Iago's apartment is of Average rank. It sits on Burden Street in the Incudine, and is attached to Madame Burrfoot's pipeleaf shop. The space is a former cobbler's shop, with a ground floor suitable as a workshop and an upstairs apartment. Iago has carefully removed the sign from the space so that he cannot be accused of attempting to sell goods there, as he is forbidden from practicing alchemy within the city as he is not a member of the Alchemist's Guild.
His part-time "servants" include his landlady, Madame Burrfoot, and his father, to whom he sends money. The former provides meals when Iago is home, and both keep an eye on the place when he is away adventuring.
Iago entered his new home. Madame Burrfoot, the halfling landlady, had done a fine job of cleaning it after its last tenant, and the half-orc had spent so little time there it had acquired no clutter or dirt of any kind. Indeed, the place looked downright sterile. Iago wondered if he should have made an effort to make the space more inviting before inviting his guest. The furnishings were comfortable enough, but the place did not look like a home.
Indeed, he reflected, looking over at the racks of flasks and strange apparatus in his work area, the only space in which he had invested any time at all was his workbench.
"Well, let's see tha' place, then," came the gruff voice behind him in orcish. A larger, older half-orc made his way in, weathered features locked in a perpetual scowl. He wore the faded work clothes and leather harness favored by Venza's longshoremen, and he walked with the slightly crooked gait of one who has spent a lifetime carrying goods in and out of the bellies of ships. The effect was exaggerated by the the wooden stump that replaced his right leg where it ended below the knee.
"This is my work area," said Iago, gesturing helplessly. "I'll be sleeping on the cot over there. The apartment upstairs would be yours."
But the old man seemed to ignore the alchemist's words, instead stamping over to look at the work area. "You put 'dis in?" he asked, gesturing to the shelves.
"Most of them," replied Iago. "Some of it is left over from the old shopkeeper. He was a cobbler."
"A human?" asked the old man. "Thought so," he added, at Iago's nod. "Still has his smell."
"So, your room would be upstairs," Iago repeated politely. "Madame Burrfoot would make your morning and evening meals. She's a good cook," he adds. "And she buys her ale from a cousin of hers, a brewer. It's good."
"How's her leaf?" asked the old man, still looking over the workbench.
"I don't know," answered Iago honestly. He did not partake of pipeleaf, though he supposed it was harmless enough. At least compared to the rotgut whiskey the old man favored. "But she's got a big stock in the shop. I'm sure there's something you'd like."
There was an awkward pause as the older half-orc looked Iago up and down.
Finally, Iago broke the silence. "Pa," he said carefully. "You'd like it here."
"Ha!" Answered his father. "You didna' think I'd leave de docks, did ya'?"
Actually, Iago had been surprised when his father had agreed to come look at the place. He'd held out hope he could get the man to leave that cesspool behind and live in a part of the city with decent sanitation and safe food. "So why did you come," he asked.
"Ta' see that," answered the old man. "I wanted ta' know sumthin'. Ya never made much sense ta' me, but now I get it."
"What do you mean?" asked the half-orc in confusion. "That's...my alchemical gear." His father had never had much patience with it before, and Iago could not fathom his sudden interest.
"Is it now?" asked the old man sardonically. "That fer alchemy?"
He was pointing at Iago's falchion, which hung with his other weapons on a rack beside the workbench.
"What? I mean, of course I need weapons," he said, confused.
"O' course you do," chortled the old man. "But da ya need 'em right there?"
Iago blinked as his father laughed, seeming to savor some joke. His son tried to process the exchange. Why did the rack of weapons amuse his father so? Everyone had weapons. When he was growing up...
When Iago and his brothers were growing up, the family had kept their crude stock of weapons in a cabinet, near the door. Why had Iago hung his with his alchemical tools? What did that mean?
"C'mon, let's get a drink," the old man said, patting his son on the back. The pair made their way out, Iago still frowning in confusion. As the door closed behind them, the faint light that flickered through the gaps in the shutters played off the weapons and the strange glassware alike.