Curious Locales—Filletess Honeysuckle Crab’s Slaughterhouse and Undertaking Emporium
“What is it now, slug?”
“Look, I’ve found a property for sale in the Citystate Gazetteer. It sounds ideal for a summer retreat: quirky, cheap but in need of a major fumigation, let me read it to you…”
Curious locales are quirky locations for GMs to drop into their campaigns. Free of class and level, they can be used in any fantasy RPG. They consist of a single locale with a colorful description, characters, and relationships, along with ideas for adventures and using them in your campaign. As well as a basic set-up, they offer tweaks to relationships and situations therein to change them to suit your devious needs. Cut and paste them into your adventures and flesh out the detail or detail out the flesh as you wish…
Filletess Crab’s Slaughterhouse and Undertaking Emporium is a failing curio that graces the edges of the settlement. Its failures are partly down to its foul-mouthed owner and her frustrations.
Here ruin lurks behind a veneer of cleanliness, a curious emporium that is partly given over to the sale of meat, with hooks and platters of flesh of all descriptions arranged around a broad tiled entrance, and that of an undertaker, with a neat group of coffins of all shapes and sizes arranged by a secondary entrance. This latter painted a sombre black.
Within, both establishments (which are linked by a discreet concealed door to allow Crab access between the two when necessary) are neat and clean but decidedly tired looking, as though times are hard—which regrettably they are. A tertiary examination of either quickly reveals that fact. Throughout her somewhat extensive property, which rambles over three crooked floors and a widespread cellar, Crab keeps the finest—if faded—furniture, left to her by her aged Aunt Crimmenia, who died only very recently and whom—it is rumoured—remains pickled in the attic. That part of any local rumor is true; Crab despised her wickedly cruel aunt and arranged for her to be preserved on her death. She enjoys belittling her or singing and dancing before the preserved remains of her former closest relative to annoy her. That she is paying her back for beatings and humiliations beyond counting is justification enough for Crab, who is socially very awkward at the best of time, having been isolated from friends by her strict aunt and trained in the family businesses. This, unfortunately for Crab, was a crossing of professional paths with those of her father Groff and his twin Harold—one a butcher, one an undertaker, who lived side by side until both died in the same cow-riding accident—leaving Crab an orphan to be taken care of by her aunt, a very strict lady who did her best to ensure a balanced education in the family business, which sadly fell on the young girl’s shoulders. One reason Crab remains here is because her aunt said she would make nothing of herself nor the diverse businesses, and Crab is determined—even if it breaks her—to prove her wrong and tell her so on a nightly basis through angry shouts and song.
The rambling house lies across three towering stories and is a mixture of reclaimed temple objects dedicated to Our Lady of Cuts, the demigod of meat and cleavers: faded furniture of some value and an astonishing collection of knives, butchers blocks, cleavers, saws, and other butchering utensils.
Crab is desperately unhappy, has been unhappy for most of her days in fact, and that unhappiness tends to spill over into swearing and anger—never violent anger. Her strict religious beliefs leave her with an aloof if somewhat contorted view of her demigoddess our Lady of Cuts. Crab is enormous, a towering unfeminine bulk possessed of an endlessly lit pipe and a bloody apron (when butchering) or terrible weighted misery behind a veil (when undertaking). She works as a butcher from before dawn until noon and then opens her adjacent emporium, donning a neat dark dress replete with mourning veil to take on her task of undertaker.
That occasional (always dead) waifs and tramps bodies come her way and end up at some necromantic establishment friend of hers is unknown to all save her fellow conspirators at present. She does so because she is desperate enough to risk imprisonment or worse to keep a roof over her head and prove her aunt wrong.
To add to suspicion, she always works alone—simply being unable to afford staff—but poverty and shyness never got in the way of juicy gossip…
TO BE CONTINUED…!