Gateway to Adventure
The Wall is the edge of the Empire of Manu. The Wall is forty feet high, fifteen feet wide, and twenty miles long. The Wall terminated in the South at the sea, where great catapults and trebuchets guarded against any monsters that might think to attack around the edge of The Wall. In the north, The Wall ended in a great mountain cliff, a thousand feet high and chiseled completely smooth by Dwarven craftsmen. This was the border with the Dwarven kingdom. The Dwarves have a great gate built into the mountain, that opens on to the wall. To the east of The Wall was the Empire of Manu; the thousands of ordinary villages, normal towns, and the magnificent city of Manu in the center. To the west of The Wall lies the wilderness, containing all manner of strange beasts, forgotten temples, and hidden treasures.
In the center of The Wall—10 miles from the sea and 10 from the cliff—sits the Gate in The Wall. There is but one Gate, and rarely does it open, although any citizen of the Empire in good standing can obtain a pass. Those who survive the wilderness are required to pay to the Empire a tenth of their spoils in order to pass back through the gate. The wall has a tower every mile that houses a squad of men and a ballista. Each tower is always manned. The Gate commander is Major Hardahs.
Gateway is the garrison-town of the Gate and the Wall. Around 1200 people live in Gateway; 200 soldiers of the Wall, and about a thousand ordinary citizens. Gateway is a walled town, and the soldiers man the walls of Gateway as well as the Wall proper. There is a Sheriff Vimes charged with keeping order inside the town, although he can call on Major Vimes for assistance as needed. Minor crimes are punished using the stocks; major crimes are punished by simply expelling the person through the Gate without a pass and without weapons. There is no returning through the Gate without a pass, making this the equivalent of a death sentence. As you might expect, crime is almost non-existent in Gateway. Gateway is ruled by Mayor Tristan Loywat, although Manu does not provide him with a lot of decision-making powers.
The Axe & Thistle is the most friendly place in town to those who are more than simple farmers and shopkeepers. It’s the favorite of the soldiers; it’s also popular with adventuring types, who usually try and hit on the barkeep, Sally “no chance” Gunest, with promises of returning for her hand in marriage with the treasures they will find just beyond the gate. Sally welcomes all types into her bar, and even into the rooms she rents upstairs. On the other hand, it’s easier to pickpocket Sherrif Vimes than it is to seduce Sally. That doesn’t stop the soldiers and adventurers from trying, however, and as long as they tip well, Sally puts up with their declarations of undying love with the good humor of a woman who knows that any that step out of line will have to answer to a few dozen other suitors in the alley behind the bar.