Majetag, 19th day of Darkember, 432 AC
Twelfth Watch rising 14
The Shoikan Grove Is Expanding
by Carteeg Struve, Staff Writer
Palanthas – The city's most feared tourist attraction appears to be growing in size, according to a number of city workers. As spring comes and repairs start on the major streets, it has come to the attention of officials that weeds are breaking up through stretches of the roadways, including Temple Row, near the Shoikan Grove. As with all roads, growth has been dealt with in the past, but for the first time these weeds seem to include small twisted black oak saplings. It is unknown whether or not these saplings cause the infamous fear effects the rest of the grove's oaks create.
Traffic near the grove is usually at a minimum since almost everyone is pressured away by the fear effects of the trees. Even kender have been known to keep their distance due to feeling "unpleasant" or "queer". Most nearby are tourists who wish to see how close they can get before the panic takes them, regardless of warnings given by the City Guard.
However inspectors who must examine the roadways for needed repairs each year have reported that they have spotted the saplings breaking through the road edge. Due to the grove's proximity they were unable to examine them up close.
The city has contacted the Orders of High Sorcery, hoping to find a way to get road repair crews close enough to fix the damaged stones. The saplings will also be examined to see if they carry the Shoikan curse or if they are simply natural growth from the nearby trees. The City Guard will be overseeing the project to insure no one is threatened by the possible dangers of the grove. A source within the City Guard has stated that the number they will contribute to protect the crews will be inflated appropriately from their usual detail size since last year's murder of a black robe wizard by the Shadow Sorcerer occurred within one of the areas needing repair.