Image by Gwyneth Ravenscraft
After leaving their meeting with Torgan Betz the crew cast off for Refuge. Currents willing it’s a trip of about 23 days through the Phlogiston.
14 days out Lenata spots something in the flow moving toward the ship. As the mists of the Flow part she sees a huge form the size of their ship with three eyes and a plethora of tentacles. It’s a krajen!
The first bolt strikes home with a massive splash of flame, augmented by the volatile effects of the Flow. Vedis concentrates, controlling the flames so that they don’t go out. As she sustains the burn she also makes it walk across the krajen’s flesh towards its eyes.
Straining her skills and the ship Lenata of Celestian accelerates and pulls out of the Flow current they’re travelling. Pulling a 180 through the open Flow she enters the current headed back to Spiralspace. The krajen follows.
As the monstrous cephalapod gains on them it let’s out a screech, its skin pulsing a reddish purple with rage. Ef Utan let’s fly with another ballista bolt causing a second blossom of flame along the squid-like creature’s flank.
As [[:lenata | Lenata]] senses the krajen closing with the ship she pulls out of the flow current flipping back around into the one they started in. The ship strains, and as the hull and masts creak there is a flare in its magical field, a flare that sets the mainsail afire.
Kenari, Ef Utan, and Ayrun Sorpic form a bucket brigade bringing water up from the stores below. As they get the fire under control Ef Utan sees the krajen gaining. He leaps to the ballista and launches two more alchemists fire enhanced bolts.
Nearly blinded the krajen floats in the multicolored mists of the Flow, staring at the dragonfly ship while it’s skin pulses red and purple. With a flip of it’s tentacles it retreats from the fray.
Nine days after their encounter with the krajen the dragonfly enters Refuge and is, as usual, met by ships from the Arcane Fleet. They state their business as seeking an audience with Admiral Leafbower. They are directed to the offices the IEN holds on the surface.
First stop once they get their docking fees handled is the IEN offices where they leave word for Admiral Leafbower that they have info about Tenth Pit activities. They’re told that they will be contacted through the ship.
Go to IEN to make appt with Leafbower re : Tenth Pit activity.
Lenata and Ef Utan hit the markets and restock the ship. While doing so they hear tales of The Watcher Below, a massive rogue beholder that purportedly haunts the sewers of the undercity. Ef Utan also manages to find out the Daban The Merchant “is not someone people of good breeding do business with.” It seems that he is suspected of dealing in human flesh.
Ef notices grungy human following them. He does not accost the person, but does keep an eye out. Over the afternoon he sees the same figure shadowing them and trying to remain inconspicuous.
Meanwhile Kenari and Vedis go to a tavern called The Golden Helm. While drinking there they meet a Reigar named Tain who takes quite a liking to the pair. He invites them to a private party on his estate that evening. The ladies head back to the ship to get ready and tell the others.
When the four meet up at the ship they find Ayrun waiting with a message from the IEN. Admiral Leafbower is off planet and will be back in three days. They have an appointment at noon on the third day.
Changing their shiftweave clothes to court garb they grab the box of erotic toys they had acquired and head to the Reigar’s estate. Ayrun seems strangely obsessed with a leather working project in the hold and declines the invite.
On the way they purchase a ring of detect poison for Ef Utan so he can check everyone’s drinks.
They arrive at a large manor house with extensive walled grounds. The landscaping in front is decorated with fearie fire and colorful illousions and the sounds of drums resounds from the grounds behind.
As they cross the property’s threshold they each feel a momentary chill and a magic mouth appears on a large stone in front of them. “Thank you for accepting my invitation for this evening,” says Tain’s voice, “come in and indulge your senses. Have fun, be fun, or be made into fun.”
Ef Utan stays in bodyguard mode and refrains, but the ladies decide to cut loose and let their hair down.
It’s an amazing party, exactly what one would expect from the reputation of the Reigar. A vast array of species mingle while the highest quality alcohol flows freely from the bars. Scantly clad servants of both genders and several species pass exotic foods and intoxicants amongst the guests. A number of bards with drums have joined forces near the bonfire and are whipping the dancers into a frenzy. Kenari immediately joins in on the dancing.
Decadence holds sway, and the ladies pair off, as so many are doing. Ef Utan tries to keep track of them. Lenata disappears into the manor house with a tall half elf who whispered “hello beautiful, let’s wander,” into her ear. Kenari disappears into the bushes with a black furred catfolk male she had been dancing with. Vedis meanwhile ends up with an elven couple, the three last seen publicly making out at the foot of a large willow tree.
While the ladies indulge Ef Utan wanders the crowd, keeping his ears open for juicy info. One things he overhears is that Daban The Merchant many be in for a surprise from the Pragmatic Order of Thought tomorrow.
Tain stops and chats with Ef Utanand insists that he drink Conuring forth a 1000 year old elven mead they toast together. “How do you make a Maenad sound like a delphinid?” quip’s the Carrigmoorean to the Reigar.
A few hours after dawn Ef Utan and Lenata carry Vedis back to the ship. Kenari Sanura, blissfully staggers along and somehow makes it look graceful. She keeps murmurring the word, “”/campaign/spelljoined/wikis/Densharr/new" class=“create-wiki-page-link”>Densharr.
Once back at the dragonfly they send Kelson to the alchemists for hangover relief and get some sleep. Arising early in the evening everyone but Ef Utan has a horrible hangover. Kenari in particular seems to suffer intense gastric distress.
In short order they get their audience with the elderly elf. Kenari introduces the team and shows him their Bralian letter of marque. She fills him in on what they know and suspect aout the illithids, the neogi and the The Tenth Pit. She even tells him of their suspicion that they wish to use a Dreamstone ritual to summon forth The Spelljammer.
Then she shows him the chess set. It turns out it was his, crafted by a famed Battlepoet named Camthalion. He has not seen it in ten centuries. Pleading lack of time he agrees to contact them in a few days after he has looked into things.
Meanwhile Ef and Kenari go to Daban the Merchant’s to see if they can ferret out any fact behind the rumors of salve trading Ef had overhead earlier. After some roundabout conversation with the fat, balding human behind the the counter they proceed to a back room to discuss “merchandise.”
As they talk Kenari is suddenly overcome with weariness. In a matter of seconds she is slumped over the table snoring softly. His vision blurring Ef Utan struggles to his feet before also falling unconscious to the floor.
An indeterminate time later the catfolk and the bodyguard wake up with about twenty five other humanoids in what seems to be the darkened hold of a ship. They are stripped of all but their clothes, fortunately Kenari’s lockpicks escaped detection….