You can see the paper lanterns and the fire flies flitting around them. The smell of the bayou washes over you as you draw closer to the ancient bridge. The sounds of revelry spilling out of the Blue Bayou Inn roll over you, igniting the urge for drink and dance, singing and good times to be found within. The dark armored forms of the town guard, encased in their alligator scale armor roam the outskirts of the light, their eyes glowing golden in the dark night, the silhouettes of those strange swamp things visible here and there in the waters amongst the huge trees.
As the hooves of your horses begin to clatter upon the stone bridge, each of you feel that sense of peace and belonging you had last time settle upon you. Then you realize that Cassiel has stopped his wagon well before the bridge. His face pale in the twilight. You can tell he is having some kind of internal conflict at this point.
Finally, he squares his broad shoulders coming to a decision, He calls ahead to you all cheerfully waving you forward. “You kids go right on ahead and go enjoy yourselves. I know from you babble how much you have been looking forward to returning here. Me and Ol’ Stone will go back a few hundred yards and make camp there if you need us. We will see you here at dawn, or as soon as your able.” He finishes with a genuine smile. He begins turning the giant Rhino around and heads back the way you came. You can hear him grumbling to himself for a while as they plod their way into the dark.
You all sit there, mid span, astride your tired horses, maybe torn a bit. When Lone Bear pipes up from his usual station by Caris’ side, his rumbly voice full of unexpected wisdom. “He is not ready for place with many peoples.” Then with a gentle pat on Caris’ knee Lone bear lopes off after Cassiel. “I stay with him, things in common we have.” He calls back, vanishing after the Priest.
Slowly and maybe a tiny bit less jubilant than before you carry on to the Inn, checking your horses at the unusually full stable. BY the time you are all striding up the steps to the invitingly open double doors of the Inn, with its life and light spilling out across you lifting your spirits. You are all in fantastic moods.
Stepping into the maelstrom of people, you stop just inside the threshold, striking a pose unconsciously, a pose that says “Bad assess”.
Directly across the large common room on the stage you see a pair of female orcs dancing with a giant snake, the giant purple piano sits behind them covered with a black velvet cloth.. The bar wrapping around the left lower half of the room is packed with patrons of all descriptions. Many of the tables have been pushed back almost to the walls to provide even more dance space before the stage. The dance floor is full of people milling about watchi8ng in awe as the snake charming women cavort around with each other and the snake. The majority of the tables are packed, with many people just standing by a table full of their companions.
The second story balconies are also full of people talking, drinking laughing, and other stuff in darker corners. You are noticed right away by some many people you cannot keep track of them all, a round of cheers roars out as you enter, filling you with joy. Looking at each other, slapping each other on the back, or ass, you step down into the throng and get swept up in the feasting and drinking. The feeling of being welcome and appreciated amongst your own.
Remember there are examples of a lot of races here. Hulking nomadic pelt wearing orcs and in the corner furthest form the stage a trio of proud hobgoblins in red and white Samurai armor stand drinking and talking amongst themselves, they eye Hroth and raise their flagons in recognition. A pair of snooty looking golden haired elves stand back to back at the bar each conversing with the people around them, a quartet of long bearded dwarves stand at the edge of the stage heckling the orc women. On the balconies above, there is a cackling old man with a long white beard covered in fetishes and brandishing a gnarled staff telling some kind of joke to a stern faced well-dressed human in formal robes, his long black hair pulled back from his high forehead with a circlet of gently glowing jade, his robes a pale blue.
To name but a few of the notables in the Inn at the time you enter. It is not long into the night before you are all standing together, drinks in hand, cheering as The Prince takes the stage for a rousing piano number accompanied by the deep voices of the Dwarven quartet.