Population: 10,000 Eshpurta is a rugged border town with a stable population, but not a thriving metropolis like Athkatla.
Industry: Eshpurta is home to a number of thriving businesses. It serves as a crossroads for both water-based and overland trade to the north and east out of Amn. It is also home to a thriving lumber industry, which feeds much of the country from its base in the Snakewood.
Government: Ruling council of noble merchant houses.
Law: As with the rest of Amn, the law in Eshpurta is founded on one solid principle: Greed. Possession and wealth are king, and personal rights are minimal. For the right price (bribe), one can obtain the right to do most anything, though infringing on another’s property rights can become quite costly.
As is true across all of Amn, the use of arcane magic is technically illegal without a permit, though the Cowled Wizard presence in this relative backwater is minimal, and the law is only sporadically enforced.
Law Enforcement: The various laws and rights are enforced primarily by independant organizations, such as the house guards of the noble merchant houses. Though there is a nominal and theoretically neutral city watch presence.
City Watch: 100 men-at-arms led by Captain Byron Brighttassle. The city watch does maintain some minor amount of order within the city, but is almost entirely bought-and-paid for by the merchant houses. Their prime function is to man the city walls and collect tolls. Other than that, there is some minor attempt to crack down on pickpockets and the like, though violent crime is almost always ignored.
Cowled Wizards: Nominally unlicensed magic users are illegal in Amn, though the Eshpurta only casually enforces this law. There is a circle of licensed Cowled Wizards housed in the city, with headquarters in a tower in the northwestern wall of the city. The circle consists of Head Wizard Neflas and 7 other wizards and warlocks. The fee for all wizards and warlocks is nominally 200 gp, and any overt use of magic is subject to further charges. Offensive use of magic officially warrants the death penalty with no trial.
House Guards: Each merchant house has a house guard of troops who serve the needs of the house. These guards often come into conflict with the forces of other houses, as the desires of each house rarely coincide with those of the others. There is an unofficial rule that major conflicts are settled within one each House’s compounds, as the common areas being damaged would generally result in a loss of revenue for all parties.
Mercenary Companies: There are a number of free-lance mercenary companies in the area who are generally associated with one house at any given time, but bear no real loyalty to any one.
Temple of Waukeen – largest temple in town, located on one side of the the main merchant square. Clergy of 50 priests led by High-Priest Delver Silverthumb. The party is likely to interact primarily with Chief Moneylender Wencil.
Abby of Lut Marken – a small monastery of Tyr on the outskirts of town. The brothers are looked upon poorly by most of the inhabitants, who are generally content to live under the order of the merchant houses. The brothers of Justice are not allowed within the city walls, and any who go to consult them will evoke concern from the city guards.
Shrine of Illmatar – There is a small shrine near the east gate of the city that serves the poor and travelers, minor healing services can be found here, but it is largely eclipsed by the larger and more expensive temple of Waukeen. Father Quhom is the sole caretaker of the shrine, a former horselord, who still maintains some of his tribal ways.
Temple of Tymora – rivaling the temple of Waukeen, there is a real, sometimes heated rivalry between the two churches. It is situated on the opposite side of the merchant square. High-Priest Aileen Hightower heads the temple, but the party is most likely to interact with Brother Morgan, one of the junior acolytes and gambling managers.