FLYNN AND MELIAN
Flynn and Melian returned to Tramorn, who was less than delighted to see them after their dealings earlier in the day. He was even less pleased when they showed him the Ring of Vecna, and hastily closed the shop so that he could talk with them in private. He told them that they should leave, that the less they had to do with the cult of Vecna the better it would be for them and the longer they would probably live. He told them of a disturbing rumour that the Raven Queen was gone and might never return, and that the captain of her Deathless Guard and his son were missing, along with the alchemist who had owned the store across the street. They left by the back door, not wanting to bring further trouble to him.
ODO AND AQUELLE
Odo and Aquelle went to the Cracked Keel in the hopes that liquor would loosen people’s tongues. The inn looked like it had been formed by multiple ships crashing together, and then never coming apart again. Like all dock-side inns, drinks were flowing freely and whores were plying their trade. Odo and Aquelle decided to buy a round for the house, thinking that it would be the quickest way to make friends. In the ensuing celebrations, Odo found a gnome who was already deep in his cups and plied him for information. He told him that he was worried about the fires on the docks, and mentioned that people had been vanishing around the city. He also showed him his trinket. Surprisingly, this was not a euphemism for a certain body part, but a real amulet that was meant to keep him from drowning in the Astral Sea, real, of course, being a very subjective term. Its maker was one of the people who had gone missing, and it was believed that the cult was behind her disappearance.
Meanwhile, Aquelle was drinking the surrounding sailors beneath the tables, and hearing similar rumours. She noticed that one man was holding back to the side, and asked about him. The sailors told her that his name was Karl, and he’d come back all meh after being hired by some weird guys in robes (the ale had made them eloquent). At that point, Karl got up and made to leave. Aquelle tried to pursue, but was too drunk to get through the crowd and ran into Flynn who had just come through the door. It had much the same effect on her as running into a tree. Fortunately, Odo observed him leaving too, and shapeshifted into a Revenant to follow him. Shadowing Karl down the street, he saw him duck into an alley, reach out and touch the wall, and open up a door where there was no door before. Odo tried to do likewise, but could not work out its secrets.
ADARA AND PIETER
Adara and Pieter returned to Father Melathius in order to see if his inquires had turned up any useful information. Security was high around the Temple of the Hooded Lantern, and the guards were reluctant to let them speak to Father Melathius. Eventually, though, they were able to get through to him, and learnt worrying news from him. The cult was hiring muscle, and had made several citizens disappear over the past few weeks. He also said that there seemed to be some new individual in the House of the Eye, known only as the Eye.
INTO THE HOUSE
When the entire party was back at the ship after its investigations, everyone went to the alley where Odo had seen Karl disappear. After some time and experimentation, they found the hidden button in the wall, and opened up a dark doorway with a staircase leading downwards. Flynn covered the group with undergrowth, and they slowly made their way into the building. Nearby, they could hear the sounds of guttural conversation, and knew that goblins must be ahead. Once they reached the bottom of the stairs, they could see two hobgoblins and three goblins having a conversation around a brazier. (Sadly, it was not a brassiere, or else the adventure may have been a lot more sexy.) In the ensuing fight, the braziers turned out to be traps, which would move along rails and spit fire. After a brief scuffle and a couple of minor burns, the party subdued the goblins, and were confronted with a number of doors ahead of them. The middle one was strongly barred, and had deep scrapes on the ground in front of it. They were not sure whether it was intended to keep intruders out, or, worse, to keep something in.
Throwing caution to the wind (and other cliches), they chose to open the door. Inside, the air smelled musty and damp, the floor was covered with mushrooms of various shapes and colours, and they could hear the deep, predatory grunt of animals. . . .
APPENDIX: LIST OF THE MISSING AFTER OUR INVESTIGATIONS
Jalissa – Shrine of Aion – Knowledge
Sartanian – Castellan – House Harskill
Kartenix – Captain of the Deathless Guard
Thurn – Kartenix’s son
Zeriska – Trinket Peddler
Adronsius – Alchemist