Ruler: Elina Vuolle
Resources & Industry: Fishing, smuggling (?), ship repairs
An isolated place, perched upon an inhospitable coast at the head of a muddy coastal path, Coldwater is not an easy, or pleasant, place to visit. The village huddles at the mouth of a steep-sided valley leading down to the sea.
Widely thought of as a haven for smugglers and other miscreants, rumours swirl as thickly about the village as the persistent sea fogs that sometimes blanket the place for days at a time. Other rumours—whispered in taprooms up and down the coast—speak of darker things: of unwholesome practises carried out in worship of some ancient, depraved power, of travellers going missing near the village and of an ancient set of steps buried at the base of nearby cliffs and revealed only at particularly low tides.
Whatever the truth, Coldwater’s folk are sullen, distrustful of outsiders and some are said to suffer from horrible deformities. Even the village’s ruler—the aged Elina Vuolle—hates the place and leaves its folk to fend for themselves. Two rival families dominate day-to-day life: the Eerolas and the Purhos.
Both Coldwater’s legitimate and alleged illegitimate businesses are focused on the water. Fishing accounts for much of its mercantile business; merchantmen call weekly to exchange barrels of salted fish for meat, flour and other staples.
Most of Coldwater comprises peasant homes. A few locations, however, are of interest to adventurers:
Vuolle Manor: Perched on the side of the valley, Vuolle Manor overlooks the village. Its battlemented walls give spectacular views of the surrounds.
Waterside: The harbour is the busiest—and smelliest—place in the village. Here, a gallimaufry of fishing vessels and small merchant craft jostle for berths.
Itkonen’s: Here, Uzlen Itkonen builds and repairs fishing vessels and small merchant craft. The dockyard is always busy.
Sauli’s Home: Here dwells the patriarch of the Eerola family.
Crooked House: This partially sunken building is the home of Armas Hujanen. Part of the cellar’s foundations has collapsed, giving the house its name.
Chapel of the Mistress: Dedicated to Serat (the uncaring Mistress of Storms) this small chapel is one of the most substantial buildings in the village. On misty nights its bells toll endlessly to guide home those still out on the water.
The Stooped Man: Coldwater’s only inn and tavern, the Stooped Man is a bastion of cheap alcohol, surly service and draughty, flea-infested accommodation.
Atro’s Home: Atro Purho dwells in this large, ramshackle building.
Devil’s Cove: Strange goings on and several disappearances conspire to keep the populace away from this nearby cove.
Devil’s Point: Steep and slippery jagged cliffs and treacherous, unpredictable tides conspire to keep the curious away from this aptly named point.