Riverford Keep, Main Floor

 
Riverford Keep, Main Floor

Note that only major features of the castle are listed here. Outside areas are shown in visual format, while inside areas are shown in a dungeon layout format.

1. Entrance Hall
This is the main entrance to the keep, and is appropriately designed to impress with limited space. The room is a mere 40'x40', yet appears much larger thanks to the design of the interior. Dominating the view as you enter is the huge stained glass window opposite the front doors. Six marble columns (3 left, 3 right) support the two 2nd-floor balconies to either side of the main entrance. The columns are decorated with gold trim and fitted with large candle sconces, while the balconies feature ornately carved wood trim and handrails. Two sets of wide circular stairs in the front end of the entrance lead up to the balconies. Directly above the front doors is a large circular stained-glass window, drawing attention to the vaulted ceiling and hanging candelabra overhead.

2. Guard Barracks
This is the main barracks for the guards who patrol the inside of the keep. The barracks are deliberately larger than what is required for the small number of inside guards. This was intended to provide extra room in case the outer walls of the complex are breached during siege, and the outer wall defenders are forced to retreat to the security of the main keep.

3. North Tower
This is a service tower, mostly to allow quick travel between floors of the keep. It is also used for storage or as an extra room, as needed. The 1'-wide windows spaced around the outer wall of the tower double as arrow slits for defenders to use bows and crossbows in times of siege.

4. East Tower
This is the largest of the four keep towers, and serves many functions as needed. The floor of the tower is nearly always empty; usually serving as extra barracks during times of siege. The central staircase is always locked, and leads to the "dungeon" level, where the prison, forge, and training areas are located.

5. Ballroom
This ballroom features a polished marble floor, bright colorful decorations, and 20' tall windows overlooking the reflecting pool in the inner courtyard of the keep. The three sets of double doors in the ballroom are made of ornately carved wood, with gold-trimmed glass panels in the top half of the doors. A wide stairway sweeps upward along 2 of the walls to a 2nd floor balcony, which overlooks the entire ballroom. Similar to the main entrance, this room has a vaulted ceiling, but with 2 smaller hanging candelabras (instead of one large candelabra) to provide more even lighting to the room. In the lower-left corner of the room is a large fireplace, decorated in marble.

6. Banquet Hall
This is the main dining hall where guests are often entertained. It features the same vaulted ceiling, 20' high windows, and hanging candelabras as the ballroom, but the banquet hall is decorated more with wood trim and warm color tones rather than the bright colors of the ballroom. The room is dominated by the large banquet table, built not just for a touch of elegance, but also to endure years of service. The room also features a large fireplace in the lower-right corner, decorated in fieldstone to give it a slightly more rustic look.

7. Reflecting Pool
This is the reflecting pool in the northern half of the inner courtyard. The water is only 2' deep, but features an ornate marble fountain at its center. A stone walkway surrounds the pool, with 3 wide sections where a stone bench is placed to allow visitors and residents to sit and enjoy the view. On either side of the benches, and on either side of the path at the south end of the pool, are oil-burning lamps to provide light to the area at night.

8. Well
This is the main well for the central keep, located in the southern part of the inner courtyard. Stone walkways meander their way from the various entrances of the courtyard and converge here. Oil-burning lamps are placed at various locations along the paths to provide light to the paths at night.

9. Staff Access
This is a stairway leading down to the service tunnels below the keep. The tunnels allow access to various staff areas of the keep. This particular access point allows the staff quick access from the kitchen to the ballroom for serving refreshments and drinks. The stairs are fitted with rail-like grooves to facilitate the use of small carts.

10. Kitchen
This is the kitchen area, with a ramp access to the service tunnels below the castle, and to the keep's food storage rooms. As with all of the staff's areas, the room is designed for function rather than style. The floor is made from thick, fitted wooden planks, which are covered over with durable stone tiles and grout. The kitchen is equipped with a large brick fireplace/stove with two small brick ovens on either side of the fireplace.

11. Staff Dining Hall
This is the private dining hall for the castle's staff and guards. Decorations in this room are limited to whatever the staff themselves put in it, and the floor consists of fitted wood planks laid diagonally across the spans of the floor beams.

12. Library
This is the main library of the castle. It is a two-floor design, with the 2nd floor consisting of a wide balcony overlooking the main floor. Most of the bookcases are 12' high, with 4' bookcases used at the windows. As with the ballroom and banquet hall, the windows in the library stand 20' tall, providing an excellent view of the inner courtyard. A spiral staircase in one corner provides access to the 2nd floor of the library.

13. Staff Quarters
These rooms are the living quarters for the household staff. These rooms, along with similar ones on the 2nd floor, provide private living space for staff members who live on-site. As with many such things, the larger rooms (and those on the 2nd floor) are reserved for the higher-ranking staff members.

14. West Tower
This is a service tower, mostly to allow quick travel between floors of the keep and can be used for storage or as an extra room, as needed. The 1'-wide windows spaced around the outer wall of the tower double as arrow slits for defenders to use bows and crossbows in times of siege. This particular tower is also part of the outer wall that surrounds the keep's grounds.

15. Warehouse
This area is used for moving and storing all the containers of goods that come into the castle. The eastern section consists of a pantry for storing small non-perishable food items and dishes, while the western section contains a freight lift used to move large containers to storage areas on the 2nd floor and the basement. The lift uses a winch and counterweight system similar to those used for drawbridges. A set of thick double doors at the south end of the area leads outside to the loading docks.

16. South Tower
This is a service tower, mostly to allow quick travel between floors of the keep and can be used for storage or as an extra room, as needed. The 1'-wide windows spaced around the outer wall of the tower double as arrow slits for defenders to use bows and crossbows in times of siege. This particular tower is also part of the outer wall that surrounds the keep's grounds.