Monday, April 28, 2014

The Necromancer's Legacy - part 20

The night continues with celebrations and it is very late when the group returns to their rooms at the embassy. A late breakfast follows the next morning and a letter arrives by messenger from Kanadir, informing that they are invited by the new grandmaster when it suits them. They start making plans for the day but soon all experience severe stomach ache - it appears the food has been poisoned!

Meanwhile Horacio is making his way to Lao-Din after a meeting with consul Quadrata. Not finding the others at the wizard house he heads towards the embassy.

Using magic to purge the poison, the mages and Maladir have recovered and while Charon goes to find the chef they send a servant to start an investigation. Horacio arrives in time for a discussion between the guests and the imperial ambassador turning sour and tries to mitigate the situation. The ambassador agree to run an investigation and leave the company to their own affairs.

Sarissa head out to have their food analyzed by the mages but notices a spot of blood on the ground. Following a vague track she notice what she believe to be human feet in an alley. She hurry back to fetch the seneschals and together they explore the alley to conclude that a man has been murdered by a dagger and that he, the victim, was probably a mage. They immediately send for Kanadir who quickly arrive with a dozen mages. Apart from healing the group from some lingering effects of the poison they conclude that the dead man is the Messenger Kanadir sent to them in the morning. It is however not the same person that delivered it, so the question as to how they were poisoned seems to be solved.

The group split up as Charon and Thriatos follow Kanadir back to the wizard house to discuss the events, while the others follow Maladir who thinks that the city's underworld might know a thing or two about it all and head towards the city docks.

The meeting with the grandmaster is short and they all agree to lay low with their personal agreements until Kanadir has strengthened his position and, of course, that the morning's events must be thouroughly investigated. As they intend to leave the city shortly they visit the teleporting mirror only to find its keeper absent. According to a note he has left to purchase alchemical ingredients so they leave a note of their own stating they want to travel to Sunn later in the day.

In the docks Maladir manage to spot a familiar face - one of the men who attacked him the day before. Horacio quickly ruins any hope of a discreete chase by catching the man in a forcefield. Surrounded by mages the man agree to take them to Varvara, the most powerful crime lord of the city. They arrive at a tavern where the bouncers start to make trouble but Horacio utilize the same trick as before to convince them they shouldn't. The inside is poorly lit but they head towards a staircase in the back of the room.

Meanwhile Charon and Thriatos have also arrived in the docks and pick up the trace of magic. As they track a second spell, Thriatos sends a message to Horacio asking what is going on.

Horacio is however not able to respond at the current time, aso two men waiting at the top of the stairs have charged them with drawn weapons. After taking a slight injury, Horacio respond with thunderbolts while Maladir protect the mages with his sword. Sarissa summon a small earth elemental while Ignatia heals the party. As the clients of the tavern join in the fight they are inevitably surrounded.

Horacio and Maladir clear the top of the stair just as Charon and Thriatos arrive at the scene. Thriatos sends a massive flame into the crowd while Charon summons a wraith to join with Sarissa's earth elemental in the mayhem. The lowlifes start to flee the scene and face no resistance as the group heads towards the door at the top floor. As they break through the door they suprise a woman in her thirties who is looking out the window at the fleeing thugs. The woman, identified as Varvara, find herself surrounded by the mages and the distant sound of clanking armor lets know the city guard is on route as well. As Charon head to explain the situation to the guards the others start questioning Varvara. They learn that the seneschals have a price on their heads at 1000 silvers, according to rumors placed by the governor himself. Also a famous assassin, Mergus, has apparently arrived in the city a few days ago. Content with this they are prepared to hand the tavern over to the city guard which, at the sight of the carnage, has waited outside at Charon's suggestion.

The mages head back towards the wizard house to discuss what they have learned while Maladir head to the marketplace to try to learn more about the poison used. They come together later in the evening and after piecing together the parts of the puzzles they now possess. They conclude that given what has transpired it is likely that Mergus is hiding somewhere within the wizard house, disguised in the robes of the dead mage they found earlier. Maladir, who managed to gain a description of the assassin, gets help from Assabi to produce some magical images to identify him. At this time the seneschals are reached by the word that the keeper of the magical mirror has returned and they decide to discontinue the inquiry for now and head towards Sunn. Sarissa sends a magical message to Maladir to inform him of this as the others head out.

But their journey is halted as they discover the mirror to be hexed and the keeper attack Sarissa with a dagger as they do so. The group manage to disarm him after a short fight and Thriatos hurries away to find Kanadir.

Maladir is about to leave the house to catch a boat to Sunn when he spots a mage matching the description of the assassin. He shadows the man abut while it appears he was misstaken he timely arrives to see Thriatos getting attacked by another mage with a dagger. Together with Kanadir, who just arrives, the three manage to defeat the assassin and hurry back to get Charon to interrogate him. However, the man is dead when they return but Charon decide to trap his soul inside the dagger to allow them to question him at a later date.

The deception of the mirror keeper requires the collective wisdom of the house to solve, but it appears the man have been killed and later raised as a revenant. As this requires a powerful necromancer Horacio, Charon and Thriatos head towards Femala's appartment only to find it empty and Horacio suffering a curse by opening the door. They return to the others but don't get time to invent a plan as a novice arrives shouting "Fire, fire!".

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