Scornubel is the Caravan City a sprawling place of warehouses, paddocks, and stockyards. It is a city of traveling merchants with a population that can increase eightfold in a good summer, sixfold during most traveling seasons. It has no walls and is a place of ready swords and watchful residents. There have been more than a few raids on it by bugbears, hobgoblins, and the like, particularly in harsh winter weather, when game is scarce. Thieves and dopplegangers are a constant problem.
This rough-and-tumble place is the closest thing some caravan merchants have to a home. It sprawls along the northern bank of the River Chionthar where the Trade Way meets the waters. From Scornubels docks a ferry crosses the river. Many skiffs, narrowboats, and barges make runs along the Chionthar as far upstream as Berdusk (where rapids prevent travel onward), as far downstream as Baldurs Gate, and as far up the River Reaching as Hills Edge and a few ranchers docks upstream of it.
Old, sharp-tongued Lady Rhessajan Ambermantle rules the city, assisted by three Lord High Advisors (retired merchants) in consultation with a council of merchants. Her tongue and worldwise stratagems have earned her the title the Old Vixen, but shes generally loved or at least respected among Scornubians. She can whelm a mounted militia and scouts headed and equipped by the Red Shields mercenary company and has a watch of well-trained and well-equipped soldiers assisted by both priests and mages. The city has many shrines and visiting clergy., but only one temple, the Healing House of Lathander, which is much called upon to heal injured travelers of all faiths.
Its been said the goods and riches of half of Faerûn pass through Scornubel, but the city itself is known as the source of much mutton and wool, medicines concocted by local artisans, merchant services (wagon repairs, moneylending and a barter fair), and the trading, training, and doctoring of mounts and beasts of burden. Businesses and the buildings that house them change from season to season or even more rapidly, and Scornubel has few permanent landmarks. One never need pay for a nights rest unless one wants a bed, bath, or stableseven in cold winter weather youll see folk burrowing into hay piles to hollow out warm beds, and on hot summer nights many folk lie down amid their stock in the paddocks, surrounded by saddles and saddlebags to keep the beasts from stepping on them.
- Volothamp Geddarn
“Volo’s Guide to the Sword Coast” – 2nd Printing