060210 Game Night Recap:
Omega boarded The Herald after divvying their spoils and saw Capt. Squiddy across the deck admiring the sea. They approached and he asked if they were successful to which was replied they believe Zed to be locked away in Dreadhold, but they have not confirmed it yet. They also reveal the deal made with Ryger to which Squiddy jests at Omega’s “jumping into the politics of Lhazaar with both feet.” Among the information, they also inquire Squiddy’s advice of the 3 possible locations Ryger suggested they go to intercept one of the raids: Sabronport of Redwatch Island, Pellen of Seventh Island, and Kapram of Thrug Island. Squiddy gives them a brief overview of the three Frontier Trade towns and Omega makes a temporary decision to aim for Kapram once they’ve settled their affairs in Regalport. The group decides to bed down for the night and head to the service district in the morning to find the Kundarak office to investigate more on Zed.
The following morning they make way through town, past the Pirate Exchange and into the only slightly more upscale Service District. The Dragonmarked house block is relatively easy to find. The house crests of Lyrander, Thuranni, Kundarak, and Cannith to name a few stand out boldly amid the other shop signs. Though, only Kundarak’s building is anything to be considered well-maintained. The other House buildings appear shoddy and worn with disinterest. Despite the bitterness of winter setting in, all the doors to all the offices stand wide open, awaiting business.
On entering the Kundarak office, a narrow deep room lined with waiting couches and 2-man tables all with shaded everbright lanterns for document perusal (kinda like a library reading area), the dwarf behind the long desk that bisects the building sits up with an eager start as though awakened from a very bored daze. He sits tall and bellows out eagerly, “How may I be of assistance to you today?”
Omega stated their case, directly and to the point. The dwarf, Thrili d’Kundarak, a balding middle-aged dwarf, strokes the long pointed jet black goatee that hangs between his thick bushy mutton chops and says he can pull the information for a fee, but that he isn’t privy to all the information they seek. After some deliberation between Tripper and Thrili, Thon interjects in Dwarven that Tripper doesn’t understand “us mountain folk” and warms Thrili over. Thrili decides to offer the info and search for free and does his search. From the mountain of tomes and ledgers behind the long desk he pulls a few books bearing the crest of Galifar and thumbs through them looking for Zed. Finding nothing, they dig deeper, narrowing the time of capture down and he finds that in that time frame only 2 incarcerations were put on record. One was a crazed Gnome Dragon Below cultist leader named Fairn Thistledown. The other was a nefarious Cloudreaver smuggler named Capt. Rachel “RumRunner” Churchill. After being prompted, Thrili reads more of the ledger that states Churchill turned out to be a changeling, but the events of the trial were such that s/he was tried and convicted, no evidence to keep s/him free. Remembering the acquisition was made by a Bounty Hunter, they inquire about him, but Thrili is reluctant to disclose any of that information saying they don’t like to dissuade the keepers of that trade from continuing to do business, so they prefer to keep that information secure. Omega instead acquires the name of the judge for the trial, Lord Hunfrid Farington, male Half-Giant and owner of the Farington Manor just on the other side of the Garden District of Regalport.
Leaving Thrili, Omega make way to Farington Manor. Once there, they’re greeted outside the gates by a regal-looking dwarf, clean-shaven and slicked back brown hair, who asks their business. Not sure what to make of Omega’s tale and apprehensive of an attempt on Lord Farington’s life, he suggests they all disarm and meet the Judge in open ground with the gates between them. After a few moments, Lord Farington emerges with a large, well-armed Warforged bodyguard at his side. Omega then state their case of the incarceration of their friend and how they seek to verify it, to which Lord Farington defensively claims they were just Cloudreaver sympathizers. After a bit of tactful diplomacy, Omega do eventually convince Lord Farington that if they’re able to capture the real Capt Churchill, and bring her before the court, could they have Zed set free, to which he begrudgingly agrees, though he proudly claims the law didn’t fail. Satisfied that Zed actually now is in Dreadhold, Omega thanks Lord Farington and leave, plotting what to do next.
With the puzzle pieces starting to fall together, one piece that just doesn’t seem to fit continues to bother Tripper and he insists the party revisit their old contact Rohari Shalepick at the Wet Casque. It happens, being just around lunch, Rohari (or RS, as Tripper likes to call him) was at the bar downing ale. So the party approaches him and inquires just how he knew it was Zed who was imprisoned and not Capt Churchill. RS flashes a badge hidden in his vest and explains that he was the Bailiff on duty for that trial and remembers both names and the scenario. Further pressed about the Bounty Hunter’s name, RS eventually caves on the information when Omega convince him they’re interested in learning the trade from him. He didn’t know exactly where Kelyl would be, as the Hunters typically stay mobile looking for their marks, but said you can keep a lookout for his ship, Qabalrin Scourge, a soarwood Wind Galleon modified so the sails are everwhite, magically enhanced to never soil, and the hull has been treated a shadowy black and then covered with patches of chitin plates to pattern armor.
He also lets on that if they need a bounty, he has a hefty stack, most of which contain Cloudreavers. RS also informs Omega that the Hunters typically keep to territories, akin to a grid, where they hunt and usually don’t stray too far from that grid. So, if you want to find one, you can just patrol that grid. Since their destination, Kapram, is where Capt Churchill was accosted, Omega felt it was a pretty safe bet that this Hunter’s grid was there. One final piece of information Omega pull from RS is that Capt Churchill pulled in a bounty of 45,000gp. But there are bounties for some of Princess Mika’s Lieutenants that could bring in double that. As well, while it’s unprecedented, if a bounty was wrongly claimed RS notes the party responsible for righting the bounty would likely be compensated somehow, even though the original bounty had already been cleared.
Going back to the Herald, Squiddy sets sail and they make way to Kapram. A day later they make port and Omega disembark telling Squiddy he might want to leave port and return in 2 days to get them and that if they’re not there, give them a week then check back again. They then make for the Sitting Duck Inn, a moored ship that was converted into a tavern and small inn. The town, otherwise, is very small and scattered, totaling 200 in occupancy on a busy day. Inquiries of the locals return confirmation that this town lies in the bounty hunter’s grid and that there have been attacks by Cloudreavers of late, though there’s no pattern to the timing of it, they feel they’re due another attack, since it’s been so long.
As dusk falls, the prophetic claim comes to fruition as 6 metallic pill vessels surface to a call of alarm from the single dock of the town. Omega comes out to view the situation and see the anchored merchant vessels out in the bay being boarded as well as the docked ships. Thon and Corwyn note that the lightning strikes from the submersibles to the merchant ships are aimed in such a way as to not harm anyone, just cause damage. They also note that the assailing Dwarven pirates are not striking killing blows on their victims.
Deciding, finally, to infiltrate rather than exterminate, (a debate Omega held for several days on how to proceed) Omega set forth to “attack” the town guard and put on a display to show the pirates their support in their cause. Successfully stymieing the meager town guard, Omega meet up with the Dwarven pirates on the docks and request to join the group out of love for piracy. The spokesperson for the group, as dumbfounded as the rest at the unexpected support, suggests they meet their Captain, Braran, aboard their Submersible Flagship Morn’s Quarrell.
Omega agrees and they board the vessel.