Book 3: Act 2 - Friends of the Easterly Inn

It is the year 2946 of the Third Age, and the lands east of the Misty Mountains are astir. From the cloud-shrouded peaks above the High Pass to the spider-infested gloom of the forest of Mirkwood, paths long-deserted are trodden once again. Busy merchants carry their wares to new markets, messengers bring tidings from foreign realms, and kings send forth armed men to extend their influence and the rule of law. Some say that a new age of freedom has begun, a time for adventure and great deeds to reclaim glories lost in long centuries of oppression and decline.

But adventures are not really things that people go out and look for. They are dangerous and rarely end well. While it is true that a handful of valiant individuals set out to make their mark on the world, for others it seems that adventure chooses them, as though it is the path they are fated to tread. They are restless warriors, curious scholars and wanderers, always eager to seek what was lost or explore what was forgotten. Ordinary people call them adventurers, and when they return successful, they call them heroes. But if they fail, no one will even remember their names...

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Book 3: Act 2 - Friends of the Easterly Inn

Post by Vardaen » Thu Mar 26, 2015 10:52 pm

Image

There is an inn, a merry old inn
beneath an old grey hill,
And there they brew a beer so brown
That the Man in the Moon himself came down
one night to drink his fill....
September 5th - April 9th, 2947 - 2948 The Third Age, Autumn into Spring

The autumn of the year began in the south, in Radagast's home of Rhosgobel for the small company of free peoples. The many week trip from there to the Hobbit run inn known as the Easterly Inn takes the fellowship through the lands of the Woodmen and the Beornings. The cool fall air blows cold from the north, and leaves fall from trees both in Mirkwood and without. Shepards move their flocks to sheltered pastures and farmers begin to reap what they have sown.

Winter this year is typical, snow falls in the vale, but no more than last year, and no less than next. Many months will pass as the Fellowship spends their winter season with Dindy and Dody Brandybuck at the Easterly Inn. The patrons come to know the company, and vice versa. Its a dangerous place for an Inn, it lives on the edge of a knife, but with the presence of stout hearted folk like you it may yet survive. Unbeknownst to the group their mere residence at the Inn is enough to keep a band of bandits from the north from spoiling what the hobbits have set up.

The food is good, if not too plentiful, and those not careful find themselves letting their belts out an extra notch to keep up with Agatha's good cooking. Borir finds that the dwarf Frier who also lives at the Inn and is a tinkerer himself has need of help with his small make shift forged and he extend the invitation to Borir to help him truly get it up and functioning.

The boys Bando and Rodry remind many of your families back home, and the stray dog Shadrach seems to always know who is a bit homesick and is there to keep you company.

The autumn months turn into winter months and travel becomes difficult but as always winter turns to spring and the rains begin. The great Anduin is swollen with the thawing of the snow and the rain but with its loud roar comes the hope of a new year and new adventures.
Welcome to the Fellowship Phase for Book 3. You should work to explain your XP and AP actions. If you really get into things I can allow a second Undertaking beyond making the Inn your Sanctuary -- even more likely if it somehow ties you to the Inn.

You can find plenty of NPC information here, feel free to tie into them.
http://brennor.dyndns.org/rpg/Forums/vi ... tml#285375

I tried to lay out the time you have here, but what you do with it is up to you. You remain here from September to April, and once April arrives we will start the next Adventure Phase, hopefully with some nice hooks you develop now.

Please post to the OOC about your expenditures and let me know so I can double check them.
There is an inn, a merry old inn
beneath an old grey hill,
And there they brew a beer so brown
That the Man in the Moon himself came down
one night to drink his fill.

The ostler has a tipsy cat
that plays a five-stringed fiddle;
And up and down he runs his bow,
Now squeaking high, now purring low,
now sawing in the middle.

The landlord keeps a little dog
that is mighty fond of jokes;
When there's good cheer among the guests,
He cocks an ear at all the jests
and laughs until he chokes.

They also keep a horned cow
as proud as any queen;
But music turns her head like ale,
And makes her wave her tufted tail
and dance upon the green.

And O! the rows of silver dishes
and the store of silver spoons!
For Sunday there's a special pair,
And these they polish up with care
on Saturday afternoons.

The Man in the Moon was drinking deep,
and the cat began to wail;
A dish and a spoon on the table danced,
The cow in the garden madly pranced,
and the little dog chased his tail.

The Man in the Moon took another mug,
and then rolled beneath his chair;
And there he dozed and dreamed of ale,
Till in the sky the stars were pale,
and dawn was in the air.

Then the ostler said to his tipsy cat:
'The white horses of the Moon,
They neigh and champ their silver bits;
But their master's been and drowned his wits,
and the Sun'll be rising soon!'

So the cat on his fiddle played hey-diddle-diddle,
a jig that would wake the dead:
He squeaked and sawed and quickened the tune,
While the landlord shook the Man in the Moon:
'It's after three!' he said.

They rolled the Man slowly up the hill
and bundled him into the Moon,
While his horses galloped up in rear,
And the cow came capering like a deer,
and a dish ran up with the spoon.

Now quicker the fiddle went deedle-dum-diddle;
the dog began to roar,
The cow and the horses stood on their heads;
The guests all bounded from their beds
and danced upon the floor.

With a ping and a pong the fiddle-strings broke!
the cow jumped over the Moon,
And the little dog laughed to see such fun,
And the Saturday dish went off at a run
with the silver Sunday spoon.

The round Moon rolled behind the hill
as the Sun raised up her head.
She hardly believed her fiery eyes;
For though it was day, to her surprise
they all went back to bed!
Last edited by Vardaen on Wed Apr 08, 2015 6:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"He that breaks a thing to find out what it is has left the path of wisdom." - Gandalf
J.R.R. Tolkien, Council of Elrond, The Fellowship of the Ring

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Re: Book 3: Act 2 - Friends of the Easterly Inn

Post by Blubbo_Baggins » Tue Mar 31, 2015 9:16 am

During their short stay in Woodland Hall, Finn and Borir visit the forge. Borir dusted off the blower, firepot, and hearth, and complained of its lack of care (though in truth the Woodmen had not entirely neglected it, they did not match the peerless craft of caring for a forge as do the Dwarves).

After some basic and simple repairs to the Great shield, the Dwarf handed it to Finn, who excitedly lifted it. "This is nearly half as light as before! Impressive... and you are certain it will hold up as strong as before?"

--------------------------

At the Inn Dody and Agatha heartily welcome their guests for the winter.
"We shall have a warm Yule indeed this year, with so many friends, to whom we owe so much. I shall ensure each of you shan't ever forget the hospitality of the Small Folk!"

Before the cold set in, Finn worked to help fell trees with Wren, Borir, and Frier, working to have enough wood for the fireplace, and making plans to expand the Inn's rooms. The Dwarves talked about having a simple forge of some kind and though Finn was not familiar with the workings thereof, did his best to help.

--------------------------

Before the company's trip to the South, Dody had tried to give each of them something to thank them, though the Hobbits were comfortable, they were not exactly rich. Finn's gift was quite easy, and fitting.

"No, I can't take your silver spoons Dody. I know, I know, but it doesn't feel right to me. I'd have done the same thing for any Free Folk, and we'd do it again. If you insist, then I'll take that lyre on your mantel off your hands. But I'll agree to it only if you let me perform for guests twice per week, in the hopes we can build up the reputation of this fine Inn as a place of warmth for the heart and soul in the cold winter.

Dody was more than happy to agree, and soon regular nights of music (and even dancing) began to occur twice per week. When no travelers were staying in the Inn, Finn played a bit of his repertoire that less well-known or a few requests from Bando or Rodry, and then would try to compose a new piece. Though he played around with ideas and tunes all through the winter months, the inspiration never came to him.

Nevertheless, some evenings the Inn was full of travelers - often Dwarves heading East toward Erebor, or Beornings traveling from south to north or back again. Those times the music was most appreciated, and Finn was certain he would have to give a reprise of "The Man in the Moon Went Down Too Soon". He was tired of the tune, but it always got even Agatha to dance a bit. It also brought in the most tips.

Finn was glad to earn a bit, but continued to do what he could to help the Easterly Inn. Though he had come to explore Wilderland, before seeking a new source for timber for Wyngard Woods, he thought he might do well investing in some business venture. "Why not the Inn?" He thought to himself. "It's the only one of its kind all around, and of course traffic between Eriador and Esgaroth and Dale is only increasing."

In time, Dody and Dindy seemed willing to consider the idea of new investors in the Inn. Though the Hobbit family was brave, the more they had to support them, the more likely they would succeed.

--------------------------

When Finn was not playing, he spent time meeting travelers from all over Wilderland, or talking over the battle at the Ringfort with his friends, asking Tom especially of what it was like on the other side. He liked to study battles...it was his favorite subject for lays, and before he had left Rhosgobel, Radagast had lent him a dusty tome chronicling some of the battles of when Men had far longer lifespans and ruled the seas. There was no lore in the book that the libraries of Elrond did not already cover, but it filled Finn's imagination as he thought of the might of the Men of the Sea and the defeat of their foes.

--------------------------

Though at times the weather was quite cold and the desire to get out and into the wider world was unbearable, Finn was amazed to find himself in a group of friends whom he had not known ere the summer past.

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Re: Book 3: Act 2 - Friends of the Easterly Inn

Post by Muskrat » Tue Mar 31, 2015 9:23 pm

Frustrated with her failure to heal Finn's wounds, before leaving Radagast's odd house, she stays up late talking to the wizard about the healing arts. He advises Varuthil to make a deeper study of herb-lore and they then spend several hours in the wizard's garden as he gives her some basic information on which plants are useful in healing.

****

Back at the Easterly Inn, Varuthil spends a significant part of the winter working with the local Boerning healers, learning their healing arts and their herb lore, building on what Radagast taught her. She also makes a point of talking to Agatha and seeing what the hobbit woman can tell her of the herb lore from west of the Misty Mountains.

Varuthil also participates in archery practice with several of the Beornings and accompanies them on hunting expeditions. If she is to continue to be the hunter for their fellowship, she feels she needs to learn more about tracking and setting snares. Being talented woodsmen, the Beornings have much to teach her.

The Beornings are at first a little uncomfortable around the cold-mannered elf, but gradually grow more comfortable as they realize that, despite her frosty demeanor, she's genuinely interested both in learning what they have to teach and in helping their settlement. Her work with their healing is especially convincing in this regard.

Surprisingly, Varuthil also makes a point of taking the two hobbit children outside and watching over them as they play. She rarely actively participates in their games, but she accompanies them as they roam around and ensures they are safe. She continues to find halflings fascinating and wants to see what they are like as children.

She also spends many an evening in the inn listening to Finn play. She says little, but clearly appreciates his musical talent.

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Re: Book 3: Act 2 - Friends of the Easterly Inn

Post by Vardaen » Tue Mar 31, 2015 10:01 pm

Dody and Dindy, and a great deal more of Agatha than at first seemed apparent, sit down with Finn to talk about the option of him joining the venture of the Easterly Inn. In fact they invite anyone who might be interested in investing to sit down with them during one of the cold months of winter that has arrived.

The place is dim and dark, only a few lamps burn and tonight there are no patrons staying at the Inn and so the entire common room is the board room.

Dindy smiles, with a stack of papers before him, "Now then let's talk about this venture. I have a head for numbers, I know you said your family is in the lumber business in Lake Town but this is the Wild, and so we have to keep tighter count on things." He passes around various accounting sheets, numbers for expenses, costs, overhead, feeding a pack of adventurers who are staying at the Inn over the winter, then another with what they take in on sales of food and ale, on renting room and even on the small iron wares theat Frier makes. The dwarf, present, but silent, as seems to be his want, does manage to bring in some coin with the shoeing of horses or the fixing of tools and the like from his small 'forge' which has grown better since Borir and Finn's help.
This holding undertaking is a good one for us to RP in short scenes, so anyone that wants to turn the Inn into a holding (as a partner) can join in. Its mid December at this point I'm going to say.

Rules for Holdings:
https://brennor.dyndns.org/rpg/Forums/v ... =7304.html

As well as in Darkening of Mirkwood book at the start (please don't read the rest of that book as I'm using it as well).
"He that breaks a thing to find out what it is has left the path of wisdom." - Gandalf
J.R.R. Tolkien, Council of Elrond, The Fellowship of the Ring

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Re: Book 3: Act 2 - Friends of the Easterly Inn

Post by TetNak » Wed Apr 01, 2015 11:03 pm

Aerth spends a great deal of his time hunting in order to keep up the Easterly Inn's supplies. He does not feel overly comfortable here, thinking the premise of an inn where it is absolutely absurd. He prays the gentile hobbits won't falter or be overrun by the evil that is clearly growing. The winter time will stay much danger, but when the springs come the goblins will be looking for supplies just like everyone else. That means to pillage and steal. If they came this far, the inn could be in danger regardless of what protection his friends could give.
"Kings have no friends, only subjects and enemies."

- King Stannis Baratheon, First of His Name

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Re: Book 3: Act 2 - Friends of the Easterly Inn

Post by Shurijo » Thu Apr 02, 2015 9:59 pm

Borir works away in the smith alongside Frier helping make it fit for a dwarf. The two share stories of old and exchange childhood tales as they work on fixing up the smith. Once the smith suitable, the dwarf begins working on Finn's shield.

As Finn's questions the shield's strength, Borir states, "Hold it up for a moment. Let me get m'axe and I'll show you!"

The dwarf then walks off and returns with not his axe, but a small smithing hammer. "Are you ready?" He asks just a fraction of a section before he hurdles the hammer towards the man.

Borir bursts out laughing as the hammer strikes the shield. "You have a dwarf's word on the shield, Finn. It'll hold up."

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Re: Book 3: Act 2 - Friends of the Easterly Inn

Post by Blubbo_Baggins » Fri Apr 03, 2015 12:06 am

Finn's eyes widen as the hammer is flung his way. He ducks as it clangs into the shield.

"Thank you Master Dwarf. I sincerely appreciate it. I will continue to keep your forge supplied with good wood through the winter.

Now, I have a thought about this Inn. We are far from Laketown and Erebor; while we are out in the wilds, we should make a place to retreat, and not only that, but perhaps we can turn it into a profitable venture. There is nothing like this Inn anywhere in the Anduin, save perhaps the stead of Beorn, though that is far less welcoming to any weary travelers. With food, warm beds, fresh horse shoes and tack, smith-work services, music, entertainment... I don't see how this place cannot turn into a great investment for us. Personally, I am thinking of seeing what the Brandybucks think of getting some "outside investors" if you will."

--------------------
Much later when we are sitting and talking to Dody, Dindy, and Agatha (Finn and whoever else wants to make the Inn a Holding)
"Look all this makes sense to me Dody. Here's what I can offer to the Inn now, and going forward. Naturally I will continue to perform twice per week, and more often if we ever have travelers staying long. Anything earned will go straight back to the Inn to help cover expenses. The forge that Borir and Frier have worked on, and I have assisted with and will keep stocked with wood, will certainly be a good way to earn more. I propose one more project to work on, especially once the weather begins to warm. That is, to build a stockade. Even if the gate has a welcome sign and is unguarded to appeal to your Hobbit-sense of hospitality, if there is only one way to get into the area around the Inn, you will be all the safer. Even a little more time to defend yourself gives others a chance to come to your aid. What do you think?"

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Re: Book 3: Act 2 - Friends of the Easterly Inn

Post by Vardaen » Fri Apr 03, 2015 6:25 pm

Tet, just keep in mind the Wilderland is currently enjoying some good years, since Smaug was killed and the Battle of Five Armies defeated the goblins in the region. The last five year have been very good, safe, and prosperous. Your run in with the goblins in the mountains and the orc attack on Woodland Hall is the first real sign that danger still lurks in the area and 'might' be returning.
Dody seated with those interested in venture listens first to Finn. He glances at his brother and his wife, and he holds up a finger to Finn and then leans in to whisper with Agatha and Dindy. The three hobbits converse not so quietly about Finn's offer and then Dody sits up straight again.

"We've been talking, and we believe you'd make a fine partner. I can see you have a head for business, and you've told me of your family's business in Lake-town. Not to mention your music draws in a good crowd from time to time. We'd be happy to take you on as a junior partner with a stake in the share of the profits, and the losses of course." He gazes around at the others, "What about Borir or any of the rest of your friends?"
"He that breaks a thing to find out what it is has left the path of wisdom." - Gandalf
J.R.R. Tolkien, Council of Elrond, The Fellowship of the Ring

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Re: Book 3: Act 2 - Friends of the Easterly Inn

Post by Muskrat » Fri Apr 03, 2015 9:46 pm

Varuthil shakes her head. "I appreciate you letting us stay here for the winter, but I have no head for business. I'm willing to offer my healing services to anyone who needs them, but I'll leave the running of the inn to others."

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Re: Book 3: Act 2 - Friends of the Easterly Inn

Post by Shurijo » Fri Apr 03, 2015 10:08 pm

Borir rubs his beard as he listens to Finn discuss business with the Hobbits. The dwarf ponders the question for a moment and then says, "Aye. I'll take a stake."

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