bakers

Additional Notables of Elsport[edit]

Carson Sturm and Borbála Ryskamp[edit]

  • Members of the Finest
  • Raised Spinner
  • Know of and do not trust Fetigurn


  • Romantic partner of Andreanne in Elsport.
  • She's a Carpenter.
  • She likes strong drink.
  • She knows someone high up in Elsport (though Andreanne has no idea who)

Duran Cordoba[edit]

  • A High ranking member of the Apothecary Guild.
  • Colleague of Shidi
  • Committed to public health

Gregoras the Scribe[edit]

  • A young scribe and personal assistant to Judge Fetigurn.
  • He is inexperienced and not especially good at his job, but the Judge will hear no complaints about him.


  • Husband of Naya
  • He moved to Elsport from Garnet to marry Naya.
  • He is a self-made man and resents people like Mathis, who were born wealthy and seem to have no appreciation for the benefits that brings them or the responsibility to others that comes with such status.
  • Jannick is a skilled duelist and sailor, as well as a talented merchant.


  • Merchant heiress, friend, and former casual lover of Mathis

Zinia Virinniel[edit]

  • Wife of Chief Elsbeth and mother to Mathis
  • Hard-working head of a successful merchant house
  • Involved in numerous charitable activities.


  • The Jarzoni Ambassador
  • The Lar'Tyan ambassador
  • A Night Person street preacher and religious pamphleteer
  • A Sea Person from the Barren Islands, and informal head of the culturally conservative Sea Folk faction, the Dolphinian Society
  • Gang leaders
  • Shadow Cultists
  • An angry Rhy-Pigeon with long standing bad-blood against Recarred Mosseater

Other Regions[edit]

The Scatterstar Archipelago[edit]

Immediately to the west of Elsport is the Scatterstar Archipelago, a vibrant set of countless small islands full of life. There the Sea Folk thrive and often work with Humans to build communities. There are also pirate coves and shadow cults hunting for relics from the Old Kingdom. Elsport serves as the "anchor" for the archipelago to the mainland, a gateway to the rest of Aldis.

The Steep Coast[edit]

The Steep Coast is the thin strip of lowlands that stretches west of Elsport between the Western Ocean and the Faerie Highlands. It is a sparsely populated region of simple fishing villages and ranchers. If "Going to Garnet" among Elsporters means one is going to seek one's fortune, "Going along the Steep" means they are going into a realm of profound banality.

The Feypeak Highlands[edit]

Called the Crying Highlands during the Shadow Wars, this mountainous area shoots up quickly from the coast around Elsport, and then gives way more gradually as one heads northeast into the Central Valleys. It was once dominated by the Sorcerer King Coombwail, but much of the unpopulated land was given to the Faerie Lord of the Peakers as part of his assistance in toopling Coombwail and reclaiming what is now Elsport. It was once known for extensive mining under Coombwail, but that is not allowed in the Faerie lands. The humans who live in the small communities in the highlands have developed intricate customs for working with and appeasing the Fey.

One significant feature of the Feypeaks is Mooncut Pass, the best route through the mountains from Elsport to the Central Valleys beyond. It is controlled by Aldis.


Garnet is a large, prosperous city at the Mouth of the Rose River. It is the gateway from the sea to Aldis and the Central Valleys.

Thematics and Creative Agenda[edit]

Blue Rose is an RPG with a specific tone, and therefore it is worth talking about some things explicitly.

Initial interests[edit]

In the recruitment thread, players made the following list of things they would like to see:

  • The distinctiveness of Blue Rose's setting is front and centre.
    • This includes the romantic nature of the setting, where society is viewed in a generally positive light and there is optimism in the world. As the books says:
      • "Romantic fantasy novels are often set in highly egalitarian societies, where people’s occupations and aspirations are not limited by fixed gender roles. In these books,cultures and individuals that are sexist or homophobic are either ignorant and see the error of their ways somewhere in the series, or they are enemies who are eventually vanquished.
      • "The heroes of romantic fantasy novels are usually environmentally conscious. Protecting wilderness areas and animals from depredation is a common plot element. In all romantic fantasy worlds, nature is a positive magical force, and anyone who protects it is on the side of good."
  • Cultural diversity
  • Misguided villains, in addition to or instead of truly evil villains
  • Maybe some Jarzoni antics
  • Inspiration from Miyazaki and/or Earthsea
  • The PCs focus on helping people, either as freelancers or working for the Sovereign
  • Possibly a love story for a PC or two. Emotional investment at the least.

Additionally, several things were explicitly requested to 'not' be in the game:

  • Sexualized violence
  • Puzzles that are impossible or that have no clues or hints
  • Graphic or Elaborate depictions of violence and misery

Applied to the game[edit]

The GM has promised to avoid the things players requested not to be in the game. Additionally, he will do his best to include the things on the requested list.

What is Romantic About Elsport?[edit]

With its discussion of the unliving, a lost demonic tomb, crime, and pirates, Elsport has the potential to be a "darker" location in Aldea. Certain elements of the setting will be emphasized to highlight the fact this is still a 'romantic' fantasy setting:

  • Elsport is a small but robust, prosperous, and cosmopolitan city. Misery and suffering happen, but they are not the defining traits of life. Though there is some ethnic tension, there is no rampant xenophobia.
  • It is true that there is a thriving criminal underworld in Elsport, and The Silence until recently was very powerful. However, the Silence by definition does not encourage a criminal reign of terror. The fact that things in the city are destabilizing is a concern.
  • It is true that there are active shadow cults and Delsha Artanis' lost tomb, but a defining element of the city is struggling with the question of 'how can we move on from horrible things?' History is not guaranteed to repeat itself.
  • It is true that there are a disturbing number of unliving rising in Elsport. However, there is no "zombie apocalypse" occurring. Instead, the unliving represent a flaw that can be corrected. 'As the natural order of the world is strengthened in Elsport, the unliving will decrease.'

External Links[edit]

IC Thread

OOC Thread

Recruitment Thread