Some taverns are places of rest and respite. Some are bawdy. Some are seedy. But if you've a mind for good food, exotic drinks, and stimulating debate, you'll want to visit the Inkwell in Tamerlight. Just be sure to bring your best secret with you.There are many draws to the city of Tamerlight. Though the ghostly citizens and the shambling yet friendly undead locals can be shocking at first, the city of the Banshee Queen is remarkably pleasant and full of wonderous sights. One of the greatest attractions of Tamerlight is the Arcana District, the academic district full of schools, libraries, and shops catering to scholars and students. People from all over Shira'tol travel to this district to join the prestigious schools, attend lectures, and exchange knowledge. This city is also one of the hubs for the Xetri's Temple of Ink, with a large library and scriptorium run by the serpent folk and supplied by their traveling scholars. So it would stand to reason that all of these travelers would need a place to rest, eat, and drink between lectures. That place is the Inkwell.
Set In Stone
Drink deep or not at all from the well of eruditionBeyond the ornamented wrought iron door, the main room of the Inkwell is well lit and inviting. Large, comfortable leather chairs are arranged before the crackling fireplace. The alcove at the front of the building has a cozy nook flanked by bookshelves bathed in a kaleidoscope of refracted light from the stained glass windows. There are tables for dozens of patrons and a dark wood pulpit where impromptu lectures and performances are often held. Behind the impressively carved oak bar stands the owner of this vaunted establishment.
Thenedra, Vessel of Memory
In many ways, Thenedra is like many innkeepers. She is quite proud of her tavern, greeting every patron with a warm welcome, and enjoys playful banter and debates with her regulars. She loves to experiment with food and drink, her specials are known throughout the city as some of the best. She often says it is her privilege to offer a peaceful sanctuary to weary and curious travelers. Yet, there are many ways in which Thenedra is very different. First and foremost, Thenedra is a cephilid. A fact which can be quite shocking to those who have never seen such people. Her purple skin, ovoid eyes, and tentacled face may even be frightening for the unprepared. The dark rumors of evil deeds perpetrated by those of her kind are not often lost on newcomers, but these reactions are nothing new to Thenedra who bears them all with grace and understanding. Once the initial shock and inevitable questions are passed, however, Thenedra proves to be warm and welcoming, and not at all murderous.
Penny For Your ThoughtsSomething unique to the Inkwell is the currency accepted for services rendered. Of course, the usual suspects of gold or jewels are accepted, but Thenedra has a particular interest in obscure knowledge, memories, and secrets. Each of these has value and Thenedra gladly offers food, drink, and even lodging for them. The rarer the knowledge or more succulent the secret, the more each is worth. One could feasibly pay for a whole week's worth of lodging with such enigmas. Thenedra is always careful to explain that while memories and knowledge are kept by the bearer, secrets are forsaken once shared. Thus a secret is always worth more. Should one choose this method of payment, Thenedra will lightly place a tentacle upon the patron's forehead. A tingling sensation will ripple through their mind and the knowledge, memory, or secret will pass to the hostess.
Talis - The Inkwell is a regular haunt for Talis, a ghost citizen of the city. She sometimes forgets the current date or the fact that she is dead, but she is a wonderful singer and will occasionally entertain the tavern goers with songs of a long-forgotten kingdom. She is otherwise soft-spoken and polite, enjoys telling stories from the past, but sometimes forgets someone is speaking to her mid-sentence. Himanu - A teenaged Xetri on her first major investigation, assigned to the Temple of Ink hub as an archivist. Her scales are shimmering emerald and she, like many of her kind, garbs herself in bright silks and gold. She has not discovered her Primary Pursuit but she will gladly discuss nearly any subject and loves to talk about the finer points of document preservation.
Zand Lemason - Nearly every tavern has that one regular who sits in the same spot, orders the same thing, and has the same conversations every day. Zand is that person for the Inkwell. A bit crusty and occasionally annoying, he isn't abrasive enough that Thenedra has thought to ban him yet. He does seem to know a lot of interesting facts and secrets about the city, though he has rarely been seen outside of his usual barstool. Rumor has it he used to know even more, but he tends to pay for his drinks with secrets. Uskold - Not much is known about Uskold. They are never seen without their flowing black robes, veils, and silver mask. Their voice is oddly muffled and sounds neither masculine nor feminine. Uskold tends to quietly enjoy their drinks (through a straw) in the reading nook or by the fire, occasionally joining in conversations but never starting them. If asked about them, Thenedra will say that they paid very well for a permanent room and that Uskold seems to be a very private person.
Clues and TalesThere are many things a patron might overhear at the Inkwell, some of which could lead to employment, treasures, and adventures. Stolen Knowledge - There has been a theft at the Xetri hub. This is not entirely unheard of, as the serpent people tend to be less capable of defending their treasures than finding them, but this event seems odd. Rather than stealing any number of treasures of ancient kingdoms, the thief only stole one very specific book; The Bounty of the Mountain. Something in the Water - Fishermen have been reporting that regular fishing spots are either devoid of fish or the fish they do catch are small, sickly, or made "strange." They do not know what is causing this issue but they are asking for as much help as possible since the fish are a primary source of food in the city. Siren's Rest - A traveler mentioned a mysterious sight they witnessed as they passed through the old ruin of Siren's Rest. An armored knight upon the back of a black dragon. Falling Stars - A few days ago, meteor showers started filling the skies. Some people say they have seen them land in the distance. No one knows how or why this has started happening but the more learned people of the Arcana District are convinced there is far more to it than natural phenomena.
Pub / Tavern / Restaurant