In the past few years, the Compact's prosperity has seen the rise of a new class of merchant with personal wealth that sets them apart from most of their fellow commoners as exemplified by the rise of opulent new homes in the Upper Boroughs. While many look at the increase of wealth amongst the merchants of the city as a sign of the Compact's economic success, as the flow of goods from other parts of the kingdom slows to a trickle, more and more look at those who gained so much when trade was plentiful and expect them to help out now that their fellow merchants, crafters, and laborers are feeling the pinch. Whether they volunteer that help or not.
The trade docks of Arx are almost always busy. But since the whirlpool's arrival, all sea traffic has slowed to a crawl. There are still boats and barges arriving along the river, but there are too many landlocked sailors and not enough work to keep the porters, steveadores and dockworkers busy and out of trouble. Idle hands and empty pockets mean rising tempers and a whole lot of nothing to distract from empty bellies. Tempers start to fray and the Iron Guard are repeatedly called to break up fights that have sparked off along the wharfs. It seems like the minute they break up one, three more have broken out. Something has got to give.
As people settle across the city, some are talked down by those with silver tongues and empathetic smiles while others are convinced that fighting is a bad idea by those with far less kind methods of convincing. The outbreak of frustrations amongst the merchants in the city center of Arx seem to be quelled... for now. Yet, as the smoke hangs thick in the air around the market and merchants begin to board up burned out storefronts and salvage their scorched goods, one has to wonder how long until tensions boil over again?
A massive riot broke out in the Lowers Dockyard with hundreds, if not thousands of Lowers residents deciding they have had enough. When confronted by a group of nobles, their fellow Lowers residents and more than 300 Iron Guard, things got dicey. Pitch and feces were flung at the nobility, and one Lady was nearly lost, carried off into the warehouse district. In the end, multiple efforts brought stores of food to the lowers, and the largest warehouse was opened and the contents distributed among the rioters. For tonight, some in the Lowers have a full belly. Now that they know rioting works, how long until this becomes the new normal?
The riots appear to have caused other damage in ways that, in the middle of surging chaos, weren't anticipated. That's the point, of course.
There's been a lot of looting, but a few houses stand out as notable, as in these only one or two things appear to have been taken. Small antiques. Family heirlooms. A sword or two. There's seemingly no pattern to it, except the burglar seems to have not been terribly concerned with taking things that were valuable. No one was home to see it happen.
The Thrax Estate fairs differently. Most of the House guards were busy at the gates to the ward, making sure the riots didn't spill inside, and others were busy trying to guard their charges from the violence. There were still guards though. Plenty of those. That's why it's fairly inexplicable how the thieves managed to get past them.
Because, ohhh there were thieves. While no occupied rooms were entered, quite a lot of expensive things are missing from elsewhere. Jewelry. Coin. At least one painting. For some reason the thieves took nearly everything to be found in the pantry and larders that reasonably could be snuck out of there, which does mean that they mostly left the alcohol alone. Mostly. And there's no shattered windows. The locks weren't broken, but someone did open them. No one heard a single peep.
Lords Lane gets it the worst, though. Nearly every large manor, every fancy building, every single place that might have contained valuables seems to have been hit. It could be mistaken for simple looters except the thieves were very discerning in what they took. Small, very valuable things. And food. Only the shops and smaller residences were completely spared.
Bad things happen in the Lowers. That's just a fact of life. But sometimes bad things happen that are weird enough to get at least a little bit of attention, and so it is that when a human arm washes up under the docks, it does get noticed. Mostly it gets noticed because the hand attached to that arm is still wearing a little ring on its pinky, but after assessing that said ring isn't really worth much, the proper authorities are eventually notified. And it's really not very usual for that to happen.
It's just that this severed arm looks like something large was /chewing/ on it.
In the wilds of Tor there has always been the rumor of a garden that appears only at dusk in winter's longest day. Farmers are persistent that it exists, even if it never appears in the same place twice. Such stories are given the polite nod and healthy dose of salt they require - that is up until the most recent batch of Abandoned tribes to swear fealty to Duchess Calista Fidante are heard repeating the same tale. A contingent consisting of Marquis Dante DiFidante, Lady Esme Fidante, Lord Ezra Riven, Lady Ingrid Grimhall, Lady Videl Igniseri, Nurie Baseborn, Aaron Blackburn and Thorn band together to seek the validity of these rumors and quiet the upstart and worry the urban myth has inspired for the common folk.
Whatever takes place only upsets the farmers further for a few days. There is just something about a singular bloodcurdling scream at dawn startling their livestock, causing the animals to escape from their pens that angers them.