A Spot of Silver
The Iron Circle appears to be a group of mercenaries operating in the Harkenwold area, maintaining their power through seizure and control of Harken Castle, renamed the Iron Keep. In order to subdue the countryside, they have taken extreme measures: harassing travelers, imprisoning Baron Stockmer, and levying unfair taxes on both businesses and places of local worship. In response to the actions of the heroes, they even burned the town of Marl in retribution for the humiliation of their forces in the inn.
The Iron Circle employs several types of warriors in its attempts to dominate the populations in the southern Nentir Vale. In addition to the ordinary complement of thuggish ruffians, cutthroats, and brigands endemic to any mercenary organization, a few such rogues have attained more soldierly training, while others have developed their innate magical qualities above that of a mere hedge-wizard. Dark tales are told by Harkenwolders, too, of the Tieflings employed by the Circle. However, as the adventurers recently discovered, these warriors are in fact Tar Devils in the service of Asmodeus, suggesting that the Circle is involved in some extremely sinister activities.
There is some proof that the Circle is connected to the southern city of Sarthal. Argenta’s source regarding the events in Harkenwold is from Sarthal, and Greag, Argenta’s driver, had a little more information regarding the existence of a group calling itself the Iron Circle that operated in that area of the world.
The Iron Circle is known to be led, at least in Harkenwold, by a warlord named Nazin Redthorn. Little else is known of the group’s hierarchy or command structure.