City of the Five Keys
- Ruler – Lord Mayor Drūs Karzfug
- Population – Grōmyr 15,340 (650 DR)
- Elevation – 3,420 feet
The City of Æzàlari may boast the largest bazaars and most lucrative trading contracts in Teréth End, but the City of Grōmr is where many of those same businesses keep and invest their money. The City of the Five Keys is so named for the five major banking houses that reside there. Within the vaults of Grōmr are stored a large portion of the world’s riches. For this reason, the city is under a constant state of occupation from ambassadors and businessmen from across Teréth End. Defensively, it’s remote location in the high mountains of western Tassèrus make it a difficult target for an army of any size. There is also the common aphorism that:
“The defenses of Grōmr stand ready in every kingdom of the world. Any attack against its mountain gates would be answered by a hundred armies.”
On a smaller scale, theft is uncommon in Grōmr, but it does happen. The city does not however maintain a police force. Individuals are responsible for their own safety while moving around the city. When one enters a home or business, responsibility for their protection is automatically (and legally) transferred to the owner of the property.
- Counting Ward. This section of Grōmr is dominated by large stone buildings with heavy metal doors. At dawn and dusk the polished cobble streets erupt with people entering and leaving work, but otherwise the avenues are empty except for the occasional courier. The Counting Ward is the home for many of Grōmr’s banks and trading institutions. The ward is separated from the rest of the city by a thick curtain wall that is “manned” day and night by mercenaries. Much of the Counting Ward is believed to be built underground, though the extent and location of those areas are well-guarded secrets.
- High Ward. The wealthiest Nōgyr live in the residential High Ward. Understated mansions crowd together along labyrinthine alleyways. It is sometimes impossible to tell where one home ends and the next begins. One boulevard winds through the High Ward’s center. The remainder of the roads are tiny pedestrian alleys, many unfit for larger guests. Most homes in the High Ward have no exterior doors, being accessed instead via a series of tunnels that radiate from common wells. During times of crisis, the wells are capped, sealing off entrance to all the homes in a block.
- Middle Ward. The largest of the Grōmr boroughs is the working class Middle Ward. There is very little to recommend this section of the city and very few visitors seek it out. The ward is comprised of thousands of apartments, homes, and numerous neighborhood pubs and theaters. An amphitheater at the ward’s center is a popular location for Nōgyr to gather every monthturn.
- Old Ward. The Old Ward is a mixture of poor residential neighborhoods and large business operations. A number of Old Ward factories churn out every manner of merchandise which is then taken to coastal ports and shipped around the world. Products range from basic tools to elaborate pieces of artwork, all created by poor artisans operating outside the influence (and support) of guilds. Though most believe the Old Ward is named for the rundown appearance of the area, it was originally believed to be the location of ancient Tal-Grozur, capital of the Gnorzàri Empire.
- Travelers Ward. Most visitors to Grōmr rarely venture outside the Travelers Ward. The proportions of this borough (e.g., ceiling heights, doors, walkways) are sized to accommodate larger races. Many of the more affluent businesses maintain offices in the ward for receiving non-Gnor patrons. The moneychangers of the Travelers Ward are renown for their ability to broker exchanges between all current and historic world currencies. Several mercenary agencies near the city gate are available to offer guard services for visitors to Grōmr.
- Gromran. Natives of the City of Grōmr are called Grōmryr an unbroken chain of residency. All Grōmryn are Nōgyr but the opposite is not true. Lord Mayors and other government officials must be Grōmri. Officials and members of the elite classes are sometimes marked by tattoos. Grōmr tattoos are recognized throughout the world by Gnor and savvy businessmen of other races.
Nomenclature: Gromr Dekàlic: Grōmr (place); Grōmi (pertaining to); Grōmyn (resident); Grōmyr (people)