City Tour: The Residents Quarter

  1. Camel's Hump
  2. The Friendly Cockatrice
  3. Travellers' Rest
  4. The Aquarium

The smallest and quietest of the quarters, the RESIDENTS QUARTER is where the people of the city have their homes. Some of the traders, merchants, workers and artisans live above their shops, the rest living here. Although, many of the people who live here, actually work outside the city, in the outlying farms or the mines in the hills. It's safer, more comfortable, to live within the walls than outside. Expensive though. There's no space to build on the ground anymore, and the council have refused to expand the city for the time being– they made a start on the East side, but stopped when funds for construction ran out– so new builds are built atop older ones, and that costs gold. You can rent, however, and there are plenty of blocks with single room homes in the shadows of the walls. Thy're not particularly cheap either, but if you ever want to settle down in the city, it's the cheapest option.

HOME STREET divides this quarter in two. The East side is where all the local shops and taverns are, as well as a couple of inns catering to visitors who come through the south gate– that's Black Gate, so-called due to the scorched stone, after a dragon took exception to the soldiers' arrows; but that's another story, for another time. The locals don't mind strangers joining them for a drink, so long as they behave themselves. Two taverns of note are the Camel's Hump, known for its imported elven wines; and the Friendly Cockatrice, which does indeed boast a cockatrice that is friendly. It's actually the runt of a litter, with none of the expected petrification powers. The locals consider it lucky if it pecks you.

If you fancy staying a few nights here, the best inn is the Travellers' Rest, one of a chain owned by an enterprising baron of the kingdom. It's nothing fancy, but the sheets are clean, the rooms a good size, and the service both friendly and efficient. They serve pretty decent meals too, but if you want to dine out, I say you should dine at the Aquarium, a fish restaurant that imports its fish at great expense, in bulk and alive, storing them in glass tanks that line the walls. You pick the fish you want to eat.

The West side of the quarter is where all the homes are located, mostly flat-roofed, two or three storey houses or blocks of apartments, four, even five stories high. The more elaborate and expensive houses are closest to the main street, with the cheapest under the West wall. No slums though; these houses are all owned by or rented to employed men, women and their families. The actual SLUMS are outside the city, spreading out from the meagre protection of the lower East wall. You would have seen it as you approached the city along the PILGRIMS ROAD; a dark mess, with smoke wafting above the hovels. That's not part of our tour, I'm happy to say.

Now, if you'll all follow me, we'll go back through the gate and I'll show you the WEEPING CHASM in all its glory.


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