The Chronicle

of the month of Heliora in the year 140

Life in the wards of the west hill has been disrupted by an unexpected wave of violence. First Cllr Tiliniel Falgar was attacked by swordsmen and barely escaped with her life, then Alderman Bert Belcher was shot and seriously wounded by an archer, who then shot Alderman Mowbray the next night. The attackers were more vicious than skilful, and both Alderman Mowbray and Cllr Falgar are expected to make a full recovery. Alderman Bert Belcher is still in the Torian Infirmary. Investigations by the Drapers and Tailors Guild have revealed that the incidents were not, as first thought, connected with the boundary change or the motion of censure, but related in fact to Ellis Devon's imprisonment. Two youngsters have been detained after a midnight chase through the streets of Dowgate by Olnorth Dexter's men, who were acting on a tip off. Sheriff Maxil has since confirmed that ex-Cllr Devon has been seriously ill in prison for some weeks.

The events of the previous month led to interesting scenes at the end-of-month Witanmoot session, as first Alderman Mowbray and then Cllr Falgar staggered to the floor to verbally attack each other. Despite a thought provoking lecture by Sergio Aragonis on the values and principles of free speech, the 'establishment' factions lined up to ensure that the concept was thoroughly squashed. The motion of censure against Cllr Falgar was carried by 169 votes to 104. The proposed Welland/Shambles boundary change was far more hotly contested, however Gillian Howe's persuasive arguments took effect and a last minute switch by Cllr Perignon's faction ensured that the motion was carried by 140 votes to 133. Lord Courtney has ruled that most changes are to be completed by the start of Heliora, except for the Councillors who must remain in their present ward until the Midwinter elections. The meeting ended with a surprise speech by Alderman Mowbray, who managed to rise from his seat long enough to formally accuse Cllr Reg Marc of serious and treacherous misconduct. Alderman Isenbard has insisted that Cllr Marc attends a hearing within the month. This comes at a particularly bad time for Cllr Marc, who not only remains vilely ill, but who also has son Carl in prison. Alderman Isenbard is refusing to elaborate on Carl's exact misdemeanour.

Passengers attempting to travel the river this past month have become the victims of a sudden wave of crime, which has included theft, mugging and worse. Several people have been reported missing and the port authorities have confirmed that an entire goods barge has disappeared. The trouble appears to be centred around the floating market, and Cllr Buggs Moran of Dowgate has demanded that the Knight Marshal destroy the river slum.

Earlier in the month Lord Courtney's inaugural ball was held at the Witanmoot. After a sumptuous banquet guests were entertained by Cllr Dexter's stylish new musical composition, and then the dancing began. The belle of the ball was undoubtedly young Julia Perignon, who caught the attention of most of the bachelors attending, and not a few of the married gentlemen as well, notably Lord Courtney himself. Lord Courtney's other companions frequently included Cllr Falgar and the Lady Elspeth. The wine continued to flow and it wasn't long before the Levestone councillors, Septer and Perignon, indulged in an open display of incivility. The squabble stopped somewhat short of a duel, but Lord Courtney has exercised his prerogative in banning both of them from future balls. Also banned is Cllr Aragonis, who partook rather too enthusiastically of the free wine, and later completely disgraced himself.

Cllr Perignon's problems have not ended with the Ball. Lord Courtney has been forced to issue a writ for her arrest, following widespread allegations that Cllr Perignon has been misusing guild funds for personal gain. The trial will be held next month, and Beatrice's Alderman and Guild treasurer, Alderman Mowbray, is expected to be a key witness. The current trial of Petronella Talbot, also accused of embezzling guild funds, has ended with her acquittal. Fellow Chandler Mary Clifford has chosen this month to leave Cllr Falgar's faction and join the obviously more notorious entourage of Beatrice Perignon.

Gax has once again taken to preaching from the Mootstone arguing, if our reporter understands this correctly, for greater civic influence and more discretionary powers for the Aldermen and Councillors who sit in judgement at the civic courts. The general contents appear to have gone down well at the Witanmoot, although phrases like "disenthralling the magistrative structure from the constraints of an overly inflexible legislative system", sank without trace into a sea of glazed expressions. In recent months Gax has been particularly associated with Malcolm Mowbray's faction, however his recent preaching seems to have taken that worthy Alderman by surprise. "Wonder who's been pulling his strings?" was the Alderman's initial reaction.

Up at the Citadel everyone appears to be far too busy preparing for the Princess' Midsummer wedding to notice the problems of the city. The Drapers and Tailors Guild is refusing to accept any more commissions, and bolts of silk are now said to be unobtainable. Out on the tourney fields the construction of the platform and the marquees are well advanced, awaiting only final decoration with flowers. The Common Council has already been honoured by the king with a demand for extra funds, and much of this has already been collected. Guilds are hoping to recoup the loss by the extra influx of summer visitors attending the wedding. Many inns, and not a few private houses, are adding extent ions in order to offer more accommodation over the summer. Many local Wardmoots are responding by tightening up on the procedures for planning permission.

News from the City States confirms that the war between Orissa and Kerun has ended as abruptly as it started. Unconfirmed reports say that the City State of Adaqua has invaded the Duchy of Cascorach via the Shelang Pass. Should this news prove to be correct, it may well explain the continued absence of the bridegroom from the Princess' wedding preparations. Young Roland Dixon appears to share his uncle's predilection for duelling, and has challenged the hapless Carl Marc to a duel. Carl however remains firmly imprisoned in the Welland lock-up; the meeting between these young hot-heads will have to wait. Councillors of Bridge ward have been receiving several complaints about the shoddy masonry on the bridge's southern supports. The bridge has been renovated in recent years, and residents say that such extensive erosion should not occur so quickly. Councillors are particularly worried that access may have to be restricted at a time when the river ferries are so badly disrupted by crime.

The Grossers Guild has been particularly worried by recent rumours that a new type of sheep parasite has been discovered. If true, this could result in the burning of all stocks of fleece in the city, and will push up the price of woollen garments for the winter. The Wellhouse of Daleth is not yet prepared to comment.

Finally, nominations are now open for the two posts of Sheriff within the city. Kennet Maxil has already been re-nominated for another term, and further nominations are sought from amongst the Aldermen.