Farpost is a small mining thorp consisting of a dozen buildings founded close next to a small iron mine. The mine is run by the middle-aged foreman, Herick Hause. The mine is sanctioned and licensed by the local Lord. The surrounding hills are not exactly abundant with ore but Herick has an almost unnatural knack for finding new caches of iron. He and his men has successfully prospected in the area several years where many others have failed.
A small well-traversed mud path leads through the lightly wooded hills where a dozen old mines can be found. There is currently only one active mine, Helsia, named after one of Herick’s many women.
1… Herick’s House – This is where Herick lives. It is a well-built wooden cabin surrounded by small wooden fence. In the back is an outhouse. In the early days Herick would let other miners stay in the main room but with the construction of the longhouse he now has his cabin to himself. There is a small porch where Herick spends evenings with a pipe discussing prospecting with his closest men. It is locked when Herick is out prospecting or visting the nearby village.
2… Miner’s Longhouse – This is where most of the miners sleep. There are a dozen beds inside and Herick decides who gets a bed. New workers have to sleep in tents or lean-tos. The longhouse is a sturdy wooden cabin. The ground around it is trampled from many heavy boots and there is discarded equipment, old clothes and broken wagons littering the grounds. A strong smell of sweat lingers around and especially inside the longhouse. Two hearths keep the longhouse warm during the colder months. Inside there are a dozen simple beds in disarray. Personal items, boots and clothes are strewn about.
3… Food stores – This is where Herick keeps the food provision for the workers. It is mostly dry goods and barrels of apples. Supplies are restocked in the beginning of the week. The door is barred but not locked.
4… Mining office and tool’s shed – A rickety low wooden building. One end serves as mining office where Herick takes care of paperwork, contracts for workers and where he stores the salaries. One wall is covered by a large map over the region. A dozen mines are marked, each with a woman’s name below. All except one are crossed out; Helsia mine. The office door is securely locked when Herick is out and always guarded by one of the guards. The other end of the cabin is used as storage for mining picks, shovels, hammers and other important mining tools. The door is unlocked but usually barred from the outside.
5… Stables – The stables is where Herick’s two working horses and wagon are kept. It is usually attended by the two boys from Stengard’s family.
7… Guard barracks – Herick has four guards employed overseeing the mine and the small thorpe. A small room in the house can be locked and have sometimes been used as a temporary jail. The guards are as loyal as they come. Berren has worked with Herick for ten years and they are good friends.
7… Smithy and workshop – A small smithy is built here along with a workshop. It is usually only manned when something needs repairs. Hurd Stengard usually mans the workshop.
8… Large Wooden cabin (Stengard’s Family house) – Hurd Stengard who has worked for Herick for several years built a cabin here to have his family close. Hurd works the mines when there is no need for his carpentry or metalworking skills. His two teenage sons are splitting their time managing the stable and setting up a proper farm.
9… Wooden cabin (Rock’s family house) – Inspired by Hurd, Jen Rock and her family has built wooden cabin along with a farm. They have plans to expand the farm with goats and other animals. They are currently persuading a few other miners to setup homes in Farpost.
10… Hunter’s cottage – Kenja, a tiefling hunter has built a small cottage here. There are several skins stretched out outside. In the back Kenja has a small shed where he prepares and stores large game. He supplies Farpost with fresh meat which makes him popular with the miners despite his sour attitude. Kenja is secretly enamoured with Jen Rock.
11… Inn (The Shining Pick) – A small tavern that prepares food for the miners during the day and give them a chance to spend their hard earned copper on ale after work. The place is run and managed by Farben along with his slightly retarded half-elf daughter Sindella. Herick makes sure the tavern closes by sundown except on Saturdays. The tavern is not big enough for all the miners so they usually gathers outside. A small addition to the cabin contains a few small rooms outfitted with simple beds. Behind the inn is a smelly outhouse and a cold storage cellar. On certain evenings the Inn have entertainment in the form of a bard along with 3-4 harlots from the nearby settlements.
Life in Farpost
Every sunrise Herick rings his bell to wake up the workers and start the day in the mine. The miners eat a meagre breakfast outside the Shining Pick before walking together down to the Helsia mine. One of the guards take up position outside the mining entrance. The workers take a short lunch break and then continues to work until afternoon when they walk back to the thorpe for dinner around the Inn. The ore is melted into iron tacks outside the mine and carted down to the thorpe as needed. Before sundown, the miners are in bed, tired from the hard work.
Once a week Herick transports the iron ingots to the nearest village where it is registered and transfered to the Lord’s bailiff. Herick is paid and visits the trade post for provisions and any required tools before returning to Farpost. When he returns the miners and the guards are paid their salaries.
Herick and a few of his trusted miners are out in the hills once or twice every month to prospect for new potential mining sites. He usually brings a guard to two for safety while Berren stays in Farpost.
Around once per month Farpost is visited by the half-orc Blacktooth and his harlots. They stay one-two nights depending on Herick’s mood and the month’s results.
Herick Hause – is an old grizzled miner. He knows the region well and he cares for his miners, knowing that without them he would be back to mining the ore himself. He keeps the whole mining settlement in tight control and does not accept failures or bad behavior. He is usually dressed in miner’s clothes, dirty with soot and grime. As with most of the miners, personal hygiene is not a top priority.
Berren – is an old veteran soldier that started to work with Herick a decade ago. Together they’ve build Farpost into a prospering operation. Berren manages the guards and discipline in Farpost. He is known as a silent “evil bastard” among the miners. You don’t want to get on his bad side. He doesn’t show emotion or temperament. Always cold and very present.
Hurd Stengard – decided to build a cabin next to the mines in order to bring his family closer. He is a skilled carpenter and metalworker and usually manages the smithy and workshop. He built most of the houses and inspects the mine’s support daily. His wife Melissa and and two teenage sons, Gren and Flen are working on clearing out and preparing farmlands. Back in the house Grandma Lina spends her twilight years mending miner clothes. The twins are also caring for the stable as needed.
Jen Rock’s family – About two years ago Jen’s husband was killed in an accident in the mine. Jen now lives alone with her three children (Kaleb, Drizza and Derek). Jen is working in the mines but have plans to focus full time on her farm together with her children. They are planning to buy goats and chickens come next salary. Jen is getting some support from Kenja the hunter to look after the children when she is down in the mines.
Kenja, tiefling – Kenja a red-skinned tiefling is shunned by most of the people except Jen Rock and her family. He hunts the forested hills for small game that he sells to Herick and The Shining Pick. He is enamoured by Jen and spends as much time with her as possible. Sometimes he checks in on her children or even brings them out on his huntings trips. Only Herick knows the hills as well as Kenja. Kenja truly and deeply hates Berren and keeps an old grudge for a misunderstanding now forgotten.
Farben MacLoth and Sindella – Farben is the innkeeper and keeps the miners fed and happy. He is a jovial fellow that believes in hard work and a strong community. He is well liked for providing a little entertainment to the miners every now and then. He takes care of Sindella, a slightly retarded half-elf girl in early 20s. He claims that she is her daughter but they look nothing alike. He is a good friend with Blacktooth. Farben regularly offers Blacktooth’s girls work at the inn but they always decline (out of fear from Blacktooth). Sindella has an empty look on her face and is very quiet. It is hard to know if she understands what’s being said or not. Everything she does is very slow. Most of the other miners are constantly making fun of her behind Farben’s back.
Blacktooth & the Harlots – Blacktooth is a middle-age half-orc that travels the region with his harlots. Sometimes he brings a bard along, but the best money is always with the girls of pleasure. He is never cruel in public but very harsh on the girls when alone or on the road. Currently 3 girls travel with Blacktooth. The blonde Diamond, Ruby the redhead and Agate the raven haired. They have all three lived tough lives and have little hope and plans for the future.
In addition there are currently a dozen miners in Hericks’ employment. They are of varying age but all of them gaunt and pale in dirty rugged clothes. They care little for outsiders and each has his own reasons for working the mine in the outskirts of civilisation.