Thieves & Kings
Huntmaster Jaervon "Longshanks" Mardesal
Huntmaster Jaervon “Longshanks” Mardesal, a half-elf archer who wears his hair in a long ponytail, currently leads an informal guild of hunters. Longshanks strongly dislikes the fact that bloody-handed murderers, reavers and goblins find a safe haven in Thornkeep. He would like to unite the good people of the area against the outlaws and drive them out, but he is not sure he can muster enough support, so keeps a low profile.
Longshanks and his hunters are fairly friendly with the adventurers, having worked closely with them over the last few months, even training several of them in survival and tracking skills. He recently acquired a minor magical relic handaxe named “Warcry”, which he is rather proud of, finding it easy to practice woodscraft skills with its blade.
The foremost trackers, guides, trappers, and hunters of the Echo Wood belong to the Hunter’s Guild of Thornkeep, based from a rustic hall located on the north edge of town, both roomy and surprisingly comfortable. The main hall is filled with animal pelts, hide rugs, and spectacular trophies the envy of any noble hunter, including a black-feather owlbear and a dire wolverine. Numerous trackers, hunters, trappers and guides live in the barracks of the hall, although only a handful are at the Lodge at any given time – their work is out in the fa reaches of the woodlands. There is a small workshop present for taxidermy and preparing various crafts, as well as a small kitchen. Huntmaster Jaervon also resides here in a small loft suite, over-looking the main hall. There are roughly a dozen rangers that work with the organization, and they charge various fees based upon the task at hand, but 4-5 sp per day is not unheard of, more if danger is expected.
The hunters are the rivals of the Wolfmane barbarians, since both groups provide fresh meat, hides, and guide services to villagers and visitors. However, the rivalry is generally more professional than expected; Longshanks encourages his band not to hunt or guide in lands marked by the Wolfmane as theirs, leaving these deeper parts of the forest alone. The fur trader’s cronies, however, are another matter, as that gang has a history of way-laying any hunters or trappers they encounter in the woods, causing great antipathy between these two factions.
It was revealed in early-Echos, TR 1049, that Tardin “Ironjaw” had been plotting to slay several of Longshank’s huntsmen and blame the lordling for the action, but Ironjaw had never been able to muster the details of the plan. Tardin’s death, and the disappearance of the Wolfmanes, has placed the burden of feeding the townsfolk and farmers of Thornkeep squarely on the heads of Longshanks and his hunter’s guild.
He and his hunters have managed to fulfill this task well over the winter, and are actually rather well-off for common hunters, having managed to corner the market in local fur sales. Their meat, roots and berries are a welcome addition to the local economy, and have begun to openly stand against the various brigands in town.