Lanterns in the Mist
Illmarsh is a small town of primarily antiquated, chinked, split-log buildings, though a few of the more modern halftimbered structures may be found, especially around the town square. The town is dominated by its wharves, from which the fishing trawlers head out every morning and to which they return in the evenings with the day’s catch, immediately followed by the fish market held near the town’s wharves. The fishing has been lethargic lately, as trawlers come back less than half full, if not altogether empty, and the tough times are starting to hit home with the townsfolk.
The town is surrounded on three sides by the swampy Soddentimbers, and a dank mildewy odor perpetually hangs over it, invading the homes and even the clothing of its residents. The odor becomes less noticeable over the course of a day, but Thrushmoor folk always know when an Illmarsher is visiting because of the smell on them. They call them “musties” as a result. The smell usually recedes within a week after leaving the town or after a good washing of all clothing and equipment. On several occasions over the past couple centuries, sickness and plague have sprung from the unwholesome pools and thickets of the Soddentimbers, giving the young settlement once known as Baytown its ultimate moniker—Illmarsh.