Fred the elfling has graciously agreed to be our foreign correspondent and ask some of the tough questions.
Today’s interview: Henry the Innkeeper the proprietor of Henry’s.
Fred: Henry, people want to know. Can you get a Hamburger at Henry’s?
Henry: I don’t know why folks think that we ain’t up to that. Course you can. We have cows. We’ve got a meat grinder. Come on by and we’ll whip up a basket for you. Mind you, not so cheap as in other parts as I hear about. But we only have fresh meat, home baked rolls, and fresh cut taters fried up waffle style with my own secret spice. Only eight shillings a basket. Like to see this ‘happy food’ person beat that.
Fred: What would be a more economical lunch at Henry’s?
Henry: Well, most folks stopping by for a pint at lunch do take a bite. We can fix you up with a ham sandwich and a slice of apple pie for a crown. That or the daily special. Shepard’s pie, Banger’s and Mash, maybe a steak and kidney pie, whatever the misses is in the mood for.
Fred: You’re married then?
Henry: Oh yes. Me and the Misses run the place. She don’t cotton to the company in the room though, so she usually works in the kitchen.
Fred: Henry, your Inn has been accused of being a house of ill repute. Any comment on that?
Henry: What rot. We’ve got a friendly staff at Henry’s, that’s all. Friendly but none of that sort. Mind you I wont say as there aren’t a few soldiers who come by Henry’s looking for a bit of a cuddle. I was in the army myself you know. I know a man gets lonely posted away from home. But there ain’t no whoring at Henry’s.
Fred: Isn’t it true that Lord Darras has lodged complaints with you over this issue?
Henry: Lord Darras is a proper gentleman. I’ll tell you what I told him. Man expects to run an Inn in a remote part of the world, he best not be too curious about what folks do at night in their rooms. Long as they don’t disturb the other guests. Been some queer things happen with his lot, so I don’t see as he’s one to complain on that score. We just have lots of young people around is all. He’s got young men. I’ve got young girls. They take to each other now and then. Perfectly natural. Now some of my girls aren’t as careful as they ought to be around the young men, but then some of his lot aren’t as gentlemanly as he wants them to be. People is people is all. There’s been a time or two things haven’t worked out so well. But we’ve had a few marriages too.
Fred: Are Soldiers your only customers?
Henry: Lord no. We do a fair trade with them, but it’s not so steady with them as I’d like. But we’ve got other folks as come by. Folks stop off for a pint on the way to Vonair, Tuck’s ferry or maybe even Wallsingham or Bristol Springs. We’ve got our share of locals too mind you. There’s a couple of farms about and then there’s the woodsmen. They like a pint and a bit o news themselves.
Fred: Do many fairy folk come to the inn?
Henry: Now and then. Dwarves mostly. They are the most social of that lot. Don’t do much trade with elves. I try and keep a bit of bear claw for the trolls. Keeps them social.
Fred: So Trolls are partial to bear meat, eh?
Henry: Don’t be daft. Bear claw is a sweet. Like a donut or a pastry. Good seller for us. Woodsmen don’t get much sweets. No bear in it at all. Trolls has got a powerful sweet tooth.
Fred: What are the most popular drinks at Henry's?
Henry: Beer and Cider. We do a fair trade in Rum and Mead as well.
Fred: By Cider, you mean 'Hard Cider' right, i.e. the fermented alcoholic beverage made from apple juice?
Henry: Right, though in the Stewardship we take pride in the quality of our water supplies and non-alcoholic drinks are becoming more popular. Apple juice, Lemonade, Sarsaparilla, and Sun Tea are popular.
Fred: What surprises first time travelers most about Henry's?
Henry: The quality of our bathrooms. The flushing toilet was actually invented in 1596. Plumbing isn't under the ban. We cater to folks from Roman settlements that are used to running water and hot baths. We don't disappoint at Henry's.
Fred: I think that about covers it. Check back next month for more news from the boarder lands.