The regulars left the table nearest the fire when the strangers came in. At the base of the Matterhorn summer nights are chilly, so a fire is welcome starting in the late afternoon. Strangers paid much higher prices for everything and the whole village, not just the innkeeper, profited. Everyone made strangers welcome.

The four outlanders were barely seated before a jack of beer was set in front of each of them. "There is soup tonight," the innkeeper said, "and clean linen for pallets in the loft. I am sorry but the village has only one sleeping room for travelers and it has already been let.

"Tomorrow would you prefer beef, pork, or fowl?" The village would enjoy what the travelers paid for but did not eat. It was hoped they would want beef.

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- The Grantville Gazette Staff