Here's a bit about the local government.

The Count rules in the name of the King. At least that's the way it's supposed to work. In fact it is more complicated than that.

First, the current Count of Restenford is new on the job (he's been the Count for a bit more than a year). He also isn't all that bright. His family worked hard to have one of their members appointed, but didn't want to exile any of their "best and brightest" to the boonies. The current Count was chosen because he looks the part (charisma: 18+) and because he agreed to let the family selected Chief of Staff (from an allied minor noble house) run things.

Another complication is the Town Council of Restenford. For many years the council was the highest government body on this continent. When the Count of Restenford was established, their powers outside of the town were removed, but they still govern Restenford (reporting to the Count, but outside of his direct control).

The final complication is the bureaucracy that has grown up in support of the series of weak Counts of Restenford before the current Count (or at least before the current Chief of Staff). They've gotten used to running things by (their own) book and mostly ignore whoever is Count (though they would never disobey a direct order :-).