The Meat Locker

An impeccably-crafted two-story Ionian building made of polished marble in various shades nestles comfortably among the more ramshackle buildings on the Hempenway cliffside (Level 2). The Ionian craftsfolk of 400 years ago really knew how to work marble, though the Transmuters educated at the College have restored and maintained the stone amazingly well. It survived the Godstorm, though it took weeks to polish the stone back to its usual lustre. It served as a private residence initially, and it changed hands several times over the years. The previous merchant owner didn't survive the Godstorm and the family sold it for cheap instead of cleaning it.

A visionary Firbolg bard named Jorgen bought the place and invested some of his adventuring spoils into settling down. He opened a butcher shop and named it The Meat Locker, installing a display case in the expansive entry foyer. The marble helps keep the meats cool, and the occasional ray of frost does wonders to keep the meats fresh for longer in their locking metal chests. Not that it matters, as Jorgen's winning personality brings every wholesaler and restauranteur to his shop to buy nearly everything on offer every day.

The building seems quite opulent for a butcher shop, but Jorgen needs the large central hall for the daily meat auction. At sunup or a little before, everyone gathers to bid on the freshest cuts of a wide variety of meat, both domestic and imported from overseas. Once the auction finishes, Jorgen and his staff take the remainder of the day's bounty and trim it down for private purchase, usually opening the counter in the foyer to the public around midmorning.

Jorgen doesn't maintain a slaughterhouse, but he does hold a lucrative contract with the Amaryllis Estate for processing and selling the bulk of their meats. He lives in the master suite upstairs, and he offers to rent the smaller apartments out to his trusted staff. He closes for the day when he runs out of things to sell, so get there early if you want the best cuts of meat. After closing in the afternoon, the marble walls pivot to expose a much more intimate setting in the main hall.

After dark, night life emerges. The Meat Locker takes on a very different meaning and vibe, transforming into a performance space with a raised stage and several tables around the perimeter. Jorgen's early mornings mean he prefers performing in the early evening as Iocasta, the mother-wife of myth and legend, especially now that he considers himself a middle-aged drag queen who requires even more beauty sleep. The burlesque show never fails to entertain the masses, though it usually runs only on weekend nights now. The rest of the week fills up with intimate shows by up and coming performers, private rentals, and the well-established Midweek Club, a dance party featuring a rotating lineup of live music that keeps the thumping music rolling all night long.

Jorgen never used to turn people away, accepting anyone to come as they are to enjoy themselves without judgement. Some in town have a dim view of free expression like this, and Jorgen maintains a blacklist of those who have caused trouble and been kicked out. The list remains blissfully short after twenty years, though it expands a little more every year.

The Meat Locker has a well-stocked bar and a smaller hall in back for more private functions. The thick stone walls prevent noise from escaping, so things can get a little rowdy. Sometimes the party leaks onto the rooftop patio, but the staff keeps the volume down to make sure the neighbors have nothing to complain about.

The staff keeps a close eye on everyone, quick to intervene and rescue someone suffering unwelcome attention. Consent reigns supreme here, and every staff member stands ready to educate the unfamiliar, or to escort those who violate consent off the premises. The cover charge and drink prices tend to run a little higher than other bars or performance venues to cover the extra staff and the security services they render.

The Meat Locker after dark is one of Fellport's worst-kept secrets, and even the entry's persistent illusion of various meats hung from the ceiling on hooked chains barely fools anyone after the first time. Many sailors come to the Meat Locker, and several local inns with inexpensive rooms (and pointedly inattentive staff) have cropped up around the place. For all the personalities and differing outlooks that it attracts, The Meat Locker self-polices amazingly well. Members of the Watch have only visited as patrons, never in an official capacity. Jorgen cultivates excellent relations with several Watch members should anything untoward ever occur.

Part of T.W.Wombat's Lore 24 project, detailing the world around Fellport.
For all city posts, see the Fellport Index. For posts about the wider world, see the Beneterra Index.

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