The group sleep in Abacus’ flat, but Naedas and Sitani wake up in the night to a commotion in the lane outside, where Abacus harasses street children while intoxicated. After abusing them verbally, calling them lazy wastes and unworthies, Abacus gives the children a handful of jinx and tells them to run off. Back in his apartment, Abacus shares the story of how his parents, factioneers in the Fated, met and romanced one another.
The next morning Abacus, Naedas, Sitani, Taga, and Tim go to the Hall of Information in the Clerk’s Ward. After making an appointment with the Portal Registry for the following day to pick up information on portals to Faerun, the group walk across the Cage to the Lower Ward to check out the Crimson Harpy, the bar Dolly arranged to meet at that night.
As the Harpy is closed until the show, the group explores the Lower Ward and visits the Foundry, where Sitani learns about the Believers of the Source. Walking to the Lady’s Ward for their meeting with Shemeshka the Marauder, they pass by the City Barracks and Sitani attempts to inform the Harmonium posted at the Barracks gate about the Rehabilitation Centre on Arcadia. Unfortunately, the guards do not believe him, and threaten to arrest Sitani for slander, defamation, conspiracy, and similar crimes. While leaving the area, they notices an air genasi woman that had watched their exchange with the guards, and though they attempt to pursue her, she is lost in the crowds.
Arriving at the Fortune’s Wheel gambling hall in time for their appointment with Shemeshka, Abacus and Tim get a table while Sitani and Naedas speak with Shemeshka’s gate keeper, a hideous tiefling woman named Margot. Margot is briefed on the information Sitani and Naedas possess, relating to their imprisonment on Nemausus, and the pair are granted an audience with “the King.”
Shemeshka, dressed in her fine silks and razorvine headdress, is seated at a private table with many tiefling men attending her. She asks Sitani and Naedas to restate their information, making a callous offhanded remark on Margot’s incompetence. Sitani attempts to defend Margot, insisting that she did a fine job, but Shemeshka takes offence and immediately discharges Margot from her employ.
Margot is forced to leaves the Fortune’s Wheel immediately, but Sitani follows after her and offers her a job at the same wage she received from Shemeshka in order to make amends for causing her loss of employment. Meanwhile, still inside, Naedas re-explains the information they possess on the Harmonium and strikes a deal with Shemeshka to receive details on a way back to Vidalok in return.
The group plus Margot return to the Crimson Harpy, arriving in time to catch the end of Dolly’s show. Abacus orders a plate of larvae chips and, though they prove disgusting, he finishes them in order to get his money’s worth. The group waits for Dolly after the show, and though she leaves them waiting for a long time, she does eventually emerge from the back. While happy to see them, she seemed confused by their visit, claiming not to remember offering them help find a portal. She states that she has looked for Nerissa and hasn’t found her, but isn’t concerned about it. She asks the group to remind her what they needed and offers to help them find a portal again, but Naedas tells her not to worry about it. Dolly tells the group about a show she is putting on the following week in the Clerk’s Ward and encouraging them to come see her again before leaving the Harpy.