THE PACTMASTER’S BARGAIN
The last few weeks have been a blur. After wilting in the hot streets of Katapesh, you’re relieved to at last reach the Winding Road, an inn outside the city, also secretly a Pathfinder lodge. As you descend into the basement, you overhear Venture-Captain Roderus through an open door. Just inside is a Pactmaster, one of the mysterious masked plutocrats that rule Katapesh. This must be important!
“I’m sorry, Pactmaster Krimiltuk,” admits Roderus, “but I don’t know of any Pathfinder agent named Panven Wikar. Desna knows that there’s been plenty of stolen wayfinders, and this honestly sounds like someone setting us up. Perhaps you are wasting your time.” Recognizing the name Panven Wikar, you step into the venturecaptain’s view and flash the Pathfinder hand
signals for “important” and “continue task.” He raises an eyebrow but continues speaking. “On the other hand, Pactmaster, perhaps it would be useful to know who exactly is framing us. What exactly are those damages that he caused?”
A low, buzzing voice issues forth. “I’ve itemized the total known damages here,” the Pactmaster says as a piece of parchment flies out from inside one of its sleeves and lands on the table.Roderus glances briefly at the parchment before staring back at Krimiltuk. “We are both aware that you did not come here expecting us to pay that amount.”
Krimiltuk bows its head slightly. “Entirely. The culprit is in our custody, as is the amulet with which he caused such havoc. Your recovering a different creature and different relic is a fair trade to overlook this incident, and Wikar shall be yours to discipline as you like. Is this agreeable?” Roderus glances at you for affirmation, then nods to Krimiltuk.
“That locket broke our control over one of our aluum constructs. Recover that aluum in working condition. I’m acquainted with your organization’s reputation, so I must emphasize that the aluum only has value if it returns in one piece. Second, in the desert south of here lie three small pyramids known as the Three Stars. We believe a fourth exists nearby, and within that fourth pyramid exists something that should grant us access to the other three structures.”
Roderus quizzically asks, “You would have us go to a mythical location and acquire a mythical item?”
Krimiltuk replies, “We believe that it is not as mythical as it seems. We would provide enough information to you before your team headed out.”
Roderus thinks before answering. “Well, if the choice is between paying a large sum we don’t have or exploring, that choice is easy. We’ll take that deal.” With a nod, Krimiltuk teleports away, and the parchment on the table incinerates itself. There is an awkward silence.
Roderus turns toward you. “Welcome to the Winding Road, Pathfinders. Mind explaining how exactly we got here?”
COMPLETE THESE SCENARIOS IN ANY ORDER:
4-5A: Zarta's Assessment
4-5B: Money Stalks
4-5C: The Stars Align
4-5D: Temple of Light and Metal
4-5E: Dusk's Domain
DURING THIS ADVENTURE
The scourge die is 1d8+1.
When creating the blessings deck, replace 1 blessing with the favor Dark Archive's Favor.
If the result of your check to defeat a barrier exceeds the difficulty by 6 or more, suffer a scourge. If the result of your check to acquire an item exceeds the difficulty by 6 or more, draw an item from the box and banish a displayed card that has the Curse trait.