Image Credit: Adam Paquette - Copyright Wizards of the CoastGeneral
Peacehaven is a unique and fantastic coastal city on the Free Cities peninsula. Founded by refugees from the Isle of Elysium, its population is mostly human. The city does have its fair share of other races, especially Sylphs. One of the most fascinating aspects of Peacehaven is its location. Set in a deep valley at the mouth of the Otagrin River, Peacehaven is most noted for its vast deposits of havenum.
Havenum is a light blue crystalline substance of unknown origin. Its quartz-like formations vary greatly in size from a pebble to larger than a warhorse. The most remarkable feature of havenum is its natural desire to stay in the place it was first formed. Several earthmotes float throughout Peacehaven because of the properties of havenum. Sufficient force or weight can move a shard of havenum from its origin but when released the substance will slowly return.
Peacehaven and the surrounding lands are governed by an elected parliment of 21 members. Parliment members nominally represent an industry within Peacehaven, acting as guild leaders. This enables them to secure the preferential and lucrative contracts, often allowing them to enjoy of life of nobility and excess. Individual appointments last a term of 10 years, though nothing stops a parliment member from being appointed again and again. Elected by others in their industry, bribes and backroom deals are common and expected. Intrigue and betrayal abound.
At the head of the council presides the Prime Minister, simultaneously a head of an industry and also charged with the officiating council business. Recently, the health of the Prime Minister has faded, and council members are jockying amongst themselves to secure the coveted seat.
Peacehaven is part of the Galgation Mutual Defense Pact and as such has virtually no standing army of its own. As an additional, natural deterrant to invasion, the surrounding lands have very rocky soil and are poor for agriculture in a foreigner’s opinion; though the locals don’t seem to mind at all. The earthmotes at the harbor make for extremely defensible positions against a naval invasion and the treacherous nature of overland navigation usually discourages invading armies. When there is a need to put down a troublesome monster or an overzealous villager, the council often turns to the Galgation contingents permanently stationed within the city.
The city makes very good money on trade, specializing in crafted goods traded throughout the Free Cities Penninsula and beyond. They have a particularly lucrative market for goods based on havenum, such a compasses which are sold throughout the known world. Fishing is also a strong part of the city’s commerce.
The economy is thriving in Peacehaven - driven by recent innovations in uses of havenum. Artisans, metalworkers, shipwrights, and many others from the skilled labor force have flocked to the city in recent years, creating a sizable middle class with generally progressive social view. Rumors suggest that a group of gnomes in the city are in the grip of obsession, working hard to develop an airship using havenum and bound lightning elementals.
The artisan guilds are potent forces in Peacehaven, especially the havenum workers guild. A skilled crafter or distributor has significantly more mobility here to move up the social ladder than in virtually any other city on the Peninsula.
Organized worship of any deity is technically strictly limited in Peacehaven. Though an individual may worship anyone they want, temples are outlawed. Shrines are permitted, though they must always be exposed to the sky (so the nobility can keep an eye on them). Culturally, worship is considered by many to be a foolish pastime of weak or deluded individuals; the old gods are either long dead or never existed at all.