"I can tells what ye be thinkin', I can - quite wright," says the dirty faced boy standing before them. "But I got nothin' like dat planned see. I'm earnin' me an honest livin - quite wright - I am. Sees here..."
He holds out a heavy parchment with dark markings on both sides. It takes the group a moment to recognize what they are looking at, because the lines are rudely drawn, adn the markings inconsistent. But in the end, it is clear, this is a complete map of the entire market place.
"I know a good Armour Smithy here," he points to a central location on the map, and a long road cutting through the marketplace off to the East. "He will usually make something to match any Weapons made by his brother, over here..." He drags a grimy finger down to the lower side of the map.
"Hmm hot cakes, buttered scallops, and a pint - when I have the coin - this is the place I end my day - when I have my choice. It's called Blakely's but no one there is called by that name. At least by me. Anyhow it's a good Tavern. Across the way from Blakely's you can visit the many Outfitters and get any sorta clothing you desire. I've seen the strangest get up's mind you."
The boy shakes his head as if recallign a bad memory. "I won't be takin' you into this Den of Theives, or parading you through the Marketplace Center either. That be where my tour ends friend. You'll find plenty in the Center for entertainment, but mind you don't get so distracted you loose your purse to the theives. They gather and thrive in the abandoned side shantys lying about."
"Beyond Blakely's," he backtracks as if he'd forgotten a crucial detail, "there are an assortment of Ranged Weapon shops, an open Archer's Range, and plenty of Masters in the art of range craft to fill more thean an afternoon, I'd say - quite wright."
"As I've said I aint wandrin' too far past the Fountain with ye. But I'll remind you to kindly walk lightly through the Barracks and mind who you address there. Some will help build up your body, while others in training are just waiting to tear your's down."
"While I've got my ways - and I don't mean I saunter through the Center - I do live far beyond the Marketplace in the Slums to the south. Just before you come into my neck of the woods - you should visit the Furtune Teller to see if she's got a word for you from above on your purpose here. Not that she'd ever pointed me to fame and fortune mind'ye!"
At that he quickly folds his map and stuffs it back into his waist. After sinching his rope belt, he looks up eageler, "So, where to?"
Peoples from every walk of life, and every corner of the Realms had descended, it seemed, upon the City and her market. At every turn a new shop could be discovered, down every dark passage an alley of adventure.
Nothing of purpose is noticeable here. There are multiple torch sconces with unlit torches set into corners of buildings. A few unmonitored carts sit with horses resting idly waiting for their drivers to return.
A street waif, Donnor, stands before the party ready to guide them to any destination they request. The busy street is filling with merchants, mariners, and maidens. Everyone is setting about their daily routine. Near a busy stall a rotund woman with wildly stringy white hair loudly objects to the merchant's pricing. She pushes her sizeable belly and chest into the tiny man, toppling him into the cart. You overhear someone say, "That Sandy, at it again..."
North: Leave the marketplace and head toward the Castle.
South: Head toward an enchanter's sign, and the magic district.
East: Return to the dark alley and the Sewer entrance.
West: Explore the multiple doors lining the opposite alley.
Hint: Donnar the Waif will quickly take you to any location in the Marketplace, as long as he's traveling with you, and for a small fee. Otherwise, it is up to the party to navigate and explore the many corners of the Marketplace on their own.