Pick and Stone Fair of Ura
The Enclave > Known Roads > Ura

Stoneworkers and pick-wielders of Ura turn to other occupations while snow piles high in the hollows left from the past summer's work, sustained by coin from the Red Iron Guild. Around the time of last snow, when the ground softens and troubadors depart their winter retreats in Port, Three Stones and Mirael, the Pick and Stone Fair is held in Ura.

Since the Year of Winter, that terrible, unending season of Trespassers and wizardry, when snow and hail buried the Red Iron Road and a third of Ura's commonfolk starved, the Pick and Stone Fair has grown in significance. What was once a small, traditional occasion - marked by coin passed to the few troubadors who wintered in Ura and a late night of ale and carefully husbanded provisions in the tavern and manses - has become an event to rival the summer fair at One Stone. Coin flows freely from the Guildmaster, merchants and players brave the thawing, muddied Known Roads to claim their share, and even some cityfolk from Port - and thieves too, no doubt - have taken to making the journey in recent years.

A successful fair is taken as a good sign for the seasons to come; it is a defiance of the Farthest Winter and its hold over the Enclave lands. After troubadors have played their part and the last of the ale has gone, half of Ura follow the stoneworkers and minefolk out to the quarries, where they compete - often drunkenly - for the right to be first to break the earth and win a purse of Guild-pressed coin from the Red Iron Guildmaster.

[ Posted by Reason on August 22, 2005 ]