War of the Burning Sky
Population 17,000; another 2,000 or so live on the countryside and upper mountain slopes within a few miles of the main gates.
The citizens of Gate Pass are mostly human. A sizeable orc and half-orc population represents about 20% of the city. A small elven refugee population is the only other significant group, with half-elves, dwarves, and gnomes filling out the rest.
A half-orc individual named Merrick Hurt is the city’s governor. He presides over a city council represented by individuals from each ward and district in the city. The council is responsible for managing the military, commerce, and public projects. According to most of the populace, the council is largely ineffectual and is easily swayed by citizen groups, wealthy merchants, religious concerns, and military groups.
Numbering in the hundreds, the guards also act as constables. Most guards are responsible for watching the gates and kill zones around the city. A small unit of twenty griffon riders patrols the farms in the outlying area and represents the only cavalry.
Inns are most often found at the outermost districts of the city with the exception of a few around the grand square. The quality of accommodations lessens the farther away the inn is from the Emelk Way. Famous locations: Dassen Arms (5 stars, the best); Griffon Suites (4 stars); Harrigan’s Inn (1 star, the worst).
Some well-known taverns are Flaming Forest Alehouse (5 stars); Seaquen’s Spirits (3 stars); One-to-Go tavern (1 star). Supplies Two-Winds Trading; Menash’s Provisions; Adventurer’s Trove.
The religious community of Gate Pass is diverse, owing to the interaction of cultures flowing through the city. Eight major temples represent the religious core of the community, and though each religion has its own interests, they share common ground through the annual Festival of Dreams, during which the temples all briefly work to provide for the greater good. Numerous temples of smaller religions dot the city, and though they lack the same sway as the major eight, they still put a lot of effort into New Year’s festivities. Some of the major temples include: The Saraswatin (knowledge); Aquiline Cross (healing); Stronghold (strength); The Bacchanal (revelry); Dassen Stone (dwarven); Fertile Fields (hearth and home; Mercinuem(healing); Shrine to the God of Sorcery.