Rickety streets filled with strange smells and loud shouting. This is how you know you are in Blacksands Marketplace.
Things are different here; if you are not a resident one would be wise to take preparations before setting foot in the Market. For instance, leave your gold at home or hidden in your breast pocket. It's going to be gone by the time you enter the pub if you are not careful.
A great place to trade strange and maybe illegal goods (we never ask). Meetings between two organizations or followings who wish a neutral setting may happen in Blacksands. Although the Red Queen can bring chaos she always opens her doors to possible new opportunities.
Blacksands Marketplace bridges the gap between the two major continents of Terra. Those travelling without a boat between Nique Taure or Montset to Estvale or Meerdistrin must brave the markets. The climate is hot and dry, only the breeze coming off the ocean offers a brief reprieve from the unrelenting sun beating down on the sands.
The markets rival even the hustle and bustle of Estvale's habor trade. It has a reputation for housing shady characters, but those with reasonable street smarts manage just fine. Whether they seek the unique goods of the markets, the loose morals of the more adult entertainment to be found, or wish to escape the structure of a more rigid city, there is something for everyone in Blacksands. Thugs, brutes, and warlords are the primary residents of this small island. They also include dancers, bards, and anyone else who wants to feel at home who doesn't belong anywhere else.
No one rules this place yet somehow it seems to live and breathe on its own. The city has no formal leadership. It is said at one point in the past it did, but never again will it see a leader other than the Red Queen sit upon its throne. Despite its shady nature, it is considered a somewhat neutral zone between the neighboring cities. The heart of the markets cannot be tamed and that is exactly how its residents like it.
The Red Queen Tsern has a strong grip on the desert island. Ambition, passion, and mischief have free reign on the streets. The often misunderstood Goddess can stir up trouble in other cities, but in Blacksands she is welcomed and shifts to fit the passion of lovers or the violence of warlords.
Although no one is certain, it is thought that Blacksands Marketplace is the youngest of the major settlements on Terra. Popping up only to harbor those who did not fit in with the major cities on either continent. There were perhaps those native to this island before, but their history has been mostly overshadowed by the tales of the market's unique wares and shady residents of infamy. With no formal government remaining, there is little written record from Blacksands' perspective. Most writings you will find are in the libraries of other cities - recorded interactions or disputes.