|Old Guy GM|
"Worry not my good man," Praxim says, handing over his bow and blade. "She will no doubt do just that. I will need those back after the world learns why we did what we did and are rewarded for our service. If some of you lot wouldn't mind carrying Ironbriar's mistress' body with us for evidence...she's a demonic creature called a lamia, but fear not, she's dead."
Lym briefly puts her hand to her masked face and sighs deeply.
"In spite of my comrade's flippant attitude on the matter, he is essentially correct," she tells the man who just appeared. "We have written evidence to the matter -- which I would prefer to be allowed to present before the authorities at the church of Iomedae. The Inheritor's faithful are above doubt, which is unfortunately cast quite widely by the evidence we uncovered."
|Old Guy GM|
The man gestures and with a few arcane words, the body of the lamia known as Xanesha lifts up over the side of the tower and floats gently down to the ground.
Your trip down is less dramatic, but just as uneventful. The guards at the bottom secure your weaponry and you set off. Each of you is separated by a group of 4 guards, with the corpse of Xanesha floating along on a glowing blue disk, tended by the man from the tower. It is obvious that the nervousness of the watch contingent isn't just due to your group. They spend more time watching the dark places in the alleys and under the eaves of the Shadow. It isn't until you begin to climb out from under the Irespan that they begin to relax and pay attention to you.
Its a long climb up the great ramp that leads from the Dockway to the Capital District. If nothing else, your arrest and march to whatever fate awaits gives you a breathtaking view of the lower parts of Magnimar.
It soon becomes obvious that you are not headed towards the Arvensoar - Magnimar's tower of the watch, and home to its notorious prison, the Hells. In fact, your guard turns you further up the slope into the richest part of the city. This is the Alabaster District, home to Magnimar's richest and most powerful citizens. Within minutes, you find yourselves stopped in front of the home of the city's most powerful figure. Defiant's Garden, home of the Lord Mayor, Haldmeer Grobaras.
|Old Guy GM|
The guard contingent waits outside while you are led into what can only be described as a definitive example of opulence. It is clear to you that the Lord Mayor has spared no expense to make his home at once beautiful and intimidating. Beautiful for its artistic quality, and intimidating because of the power and wealth it would take to build such a place. The inside is even more stunning than the outside, if that is possible. Intricately carved marble columns, expensive tapestries, fountains, and statuary line your path deeper into Defiants Garden.
The party halts in front of a pair of massive wooden doors. Swinging inwards silently at a gesture, the doors open into an office nearly as big as the tavern in which you slept last night.
"Ah. You are here. Do come in." Says a deep voice from across the room. Behind a large desk of polished darkwood sits an obese man. He peers at you intently from an immense chair made from a fine snakeskin of deep black and purple hue. "Nightbelly boa." says the man, noticing your interest. "From the East, which you will know all about, if you are wise." he says, rubbing the arms of his chair. Ah. But where are my manners? I am Haldomeer Grobaras, Lord Mayor of Magnimar. He pauses for a moment. "Who you are may, or may not be, of consequence. What IS of consequence is how you came to be in possession of THIS." He takes a familiar book from his desk drawer and tosses it onto the desk. It is the leather bound book you gave to Brother Pietre to decode!
Lest his flippant attitude make things worse, Praxim stays quiet, but he gives The Lord-Mayor a quick once over.
Detect evil as a move action on the man.
"We followed the tracks of a cabal of murderers who had struck in an area outside your jurisdiction, sir mayor," Lym replies in a soft tone of voice. "Their trail lead to an old windmill, where we encountered them and were summarily attacked. We uncovered the book you have there after we overcame our attackers."
Not telling him where we first picked up the cabal's trail. No need to drop Sandpoint in it...
|Old Guy GM|
The Lord Mayor's voice rumbles deeply. "Perhaps. Do you know what is IN this book? No? But of course not. If you had, you would have not needed Brother Pietre's help. BROTHER PIETRE!" At this call, the priest of Iomedae steps through a door previously hidden from view. He swiftly approaches the desk to stand before Grobaras.
"Yes, Lord Mayor?" the priest asks calmly.
"Enlighten them, as you have enlightened me, as to the contents of this book."
The priest turns to face you, giving you a quick wink before he begins. "It is the journal of the late Chief Justice Variel Ironbriar. It contains detailed information and business dealings of a cult of Norgorber called the Skinsaw Cult." He pauses. "It also contains a list of names. Some are crossed out, some not. The "crossed out" is both literal and figurative, for those people are dead...murdered. Each with an odd seven-pointed star carved into their chest. It also speaks of a...love-interest...of Variel's: one "Xanesha". I can only assume that this is the monster we saw coming in with you. Lamia's have a way of...persuading...their victims." Here Brother Peitre turns back to the Lord Mayor, who by now is standing up, his vast bulk quivering with anger.
"At the top of the list of names is one Haldmeer Grobaras."
|Old Guy GM|
Lym's eyes narrow.
'We must get that book back and see we translate it for ourselves,' she thinks. 'We must! ... I wonder how much we should tell these people. I do not trust this mayor at all.'
"You are the leader of the greatest city in the world and you are surprised that you have enemies? Lord-Mayor, we may have saved your life and you reward us with a threat against ours? I wonder if the note was not correct about you."
Praxim, sensing that the old windbag has more to say, stays quiet, feeling Xanesha's note in his pocket, waiting for the right time to present it.
|Old Guy GM|
Grobaras moves round to stand in Tomarus' face. His huge frame towering over the cleric. "Enemies? You have no concept of the word. You all have enemies...now...that you do not even know about. If it were not for me, you would be rotting in the Hells right now, waiting for judgement." He holds up a hand to forestall any further comment from you.
"You broke into the home of a minor noble, assaulted a legitimate business of the city," he begins, moving to sit on the edge of his desk, " and murdered a Chief Justice of the Council." He folds his arms across his chest. "If it were not for Brother Pietre bringing me this journal, you would have an appointment with the gallows in the morning. That is not a threat, cleric of Desna, that is reality."
"However, I am aware of what you have done for me, and I am not an ungrateful man." He goes around to his chair again and sits down. Reaching into a drawer, he brings out four small pouches and tosses each in turn to the four of you. "Inside each you will find the sum of 600 platinum pieces, a token gesture of my gratitude."
After giving you a moment to look at the contents, he rings a small silver bell. At the sound, two figures enter the room. One a rough-looking dwarf, and the other a human male. Hint, hint "Your status in this city for the short term is another matter. There are factions in the Council - Variel's allies - who are demanding your immediate execution. Fortunately, fate has given me...us, an answer." He smiles.
"To the east, Magnimar has holdings at the edge of her territory. The village of Turtleback Ferry has sent a message asking for aid. It would seem that a border fort nearby has ceased all contact for several weeks. Fort Rannick, it is called, and it is manned by a group of rangers known as the Black Arrows. An irascible bunch, but effective at controlling the ogres and ogrekin that plague the area." His voice becomes grim. " Although I find them loutish, even this is unusual for them. Your task is to find out what is going on. These two will accompany you." He waves nonchalantly at the two newcomers. "You leave in two days. Do not try to stay longer in the city. I will not be able to help you if you do."
With that, you are dismissed.
Check the discussion thread, I will be opening a new thread.
No longer feeling compelled to share the threatening note with this fat wretch, Praxim leaves the mayor with the barest of bows, and goes in search of his equipment.
"Turtleback Ferry you say?" He looks meaningfully at the members of his group. "I understand it is beautiful this time of year. I think we would be only too happy to perform this duty for you, lord-mayor." Tomaru addresses Brother Pietr next. "If you have some time, we would like to confer with you on our travel plans." Tomaru then leaves the lord-mayors office. He waits for Brother Pietr there or returns to their rooms as Brother Pietr directs.