I'm running a campaign set in the 1350s DR and the party has traveled to Zhentil Keep. The party has legit papers from High Hall courtesy of a Zhent merchant they accompanied to the city. They are not aligned with either major faction of the period, the Zhentarim or Harpers. Ruins of Zhentil Keep lists many inns in different parts of the city, in the chapter Zhentil Keep - Then. The chapter Zhentil Keep - Now of Ruins of Zhentil Keep is not applicable to this question as the destruction of most of the city happens in 1368 DR.

The party is mostly good and mostly human with one half-orc (Mistress Mara Trollsblood, AL LE, a minor encounter from Doom of Daggerdale upgraded to NPC), and an elf wizard who is disguised as a half-elf bard. I'm using Basic D&D with old 1E and 2E Forgotten Realms books including the old Grey Book (FR0) and Ruins of Zhentil Keep. Probably I'm going to switch to 5E once I finish reading the books, but keep the 1350s DR time period. Nothing in this question is edition specific which is why I marked it as lore.

Would they be restricted to the Foreign Quarter or could they lodge elsewhere in the city?
What restrictions could there be on their lodgings as neither Zhent or Zhentarim?


1 Answer 1


The Ruins of Zhentil Keep Campaign Book does not state any restrictions on who can find lodging in various districts of the city. Pages 51-54 mention inns and taverns in all quarters. For example even about the Inner Quarter, which is home to the most prominent citizens, we read:

plush inns, exorbitant taverns, and the Keeps official government also reside here, as well as an assortment of other notable (and disturbing) city structures .... The services offered in the Inner Quarter command higher prices than in other quarters of the city, except for the obscenely inflated Foreign Quarter.

The only issue is about gaining access to the various quarters as the party passes through the various gates. They need to answer a number of questions like whether you carry potent magical items, whether you come from states/locations that the Zhentarim considers as enemies, and whether you are followers of Bane. However since you mentioned that the party has legit papers and have already entered the city, you should judge whether those papers are still ok at each of the gates. A little bribe could also be useful.


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