In the wake of the Rift storm, Vectis is left with strange alterations wherever lightning struck.
Fearing another tempest should violence erupt again, we meet with the storm-battered members of the Cabal to discuss options for curtailing the protests. We agree to approach Cirace to enlist the support of the City Guard in reigning in the disorder.
Meanwhile, Argal consults with the Shadow in an effort to determine what caused the storm. The magic behind the storm is unknown to the Shadow: arcane, divine, of another realm. Although the Shadow has searched the city for the source of the magic, this magic is unusually invisible and powerful.
Cora and Dracaena meet with Cirace to share their perspective on recent events and to request Guard assistance. Cirace believes that sweeping measures will be necessary.
Martial law is enacted in Vectis. Large public gatherings are prohibited, and movement in public is severely restricted. However, the heavy handed approach only intensifies the uprisings in the city.
Meeting again with the Cabal, Carter indicates that he thinks the storm is the work of a god. We discuss the deteriorating situation in Vectis, and Carter believes that we will need to share our information with the Governor, who will have more power at hand to quell the violence. Carter has taken the liberty of setting up a meeting with a contact who can help us get through to the Governor.
We arrive at the appointed drinking establishment at the appointed hour to find Carter and Burroughs arguing about what happened the last time they trusted Lord Joy. We settle in with our drinks. Lord Joy, accompanied by a servant, approaches our table. He is frail, with half-lidded eyes and a faded tongue-colored frock coat, and carries a sliver walking stick topped with opera glasses. As Joy sits down, he only seems to see Carter. Joy places an order for absurdly good food, and, when the food arrives, instructs his servant Pitts to immolate the food and then eat it.
The eating concludes and Joy is ready to discuss business. Joy explains to Carter that only Gwendolyn receives invitations to see the Governor. Unfortunately, Gwendolyn is being held by a Hochi gang at the moment. Upon questioning about how exactly Gwendolyn came to be in this situation, Joy divulges that he exchanged her for goods procurable from the Hochi. Joy wants to know what need we have of seeing the Governor, and Carter explains our recent encounters with Devils. At the mention of Devils, Joy begins to acknowledge that there are others beside Carter at the table. Joy has read the (absolutely unexaggerated) novelized recountings of our exploits, and it dawns on him who we are.
Carter and Burroughs beg off, and the rest of us set off in the Greyhawkmobile, accompanied by Lord Joy, to the place where Gwendolyn is being held. Arnauld and Argal explore the perimeter of the building, which turns out to be a heavily guarded pawnshop. Lord Joy is somewhat withholding of information about how to identify Gwendolyn. Arnauld enters the shop for a casual browse, which reveals that the area of the room is clearly smaller than the footprint of the building. Arnauld unsuccessfully attempts to buy Spike off of the shop owner, and departs.
Cora takes a magic look at the rest of the building, and is able to discern the location of the rooms within. Arnauld magically enters the building, and finds a belt with a bill of sale from Lady Joy Gwendolyn. Arnauld picks the lock and takes the belt.
As we head back to the Greyhawkmobile, our path is blocked by a cloaked figure who seems to have a history with Joy. When Joy is attacked, we take on the assassin, only to find that our efforts merely result in the shadowy figure breaking into multiple smaller parts. We realize that we must fight the assassin in the shadow realm, and ultimately defeat him.
After the battle, Arnauld presents Joy with the recovered belt. Joy takes the belt, and as he puts on the belt, his figure begins to alter.
“Seldom, I find, does fact exceed fiction,” gushes Joy, in a newly feminine form. “But in your case… in all your cases, I’m thrilled to have erred. I realize that we differed as to methods, and if you require further detail, I shall withhold no more. You clearly know more than I about the precise nature of the infernal activity in Vectis…”
She clears her throat.
“But the rub of the matter is – you saved my skin just there. That unsavory pool of former cutthroat was certainly not on your dance card, nor among our contract’s parameters. Yet you did for him handily. When our association began, I thought of you as mere hands in my employ. Now, with apologies, I consider it quite the reverse. If that means a non-lethal proviso, I will of course defer to your judgment.
Whatever your decision, after the audience with the Governor – I thank you all."
She starts to bow, less theatrically than you’d expect – and then curtsies instead, a little stiffly, as if it has been a long damn time.