Before the Collision, in the days of spacefaring humanity, Fels was a popular place for immigrants. The original colonisers settled in various diverse locales, Mynatan, Merhulneo, Tronapt. In the delta of the wide and sluggish Orstrey River they found a large redoubtable granite island amid the mud and mangrove. On the islands eastern side, they carved a vast arc out of the natural rock and in its place laid down a huge metal and stone platform, a site for landing craft and minor ship-refitting and repairs. It was built on concrete and steel pillars sunk well into the granitic bedrock. 12000 years hence, it has become Lake Village. The original technology and machinery has long since corroded into motes and dust but the platform remains. The lowering of Fels' sea level over 12000 years has left Lake Village approximately 25 feet above the median level of the water.
As such, it resembles a pile dwelling settlement of ancient Earth, hence its name. In the long years of settlement here, the original metal has been chipped away or covered over in wood, canvas, cloth and the other materials Societors use for house building. Lake Village is bordered on the north by Old Town, on the west by Hired Skull, The Middle and the Hired Skull Scrub, on the south by Hired Skull Scrub and Tweenport, and on the east by Eaststretch.
Lake Village is surrounded on the island side by a gap of forty feet. The water in this gap is known as Lakesverge although it isn't a true canal. It is possible to sail under Lake Village although it is illegal and the gloom of being under several million tonnes of former space landing pad turns most folk off.
As such, the perimeter of Lake Village has been fenced off with ironwork and hatches. It is the only structure in Fenstre apart from the Causeways and the Artefact of Onallion, to survive the Collision. There are seven bridges onto Lake Village, one from outside Fenstre and six from within. The one from outside is the Scail Island Bridge which carries the Port Ofrey Road. It crosses large Scail Island before it reaches the mainland of Hauld. Scail Island will be covered elsewhere.
Lake Village is a poor district. Most of the folk who live here are shiftless and live in dilapidations and hovels. Save for an opulent corridor lining the Street of the Straight, the inhabitants and their dwellings are poor. Though not quite the shantytown Westmer Community is or even Ipty, there is little moneyed distinction here. The militia maintain a constant vigilance, for it is in Lake Village (as well as Westmer Community and rarely Ipty) that the Societor idiosyncrasy known as imwiet occurs.
This phenomenon is possibly best described as “mass murders”. In truth an imwiet is more of a culling of a certain group, such as meretrices, street-children, elderly men or the occasional knot of foreigners. This form of killing is not unknown among the rest of Fenstre but here, on the piles, imwiet's are a real, if infrequent thing. Most folk blame the Hallilan, others Hired Skull thugs. Some aver it is Ydrys or Cydain which coerces the perpetrators to their deeds.
Most of the industry here is fishing and agricultural related with the occasional tavern. It streets are set out concentrically from the feature known as the Cirkule. The Cirkule is a large “hole” in the structure of Lake Village, approximately 150 yards across. Its design and purpose are unknown, but the granite bedrock on its bottom has been drilled out to a depth of several hundred yards which gives the water an azure hue. It is probably an analogue of the inflan of Hired Skull. On the southern side of the Cirkule is a shrine to Cydain. The Cirkule is located in the lower half of Lake Village. It is a popular place to swim for the local children. The bridges, from north to south are: Topland Bridge, Peregrine Bridge, Little-O Bridge, Scrub Bridge, North Ipty Bridge and Jhernase's Bridge which leads into Tweenport.
Notable people who make their home on Lake Village include Rindoman, a herbalist. He lives on the Street of the Straight, near the Topland Road junction and his wares have addled and stupefied the inhabitants around for some time. When he or his staff aren't concocting drugs they dry spices and formulate bath essences and aromas. Rindoman is a cultured man more at home at Knebber Point than Lake Village.
Feldenn owns a tannery on the west side of the Cirk and does a roaring trade. A Geriarch, Hallu, dickers to make Lake Village his home, south of the Cirk. He is hardly ever at his residence, yet he maintains a guard and his collection of foreign objets d'art is immense. Hallu is a quiet yet calculating man, much in line with Ydrys's tenet.
Cheaghdi lives just across from Rindoman and the two complement each other. Cheaghdi is an astrologer and a seer and his services are much in demand, especially under the mind-opening influence of Rindoman's philtres. Cheaghdi has some odylic ability to back up his charlatanry and is much an enigma with a few people. For those coming in from Orur or Port Ofrey, Lake Village will be their first experience of Fenstre. It could be argued things do not get any better.
Tweenport is a small slice of land situated neatly between Lake Village on the north and Eastmer to the south. It has the Hired Skull Scrub on its west and Eaststretch on the east. In all, it doesn't extend more than half a mile inland. It is not officially a district of Fenstre, instead it is considered part of Eastmer. It is afforded its own heraldry which is identical to the arms of Trowheald, save for a silver sun in the canton.
The entire region is owned by the Trowheald Clan. There are only two land-bound ways to enter Tweenport, from the north at Mereguard Bridge and from the west from Ipty, along the Tweenport Road. There is no bridge across Wendsnake Canal onto Eastmer. It derives its name as a minor Eaststretch port between two larger areas. The main importance on Tweenport is its Circus, a large round clearing in the Hired Skull Scrub to the west.
Each year, on the Lupercalia holiday, the five septs of Fenstre provide a fair for the populace. In reality, it is the Trowheald Clan who generally pay the bill. Food and drink is given away free to all for three days around Lupercalia and to many Societors it is a time when getting drunk and revelling is guaranteed as is a free meal. Tweenport itself is a relatively distinguished area. The Clan have long since clamped a prohibition on expansion and Tweenport will possibly remain the size it is for generations.
The people who live here pay a reasonable rent. Tweenport's main purpose is as a wharf for the Trowhealds. As such, the Clan is exempt from the tariffs and dues payable generally, something which has long rankled with the various Guildsmen and Cartel heads. Other industries include fishing and small businesses. Yone De Florio and his spouse Olanelli Trowheald operate the Tweenport Tavern and their lives are chronicled earlier. Tweenport is not generally a locale that one passes through and strangers here will generally be noted, Lupercalia and the Circus an exception.
Ipty shares with Westmer the distinction of Fenstre's poorest area. Ipty is that area west and north of Eastmer and Tweenport, south of the Hired Skull Scrub, east of The Middle and Inmer. It is a veritable shantytown adorned with the usual Fenstre trappings except refuse make up a good part of the camouflage. In fact “as poor as an Ipty beggar” is an idiom which sadly sums the district up. From the Ipty Road, one crosses into Ipty from Aloysius Point. This region is known as Lower Ipty and is in bizarre contradistinction with the remainder of Ipty. Lower Ipty is a peninsula pointing south on to Southstretch. In fact Lower Ipty is divided off from the balance by the encroachment of the Hired Skull Scrub. It is an eminently wealthy area, mainly due to the palatial homes of the D'Arrest family.
Many cults and sects frowned on by Geriarch law live in hiding here, with nearby Aloysius Point being too noticeable. The D'Arrest family have long been adherents and patrons of religions, wizardries and sects contrary to that of Geriarch law. The D'Arrest family is currently headed by Quyle D'Arrest, a tall and stately man in his late forties.
He is a Xene, a fact which is not openly advertised. His younger sister, Aludra, is a women deep and intense, a couple of years younger, and a Dyne to boot. She has a broad smile and keeps her sandy grey hair shoulder length. Her and Taunil Trowheald have shared a relationship on and off for some time, their interests and contempt for Society thinking running parallel. Younger still of the siblings is Drawn D'Arrest, who is generally the spokesman for the family. He is a quiet man who surprises people with his witticisms and adages. He is also a Xene. Krame, a Geriarch, is uncle of these three although he has forwent any claim due to his elevation into Fenstre's ruling class. He is an archetypical Geriarch, being secretive and having a policy of deny everything. He is possibly aware of Quyle's status and at one stage advocated the removal of the Trowheald Clan from Fenstre, due to Diomedes megalomania. He dwells entirely in the Clathe now, not bothering to dicker with his erstwhile family.
It was Krame who reared Olanelli Trowheald, for reasons totally baffling. Further east along the Ipty Road, one comes across hovels built alongside. Here is a thriving red light district. People who cannot afford the excesses of Ecquair Point travel out to Ipty to partake on lesser comestibles. In fact, the entire length of the road between Lower Ipty and the beginning of the Tweenport Road, it is one entire ad hoc brothel. The entire area is given to subsistence farming, thieving, witchery, whoring, gambling and the baser pursuits of mankind in general. The Ipty Road curves north here to eventually cross Lakesverge onto Lake Village. The road here is in the midst of the Hired Skull Scrub and is avoided at night. Near Ipty Bridge at Lakesverge, the Road of the Perilous Step joins, coming from Hired Skull. It too, is predated at night by bunes and natsaws. Ipty is also home to Fenstre's second cemetery, the quaintly named The Resting.
Somewhat north of Ipty, surrounded by the Hired Skull Scrub, The Resting is maintained by a fellow named Ingento, who also runs an undertaker's business. He gets little business from the Societor who invariably float their dead out into the Fairge. Most of his work is antemery. Like Klaur of Swott, Ingento is an obair. He can manipulate bones beneath the flesh. This odylic ability allows him to “sink” his fingers in flesh and broken bones and dislocations. His services are not cheap and many Societors carry around disfigurements or incorrectly set arms and legs due to insufficient funds. The Geriarch's frown upon the practice although they grudgingly admit to its usefulness.
Eastmer is snugly positioned in Fenstre's southeast. Like Southmer and Inmer, it has status as a port and warehouse area but the inhabitants are genteel, almost the affected quality folk of Trowheald Island have. Eastmer is geographically part of Fenstre's main island but the canal known as Wendsnake has all but made Eastmer an island in itself. Wendsnake Canal comes off Phyler's Canal south of Lower Ipty and bends its way to exit into the Eaststretch as Tweenport, hence its. The district of Fenstre the other side is Eastmer. Most outsiders only see this area as a continuation of the docksides of Southmer.
The main road into Eastmer is the Eastmer Lane which runs from the Warehouses, across Fort Island an onto Eastmer. The western part of Eastmer is covered with jungle and has been left wild. It lacks none of the Society's quirks. No antemer would ever hope to find his way through here without guidance, not that he'd get any. Notable folk to dwell here include Har Haddi, a dealer in books and manuscripts. There isn't much call for these among the mainly illiterate and uncaring Societors yet his services are in great demand. Like most in his trade, he considers himself knowledgeable although this is of an academic nature rather than of the furtive kind. He is aware of the Attuned Wind background and suspects pre-Collision involvement with Fenstre although no records survive from that cataclysm. Near him is Trinso's Vintner. This man sells nearly all grape wine in Fenstre. Admittedly there isn't much call for it either but the aristocracy prefer it over the local fenny and fruit punches or mango spirit. Grapes do not grow well in Fenstre's climate an most wine is imported. Trinso is a Drivandad and is the brother of Yuill and the son of Telent. The three rarely associate.
The Fine Man Inn sits on the Eastmer Lane and is a grand establishment. It has the fame of Otulio's but it lacks the rough character yet there is never a half-full common room there. It is busy the duration of its opening hours. It is a Taverner's Guild affair, owned by a fellow known as Solusgal. Solusgal is Silvius Flamistead's younger brother although neither care much for the other and Solusgal rarely considers himself a Flamistead. He possesses the Flamistead trait of brusqueness nonetheless and is a burly red-headed man.
When Fhind Island became part of Fenstre is unrecorded. It sits half a mile off the south-east coast of Eastmer and is not a part of geographic Fenstre. It is a low-lying island of which only the western end is inhabited. It is a crescent shaped island about two miles long. Fhind Island is, nonetheless, a district of Fenstre. The folk that dwell here are Societor through and through and in fact, there is a prohibition upon foreigners landing on the island. Fhind Island supplies Fenstre and other markets with teak and cedar wood and is the island's main income source.
Smuggling is another. No buildings of repute lie here due to the nature of the soil and the island has been flooded on numerous occasions. There is a ferry between Tweenport once a day, and one to Eastmer every hour. No other ferry connects to the island. Most folk sail pirogues, coracles and scows over.
People and places include Da Dernae's lighthouse, the Market, which sits in the middle of residential Fhind Island, the Staith, which are the docks of Fhind Island and a sole inn, the Dramshop. There is a lunatic asylum near the verge of the jungle and one obair, Jhugh, who dwells in a shanty on Teakcutter's Way some way into the jungle on the eastern end. One thing Fhind Island serves as is a staging area for forays into Gollock and Scail Islands. Societor hunters base themselves here and charge off in search of monkeys, natsaws, huitts and bunes. A lot of them do not return or end up corpses floating out into the Fairge on the tide.