Vonya’s Span

The only bridge spanning the Svart, Vonya’s Span—or “the Span” as it is colloquially known—is a prominent city landmark. Comprising three great stone arches, it stands at the point the Svart widens on its journey toward the sea. It marks the spot beyond which ocean-going vessels cannot pass.


A towering gatehouse stands at its northern end, warding the Old City. In times of crisis or danger, this gate is shut. Normally, however it remains open. It is always, however, garrisoned by the City Watch who maintain a small garrison here.

The bridge itself is 25-foot wide, but buildings cluster on both sides of the street reducing the usable carriageway to barely 15-foot wide. Housing shops at street level, and cantilevered out over the Svart for an extra ten feet to so, these buildings reach three stories or more into the air. A chokepoint, Vonya’s Span is one of Languard’s busiest streets. It is barely wide enough for two carts to pass side-by-side. Sometimes traffic becomes snarled here and chaos results.

Vonya’s span is named for Vonya Madann—the alcoholic dwarven stonemason responsible for its construction. A companion of Arndul Nenonen—the wandering adventurer who founded Ashlar—she was as skilled as she was troubled. The bridge is of stout dwarven design and construction. Although it is over four centuries old, and one of the oldest structures in the city, it is in excellent condition. Despite this, some say the bridge is haunted by its architect’s capricious shade. Vonya disappeared—tragically—one night while crossing the bridge. Local legend has it her ghost can still be seen on the bridge on the anniversary of her disappearance—as no-one can agree on said anniversary any strange events on the bridge tend to get blamed on Vonya’s restless spirit.

Businesses on the Span

The businesses clustering on the Span are almost all uniformly successful and busy—the sheer volume of traffic on the bridge virtually guarantees this. Most deal with normal, mundane needs: refreshments, clothes, shoes and the like.


Languard is the capital city of Ashlar and closest settlement of note to Gloamhold’s benighted halls. This is a first look at the location, which will appear in its final form in Town Backdrop: Languard which will be published by Raging Swan Press in early 2018.

For more Languard, check out the city’s main page!


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Creighton is the publisher at Raging Swan Press and the designer of the award winning adventure Madness at Gardmore Abbey. He has designed many critically acclaimed modules such as Retribution and Shadowed Keep on the Borderlands and worked with Wizards of the Coast, Paizo, Expeditious Retreat Press, Rite Publishing and Kobold Press.

2 thoughts on “Vonya’s Span”

  1. Hello, Creighton…

    A touch of London Bridge (which itself still boggles my Twentieth Century American mind)! Will there be a boat colony beneath the bridge inhabited by Gypsy-like folks who can help anyone get lost for a price? That’s a handy thing to have, although it’ll snarl river traffic as badly as the shops above do road traffic.

    This is one area where some poorly-traveled Yanks (points at self) would benefit from a mini-map or even a cutaway showing how it all co-exists. Does Languard have any zoning laws or is it classic medieval ad hoc? (Smelly businesses down there and anything else is fair game if it doesn’t burn the town down.)


    1. I hadn’t considered a boat colony under the bridge! I’m not sure there would be space, but I think the idea is great. I might steal it and transplant them to some of the more dingy, dangerous docks.

      Thank you!

      I suspect, I will get a map of the bridge done. It’s a central, important location after all.

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