This question was inspired by the the Fortnightly Challenge, and also a common occurrence in many fantasy novels.
This question is going to use the incomes of England around 1270-1400, based from this article, for some of the prices of services and goods. We have 4 heroes. Like all so many heroes, they are on a journey.
Journeys cost money, though. Our heroes were simple laborers, farmers or some such. Since their call to action was sudden, they don't have much but the clothes on their back and a few tools- 1 dagger per person, a hammer, and some spare bits of cloth and leather.
These heroes need to stay at an inn. They've run into baddies, etc. and want some rest in a proper house. The innkeeper, a practical man, demands they pay for their stay, either with money or through their own sweat. The heroes currently have no money; they need to work to get a room. If there are 4 heroes, all of them being "laborers", what can they do to earn their stay? (Please provide monetary values for what they do; that way, we're sure the work they've done has covered their costs.) They must complete their labors over the course of 1 working day, or 8 hours. Any task taking longer and these heroes will not be on a journey any longer, and our tale will end with them trying to work off debt in a most un-heroic way. There are ample opportunities to practice almost any trade which falls under the category "laborer" and the locals seem willing to fairly pay them for help they offer. (Laborers can be: farmhands, (apprentice-level) smiths, (apprentice-level) weavers, fishers, lumberjacks, etc.)
These 4 heroes will eat a whole chicken, a 1-pound loaf of bread, and 1 gallon of ale between the 4 of them over the course of their 1 night and morning stay. (They are thirsty!) The innkeeper also wants a profit margin of around 20%. About .1 pence for the bread, .5 pence for the chicken, and 1 pence for the gallon of ale, so about 1.6 pence total costs for the innkeeper. With the profit margin needed, that means it costs around 1.92 pence for all four of them.
If this is not possible, what can they afford in terms of lodging and food?