In Leupthia, negotiations about the surrender of Usdar and the governor has started as the city is being besieged by Acidus and his forces. Horacio prepares his reclaimation of the wizard house Lacerta and secures a good income by confiscating weapons and armor from surrendered legionnaires and having captain Scaurus trade them to the pantorians to the north. Charon and Thriatos meanwhile embarks on a quest to find the illusive Book of Unlife - a legendary text on necromancy - of which they learn a copy was in the hands of a coven of necromancers working for consul Quadrata in Usdar and another might have been held by the city's Temple. It appears the city must fall before they can continue their line of inquiry any further.
After two weeks the three mages learn a proposal has been made in which the governor and his advisors, accompanied by the remaining legionnaires, should be allowed to leave unmolested for Sarinia in return for handing over the city of Usdar. They are invited to a meeting to discuss the proposal alongside Acidus, Celena dux of Neddam, spymaster Jonius and lieutenant Tyras. While a governor in exile may always remain a threat the council sees greater dangers in refusing the proposal as this could cause further unrest among the governor's loyalists. The seneschals suggest their servant Mergus could infiltrate the governor's entourage and remain close to him to stop him should he ever consider returning. Also, they are quite keen to capture lord Jorian to question about the events at the estate which almost lead to their death by execution but without any real claims for doing so the rest of the council is unwilling to risk the governor refusing their response. Thus the matter is settled and a positive response is sent back to Usdar.
A few days prior to the official signing of a peace treaty the senechals are visited by Pater accompanied by Silus, the seneschal of consul Callissios. Silus reveals he has obtained evidence that lord Jorian had staged the murder at the estate to frame the seneschals from scrying in the past. Pater claims that this might be reason enough to capture Jorian but suggests thay wait until the treaty is signed to avoid any political reprecussions.
The signing of the treaty is made in front of the gates of Usdar with two armies watching each other. Acidus and governor Rubaros accompanied by a few aides meet in an open tent and signs the document for all to see. As the treaty forces both Rubaros and grandmaster Marcia to renounce their posts Acidus now claims the title of governor while Horacio might style himself grandmaster. When Rubaros' army prepares to leave lieutenant Tyras arrives to arrest lord Jorian for plotting against Acidus and his companions. Unwilling to risk their safe passage Jorian recieve no support from his allies and are taken away to the dungeons of Neddam with the three seneschals watching from a distance, content.
With the city made safe Horacio, Charon and Thriatos return to Usdar where they make themselves at home. Horacio immediately makes himself a leading figure in the city by lending mercenaries to the city guard and keeping himself informed of events in the city while lettling in as the grandmaster of Lacerta. Charon and Thriatos are given generous quarters in the building and after Horacio has assured the members of the house no harm will come to them for supporting the governor as long as they stay loyal to him thing starts to settle back to normal. With Horacio getting stuck in administrative work Charon and Thriatos resume their search for the Book of Unlife but finds the city's templars have left with the governor along with their possessions. Searching the wizard house they do find notes from the house's necromancers suggesting a secret chamber. Unable to find it they ask Horacio for help and, having been part of the group of necromancers he can tell where it is, but not how to open it. Charon and Thriatos quickly begin to research the door's wardings to unlock it.
While it takes them the better part of the day they finally succeed and find dark stairs leading down. They hurry down to explore before anyone discovers their success and come across an old laboratory. Charon believes a shape is lurking in the darkness and to their great surprise consul Quadrata turns around and welcomes them to her circle.
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