Kain Darkwind's Savage Tide
The Shipping News HQ
“Read all about it! Two coppers’ll get you the whole story! Rat Man Spotted in Sewers! Sea Lord in League With Gibbering Cosmic Horror! Gate to Hell in Center of Town! All this plus arrivals and departures, sunrise and sunset, high tide and low, and the continuing adventures of Commander Cody in serial form! Plus our award-winning political column — ’One Sasseriner’s Opinion’ — the column that brought down Sea Lord Drac! For the ladies we have ‘Sasserine After Dark’—all the society gossip you can swallow! All of it for the same two pennies! Thank you, sir! Bless you, ma’am!” —Quick Willie, Paper Boy and Scamp
The Shipping News is Sasserine’s newspaper. Each morning before dawn, scores of young boys and girls take to the streets, laden with bundles of papers. They drop their loads on a street corner and go about the business of selling their rag, calling out headlines to passers-by, cajoling and heckling, and generally being obnoxious until people buy up all the issues.
The Shipping News got its start almost fifty years ago, when a young man named T.K. Calame set out to make his way in the world. Lacking any kind of appreciable skills, he searched for something he could do to keep food in his belly and a maiden in his bed. One advantage he had over his peers was his education. He could read and write, and quite well. He began with a series of pamphlets calling out corruption in the government, uncovering society scandals, and reporting on a variety of current events. At first, he pasted his writings on the sides of buildings and on fingerposts, and it wasn’t long before people would collect in front of his weekly news. It seemed Sasseriners liked to be in the know and preferred Calame’s reliable tales over the fabricated tales spun by the rumormongers and criers.
Calame realized he could turn his experiment into a fortune. He convinced a few merchants and ship captains to invest in his growing business, and before he new it, he had a full-fledged printing operation in the Docks. He sold just a few copies at first, but as word spread, Sasseriners clamored for the latest issue, forcing Calame to step up production, hire reporters, editors, and invest in more expensive printing equipment. By the time he was old and gray, the Shipping News had become Sasserine’s sole source of information, and the era of rumormongers had gone the way of Azlant.
The Shipping News evolved from a single sheet of paper with muddy print into a full-fledged newspaper broken up into sections including classified, society, current events, weather, and much more. C. Q. Calame, T.K.’s grandson, pushed the paper forward, tripling the readership. The Shipping News’ reporters hit the streets all over the city, dredging sensational stories, reporting on rumors, and including inflammatory editorials about key figures in the city. The Shipping News is still concerned with getting its facts straight, but if they can shade the truth to sell more issues, all the better. And if they get a few details wrong, they can always print a retraction in the next issue.
The Shipping News operates out of a large building on the northeastern edge of the Docks, just south of the Eastern District and west of Scurvytown. T.K. Calame chose this site as it afforded easy access to the more interesting parts of the city. The front of the building contains the Shipping News offices, where reporters write their sensational stories, and editors fix the errors and add a few extra details. C.Q. Calame works here as well, writing his regular column, “This Week in Sasserine.”
Behind the offices are the printing presses. The Shipping News employs a large staff to run the machines. The Shipping News credits itself with inventing movable type; although in truth, Calame’s father discovered the technology on one of his visits to a city on the other side of the Hellfurnaces.
With nearly fifty employees, the Shipping News is one of Sasserine’s larger industries. Between editors, writers, copy fitters, and printers, they have a diverse assortment of staff, possessing motives and talents that run the gamut.
Newspaper – 2 cp
Newspaper (bundle) – 19 sp