The Chronicle

of the month of Lorinfall in the year 146

The late autumn sunshine and bumper harvest last month resulted in the most exuberant and lavish Harvestide Festival seen within Linrodeth for many years. The collective hangover on Firstday Firstweek this month was such that there were very few people to witness the Floating Market hijack the first of the grain barges bringing Daleth's abundance to the warehouses of the city. In the absence of leadership from the Witanmoot, several ward watches and guilds have combined forces to send out an armed guard for the river traffic. The response was co-ordinated by the Portsoken watch and the Grossers Guild, who have already suffered substantial damage from previous raids by the river scum. The Floating Market is now ringed by an armed guard on a flotilla of small craft. The guard, comprising mainly of hired mercenaries, forms at sunrise and disperses at sunset, during which time the heavily laden barges make their way to dock undisturbed. A spokesman for the Grossers Guild commented "We are distressed to have to take this unusual and necessary step to protect City supplies. It appears that those in power on Witanmoot Hill find it more important to squabble with their neighbours or to protect known thieves than safeguard food and trade routes." This display of effective power by the trading families has triggered widespread protest at Witanmoot inaction in the street. Several demonstrations have lobbied the Witanmoot to support the reforming of the Wharf Guard, or for more powers to be given to ward watches to deal with trouble from the river. Alderman Hubold has been quick to point out the advantages of a professionally trained, locally funded ward watch.

Sheriff Shefford has been delighted to get her hands on one Guy de Tabarie, a lapsed scholar of the College, who has come forward to complain about a serious deception. It appears that on the night of the robbery, our young hero dined at The Mule with a fellow scholar, Francois Villon, who introduced him to Colin the Keys, Lank John, and a lapsed Brynette priest known as Dom Nicholas. After dining and listening to the news, they made their way to a muddy alley behind Sheriff Shefford's study window. Here, de Tabarie was posted sentinel while the others disappeared up a ladder and explored the upper rooms of the house. Some four hours later, according to our hero, they re-emerged having rifled the coffers and extracted a haul of some £20, as they told de Tabarie, to whom they gave two guineas and suggested that he buy himself a good dinner on the morrow. Not until the following week did Master Guy learn from the Chronicle that the stolen haul had been worth considerably more. It appears that our hero found the outrage of the deception considerably more important than the theft and the possibility of torture as an accomplice. Incorrectly, as it turned out.

Romance may be in the air around the Witanmoot following rumours of a strictly private and intimate discussion between Sheriff Tasker and Alderman Monterey this last Sevenight. Both were observed leaving with slightly flushed and stunned expressions, but have resolutely refused to comment on events. Elsewhere, flushed might be a good description of Alderman Derwent and Councillor Trueman, who have been noted holding discreet meetings around the Witanmoot. Rumours suggest that they have been putting Committee Room 4 to intense if somewhat unorthodox use.

Also stunned are Lady Beatrice and Lord Matthew who have take time out of their busy schedules to confirm rumours that the first Dixon-Perignon child is due next Springtide. To save quarrels, Roland and Julia have already announce that they intend to name the baby after the Wellkeeper Shinnanon. Alderman Monterey has kindly offered to place a guard on the house to prevent the happy couple being pestered by well-wishers, but it appears that the grandparents have paid frequent visits anyway.

More quarrels have broken out in Portsoken over the likely routes for the extended city wall which, being through the prime property on the docks, has caused most of the main shipping families to be warned that their warehouses may be demolished forthwith. Unease at the loss of such valuable property has been exacerbated by the discovery that not all sites appear to be registered for land tax with their current owners. Ongoing disputes with the tax registry over the accuracy and probity of Lord Dixon's scribes are adding to an already difficult situation for the surveyors, who are now accompanied by a squad of the Witanmoot Guard.