Session IV

The party spent a lot of time figuring out how to get into the city, and trying to decide whether or not to go to Alistair and, if they did, what they would tell him. The idea of going to see Louie first also came up, and eventually a plan was hatched to go find a farm and buy a wheelbarrow, some produce, “farm costumes,” and a blanket, and send the two women in through the city gates with a bunch of their gold hidden in the blankets and under the turnips, while the two fighters hid in a copse of trees about a quarter mile down the road.

A farm was found, and Farmer Wilkins’ midday meal was interrupted. He grudgingly agreed to sell Bunny and Stark a rotting wheelbarrow, a blanket, and some turnips, though he had no extra farm costumes (“What do I look like, a haberdasher?”). The plan proceeded…

The guards at the city gate asked them some questions, which they answered badly (“which farm you from?” “the farm up the road…” “too bad market day was yesterday”), but the guards let them through. Frog, a shadowy, eyepatched acquaintance of Buuny’s sidled up to them and said “you’re not fooling anyone” (pointing out that they had left their armor on under their cloaks) and suggested they get to the Dusty Dagger (the epicenter of Louie’s activities) ASAP. They got there, finding an alley in which to transfer something like 200 gp from the turnip cart to their backpacks. They finally made it in and the bartender (Ron) had to very heavily suggest they tell him where their companions were, in order to sneak them into the city. Eventually they did, and back at the copse, where the fighters had been talking about what they would do with all their gold (Koringa: “one thermos for beer and one thermos for cheese”), and he convinced them to come with him.

Eventually the party was reunited and brought down a twisty alley (containing several of Louie’s men disguised as human refuse) to a blank wall, which a guard manipulated to reveal a secret passage. The party found themselves in a toilet stall and exited into a very phony looking office. Another henchman (disguised as an office-type) opened another hidden door, and the party found themselves going up a stairway, past a landing with another guard (“This isn’t where you’re trying to go”), and finally ascending into an opulent apartment, the likes of which they had never seen.

They were greeted by a tough-looking woman with closecropped hair wearing chainmail and brought into a sitting room, where sat three men. Louie – a large man in his 50s who resembled Stephen Fry (and who was “fruitier looking than Kingpin”) – introduced the woman as his bodyguard Mara; the scraggly redhead in the corner as Turlough, and the “hippie-looking” younger man smoking a pipe as Spiderssen, a magic-user whose late father was a friend of Louie’s.

Louie was a generous host and fed them well, offering much food, drink, and tobacco. He was very interested in their story, and when the party had recounted it and asked for his help he approached it with some relish as a mystery to be solved, noting that

  • three of the party (Koringa, Bunny, and Stark) had been arrested at Louie’s own birthday party (though Koringa was a crasher);
  • Alistair never had an original thought in his life;
  • the Church’s apparent interest in “the case” was perplexing; and
  • both Alistair and the Church had of late been snooping around and been entirely too interested in the “movement” of magical goods in the area.

While he did not know Calcidus personally, he had heard Calcidus was a nasty character (Koringa: “He’s kind of a dick.” Koringa said this about almost everybody before conceding that he didn’t really have any friends).

Louie said that he (or his proxies) would begin making some discreet inquiries in town, and suggested that in the meanwhile they get the hell out of dodge for the foreseeable future. He mentioned that his niece Lucinda (“red hair, freckles, very devout”) was visiting Deadlake from Southlake and would be in need of an escort back to Southlake within a day or two. The PCs – including Spiderssen – agreed to do this and went to bed. As Louie bid them goodnight he told them that Neringa the fighter had been found dead in his room, as if gored by beasts, and that his landlady saw no beasts but heard him shouting about “the shadows! the shadows!” Until she found his body that morning, she assumed he had been drunk again.

Most of the second half of the session was spent doing math: Louie had agreed to fence items for them, and to obtain the party whatever they needed, so there was lots of gold being converted and stuff like that. Louie needed the cash up front, but would give them the money from the things he fenced the next morning. Most characters upgraded to chain mail, they got some bows, and then from Turlough bought a bunch of potionsĀ  (Cure Light Wounds, Cure Poison, Cure Disease). Eiluned gave Spiderssen the eldritch scrolls and spellbook she had found in Calcidus’ secret library, and Spiderssen was very grateful.

After they fell asleep in Louie’s sumptuous guest room, they were awoken in the middle of the night by Turlough, who was very shaken and told them that Alistair’s men were attempting to gain ingress and question Louie, and that they had to get out now. He shoved them through a secret door in the wardrobe and said “Go downstairs and to the end of the hall, and behind a door there will be some stairs going up. We’ll find you.” They went down several flights of stairs until they found themselves in a dingy basement room filled with debris, filth, and a pool of nasty smelling water.

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~ by erranttiger on June 19, 2011.

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