The Beached Leviathan
The Beached Leviathan is a three-level inn located on the docks of Neverwinter.
Because of the nature of his establishment and his past career as a pirate, Harrag uses ship terms to differentiate various areas in his tavern. For example, Harrag calls the lowest level of the tavern the Hold. It contains a kitchen and a bar area with many tables. Though the oak and cherry woodwork here is fancy, it has seen better days after having sustained damage from bar fights over the years. Nautical equipment and some of the spoils of Harrag’s travels adorn the walls; including sahuagin skulls and weapons, preserved shark fins, and a giant crab’s carapace.
The second level, which Harrag calls The Quarters, for obvious reasons, has nine small rooms, two larger suites, and a mid-sized room. The larger three rooms contains a stove for tenants who wish to prepare their own meals. Several simple but beautiful tapestries of seascapes lend color to the walls of the larger rooms.
On the starboard side of the ship, a platform called the Stardeck juts out, providing an exterior seating area.
The third level, called The Deck, has tables and chairs for overflow seating in its central area. For a hefty price, patrons can rent one of the pair of private parlors that Harrag set up at the fore. The aft has storage rooms, atop which sit Harrag’s personal quarters.
An open-sided spiral stair connects the three levels, winding around the central mast.
Over the years, the Beached Leviathan has become a hot spot of drinking, gambling, and business activity in Neverwinter, and Harrag welcomes all of it with a hearty grin. The tavern often hosts troupes of entertainers who perform in the hold and on the deck. When these entertainers perform on the deck, those within the tavern can hear the music from any spot.
Harrag thinks of the Beached Leviathan in much the same way he did when it was a sailing vessel. He loves it and will do everything in his power to protect it (and his regulars and staff ). He is proud of the prestige associated with his tavern but does not show it openly. This said, he enjoys the occasional bar fight and isn’t above jumping into the fray.
Lord Neverember also enjoys the status the tavern holds. Neverember considers the Beached Leviathan one of his best resource in ferreting out those who might move against him, given the opposition he faces in the nearby Blacklake District.
The Tavern’s Seedy Underbelly
In addition to providing a good time for sailors and townsfolk with some coin to spend, the Beached Leviathan is home to many seedy goings-on. On any given night, nefarious denizens of Neverwinter converge on the tavern to broker in stolen goods, secret information, press-gang victims, and assassination plots. The most recent criminal development is an increase in covert press-gang activities. The Beached Leviathan serves as a meeting point for secret slavers
who have no qualms about abducting homeless townsfolk and refugees. Those who are captured are quickly moved out of the area. For the time being, and as long as nobody important goes missing, Lord Neverember has decided not to intercede in these activities, but he will step in if he sees that it’s in his interest to do so.
In terms of personal rivalries that play out on a regular basis within the tavern, the activities of a pair of human identical twins named Gustaf and Rodrik periodically create a chaotic atmosphere within the Beached Leviathan. Gustaf is a purveyor of stolen treasures and magic who frequents the tavern to make contacts and ply his trade, reveling in the thrill of his dark dealings. Rodrik is Gustaf ’s “better half,” and he seeks to thwart his brother’s dealings, hoping that his brother will give up his dangerous ways. Each twin often takes on the persona of the other to thwart the other’s plans in some manner. Neither, however, lifts a sword against the other.
Those who pay attention to their surroundings can find all manner of vice or foul plots inside the hull of the Beached Leviathan.
Crew of Note:
Harrag runs his place as he would a ship- keeping a Captain’s firm grip on the crew, and loyal to his crew above all else. His ‘crew’ of employees and regulars are quite proud of their reputations, and look out for ‘the Captain’ as well.
Harrag is a fat peg-legged pirate covered with facial scars, with a gold hoop earring through on ear (for good luck), and gold teeth. Harrag is slowly gaining weight, due to his leg injury preventing him from being active, and because of the great food served at the Leviathan. Some joke that the ‘Beached Leviathan’ is Harrag himself, although few are brave enough to say this within his hearing.
A middle-aged human female, Andrella is the eldest of the crew, having been hired by Harrag when the Leviathan was first beached on the stone docks, and he took to selling the rum in the hold to pay for her to be repaired. Soon, it became apparent that selling rum was more profitable, and the costs to make the Leviathan sea-worthy again were too high, and so here they remained. Andrella, widowed in the Cataclysm, is fiercely protective of Harrag. Only Feng and Tabnab refer to her as ‘mate,’ although she runs the entire place when Harrag is away, and sees to the barmaids when he is around.
Umi, the deep blue watersouled gensai, carries a blade and sips at her cup of rum with a smile on her face. There’s a rumor that she’s distantly related to Len-Jes, the Harbormaster, but that could just be because the two are both gensai- it might also be true. Any regular of the bar can tell you that when Umi’s blade comes out, there’s blood to be shed- she’s the last line of defense in the bar brawl control.
Bobrick Highmantle, the churlish and taciturn dwarf sits at his place at the bar, disturbed by no one but Harrag himself- even the other regulars avoid him when he’s in one of his ‘moods.’ Rather than drinking dwarven ale, he prefers Sweet Root Wine, although he doesn’t say where he acquired the taste, and no one is brave enough to press the issue. There is a story circulating around the bar that the last time he went into one of his rages, he put a man’s head through a wall, and the body had to be dumped in the water before the mercenaries showed up.
Markul, the young human, dresses poorly, choosing odd fashions. He is known for wearing a hat and robe of stars at times, but more recently he’s turned to the popular Waterdhavian fashions, after the style of Lord Neverember and the powerful merchants in the city. Markul wanders the bar in a friendly manner, always welcoming a story or tidbit, and happy to share what gossip he’s heard as well.
Ettain, the half-elf carpenter, is skilled enough that he could earn his keep building furniture and houses in the Protectorate’s Enclave, but he continues to work for Harrag, repairing damage caused by inevitable bar fights and passing the time with skilled carvings. When he isn’t drinking himself into sodden oblivion, Ettain is quite the skilled craftsman.
Korin, the gold-red scaled dragonborn, is a world traveller- he tells stories of the far-off Sea of Fallen Stars, or the Dalelands on the far side of the Netherese desert, but his favorite stories take place in Calimshan, where he lived before coming north. He doesn’t explain what brought him north, but he wears a woman’s ring on a cord around his neck, and he touches it frequently. Korin is happy to tell stories and lead drinking songs and sea tunes- on occasion he’ll sing a dark dirge that shows real talent.
Patrons of Note:
The scarr-covered watersoul gensai is an intimidating woman, and a regular sight at the docks. She supervises the construction of the docks and the removal of debris from the area. It is rumored that she was once a fierce pirate in her own reguard, although she is quiet about her past, and any who have asked about it disappeared shortly afterward. Appointed by Lord Neverember to perform as Harbormaster, Len-Jes simply repairs and maintains the docks, leaving the merchants to enforce tarrifs, the mercenaries to collect taxes, and allowing the sellers to regulate themselves- this has led to the cut-throat and bloodthirsty business dealings on the docks, and the almost lawless function of the markets here. Rumors say Len-Jes once used to be a pirate herself, although what became of her ship or crew if that’s the case is anyone’s guess.
Slang at the Beached Leviathan:
Balast Stone: A drunk
Batten the Hatches: Shut your mouth
Bowsprit: A sword (especially a large one)
Capstan: A cask of liquor
Deadlights: Eyes, especially of a drunk
Devilfish: Someone who brings bad luck
Drink the Coin: To become a member of the crew (a regular)
Feeding the Fish: Referring to an absent regular, also slang for using the head
Flash packet: A weakling
Heavy packet: A strong person
Keel: To fall over
Kiss the Lady: Be kind to Andrella
Lash up: Finish your drink
Place the Black Spot / Black Spot: Agree to dislike someone
Press-Gang: Rowdy Patrons, persons desired to be rid of.
Privateer: Newcomers to the tavern
Scrimshaw: Writings, any etchings
Short-handed: Lacking barmaid(s)
Slipped His (or her) rope: Passed out, otherwise unconscious
Wag: Anyone not a tavern regular.