Thousands gathered in Tradegate for its annual New Year’s celebration. On the tail end of a panel discussion spurning the old gods hosted by the Allegiant and moderated by acting Minster Heartsong, a glorious fireworks display concluded another epic, citywide celebration. The high spirits of the crowd seemed to peak as the audience burst into laughter together.
Little paid any attention first to the giggles gurgling from the frivolity at first—all symptoms of a wonderful time. But then, the laughter increasingly felt forced. As the crowd began noticing that they couldn’t control their own laughter, people’s anxieties grew into panic as they began struggling to breathe. The local town guard was called in to bring the peace and to prevent riots and to force citizens back into their homes, taverns—or really anywhere but the streets. No casualties have yet been reported.
Initial diagnoses from local spiritualists identified that the affliction was of a laughing disease of unknown origins that was spreading like wildfire through Tradegate. Heavily contagious, the disease’s strand was not one ever faced by the spiritualists before. As all cases analyzed were still early in the disease’s incubation, the spiritualists expressed concern about what would happen as the disease progressed in the body. They are still heavily monitoring cases but expressed a lack of magical ability to cure every case of the disease in the city.
Tradegate officials cannot confirm the disease has been contained in the chaos of its onset, stating it was possible parties fled the city with the disease. In an effort to further stop the spread, by order of the king, Tradegate has been officially quarantined. To help maintain order, the Irvanshirian Army has been called to help enforce the entrances and exits of all parties in and out of Tradegate.
Irvanshirian economists are claiming that every day of Tradegate’s quarantine will amount in serious—even catastrophic—consequence to the Irvanshirian economy, with thousands of gold projected to be lost. They are still uncertain of the impact this will have, by consequence, on the rest of Irvanshire, but the outlook at this time appears grim, especially for those most in need who do business with Tradegate frequently.
Should anyone have any information about the disease, a cure, or anything to help in this crisis, they are asked to report to an Irvanshirian soldier outside of Tradegate—who will then direct you to the appropriate avenue depending on area of aid.