10 July 2024

The Circular Spine (Barkeep Jam)

As an entry to Barkeep Jam hosted by Prismatic Wasteland - adhering to the Barkeep on the Borderlands Third Party License - we have the Circular Spine.

Marked by the great leviathans back-spine twisted into a ring that hangs above the door, the Circular Spine is a grotty fighting pit that smells like the inside of a sea cave. Muddy floor that floods with the tides, slick with seaweed. A chandelier made of a ships wheel dripping with tallow candles swings from the ceiling. The repurposed hull-planks that make up everything are sticky along the edges with old pitch.

When the jolly crew enters this pub, roll 1d6 on the table below. If a character’s number is equal to or below the result, they are in the pub right now.

d6 Staff & Regulars
1. Glargu the fishman barkeep - gruff until you entertain him, greatly appreciates an act that amps up his bloodthirsty patrons
2. Fleano, member of the Gatebreakers, bravos for hire, cocky, willing to make and take bets
3. Boris, dockmaster, slumming it for thrills
4. Miesmies, server, punk tabaxi, taciturn, observant
5. Bron, rowdy patron, loves the Circular Spine, judges others by whether they love it too
6. Herbert and Charlotte, nervous out of towners, feel out of their depth but were (wrongly) told this place was a must see

If the Risk Die rolls a Setback while the jolly crew is approaching this pub, roll 2d6 on the table below.
2. tidal wash - dex saves or knocked into wall, d4-1 damage from sharp shells, prone
3. badly injured survivor of previous act, demanding someone help them back to the bar so they can go another round
4. snarling scavengers tearing up a big dead critter dumped by the bar, failed act or beached sea-creature
5. mud-slick streets - approach is slowed or check to avoid falling, getting soaked, sand-covered and possibly stung
6. leafleteers insisting you come to their future act
7. barkers and challengers - catch their eye and get roped directly into an act (roll d6+6 on Setbacks).
8. rowdy patrons arguing over upcoming act
9. two upcoming acts (roll twice on Setbacks with d6+6) in heated argument over clashing booking, teeters towards violence
10. mudlarks rummaging through newly washed-in debris, warn off anyone intruding on 'their patch'
11. aggressive scavenger beastie tests your deliciousness
12. bar brawl, spill-out

If the Risk Die rolls a Setback while the jolly crew is inside this pub, roll 2d6 on the table below.

2. mud- hidden critters attempt their escape (avoid or engage a crab swarm)
3. aggressively passed hat
4. drinking contest
5. bar brawl, good natured
All below have the crew dragged, pushed or falling into the main act in the pit
6. dwarf brawler taking all comers
7. knifethrowers routine
8. fire dancing
9. beast fighting
10. screaming bards
11. beast riding
12. tide racing

Signature Drinks for the Circular Spine
1 silver coin - 'Grog' watered rum & lime juice served in a soggy wooden mug
2 silver coins - Salt Beer - brewed down the coast, a touch of salt and iodine, leaves you thirsty
3 silver coins - Rum
4 silver coins - Far Shores - thick viscous juices spiked with spirits
5 silver coins - Glargu's Best - Rum spiced and doctored with herbs and squeezings, energises
1 gold coin - Neptunes Bounty - dredged up sparkling wine (excellent)

This place cropped up during a one-shot where the PC's side-tracked looking for somewhere to show off their big beast companion; this place sprang near fully formed into mind inspired by sea-caves, tide-pools and the kinds of holes-in-the-sand you find dug on beaches. This was an open table and the party turned out to be a pair of bard, a pair of halfling rogues and a blade-singer wizard - very well set up for putting on a show. They wowwed the crowd with a truly profligate spend of spell-slots and animal handling chops to do a fire-juggling while beast-riding act.

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