Originally this was a blog for the setting of a RPG I was running, but after the death of my daughter the game came to an end and I posted about her instead. I doubt I will post anything here again, but I am leaving it open as a kind of on-line memorial.
City Tour: Merchants Quarter
The Perfumed Privy
Hammer & Anvil
Owl Bear & Wyvern
The Fighting Pits
The MERCHANT QUARTER lines one side this street, TEMPLE AVENUE, and occupies most of the South half of the city. It's by far the largest quarter, housing businesses of every kind, numerous taverns, inns, brothels and markets. Further in are the ARTISANS DISTRICT, where the craftsmen work their trade, and the STONE DISTRICT, where the majority of the dwarves live.
It's the liveliest part of the city, bustling with trade and revelries, busy night and day. This quarter never sleeps.
As you can see, the avenue is lined with numerous shops, eateries, and drinking dens; it caters to travellers and tourists. Let me fill you in on a little secret: we locals call this CHEAPSIDE. Not that their goods aren't expensive– because they are– but because the quality is poor, rushed work and mass-produced rubbish. If you ever want to shop in the city, you want to go deeper into the quarter, ideally to the markets. We'll visit the best of those shortly.
We're turning South now, onto TRADE STREET. That building to your right is one of the oldest Guild Halls in the city: the TORCH-BEARERS' GUILD. It is the place to go to hire torch-bearers, lantern-holders, baggage handlers, guides and the like. They cater to adventuring parties mostly, delving into the catacombs or chasm, and, as their slogan says, you can hire them for "A Silver a Day, to Light Your Way". Although, to be honest, that's just the cost of their most basic services; they normally cost more.
Now we're going to leave the road and head East down his narrow street and onto this avenue. Most of these streets have no official names, only the paved roads are labelled, but the locals call this the GRAND AVENUE, as it leads to the GRAND BAZAR, which you can just see rising above the adjacent buildings, with its peaked rather than flat roof. You may have noticed that the majority of the city's rooftops are flat, influenced by the architecture of the kingdom a few centuries back, which we've adopted and continued with.
That busy building there? That's the TRADERS' GUILD, where disputes are settled, licences applied for, fees levied. It also serves as a bank, for a fee, and has well-guarded vaults flowing with gold, silver, and gems; or so it is said. It's the most powerful guild in the city, and its Guild Masters sit on the council, ruling as much as the clergy, possible more-so. And beyond that is our destination, the GRAND BAZAR.
The funds we raised to dedicate an acre of ancient woodland and a memorial bench has now been completed, and the bench now sits in a wood near my hometown.
These are the maps of its location and how to get there. We won't be able to visit it for a good few months yet, but look forward to doing so.
Good news, for those who do not know, is that we now have a beautiful boy, my son Rohan Robert Forster, nearly eight months old, healthy and strong and amazing. It makes dealing with the loss of Millie easier.
This is him, from a recent outing to some nearby woods:
Happy Birthday Millie.
Love from you mum, dad, and your brother Rohan xxx
Yesterday was the funeral of our daughter. It started by the two of use viewing her body, which was so much harder than I expected it to be. She looked so different, so very much a body rather than the little girl who left us. Although it was difficult, and there were tears aplenty, I am glad we saw her one last time, if only for the sense of closure. The funeral itself was lovely, and it was nice to see so many of our friends and family in attendance, most of whom had to travel a fair distance in order to be there. Some of them we hadn't seen for years, as we'd lost touch with people with all the trouble of the past few years; so it was nice to reconnect, albeit under circumstances that we wouldn't have wished for. Lorraine wrote a eulogy for our daughter, which I thought I would share here. To our dear family and friends,
I just wanted to say a huge thank you on behalf of Simon and I for the outpouring of love and support you've given us over the last year, throughout my …
It is a year ago today that we had the funeral for our daughter, Millie. It was about three weeks after she died, due to the necessity of an autopsy, and it was on the Friday of my first week at work in my new job.
It was a strange and emotional day. We went to view the body in the morning, which I wish we had avoided, as seeing her lying there in her coffin... well, it wasn't our daughter. I could barely look at the body, and my tears flowed freely. I had thought it would give us closure, but all it did was remind us of what we had lost, and with hindsight I would've preferred to remember her as we saw her at the hospital.
The funeral itself was full of people and relatives we hadn't seen in an age. My childhood friend Phil managed to attend, and I hadn't seen him in years. It felt good to see so many faces, and the support they lent us was beyond anything I could've wished for.
I carried the coffin in. I didn't want anyone else to do it. I had to fight back …