Located near the center of the Guild Ward, the Kenderfoot Hearth is a predominant Halfling establishment in Ptolus. As the name implies, it is operated by the Kenderfoot family.
The family patriarch is Talbot Kenderfoot. It was Talbot’s father Coros that founded the Hearth, meaning Talbot has spent all his life in and around the building. He considers the Hearth not simply his business, but almost like a sibling, changing and growing like he has.
Talbot is quite old for a Halfling. Although that is obvious when one looks at him, age hasn’t quite caught up with his physical abilities yet. Often, Talbot can be spotted doing odd work around the Hearth – reorganizing the books on the second floor, setting beds, tending the bar, or serving drinks. When told – usually by his children and grandchildren – that he should let others do things, he complains that they want to render him useless, and refuses to allow them to help.
Talbot believes that the Hearth is a symbol for Halflings – not just Halflings in Ptolus, but travelers too. He has never refused a plate of food and a bed to any Halfling, and he has no plans to change this. Throughout his tenure as family patriarch, he has strove to make the Hearth not just the center for Halfling entertainment, but also the place where Halfling business is conducted, marriages are made, and so on. Of course, he also serves other races in the Hearth.
Sani Kenderfoot is Talbot’s wife, with the two nearing on sixty years together. Like her husband, she is far sprier than one would assume. However, she is more than happy to lounge around and enjoy the fruits of her labor.
Most often, Sami is found in the common room, enjoying the dancing and music from her favorite table and rocking chair. Among the various Halflings who frequent the establishment – and some of the other long-term patrons – she is seen as quite wise. She knows everyone who steps through the Hearth’s door, and has an opinion about everything. Many sit at her table to ask her advice on things ranging from personal matters to business.
Sami is also a notorious gossip. She gains her information from those who come to her from advice, as well as from her children and grandchildren. In fact, her family likes to joke that she keeps detailed tabs on all of them – which isn’t far from the truth.
Sami has kept the Hearth’s ledgers for decades, and continues to do so. Lately, she’s been passing some of the responsibilities to her children, but she is still the main accountant.
Otto stands out from the rest of the Kenderfoot family for one simple reason – he is not a Halfling. Instead, Otto is a gnome.
A couple of decades ago, Otto was an adventurer. Back then, Talbot Kenderfoot sometimes journeyed out of Ptolus, either to go on trips or to accompany some Halfling caravan. During one such journey, Talbot’s caravan found itself in dire straits. With their carts having broken down in hostile orc territory, it seemed like this would be the end for them.
This was when Otto intervened. At that point, he was journeying across the world as an artificer and, upon seeing Talbot and the rest of the caravan, stepped up to help them. In almost no time at all, he had repaired the carts – and helped repel an orc attack.
For this, Talbot was eternally grateful, inviting Otto back to the Hearth. Otto stayed in Ptolus for some time but eventually left to continue his adventures. However, he returned often, whenever he needed to take a break.
After a few years, Otto retired from adventuring. Already considered part of the Kenderfoot family, he was given a room in the Hearth, where he currently works as an artificer, maintaining everything and improving things where he can.
Sami and Talbot’s eldest daughter, Yorana is a seamstress who runs her business from the Hearth while also making house calls. Basically all of Ptolus’ Halflings are dressed by her.
Yorana could have settled with just her current work, making clothing for the city’s Halflings. However, she is far more ambitious than this. Lately, she’s been working on creating new pieces of clothing for various merchants and their partners, following the latest trends. This seems to be working, with more and more people asking for her services in the past few months.
Apart from creating clothing, Yorana also makes the various banners that decorate the Hearth. While some are permanent decorations, Yorana also creates new banners whenever a family birthday is coming up or whenever some Halfling celebration is approaching. Needless to say, she is almost always busy.
Norrin is the family’s scholar. While most others were fine just working in the Hearth, Norrin asked to be sent to study at Ptolus’ university, and was allowed to do so. There, Norrin studied history. He finished his studies about a decade ago.
Norrin wants to use his studies to record his family’s story first and foremost. For this reason, he has spent the past couple of years interviewing everyone – but mostly Talbot and Sani. This way, he wants to create a history of the Kenderfoots, beginning with his parents’ ancestors. After that, perhaps he will write a story of Halflings in general.
Apart from this, Norrin is a big believer in education in general. He wants to make the Hearth a repository where Halflings and people of other races can pick up new skills. As such, he’s also been compiling information about various subjects into small books – for example, he’s compiled the basics of tailoring in a small book thanks to his sister Yorana.
Norrin’s grand plan is to eventually have people like Yorana teach the younger generations about their crafts, using the books as assistance as well.