Bertelnammerson and Ernielnartera (Bert and Ernie) are a married Gnome couple and take care of all the blacksmith related needs in Ad. Bob Builder is the Go-To man for anything wood or carpentry related, and kindly Alba is the owner of the local alehouse. James is the only name of the town’s safety-obsessed head Watchman. His OCD tendencies come in handy in town defense and safety, but he often drives himself to tears worrying about security when caravans or any other large influx of new faces arrive. The last notable is crazy Mergil the Paranoid. He owns one of the larger (and the only circular) house in town. However, he will not enter the building and won’t permit anyone else to enter either for fear that the walls will fall in on them. He sleeps at the front door, keeping a constant vigil against the “dangerous” building.
In all, around 150 humans, 30 elves, 25 dwarves, 2 gnomes, and 50 members of other races or of mixed racial parentage live in and around Ad. Most of them live in cabins and homesteads outside the stockade of the Village itself. In all, only 15 buildings fill the tiny protective wall, but Ad has neither the manpower nor the funds to expand without risking the town’s security and subsequently driving James truly mad. Mayor Silverwroth has promised that he will authorize an expansion as soon as someone can present a viable plan and convince him that it can be done without crippling the Village’s security , James’s sanity, and completely draining Ad’s coffers.
In general, the people of Ad are very isolated from the rest of Calfon and can’t keep a secret to save their lives. It is not uncommon for a rumor, once started, to have reached every ear in town by the end of a day and every outlying farm by the night of the next day. Everyone knows everyone and everyone knows a stranger. It is also not uncommon for a stranger to arrive in town and be completely taken off guard by a town that already knows not only that they’re coming, but what they look like and exactly what they’ve been up to for the last several hours. Once or twice, Sigfried has met a weary Lusemite trader at the gates with exactly what they were going to say they wanted to order, leading to a Lusemite rumor of a seer living in the Village.
It can be hard to earn trust in such a small community, but, once earned, the citizens of Ad will stand by their community through just about anything. That’s why, when the despised Jo “Dirtbag” Grubman’s horse fell ill last spring, half the town turned up with their oxen and horses in tow to get his stumps pulled up in time for planting. He may be the scum of the earth, but he was of Ad.
Caravans from the farms and cities to the east make the hazardous journey through the thick Mendar Forest twice per year. This tends to mark an additional seasonal cycle for Ad in addition to the weather outside. The first series caravans start arriving just after planting season and trickle in over the next month; marking the beginning of “money season” as Mr. Rambleman likes to call it. The caravans arrive, trade, and leave quickly on the first run, carrying with them fine lumber, furs, and tribal crafts from Lusem in trade for manufactured goods, advanced tools, news, luxury items, and the occasional magical item. Orders for specific items are placed during this run. The caravans then travel east, trade at various posts and towns in the north of Calfon, and return once more with deliveries and orders before they are forced back through the forest by snows, worsening road conditions, and the threat of migratory predators that inhabit the area in the late fall.
Lusemite traders arrive at the town every so often, but rarely follow a set schedule. They most often trade for textiles, forged tools, and Alba’s herbal remedies. In return they supply rare herbs, reagents, and furrs.