In front of the closed Ivy Bush tavern(s and n)

You stand between two thick walls of the ivy bush that runs along the south side of the Hobbiton-Bywater road. South of you is a cozy yet somewhat dilapidated tavern. Its sign has been painted over, but you can still see the bright green letters "The Ivy Bush" through the carelessly thin whitewash. There is a large note tacked to the door with the caption, "The Rules."
The south door is locked.
The only obvious exits are south and north.
A vile thug is here