Once Upon A Time In The Empire
The Axe and Hammer Inn
This low-roofed stone building has two levels – one above ground and one below. The ground floor is a tavern where all are welcome, although dwarfs comprise the bulk of the clientele. Some of the townsfolk jokingly refer to it as the “dwarf embassy” because when a dwarf invites a member of another race to a meeting in Ubersreik, it invariably takes place in the Axe and Hammer.
The ground floor consists of a large, open room whose stone walls and pillars are elabprately carved with the stone ancestor figures and other dward designs. The floor, tables, and benches are also made of stone, as are the side-rooms used for private discussions and meetings. The room has no windows, being lit by torches to enhance the the impression of being underground. The bar serves several distinctive brews, including Borgun’s old Subterranean and Skull Splitter Ale, and occasional “guest beers” imported from Grey Mountain dwarf holds.
Only dwarfs ever see the lower floor.
The acknowledged leader of the Dwarf community in Ubersreik is Grodni Surehammer, a grizzled longbeard who was one of the first to come to Ubersreik in respnse to Emperor Magnus’s appeal for help in rebuilding the town. It is said that he designed the bridge himself, along with the river towers and their defensive chains. Grodni seldom ventures above ground, but younger dwarfs keep him up to date with everything that is going on in and around the town, and deal with prominent human townsfolk on his behalf. More than a few of Ubersreik’s human dignataries secretly wonder if he is still alive, but dare not insult the dwarfs by doubting any message that comes in his name.
“My brother got invited over there a few weeks back – he’s a metal worker, you see, and went with the Guild. Couldn’t hardly stand up, he said, on account of the ceiling being so low. The dwarfs were nice enough, he said, but they don’t give much away. But he said there’s a part of it that’s underground, where they weren’t invited. Dwarfs only, they said – polite like, but firm. Do you suppose we should be worried about what they’re doing down there?”