The sun shines bright on the capital city of Kuldor when the party awakes. Their brief stay in the comfortable high-class inn has been pleasant, but they must get back to resolving their dilemma. Andreus, Damathus, and Gorgalac head towards the city slums to scout the area and see if they can find any information that might help them, while Amorion and Papalonius stay in the inn, knowing it would be too suspicious for all five of them to travel together.Papalonius overhears an interesting conversation from two other patrons of the inn:
Scum and Villainy
The scouting party barely makes it into the poorer side of Fire Den before several Griffon gang thugs ambush them from the alleyways, demanding all their gold. After negotiations fail, Damathus conjures a cloud of Obscuring Mist, and the other two leap into battle. The Griffons are caught by surprise, fighting pathetically in the blinding fog, and are quickly taken down. The party hears approaching footsteps and shouting coming from behind them, so they run further into the heart of the slums before the mist disperses. They duck into an alley unseen, waiting for whoever has behind them to move on.
After hearing about the strong gang presence in the slums, Amorion and Papalonius decide to try to follow the scouting party. Shortly after passing the thoroughly looted remains of the muggers, they meet up with the others in a run-down bazaar of sorts. Merchants peddle their wares from stands that are barely holding together. While the party discusses their next move, a crossbow bolt strikes Gorgalac in the back—more Griffon thugs are in cover around the bazaar, surrounding the party! Targeting the scouts who killed their fellow Griffons, other criminals move in wielding scimitars.
The party takes cover behind merchants’ stands as the bazaar bursts into chaos. Just when they are pinned down, a new combatant enters the fray—a half-elf takes one of the marksmen by surprise, cutting him down. While the attackers are distracted, the party makes short work of the rest of them.
The half-elf notices their wounds and tells them to follow him to his home, where they can rest. Injured and in a dangerous place, they agree. He introduces himself as Black Dog, a nickname with a long-forgotten origin. When they reach his house, he tends to their wounds and explains that he works for the Fighters’ Guild in the city, combating the gangs that are a rising threat to order. He asks them what they were doing wandering through the slums, and they tell him that they are in desperate need of a way out of the city. He says that he knew this already, and takes a large piece of parchment from his pocket—a wanted poster with the names and descriptions of all five of them, with a 10,000gp reward offered for their capture. The party is worried, but he assures them that he believes that they are innocent. He explains that the city guard did not trust the mercenaries they hired to provide protection for Gromnir Ironbrow’s speech, so one member of the Fighters’ Guild was assigned to watch over each guard post where the mercenaries were stationed. Black Dog was assigned to their post, and he knows that the party was not planning the assassination, since they were just as shocked as he was. Though he cannot get involved in their escape, he allows them to rest up in his home and points them in the direction of the abandoned warehouse where both Ogranak and Snakebite were captured. The building is untouched by the other gangs, but it’s too close to the slums for the city guard to check very often. Black Dog suggests that if the gang leaders escaped from the Imyur, they might have gone there. In any case, it would be a good places to start their search. The party thanks him, rests, and leaves late that night for the warehouse.
Helping the Hammers
The warehouse sits on the far western end of the slums, just outside Griffon territory. Rusted by years of negligence, the large metal doors have fallen clean off their hinges. The interior is pitch black.
Entering cautiously, the party is greeted by two tall half-orcs. Amorion announces that they are there to speak with Ogranak, and the guards lead them to the back of the warehouse, where the Black Hammer boss waits. He is glad to see them, and agrees to help them find a way out of the city if they can help him restore the Black Hammers. The party accepts, and he gives them a simple job—he needs a secure location to use as a base of operations. The warehouse is bound to be searched soon, but everywhere else is under the control of the Griffon gang. He gives the party directions to a nearby hideout, recently occupied by Griffon thugs, and asks them to clear it out.
Arriving at the specified building, they find it in no better condition than any other building in the slums. Andreus, Papalonius, and Ogranak enter through the front, while the two mages scale the walls with a grappling hook and rope. They work their way through the place, storming both floors of the building simultaneously. After regrouping and taking out the boss of the thugs there, they find a very interesting note on his body. It reads:
To all Griffon bosses,
Ogranak and Snakebite are back on the streets. Keep an eye out for Black Hammer or Wyvern’s Sting gangs. If they find out what we did, they’ll be coming after us. Stay where you are until told otherwise.
Unable to make any sense of the cryptic note, the party returns to Ogranak and shows it to him. He too is unsure, but he does recognize the name of Ian Pegason, who he says is the leader of the Griffons. He states that Snakebite might know more, since the note mentions the Wyvern’s Sting as well. He rewards the party for their success before pointing them towards the eastern slums, where members of the Wyvern’s Sting have been sighted. Perhaps Snakebite is hidden there somewhere, and perhaps he will know more about this Ian Pegason and what the Griffons are up to.