Princes of the Apocalypse
The Swinging Sword
One door north of the Allfaiths Shrine stands the Swinging Sword. The inn is a three-story stone structure, crowned by a steep slate roof that bristles with many chimneys. A signboard juts out over the door, hanging from chains. It’s a ten-foot-long carved wooden scimitar emblazoned with the inn’s name in red paint on both sides. An inn yard with stables and outbuildings lies behind the building.
The Swinging Sword is welcoming and luxurious by the area’s rustic standards. Each room boasts a hearth, warm draperies and tapestries, and running water (provided by rooftop cisterns). Now run by the Irkell family from Waterdeep, the inn has become a popular stopover for wayfarers in the Dessarin Valley. The topmost guest floor is given over to dormitories where travelers can “sleep cheap” in rooms shared with up to six guests, but the lower floors are divided into pleasant suites of guest rooms, each with its own garderobe. There’s also a dining room on the ground floor.
The Sword has one recurring problem: kitchen fires. The one-story kitchen annex at the back of the inn, currently out of commission, was initially built with poorly drawing chimneys. Right now, cooking is rudimentary and done out in the yard, on grills flanking the bread ovens. The dining room is mainly used for drinking, with “the Helm” (the tavern across the road) currently providing the best meals in town travelers can easily buy.
While the Helm at Highsun is the place to hear Red Larchers unwind, the Swinging Sword is the polite social hub and neutral meeting ground of Red Larch.