Schism

Crosstown Traffic

Deals and Duplicity

Our heroes last left off in their favourite setting. Perhaps pining for their lost compatriot Eigil, or maybe just on the lam from the law again, they found themselves in the sewers of Vectis. Who was surprised to find out it was the latter, not me.

Having captured one of the manifested devils that they had engaged with at Greyhawk HQ, Lady Joy proceeded to put him through a rigourous questioning in her Interrogation Boudoir. She managed to obtain the following statements from her captive.

1 – “I work for Vincent. As far as I know, his orders come from Gaol herself.”

2 – “The Lady does not like to be interfered with. You are enemies of Gaol, and enemies of Alexandria. We wanted to know who you were working for.”

3 – “We are the true Inquisition. We are the invisible hand that keeps the Impernium clean. We are all that keeps the Chaos at bay.”

4 – “Enemies such as you, whose corruption lies within, are best removed quietly. Few will ask after you once you are gone.”

5 – “You were to be captured not killed. Then this conversation would be going the other way, I have a feeling. We won’t stop. As long as you are a threat to Gaol and her Lady, we will hunt you.”

Believing some of what he had to say, and disbelieving the rest, the party reluctantly dispatched the poor devil, as they had no where to leave him that he would not warn his compatriots.

Realizing that at least some branch of the Inquisition was after them for real, our heroes debated what they should do. Should they flee Vectis for a time, should they stay, should they join a minor league Badgerball team under assumed names? Since the situation in the city was quite volatile still, they decided to stay, but remain in hiding for a short while. To further this goal, they made their way down to the circus to see if the Walking Shadow could hide them for a spell. He obliged them, but seemed unconvinced that they could stay hidden for long with a branch of the inquisition after them.

The party, being somewhat in the dark about the internal hierarchy of the Inquisition needed information badly, and also to put some leverage on the Inquisition to back off. Having few leads and fewer connections to the Inquisition, they decided to follow up on the suspicious encounter they had witnessed in previous escapade between an Inquisitor and a high priest of Alexandria. As you may remember the Inquisitor had summoned the high priest to chew him out over the grisly murder/sacrifice performed by the devil Dawn, implying that the Inquisitor did not like covering for the devils.

Using this knowledge, Greyhawk Investigations decided to track down the high priest at the Church of the Lady of the Nine Hells. Unfortunately, this church happened to be on the direct opposite side of the city from the Circus. Since the martial law, and the Inquisition pursuit would make it difficult to travel simply across town, the group took back alleys, and stowed away on a subway line to make it there in a reasonable amount of time.

Once there, since Arnaud was notably absent, it was up to the rest of the party to send someone in to the church to deliver a message for the high priest to come to a nearby cafe for a chat. The highly sophisitcated, and delicate selection process was concluded when Cora picked scissors to Argal’s rock, and was chosen to enter. Donning the guise of an elderly half-elf and feigning mild indifference Cora delivered the message including a copy of a page from the Infernal book she carried to intrigue the priest.

At the appointed meeting cafe, Joy and Dracaena set up a picket inside the cafe with Cora out front to signal the team, and Argal on the back patio. Argal had been chosen for this task due to his immense success in talking to the governess, and because everyone else refused.

At the appointed meeting time, the High Canian Priest showed, along with two body guards. The priest, introducing himself as Stewart, seemed unaware of the devil that had caused the issue, and was interested in dealing with Argal to get information such that he could ferret out the culprits. Despite Argal’s mistrust in Stewart upholding his end of the deal, a bargain was struck giving Stewart the name of the devil in exchange for him wielding what influence he possessed to relieve Inquisitorial pressure for the party.

Then weighing his options, Stewart decided to fulfill his end of the bargain immediately by taking Argal into custody and interrogating him to find out all he knew. Sighing, Argal was not surprised, and proceeded to whistle in the cavalry while unlimbering his shield, and loosening his flail.

Meanwhile, Cora had been minding her own business, when she was attacked! By a single small imp that attempted to tranquilize(taze) her (bro). Thankfully she dodged the attack, and managed to strike a mutual non-aggression pact with the imp. It turns out she hadn’t made as clean a getaway from the church of Alexandria as she had thought. Their pact proved to be moot, however, when Cora heard Argal’s mighty whistle. She immediately turned invisible and rushed inside.

A battle ensued on the patio between the party and Stewart and Co. After a short confrontation between the group, in which Argal ran through a table, Cora was assaulted by a spirit controlling bystanders, Joy was thrown about left and right by magical winds, and Dracaena did some serious hatchet work. Short work was made of their foes, and Stewart gained a new respect for the party, and decided that he could give them information as part of his end of the bargain.

The party showed the book to Stewart, and in exchange he again agreed to wield what minor influence he had, as well as provide the party with information. They learned about the spy arm of the Inquisition that had attacked them, and how they worked mostly in isolation. When the group had been attacked at HQ, only Vincent, the leader of the squad had escaped. It was surmised that his failure would not reflect well on him, and he would probably try to double down on capturing the group before reporting it.

After leaving the cafe, the group was silently joined by Arnaud, who was filled in on the goings on since his mysterious departure. The team quickly cobbled together a plan for trapping Vincent, and hopefully eliminating the increased pressure on them from the Inquisition. The plan was for Arnaud to retrieve the GrehawkMobile from the alley, and then pick up a tail, and lead them to the cave in Emerald Park where we had first fought the devils. The remainder of the party would go there directly and set up a trap, hoping that since Emerald park was home to the Green Lady, it would be quite unfriendly for any Inquisition interlopers.

Unexpectedly the plan worked nearly to perfection. Vincent, an Inquisitor, and a squad of troops were lured in. Most of the troops were taken by the Green Lady, and only their leaders were left to face the group down in the cave. The trap was sprung and the fight joined by all except for Cora, who seemed quite frightened of the Inquisitor. With both Dracaena and Arnaud landing punishing blows on the Inquisitor he soon fell, Vincent was knocked unconscious, and the troop leader was dropped into the swampy pit trap that had nearly caught Arnaud on their first foray here. Unfortunately, the Green Lady turned out to be less discriminating about the interlopers than the group had hoped for. She especially seemed to be enraged that Argal, as Champion of the Walking Shadow, had entered her domain without permission.

Since, killing an Inquisitor would be a bad idea, a deal was struck with the troop leader that he could take the Inquisitor and leave. Arnaud nabbed Vincent, and the group beat feet. The Green Lady in her territory was more than a match for the team, and despite pleas and protests would not give up her pursuit of Argal in particular.

It was not until Dracaena (who appeared as a dryad to the Green Lady due to her Fae Circlet) offered the Green Lady the knowledge of how she could leave her tree that the Lady stopped and let the team leave. Sheepish, and with obvious shame on her features, Dracaena removed her circlet showing that she was an Arbonal and not a dryad. The Green Lady looked more resigned than angry, and seemed disappointed that her daughters would not be able to avail themselves of this same methodology for leaving the park.

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Haelix

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