The Rose & Thorn
Inn • Traveler's Quintan, Liminal
The Rose & Thorn is one of the largest inns in the Traveler's Quintan of Liminal, and as such, always busy. They have a reputation of preferring long-term boarders, offering a fortnight's residence for the price of ten nights. Their staff is friendly and attentive, and the proprietress Rose Hobb is outgoing woman who makes friends easily, as well as being a shrewd businesswoman. Her husband, Sauder "Thorn" Hobb is just as prickly as his name, preferring to tend the bar and keep an eye out for trouble.
- Rose Hobb: A woman in her mid-thirties, Pretty Rose's hair is a lovely waist-length cascade of red, and her eyes twinkle blue. Rose is a charmer, with a beautiful singing voice. She is also a shrewd business-woman, with a sharp mind for numbers. Rose inherited the inn from her father, who was a mediocre innkeep at best, though he loved the place well. Under her control, the inn - renamed the Rose & Thorn after her hand-fasting with Sauder - has prospered well and become one of the most successful inns in the quintan. Rose and Sauder share a room.
- Sauder "Thorn" Hobb: A grim-faced man retired from the city guard, Sauder has long been called "Thorn" for his prickly personality. Though still in good shape, he walks with a limp, thanks to the events that cost him his livelihood. Upon being paid a final wage and wergild from the watch for his career-ending injury, Sauder sought to drink himself to death, and so settled into the inn newly inherited by a red-headed beauty to do so, figuring that while he might find cheaper places to do so in, he'd not find one with a better view. He woke several days later, in Rose's bed, and the two have been inseparable ever since. Taking the rest of his wergild, the two of them invested in improvements to the inn, which have paid off many times over. Sauder can be grim-faced and ill-tempered, and doesn't tolerate fools gladly, but he is wise enough to know to leave the running of the business to his lady, backing her up when necessary. His old friends in the watch visit him often, enjoying a small discount, which has contributed to making the Rose & Thorn one of the safest inns in the area as well.
- Dilia, Molly, Wendy & Elisa: Barmaids & Servers. Though all four girls are rarely working at the same time, there are almost never fewer than three of them helping out in an evening, and always at least two during the day. Dilia is the oldest of the girls, a woman in her early 40s with salt-and-peppered black hair, having worked in the inn since the time of Rose's father and grown up with Rose; she helps keep the other girls in line. Molly is a blonde in her mid-twenties and fond of finger-rings. She is an outrageous flirt, though she doesn't give herself over to anyone - she intends to "marry well," as she brags to the others. At about the same age, Wendy is a red-haired, freckle-faced, bare-foot lass who is also quite the flirt; she enjoys her pleasures well, though, and is not above following a patron to bed to keep one another warm at night. The youngest girl, Elisa is in her late teens, a sweet-natured mousy and somewhat clumsy girl with brown hair whom the others watch out for quite protectively. The girls all sleep in the maids' rooms.
- Granny Hobb: Cook. Rose's grandmother acts as the head cook, though on many nights she leaves the actual preparation of the food to her helpers Kolin and Edelle. She can often be found at her chair by the fire, a pint of cider at her elbow, darning socks or tending to other sewing, listening good-naturedly to the talk about the inn. She has a reputation as an herb-witch, and many people seek her wisdom out. Granny Hobb has a small house nearby.
- Kolin & Edelle: Kitchen Helpers. A half-elven brother and sister, Kolin and Edelle are obviously related, both with distinctive chestnut-colored hair. Kolin is a strapping youth of fifteen who is dedicated to one day working as a chef in a great House; his little sister Edelle is twelve, and quite mischievous, always getting into some trouble or another. Kolin shares a room with Dustin; Edelle sleeps in the maids' rooms.
- "Ogre" MaKey: Bouncer. A massive-strapping half-orc, with a scar over one eye, "Ogre" is not just a bouncer for the inn, keeping things quiet, but also makes the occasional appearance at the local fight-pit. He is a favorite among the locals, and his reputation goes a long way toward helping keep the Rose & Thorn free from bar-fights and the like. "Ogre" maintains rooms nearby.
- Dustin, Alyce & Kara: Other Staff. Dustin is a thin and quiet young man with dark hair. He is a general handiman and helper, assisting with carrying things and keeping the inn in good repair. He is also on hand to help "Ogre" if things get a bit tough; the half-orc has taken the young man under his wing and taught him some fighting. Alyce, a widow in her late-40s with greying hair and a fondness for her pipe, is the housekeeper. She oversees Kara - a young-seeming female dwarf - the inn's sole maid. Together, however, the two are quite industrious, keeping the inn in tip-top shape. Dustin shares a room with Kolin; Alyce and Kara sleep in the maids' rooms.
- Younger Nate: Stablehand. Not usually allowed in the front part of the inn, Younger Nate is in charge of the stables after the recent death of Older Nate (they were not related). Though he's only fourteen, he begged Rose to let him take charge of the stables, instead of hiring a new stablemaster, so she has reluctantly agreed to let him try (with some behind-the-scenes coaxing from Sauder). As such, he is anxious to prove himself well, often asking patrons to keep their coins and instead tell Rose how pleased they are with his service directly. Nate has a cot above the stables.
- Taproom (1): The favored gathering room in the quintan, the taproom of the Rose & Thorn has seen many parties, celebrations and wakes for the people of the neighborhood. It is also where many of the traveling merchants retire after the market closes and is the location for much wheeling and dealing after hours.
- Private Booths (2 – 4): These booths are often used by those who don't wish to rub elbows with the "lower classes," or by adventurers planning their next quests. These can be rented for 3 sp a night.
- Stairs (5): These stairs lead up to the rooms above.
- Stage (6): This stage is, on many nights of the week, occupied by a bard, usually a traveler who has stopped in to make a bit of money. A bard who wishes to perform for money must have rented at least a guest room if he wishes to keep the entirety of the proceeds. Otherwise, the house requires half of the money in return for a bed in the floproom and a single meal (the quality of which depends on how much he brought in).
- Bar (7): Thorn usually tends the bar on most nights, though Kolin or Dustin may fill in for him for a time. During the day, the bar-maid takes care of the pulling of drinks and the like. Behind the bar is the staircase that leads up to the fine guest rooms – only those who have rented a room there may use it.
- Privies (8 – 9): These privies are kept scrupulously clean, and the cold ashes of the various hearths mixed with aromatic crushed herbs are dumped into them twice a day to prevent undue stench.
- Traveler's Entrance (10): Because many travelers come to the Rose & Thorn with horses, this is the entrance that many of them use, as it leads to the stables outside. A bell is hung from the door so that it rings, awakening whichever of the residents has nightclerk duty that night.
- Nightclerk's Quarters (11): The bed here is simple, as this room is used for whomever happens to have nightclerk duty that evening, allowing them to be awakened by the ringing bell at the traveler's entrance. Most evenings, this duty falls to Dustin or Alyce.
- Room Key Storage (12): This is the room where the keys to the various rooms are stored in, along with a variety of towels, bedding and a variety of other quick amenities that might be called for by a just-arrived traveler.
- Storeroom (13): The storeroom holds many of the cleaning supplies and other necessary tools and non-food goods necessary to see to the running of the Rose & Thorn.
- Records Room/Library (14): Rose's father wasn't much of a reader, maintaining this room for the keeping of his books, both professional and scholarly. Rose herself is a voracious reader, and Sauder has taken up this room and begun stocking it with the occasional book that comes his way. Though not much of a reader himself, Sauder takes a great deal of pride in his lady's learning.
- Shrine (15): This shrine holds small household altars to two of the gods: Aldinmure the cross-roads god, for his blessings on travelers as well as his patronage of the city as a whole, and to Edyma the hearth-and-home goddess.
- Private Lounge (16): This is the small lounge set aside for employees to relax and take meals in. It is rarely anyone in here.
- Kolin and Dustin's Room (17): The boys' room is slightly musty and messy, as they aren't the best housekeeper. Alyce insists they clean it at least once a week, however.
- Maids' Rooms (18 – 19): These are the quarters that the young women employed at the Rose & Thorn live in. Dilia, Wendy and Elisa are in one room (18). Alyce, Kara, Edelle and Molly are in the other (19), with Kara and Edelle sharing a bed there.
- Granny Hobb's Room (20): This room holds all of the gardening supplies used by Granny Hobb, as well as her bed. The room smells of fresh earth and the many herbs hanging from the rafters.
- Gardens (21): The gardens of the Rose & Thorn are beautiful, decorated hither and yon with roses and other lovely flowers. It features both a fountain and a pool, both of which often are used to supply water to the kitchens and rest of the house. A cross-walk balcony spans the length of the garden. Just shy of the kitchens are the herb plots used for cooking.
- Banquet Hall (22): A large and impressive hall dominated by a huge table and three hearths, the banquet hall is only used for the massive banquets sometimes thrown by merchants to impress their clients, or by the local patricians for parties. Otherwise, it tends to remain dark and unused (except by the occasional drunken patron staggering in here on accident, or one or more of the younger staff stealing a few kisses from other staff or patrons).
- Storeroom (23): A food storage room, filled with the dry ingredients for a variety of meals.
- Preparation Room (24): Where much of the non-cooking food preparation goes on, including the mixing of doughs, chopping of vegetables and the like.
- Meeting Room (25): A smaller antechamber technically for meetings with all the staff, but rarely used for such. In fact, it is often the room that kitchen deliveries from the market get dropped in until they can be properly put away.
- Treasury (26): A well-locked room with a stout oaken door, reinforced with metal bands. It is locked with a superior quality lock.
- Kitchen (27): These kitchens are massive and solely dedicated to cooking and baking. Much of the rest of other food prep goes on in other rooms. This area is always terribly hot, with multiple stoves and ovens going at the same time. The door set into the staircase in the eastern part of the room leads to a staircase that descends down into the cellars.
- Stairs (28): These stairs lead down to the area behind the bar in the taproom. Because they lead across the balcony-walkway over the garden to the Fine rooms, only the best-paying guests use them. Thus, they are kept in fine condition, with fresh flowers hung in wall-sconces.
- Balcony-Walkway (29): The balcony-walkways overlook the gardens below. The larger of the two is used only by well-paying guests and the smaller of the two is nearly never used, so much so that it tends to be kept locked, though the maids maintain keys so that they can pass between the areas easily while cleaning.
- Stairs (30): These stairs lead down to the kitchens below.
- Stairs (31): These stairs lead down to the taproom and probably sees the most traffic from guests moving between the guest rooms or floproom and the taproom.
- Floproom (32): This is the large, fairly warm room where many beds are laid out, for those who need a place to sleep but cannot afford a full room to themselves. This is a common place to find the guards and servants of richer guests sleeping.
- Guest Rooms (33): These guest rooms are solidly furnished with oaken furniture. Each room features a chest with a simple latch (though guests may rent a standard lock from the house for a single cp a night), a table, chair and bed.
- Guest Lounge (34): When those who are renting one of the rooms above the taproom seek a bit of ale beside the hearth without being in the midst of the hustle and bustle of the taproom, they often retire to the guest lounge. When a particularly influential or rich guest shows up and wishes to retire to the lounge and avoid people, it isn't uncommon for Rose to offer those in the lounge a free round on the house or a meal in exchange for giving the privileged guest a bit of privacy beside the hearth.
- Baths (35 – 36): These baths are equipped with small coal-burning stoves to heat kettles of water that are brought up to them, usually through a window-winch in a nearby window that overlooks the gardens below.
- Fine Guest Room (37): These extra-fine accommodations have seen many rich and important guests through the area. They are furnished with fine furniture and little accents that make the difference, such as a welcoming rose on the pillow of the new guest, daily breakfasts brought up free of charge and the option of any meals purchased being taken in the room beside the hearth, rather than down in the taproom.
- Rose & Sauder's Bedroom (38): Rose and Sauder live in this room, which is equipped not only with an ample table, but also a length of counter-space for one of the thousand projects that they are undertaking at any one time.
- Main Cellars (39): The main cellars contain a variety of goods, including links of hanging sausage, smoked hams and other preserved meats, as well as barrels of pickled foods, plus large bags of spices and salt. Additionally, the inn's barrels of common wine, ale and mead are kept down here.
- Wine Cellar (40): The racks built into this cool, dark area hold many bottles of wine. Some of it is Rose and Sauder's own private stock and not sold, but instead shared with good friends. The rest of them are the fine bottled wines the inn sells.
- Fruit Cellar (41): Containers of fruits – fresh, canned and dried alike – are kept here.
- Cold Storage (42): Easily the coldest room in the cellars, the cold storage room is where the spoilable foods are maintained until it is time to cool them. Rarely do foods remain down here for long.
- Well Room (43): A large room, containing a well.
The Crossroads City