Scardale Town (Large Town, 4,440 [formerly Small City, 11,099]): Before the Plague, Scardale Town had over 10,000 occupants, making it the largest and most powerful city of the Dales. Even damaged, it’s still big by Dalelands’ standards. The population has recovered somewhat since the plague. For every honest citizen who fled the city, one or two rogues or bandits moved in, finding life in Scardale more appealing than life on the run in the Dalelands’ forests.
Only the bravest, strongest, or most evil merchants bring their cargoes in through Scardale’s formerly flourishing port. Even so, the port is at least as busy as it was during the years of the occupation, which says something about how many brave and unscrupulous merchants roam the Sea of Fallen Stars.
Since no larger governments were willing to take a chance on occupying Scardale after the plague, the city runs itself by the laws of anarchy, the obligations of power politics, and the double-edged knives of friendship. In Scardale’s present topsy-turvy condition, the only thing that matters are the identity and intentions of the groups presently struggling to gain control over the city.
One site in Scardale Town deserving of mention is the Four Dolphins Fountain. Somehow, this beautiful statue of four leaping dolphins survived Scardale’s turmoil. The courtyard surrounding the fountain is in the center of Scardale Town’s port district. It’s beloved by folk for its calm and beauty, and valued by those who want privacy and discretion because a magical effect generated by the fountain prevents all scrying and eavesdropping magic from working in the courtyard.
Whenever possible, members of the Thayan enclave arrange their deals at the Four Dolphins Fountain. They wish to give Dalesfolk the sense that they can shop for precious magic items without having to worry about being watched by prying wizards from other dales.