Dusken Glade Inn
Sitting on High Street, practically at the crux where the Trades, Castle, and North Wards meet, the Dusken Glade Inn has been open for about a decade. In that time, it has become a fixture in the neighborhood, a place where the city's quill-pushers meet the noblility meet the merchants (both rough and refined). It is also a space for the folk of Twilight Vaeteru, whose spectacle transforms the large taproom into a fairy tale ambiance some nights of the tenday. The sheer variety of folk here means that no one really stands out: the noble in his cloth-of-gold brocade waistcoat might sit one table over from the drover still smelling of the road, and neither blink an eye.
Everyone comes to the Dusken Glade Inn at one time or another, it is said, and who can blame them? All but nightly performances of both musical performance and the gender-illusions of saececraft always means there's entertainment with one's drink or supper, both of which are fair indeed. For those seeking a bit more relaxation, there are a set of heated baths in the cellars for relaxing after a hard day's work. Locals frequently rent out the gardens or the rooftop promenade, as well, borrowing some of the inn's ambiance for their own soirees.
- Taproom: Practically the size of a warehouse, the Dusken Glade only rarely fills its taproom (extremely busy times with all hands on-deck, to be sure). Almost a dozen-and-a-half tables are scattered around the floor, weaving in and out between the two rows of wooden pillars that hold up the second floor's promenade. The bar, some forty-five feet in length takes up a good portion of the southern wall, with jakes, stairs to the second floor, and a simple door under the stairs that leads to the stairs to the baths. A stage sits in the northeastern portion of the room. Both the doors that lead to the street outside and to the garden are double doors, with single doors leading to kitchens and performer's lounge.
- Performer's Lounge: This is a simple, intimate relaxation spot for performers or bards before they take the stage. It has some house wine and fresh water at all times, along with whatever simple snacks the kitchens put out. A door leads from here to the performer's quarters, and to the courtyard outside.
- Performer's Quarters: Each night, Denabria gives one of their performers these free quarters. A comfortable bed and privacy that too many traveling minstrels never get is frequently enough to make musicians attempt to come back to the inn.
- Gardens: An outdoor garden roughly thirty feet on a side, with a central table, fountain to one side, a bench along the north wall, and a wrought iron fence (with a modest, usually-locked gate) separating the gardens from the courtyard, the gardens are a favorite party spot for visiting nobles and the occasional well-off patron. A large glass window is situated such that partiers out here can still watch (and mostly hear) the performance on-stage, should they choose.
- Kitchens: With a door in from the courtyard outside and a door into the taproom, the kitchen stays busy most hours of the day. Deliveries are taken here (and usually hoisted down the cellar stairs for storage). Multiple tables are spaced against walls for cutting and preparing food, with a massive twelve-foot-wide hearth that includes space for multiple kettles, and a wood-burning stove next to it. A large basin of water in one corner is dipped from with various containers that are then taken to work stations for whatever their intended use.
- Fine Rooms: Comfortable Lifestyle. The rooms on this floor are all fine quality, and usually given to those who state a desire to be near the festivities at night. Both sets of rooms include a wooden promenade between the stairs from the first floor and the stairs to the third, where folk staying in these rooms can lounge, leaning against the railing, or even holler down orders to the bar below. The space isn't entirely private, as folk heading up to third floor rooms tramp past occasionally. The rooms themselves feature sizeable beds, along with a desk and chair, an overstuffed lounge chair, a wardrobe, chest, and two side tables.
- Common Rooms: Modest Lifestyle. Smaller and sparser in decor and furnishings, the common rooms are two beds to a room, with a single two-seat table and a bedside table between the beds. As these rooms maybe shared with strangers, there is no guarantee of privacy or security – it's a place to doss down, and little else. Denabria doesn't start doubling up occupancy until these rooms are all filled singly, though, so it isn't uncommon to have a chamber all to oneself. There is no chamber pot or meal service to these rooms.
- Maids' Chamber: A chamber for maids to retrieve the materials they use for cleaning, it is lined with storage shelves, and massive wardrobes for bedclothes and the like in the center of them.
- Fine Rooms: Comfortable Lifestyle. The fine rooms are more lavish, like those on the second floor.
- Denabria & Zavelinda's Home: The eastern portion of this floor is a set of rooms that are the residence for Denabria and Zavelinda. Meals are frequently brought up to them, although Denabria eschews the services of any of the maids in cleaning (even though they're all perfectly willing). She cherishes her privacy over any convenience. The arcane locked entry at the top of the stairs leads to their family room, with social space, Denabria's desk where she does inn business, and Zavelinda's divan where she reclines to read right next to it. A door off of there leads to their master bedchamber, with two hearthside chairs and a large bed, plus a doorway into their wardrobe, jakes, and hearthside bath. The library is through a doorway from the family room, and features wall-shelves positively groaning with books, with a set of setees and tables in the middle of the carpeted room between them. A hallway continues from there, leading to their trophy room and armory, filled with Zavelinda's trophies and keepsakes from her years of adventuring. The hallway continues on around a corner, ending in two guest bedrooms (which are basically personalized versions of the inn's "fine rooms") and a guests jakes.
- The Attics: Down the hallway away from the stairs, a set of double doors stand arcane locked. Within the attic storage are a bevy of old furniture, crated goods, and various things that inevitably find their way into attic storage. Along the back wall are three closet doors: one full of trunks with linens and clothing, one with shelves full of house wares, and one shallow closet with a cabinet of the house silver within.
- The War Room: Hidden in the space behind both the attics and the owners' home is the war room, a space set aside for Harper use: specifically, for the Dusken Glade Cell of Harpers. The room itself features a large meeting table, surrounded by shelves and tables with all manner of useful tools and goods. One nook has a trio of smaller cots, used as an infirmary when necessary. The sole door out of this room leads to the portal chamber, which features not merely a teleportation circle burnt into the wooden floor, but also an invisible portal to and from the Ardeep Forest Harper Refuge. A variety of secret doors (S) lead to this part of the fourth floor: two in the silver closet of the attics and the library in Denabria and Zavelinda's home exit into the portal chamber, while another secret door leads from the library into a passage between rooms, ending in another secret door that opens into the war room proper.
- Secret Doors (S): Perception DC 15. Success results in someone noticing that something is odd about that section of wall, either scuff marks on the floor or a line of discoloration between two parts of the wall. Investigation DC 14. Success results in discovering the limits of the door, as well as the fact that they have no opening mechanisms save the effects of arcane locks on each of them. They open by password alone.
- Rooftop Garden: Though the rooftop garden promenade here is available for rental, by and large it is used by the owners and the Harpers for their purposes. Denabria is fond of taking meals out here (hauling a table and chair out of the attic down the hall), sometimes with her wife. When Zavelinda is home, she frequently practices her martial arts up here. The Dusken Glade cell also has free access to this space for private socializing or training, and one of their number – the aarakocra named Clarc – occasionally simply uses this as his entryway into the inn.
- The Baths: A small door in the base of the stairs on the first floor opens to a stone landing, and a stone spiral staircase that descends into the basements. It ends in a tiled landing, with steps down into a set of marble baths, and an attendant sits on a stool nearby next to a wardrobe. She points visitors to one of the changing rooms, advising them to use the basins therein to scrub themselves clean before entering the heated baths. These changing rooms are sizeable, and more than one have been used for assignations with someone interesting met in the taproom or baths before (although management officially frowns on it). Once clean and naked, with clothing handed off to the attendant for keeping in the wardrobe next to them, bathers may step into one of the smaller private baths, intended for no more than one or two folk at a time, or may walk all the way down to the end where the very large and deep tub awaits larger numbers of bathers.
- Secret Door (S): A secret door, identical to those on the fourth floor, leads from one of the changing rooms to the wine cellar, where an entire panel of wall-mounted wine-rack swings open at the use of the proper password on the arcane lock spell.
- The Cellars: Kitchen stairs lead down into the pantry cellar where many of the goods that see more immediate use or that do not require specialized storage are kept. Doors lead to the wine cellar where jars, barrels, and bottles of wine await use by the establishment (and a secret door leads into the changing rooms in the baths). Next to it is the cold storage space, a room with a modest (but expensive) enchantment that cools it and helps to keep the goods within chilled. Through another door is the low and dark root cellar, with its barrels of root vegetables and other goods that are kept at a steady temperature and humidity.
The Dusken Glade is owned by Denabria and her wife Zavalinda.
Owner & Proprietress; Zavelinda's wife
Denabria opened the Dusken Glade some ten years ago. She loves telling the story of how her beloved wife came home from a particularly successful bit of adventure with some friends utterly laden down with gold, and by the end of that tenday, they were sweeping out the old building and turning it into their home and business together. Denabria is warm and welcoming, although she doesn't trust easily or immediately. She has deliberately turned her inn into a safe place for vaeterann (queer) folk in Waterdeep, and adores the folk who come with that. She is very protective of them, as well – those who step out of line are in for a rude shock, as Denabria's clever wit can go from nurture to savagery in the blink of an eye. Denabria is an abjuration wizard, with a variety of useful spells, including alarm, arcane lock, and glyph of warding.
Adventurer; Denabria's wife
Though Zavelinda doesn't really want much to do with running the Dusken Glade, one of its main features is because of her: the incredible variety of music and musicians that come through it. Zavelinda has a weakness for good (or even mediocre, really) bards, and often invites them to come and perform. By and large, when Zavelinda is around, she can be found at the bar, or near the stage if someone is playing, or up in her and Denabria's home at the top of the inn. She won't hesitate to step in should patrons get rowdy, either – she is a monk of some skill at fighting, with years of adventuring combat to her name.
Door-ward (and secret hairstylist)
Though Sheila is mostly retired from her days as a hair-stylist (thanks to the ongoing generosity of the Popinjays), she works at the Dusken Glade Inn as a bouncer. Her time with the Popinjays (and particularly with Psalm) has given her a fondness for vaeterann folk, and the atmosphere at the Dusken Glade simply delights her. So, she tends to the door, ready and happy to eject bigots and troublemakers when needful, but equally ready to help rush back and avert disaster should something horrible happen to a saece performer's wig-coiffure.
The burly man who keeps the Dusken Glade's bar has a grim demeanor to him, often listening to his patrons' problems in a half-distracted way that is nonetheless fairly comforting. He is also very good at guessing what people prefer to drink. His silence isn't due to a taciturn nature, however; Grimmund is non-verbal, and uses a finger-language to communicate. Most of the staff at the Dusken Glade know a few bits of the language, and several of them (including both proprietors) are quite fluent in the language. Indeed, they've found it useful even beyond communicating with Grimmund: it has proven a simple way of communicating across a crowded and loud taproom. Grimmund is fond of exhibition fights, and frequents both those at the Field of Triumph and at the Griffin Gathers locally.
Tawnie Nurwickett, the elderly gnomish Bath attendant, also a Watcher. Granny Nurwickett comes across a brusque and all business and is a keen watcher of people and snooper of pockets. She is fascinated with Sylyra's great height and has given her special use of the large bath when no one is around. She is uncharacteristically kind to her "giant blue lassy" (Sylyra), who she brings out the nicer soaps for (the ones that smell of the woods).
Wait Staff & Performer
Sky is a waiter at the Dusken Glade and occasional entertainer. He plays a bit of harp and drums, but his greatest love is the art of dancing. He has been a frequent ally to Harpers in need, often helping keep them hidden in the city or smuggling them out. Though he is always happy to help in a pinch, he has repeatedly declined invitation to officially become one of their number. Sky is one of the tabaxi, a race of humanoid jaguars that hail from some unknown, distant jungle. He is 6' 7" tall, slim and athletic, covered with golden-brown fur with black markings and emerald green eyes. Sky is always wearing the cutting edge in Waterdhavian womens high fashion and jewelry. He is particularly fond of dresses and coats befitting a lady of status. He adores gowns with high collars and is especially drawn to fine fur coats - Waterdeep is a chilly place after all. When performing he likes to wear somewhat skimpy garments leaving little to the imagination, often draped with airy lace or else layered skirts that swirl around him as he moves.
The walrus-moustachioed Bralveinyn is absolute master of his domain, for which Denabria is thankful. Though he runs his kitchen like a tyrant, the food that comes out of it certainly seems to make it worth it.
Bralveinyn's daughter Alonel is a hard-working lass who is learning her father's trade. Though she is diligent in her duties, she also frequently peeks out of the kitchen doors at the spectacle and revelry going on out in the taproom, watching longingly until her father calls her back to task.
Fil's job is to tend to the taproom, lending a hand with whatever is needful. His first job is making sure that the bar has everything it needs, from clean glasses to new casks. He fills in the time between by making his way through the large taproom to round up dishes to take to the kitchens, and lends a hand with dish-washing and serving when he has a moment. The handsome young man is a favorite of many of the inn's patrons, especially given his preference for working shirtless when nights heat up in the taproom.
Part of the local Watch patrol, Phaumrover is fond of the Dusken Glade. Considering himself a sort of guardian of Twilight Vaeteru (he himself being vaeterann), he is a sweet-natured, quiet fellow and often stops in for dinner and a listen to the music before heading home.
Saece Performer & Barfly
The Lady Herself (as many in Twilight Vaeteru call them) is a fixture in the many establishments that cater to vaeterann folk, particularly the Dusken Glade Inn. Frequently intoxicated, and very prone to saece performances that, as Zavelinda once said fondly: "Her performances are to saececraft what the Spellplague was to magic." Still, vaeterann folk are often quite protective of them even while rolling their eyes at what a mess they are. Denabria in particular is well-known for insisting that the Lady Herself eat something solid, and occasionally shuffles them off to bed when the melancholy and cheap alcohol have done them in.