The city sits in a clearing some 10km across and 8km tall, taking up a ~2km diameter circle of that clearing on the South side. Animals and crops are grown in the fields outside the city and hunters and gatherers venture short distances into forest. Mushrooms are cultivated and more creatures are hunted in the caves in the north east that sit just inside the forest boughs.
A spring runs from under the palace down south through the city, becoming a small river supplying much of the city’s water. there are wells scattered around the city, however, so the inhabitants are not forced to travel across the city for their water – though for the more well off, there is a water wagon company that takes water around the city – and also doubles as a fire department. The Hunter’s Guild – which is responsible for the hunting and gathering of food and supplies within the forest – is looked upon with no little awe and bewilderment. Regarded as insanely brave for venturing out into the forest, they are also thought as clinically insane for the same reason. While there are a high number of fatalities (not so much injuries) among the guild’s members, it nevertheless draws in a steady supply of fresh recruits form the city’s more adventurous (and stupid) youths.
The poorer people of the city live in multi-storied houses (though few rise above 5 stories), with a family taking a floor – or sometimes more! – each. Both rich and poor grow gardens on their rooftops for vegetables and many have herbs growing in boxes hanging from the windows. While the different races of the city will mingle and interact (with so few people, there’s not much choice), the orcs, the fetchlings and the more fey beings tend to live in districts with others of their kind. Humans are the predominant race of the city, with orcs and halflings making up most of the rest. Other districts are made up of the various working groups – tradesmen, general merchants, etc. The nobility and wealthy of the city live within the Old City. The Old City was the original settlement that was founded and still has the old, crumbling wall surrounding it. No king has ever seen the need to keep it in repair and so it provides more in the way of a place for children to play soldiers than any defence should the outer wall ever be breached. The outer wall itself is an impressive site: 60ft in height and 50ft thick at the base, tapering up to 30ft at its top. Legend says it was built by the dwarves in payment for a service the city once rendered, but if that’s so then it is just one more of the many pieces of city history lost to time. Also in the Old City is the Gnome Quarter. Full of alchemists, engineers ad inventors, the gnomes have provided the city with many fine contraptions, along with a small amount of house fires. Still they are tolerated as they are considered vastly more useful than they are dangerous (though some among the city nobility whose homes have been reduced to cinders disagree with this strenuously).
The city itself is fairly well engineered, even if the building themselves are not. Roof runoffs, rainwater and sewage are gathered through a network of sewers to an artificial lake under the city’s north, where it is pumped up to irrigate the fields and water the animals through magic and gnomish contraptions. The livestock of the city are brought in every night through a smaller gate to the east of the North Gate (near the Orcish District, who care less about the smell and noise of such things) every night and taken out again in the morning. The roads are well drained and form (mostly) ordered lines. New buildings over the years have turned some areas into more of a warren of streets than any sort of sensible layout, much to the City Watch’s irritation.
The City Watch are no donut-eating slouches, for it is they and the Hunter’s Guild that protect the city form the beasts of the forest. The City Watch is also responsible for the keeping of law and order in Avernus. this they do according to their whim at the time – if they’re in a foul mood, you’d best tread lightly around them.
There are several gods that are worshiped in the city. The two main ones are:
Erastil – God of farming, trade, family, communities/cities
Sarenrae – Goddess of the Sun, redemption, healing
Then several minor ones:
The hunters guild have particular devotion to Gozreh, god of the sea, nature, hunting, weather.
The watch have a few shrines to Gorum, god of war, battle, weapons and valor.
And there is also a small temple in near the courts to Imodae, Goddess of rulers, justice, honour, truth/honesty
No one other than the hunters guild pay any devotion to Gozreh, as the city folk fear the forest and what it contains, nor do people worship worship Ptae (God of the Moon, night, fate, prophesy) as they fear the forest’s dark depths and so associate the moon and the darkness it accompanies with the gloom outside the walls.