Act One / Episode – 09
Session Date: July 24, 2012
In which city clerks are made cranky, unsound investments are counted up short, many many miles are marched, a fickle fiend sacks her security, and a sultry singer’s assent seems to have slipped her mind . . .
Sitani and Naedas awoke in the night to a commotion in the lane behind Abacus’ apartment. Sitani went out to investigate and found Abacus, intoxicated, harassing local street children. After abusing them verbally for being lazy wastes and unworthies, Abacus gave the children a handful of jinx and told them to run off. Back in his apartment, Abacus shared the story of how his parents, now both factioneers in the Fated, met and romanced one another.
The next morning Abacus, Naedas, Sitani, Taga, and Tim went 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 walked across the Cage to the Lower Ward to check out the Crimson Harpy, the bar Dolly arranged to meet at that night.
When they find that the Harpy is closed during the day, only opening at four hours to Antipeak for the show, the group explores the Lower Ward and visits the Foundry, where Sitani asks some questions and learns about the Believers of the Source. Walking to the Lady’s Ward for their meeting with Shemeshka, they pass by the City Barracks, and Sitani attempts to inform the Harmonium posted at the Barracks gate about the Rehabilitation Centre on Arcadia. The guards become angry, and threaten to arrest Sitani for slander, defamation, conspiracy, and similar crimes. While they leave the barracks area, the group notices an air genasi woman that had been watching 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 their own table while Sitani and Naedas speak with Shemeshka’s gate keeper, a hideous tiefling woman named Margot. After being briefed on the information Sitani and Naedas have to sell, relating to their imprisonment on Nemausus, Margot withdraws and relays the information to Shemeska. Upon returning, the pair are told they’ve been granted an audience with the “King” directly.
Shemeshka, dressed in her fine silks and her 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 to Shemeshka, and strikes a deal to receive details on a way back to Vidalok in return.
The group, now including Margot, then make their way back into the Lower Ward 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. After the show, the bar’s owner seems annoyed that the group is lingering so long after closing, and refuses to let them into the back. When Abacus explains that they’re guests of Dolly, the bar owner goes into the back to tell Dolly she has visitors, then returns to the front to clean up after the show.
Though Dolly leaves them waiting for quite some time, she does eventually come out from the back. While happy to see them, she seemed slightly confused by their visit, claiming not to remember offering them help finding portals. She states that she hasn’t seen Nerissa, despite having looked for the other woman, but did not seem concerned about it. She asks them what it was they were looking for, and offers again to help them find a portal, 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, encouraging them to come see her again, before leaving the Harpy.