The times of Cascorach

for the festival of Springtide in the Year 140

Duke Alexander returns from Linrodeth'

Baron Tancred executed

Duke Alexander has returned from the capital of Athion bringing a strange take of deceit, treachery and mayhem.

The events occurred during the month of Skelern, and follow on from the new reported last Ghostmoons that Duke Alexander fought, and lost, a duel with a councillor of the City of Linrodeth, Thomas Castlemaine.

It started when it was announced that King Edmund had added councillor Thomas Castlemaine to the list of approved suitors for the hand of Princess Eleanor. This was a great blow to the Duke, since following the departure of Prince Pharos in Kryll 139, Duke Alexander was the only remaining suitor.

At the time of the announcement, councillor Thomas Castlemaine was being detained in the Citadel. Shortly after the announcement, he was released and returned to his home. That following evening he was admitted to the Torian Temple with severe food poisoning. On the next day, the eighth of Kruthos, Duke Alexander purchased a house in a street leading to, and only fifty yards from, the Temple of Torus. On that evening Thomas Castlemaine, now recovered, turned up outside the Temple of Torus, where the Princess Eleanor was now working, to serenade the Princess. Before he could start, however, he was escorted by a beautiful, if scantily-clad, woman who, when forcibly removed by Thomas Castlemaine’s cronies, left with large handfuls of the councillor’s clothing. Thomas Castlemaine retired to his house, and Duke Alexander took advantage of the interlude to invite the Princess to dinner. It is believed that Duke Alexander proposed to the Princess during the course of that dinner.

On the morning of the next day, the ninth of Kruthos, Thomas Castlemaine’s guild, acting on a tip-off, raided his house, where a very large sum of money was recovered. It took Thomas Castlemaine until the afternoon to explain the discovery. His guild accepted his explanation that the money must have been planted in his house as he could not have earned that amount of money in one year, let alone overnight.

Following his explanations to his guild, Thomas Castlemaine arranged to take the Princess to dinner at private rooms at a respectable tavern. That evening he went to the Torian Temple to serenade the Princess before leaving for the tavern. As he drew to the close of his ballad councillor Thomas Castlemaine was shot in the back by a very accurately aimed arrow. As a figure ran from the scene, pursued by the watching crowd, Thomas Castlemaine was rushed inside the Torian Temple where he died at sunset. Rumour insists that councillor Thomas Castlemaine last words were to ask the Princess for her hand in marriage and that the Princess accepted.

The crowd, having failed to catch the assassin, then turned their attentions to the likely motives for the attack. The house where Duke Alexander was staying was promptly attacked by the mob and Duke Alexander was only rescued by the intervention of the citadel guard. Baron Tancred Mendoza was “celebrating” in the tavern where Thomas Castlemaine and the Princess were to have later dined. When news reached the tavern a general fight ensued. Two of the Baron’s companions, Mick Jones and John Hearn, died in the fight. Their murderers were never apprehended.

At the subsequent Royal Commission convened to investigate the affair Baron Tancred admitted to hiring the young lady to embarrass Thomas Castlemaine and to the planting of the money in his house. The Royal Commission arrested the assassin and King Edmund’s Star Chamber, at which the assassin’s evidence is believed to have been pivotal, found Baron Tancred Mendoza guilty of the murder.

Baron Tancred Mendoza was executed on the last day of Kruthos. His will states that hos monies in the Ducky of Cascorach are to be used to help the poor in his home barony of Rumsey. The barony of Rumsey reverts to the Crown. Princess Eleanor has been awarded the title of Baroness of Rumsey.

Duke Alexander returned to Cascorach in order to explain the events in Linrodeth personally to his court. He also stated that as he had been away for almost a year and hence felt that he could make “no further comment” at this time”. The Duke was accompanied on his return by a large caravan of merchants from the city of Linrodeth, mainly from the mercers and grossers, but with a few other guilds represented.

The new of Baron Tancred Mendoza’s death has left a power vacuum in Cascorach. The Baron was one of Duke Alexander’s most trusted advisors and a power struggle is expected to ensue in Caradache Castle.

During the return journey from Linrodeth, Duke Alexander defeated a group of bandits in the forest of Celidon near Linrodeth. The bandits attacked the caravan shortly before dawn, and the Duke personally dispatched two of the raiders, while the remainder of the caravan guards dealt with the rest of the bandits. Only minor casualties were sustained and the caravan was able to continue on the journey to Salvoyn, the first leg of the trip to Cascorach.

The mercers and grossers from Salvoyn are warning of severe price rises for the goods imported from Salvoyn. The emissary from that city, Alderman Joanne Kaslar, is reported to be very concerned about both the trade caravan from Linrodeth and the increased trade from the City States following the decrease in activity by the Gelt barbarians in recent months.

News from Linrodeth

Thomas Castlemaine’s funeral was a state affair, with large numbers of Linrodeth’s citizens turning out, in bitter weather, to pay their last respects. Both King Edmund and Princess Eleanor attended the funeral and the Bard’s College presented a new and very poignant ballad describing the life and death of Thomas Castlemaine.

A curfew was imposed on the city for a month, following civil disturbances caused by accusations of Necromancy levelled against the Royal Astrologer.

Kind Edmund is reported to be suffering from a slight fever.

News from Salvoyn

The ladies of Salvoyn are reported to have been very disconcerted nu the size of the trade caravan which accompanied the return of Duke Alexander. The Duke spent a few days in Salvoyn, most of which was spent in talks with the great trading families of the city.

The continuing war between the City States of Kerun and Orissa are reported to be causing great concern in Salvoyn as both cities have warned that neutral shipping in their waters may be stopped and searched, The extra delay, and the occasional loss of the vessel, means that the merely exorbitant prices normally placed on goods from the City States is now reaching unprecedented levels.