One of the taverns located inside Paltraeth Down’s extrality zone, the Sages’ Stomping Ground has the unique distinction of being both a brawler’s bar and an enhanced-privacy facility. In a traditionally kaeth twist, the proprietor, mor-Tanaz Vivek, defines “privacy” as ignoring anything going on outside the common bar – where weapons are requested to be kept sheathed or holstered, and appropriate waivers can be signed for a longer stay – short of wall-penetrating explosions without prior arrangement. Even official records reflect that this has extended, in the past, to rival mercenary groups staging pitched battles in the more spacious upstairs rooms.
Naturally, furnishings and decor are carefully chosen to be sturdy, cheap, and eminently replaceable, so we cannot recommend the Ground as a place to stay. However, the drink selection is excellent, even for those who like their strong liquor at less than kaeth-strength and scrubbed of radioactivity, and the food is also good if your tastes run to bloody-roast meat with a soupçon of heavy metals.
Before you leave, don’t forget to ask mor-Tanaz for the card of his specialist cleaning service. While expensive, there’s no-one more skilled or experienced at removing any portion of other patrons that may have spilled on you in the course of your visit.
– The Longest Crawl: Dodeciad Worlds, Dodeciad Drinks
“Those visitors unfamiliar with local custom in such matters should avoid those bars and other drinking houses displaying above the entrance a knotted wooden club, or a spaceman’s marlinspike. Such establishments thereby indicate that they are “brawler’s bars”, and as such, establishments which tolerate a nice friendly brawl between their patrons as long as no weapons are drawn and no-one’s actually trying to kill anyone else, without the usual legal and often lethal consequences that would attend trying to start a fight anywhere else. Fighting is not organized or obligatory – and indeed, may happen relatively infrequently – but entering an establishment so signed is considered informed consent, for legal purposes, to being propositioned for such an affray, and/or caught up in one that starts while you are present, and all consequences resulting therefrom.”
“(Members of any gentler sex, race, clade or caste which there might happen to be for your species are also advised that Imperials take a rather ecumenical view on such matters, and as such, while it may be possible to observe, there can be no guarantee that observation will not lead inexorably to participation.)”
“If this is the sort of thing you’re looking for in your evening’s entertainment, however, most brawler’s bars have good on-site medical support for routine traumas, and more sophisticated medical services on-call in the event of an accident. However, as with everything else in the Empire, these must be paid for, so make sure that your medical, tort and/or travel insurance policies are up to date and offer appropriate coverage before visiting. You should also familiarize yourself with the relevant sections of the Common Social Protocol – again, like everything else hereabouts, a nice friendly brawl has rules.”
– A Visitor’s Guide to the Empire: Startown and its Denizens