Mendsday & Foursday, 24th & 25th of Waxsummer
Now armed with Josephine’s silversheen dagger, two more flasks of holy salt, and the knowledge of where the drekavac is holed up, the party decides to end Mona’s epidemic once and for all. Descending into the sewers via the Crafter’s Square grate, the party makes their way to the distilling well, where an unnatural chill seeps into their bones as the undead horror rises from the water. The group lures the monster from the well; Keela cripples her with an accursed glare while Cedric and Senkara flank her. Though Mona is drawn towards Alyndra’s inspiring song, Cedric halts her advance by sinking his halberd into her back. The force of the blow causes the drekavac to lurch forward, straight into Senkara’s waiting dagger. The silver blade finally severs Mona’s unnatural grip on the mortal coil; her body disintegrates into diseased mist as the life force of her victims is released. Upon returning to the surface, the party discovers that all of the filth fever patients spontaneously recovered, and Lumen Nalia rewards them with her healing magic and a number of potent potions.
The party celebrates its first triumph, but quickly realizes that its primary task – resolving the kobold issue – remains incomplete. Keela suggests that she may be able to magically charm one of the reptilian pests, and convince it to divulge where its tribe resides. The group returns to the known kobold ambush site, and once again quickly overwhelms the hapless attackers. They manage to capture one kobold, but it manages to resist Keela’s enchantment. Nonmagical attempts to glean new information reveal only that this particular kobold is a surly bastard, so the frustrated adventurers dispose of it and return to the City Watch headquarters without any new leads.
Having hit another dead end concerning the Wetfang tribe, the party decides to spend the rest of the day investigating the mysterious behavior of Tomlin Leiby. Alyndra and Senkara ask around and find that Leiby has been spending his days traveling between the Leaky Dinghy, the Wharf Theater, and the Southwatch Lighthouse. Not wanting to spook their quarry, the party first pays a visit to the proprietors of the Lighthouse when they know that Tomlin is elsewhere. They converse with the lady of the lighthouse, Teya Lyst, and discover that her husband, Carver, has been imprisoned for the murder of his friend Jerome, a late officer of the city watch. They don’t gain much more information from the shrewish woman, until her daughter, Isabel, lets slip that her daddy is back. Intrigued by this unexpected development, Alyndra, Keela and Senkara manage to convince Teya to tell them the truth. She reveals that Carver managed to escape the prison during the chaos following Slade’s botched arrest of Josephine Trall, along with a halfling and a dwarf.
The party is initially uncomfortable with the idea of conversing with a fugitive murderer, but Carver quickly pleads his innocence. He tells the group his story about how Jerome (the man he was said to have murdered) was actually killed by an amorphous, bloodsucking monstrosity. Carver stumbled upon the monster while it was feeding, and later saw that it had taken on the appearance of the dead guard. Carver attacked the imposter, which proved to be a disastrous mistake, since the guards believed he was the one who killed Jerome.
Carver’s story sheds new light on the reason for “Tomlin’s” scripted response to discovering a disfigured corpse in his tenement (and more importantly, who that corpse may have once been). Distraught by the notion that a bloodsucking abomination is haunting the town disguised as a city guard, the group agrees to keep Carver’s location a secret, and they begin to brainstorm ways to expose this monster’s true nature and clear Carver’s name. While devising plans, however, the party suddenly realizes a crucial fact that had escaped their notice while Carver told his tale: two more convicts are now at large.
The party seeks out Treg Bjorn, the warden of the local jail, and confronts him about three potentially missing prisoners. In order to disguise the fact that they know of Carver’s whereabouts, the adventurers base their accusation on their interactions with a shady halfling in the Leaky Dinghy. They are surprised to find that the halfling in question was indeed one of Carver’s cellmates, a thief called Skeever Snapjaw. The other, Golda Furrell, is an arsonist from another district of Nova Dominium. Treg, eager to maintain his spotless record as prison warden, offers a bounty for each fugitive the party apprehends without alerting Slade of the escape. Since Cedric has already cowed Skeever and the group agreed to help Carver, Golda’s capture becomes the party’s new objective.
Rumors about a dwarf matching Golda’s description point the bounty hunters towards the Wharf Theater. Alyndra, uneager to have a confrontation with the director (with whom she has a history), sneaks around back while the rest of the party meets with Meliss Trinetta. Senkara gains a “self-guided tour” of the theater for the group by playing to the director’s self-absorbed nature, and after letting Alyndra into the theater they begin their search for Golda. They find her working as a stagehand and attempt to surround her, but the dwarf catches on to their ploy and retaliates. It turns out that Golda is not merely an arsonist but a cunning alchemist, and she mixes a chemical bomb that blasts the party as they attempt to apprehend her. Before she can escape, Cedric manages to grapple her long enough for the rest of the group to surround her. Keela fixes her evil eye on the fugitive, undermining her escape attempts and countering the benefits of the mutagen she imbibed. Even when the dwarf breaks free of Cedric’s hold, Senkara manages to stab her several times. Cedric catches up with her, knocking her to the ground and offering her a choice: she can surrender and see the light of day again, or be cut down as she flees. Golda surrenders, and the party returns her to Treg’s prison in exchange for a 600 sp bounty.
Content with its service to society, the group decides to return its attention to the kobold problem. Since interrogating the kobolds has proven to be a fruitless endeavor, the adventurers decide to begin a systematic investigation of the sewer system, starting with the eastern pipelines. First, they must clear out the known threats so as to ensure safe passage after the group has rested and resupplied. They begin by dispatching the giant leech that Zeg warned them about. The party travels to the spot marked on their map, and spots the vermin lurking in the water. Alyndra dumps the remaining holy salt on the leech – though it is not a particularly evil creature, its slug-like body is still vulnerable to salt corrosion. As it squirms onto the walkway to confront its attackers, Cedric stabs his halberd down the leech’s gullet and bisects the beast, ensuring safe passage into the southeast channels.
Content with their progress, the party decides to spend another night at the Crafty Damsel. After spending their excess copper pieces on food and drink, Cedric and Alyndra have a lively chat with Marisa about blood-sucking, shape-shifting monstrosities. Marisa postulates that the beast might be a “faceless stalker,” an aberration capable of draining blood and taking humanoid form. Unfortunately, the bard is unable to give Cedric and Alyndra any advice about how to confront or kill the monster, since she has never encountered one herself. Meanwhile, the rest of the party decides to take advantage of the Mendsday patronage. Keela strikes up a conversation with Wayne the alchemist (earning his support should Keela be interested in learning alchemy) and Senkara speaks to Heinrich the smith, who promises the group two masterwork-quality weapons if they dispose of a fence working with the Sawfish Boys to undercut his prices.
After a restful night, the party returns to the sewers and continues exploring, working their way past the freshwater channels and closer to the waste disposal networks. They find one bridge with a noticeable chill, and deduce that a patch of brown mold is growing beneath the arch. Alyndra uses a mage hand cantrip to scoop a sample into a vial before Cedric destroys the mold with a flask of liquid ice. Upon returning the sample to Wayne, the group is rewarded with a number of valuable alchemical tools, including several fuse grenades similar to those confiscated from Golda Furrell.
The group then investigates one of the water flow control stations surrounded by numerous pipes. They stumble upon a conspicuous pile of treasure, which perplexes the adventurers. Its presence is explained, however, when a choker ambushes the group from the pipes, attempting to strangle Alyndra. Cedric rips the monster down with his halberd, while Senkara attempts to pepper it with arrows. Before the killing blow can be fired, however, the beast scrambles into the pipes, attempting to reach a vantage point from which it can continue its assault. Keela’s keen ears allow her to identify which pipe the choker is hiding in, so she takes a fuse grenade and tindertwig from Cedric’s pack. She lights the bomb and lobs it into the pipe. Just as the choker reemerges to lash out at Cedric, the grenade explodes, reducing the aberration to a lump of smoldering flesh. The party celebrates by dividing up the beast’s horde amongst themselves.