Continuing my series about the town of Cross Tree, this week I am covering location #5, the Stables. As previously mentioned, I will keep this as system neutral as possible. There won’t be any in-game stats provided. Instead, I will focus on what you would need to know, should your players opt to visit the stables.
Enough travelers pass through to keep the operation worthwhile for its owner. However, she is new to the town and inherited the property after it had been allowed to go downhill for a number of years.
Taryn Keen is a young human woman who appears to be in her mid-twenties. She has green eyes and auburn hair that falls below her shoulders. Taryn bears a tattoo of a black dragon, just below her collar bone, on her left side. Under normal circumstances, she dresses quite plainly in wool breeches with a linen shirt.
Having inherited the stables from her uncle Benjamin, Taryn has only been in town for a little over a year. She grew up in a large city to the west, where she spent her youth working in her father’s stables.
An adventurer in his younger days, Benjamin Keen had owned the stables in Cross Tree for over 25 years, until he went missing 2 years ago. Townsfolk claim that he had an unhealthy fixation on legends of a lost city somewhere in the vicinity of Cross Tree.
Rather than operate and take care of his business, Benjamin was known to wander off into the woods for days at time. It is believed that he was obsessed with finding the lost city. On one such expedition, Benjamin failed to return.
When it was clear that the stablemaster was not likely to come back, word was sent to the family and Taryn arrived within the year. Having had a good deal of previous experience, she set about to putting things back in shape. The house itself still needs work but she is getting there.
Besides boarding, Taryn grooms the animals left in her charge and provides medical attention as necessary. She supplements her income by caring for the other beasts of burden and livestock around the town. Her rates would be considered modest compared to whatever is standard in your game. While her operation is too small to carry equestrian equipment, Astolpho & Gina at the mercantile, carry all of the basics.
The eastern portion of the ground floor is comprised of Taryn’s living quarters, while the room to the west is what she uses as an office.
In addition to Taryn’s bedchamber, the 2nd floor consists of a meeting room. While not generally accessible to the public, she may invite the PCs up here for counsel, or to discuss future plans.
Plot Hooks & Encounters
As previously mentioned, Taryn’s uncle Benjamin went missing 2 years ago. What the other residents of Cross Tree are not aware of is that fact that Taryn’s father Adam also vanished around the same time.
- Knowing that both her father and uncle had been adventurers in their youth. Taryn suspects that the legend of a lost city was what lured Benjamin here. It is reasonable to think that she might attempt to hire the party to find out what became of them.
- While out on a ride two weeks ago, Taryn discovered some stone tablets with odd runes on them. She might hire the party to travel to the nearest city and try to decipher them.
- Adam Keen owned a cabin located 3 days west of Cross Tree. Taryn has not been there since she was a young girl. However, she faintly remembers that he kept journals there, detailing his exploits. If she trusts the party, she may give them directions to the cabin and ask them to go retrieve the journals. Obviously, with this and any of the other previous tasks, she would be willing to share any resulting bounty.
- Finally, if the party is simply in needs of funds and willing to put in some hard word, there is plenty to be done. Taryn would certainly be willing to hire party members to clean the stables or assist with the process of fixing up her living quarters.
That will conclude another post about the town of Cross Tree. Two more installments to go and then I’ll start using this basic town to produce some adventures. Thank you for taking the time to stop by and share in this hobby. Good gaming!