The Festival of the Hammer is the largest festival held in the Dwarven holds of the Seran Mountains - the mountainous region making up the Hills of Skoshi and the Kestral Ridge in the common maps of the Frontiers of Alusia. High in the fortified Mountains is the Fane Valley, named after the revered miner Fane Stoneknower, renowned as the only Dwarf of Seren to never work a day without uncovering prized veins of metal or emerald clusters deep in the rock.
The Fane Valley, surrounded on all sides by the Serens, and watch posts to keep curious Gryphons from taking too close an interest, is a broad swathe of grass and trees, with freshwater streams and pools high in the mountains.
The Festival has an ancient heritage, going back further than the memories of any living Dwarf in the area and has become a right of passage for Dwarves who wish to honour their forebears and mine the rich veins of silver, gold and iron amongst the rarer beds of emeralds hidden 'neath the Seran mountains. Games of skill, speed and judgement are held, with teams of strong and eager young Dwarves racing to find buried treasures in specially prepared mounds of compacted earth and stone and get them to market before their rivals.
And amongst the caravans having made the journey to sell all manner of human and Halfling produce from the far-off towns of Haven and Landfall to merrymakers and onlookers, are occasional Giants and fellow Dwarves from the even further Superstitious Mountains. And on occasion, Elves from the Forest of Kasharak are spied enjoying the festivities.
Common amongst the traders are:
- Food vendors - fresh and aged, cooked and uncooked
- Ale merchants - the finest ales and wines of Seren and Haven
- Healers and apothecaries - low to mid-level healers and medicines
- Weapon smiths - selling all manner of weapons from swords and daggers to bows and crossbows, maces, axes, spears and of course, hammers
- Armourers - selling plate and chain, leather and cloth
- Astrologers - have your future unveiled!
- Troubadours - music and stories, tales of heroes and woe
The Festival of the Hammer promises to be a fine event this Spring.
With thanks to pixabay.com for the use of the images above, and a special thank you to @ryivhnn for my wonderful Wombats.