Heavy rain and lightning in the distance. That is all that is seen by the Champions as they ran through Old Korvosa. Passing old buildings and run down alleys, the heroes are on a chase but not after any enemy or criminal. They were after Anja and Grunt.
After Anja and Grunt ran off with Vencarlo Orisini’s chest, Blackjack and Orion chased after her as the storm overhanging Korvosa intensified. Ari followed closely behind them as she fired warning shots at Blackjack. Through tears and anger, the group gave chase through Old Korvosa over a simple box. Each had their own reasons, each were uneasy with the others.
After reaching a collapsing roof, Grunt stopped to wait for the others. They arrived one at a time as Grunt readied himself to scold them. He stood in the heart of the storm to remind them of their real enemy. He pointed out the large Black Dragon flying over the castle. He reminded those with family in danger. He reminded them of the draconic ambition of the Queen and the mysterious motives of their new king, Rand Gilver. Grunt bore all of these feelings out for the group to remind them that hopefully working together will make Korvosa stand on its own again.
The party finally calmed down again after this and headed back to the Academy to rest and regroup. Anja looked through the chest again, this time with Brealyn, and truly took some time to see what it had to offer. Amongst the treasure and equipment, she found an amulet with the name of each and every man who took up the mantle of Blackjack. After much soul searching, she decided to let everyone take something from Vencarlo’s box to help them in their journey.
Blackjack took the amulet and saw the memories of the previous Blackjacks. He saw the truth of Vencarlo Orisini but most importantly, his father. Knowing the truth of what happened to his father, Blackjack accepted the mantle of Blackjack and unlocked the true power within the amulet. But power was not the only thing the amulet offered, as it told him who was responsible for his father’s death; none other than the Queen Ileosa. Thanking Anja for the chance to know the truth, Blackjack suggested they discuss their next move.
After resting, the Champions planned out their next course of action, which led them to the house of the artist, Salvator Scream. Blackjack had a previous run in with the painter so he was interested to make sure he was alright. The group packed up and headed to his home with some renewed vigor.
They found the place surrounded by several well fed Otyughs, but after some careful planning and assistance from a surprisingly chipper cleric of Zon-Kuthon, they destroyed them with ease. The cleric introduced herself as Laori Vaus and did not even try to hide her allegiance to the Lord of Pain. The group found out that she wanted to find Salvator Scream as well albeit for more benign reasons. During the conversation which they took inside the artist’s lair, they found an old friend, the Varisian Harrower, Zellara. While Ari kept her mouth shut in hopes no one suspects the truth about her, she felt relieved that no one questioned how the old woman got into Old Korvosa. She performed another Harrowing for them for old time’s sake and hurried them on their way as someone knocked on the door.
Answering it, the party is surprised to see a man dressed in finery with a long large scroll. The man proceeded to read a summons to the Emperor’s palace to discuss their recent intrustions on his territory. The summons directed them to appear the next day but being the dashing heroes that they are, the Champions decided to go that night in a midnight raid.
Splitting up into two groups along with Laori Vaus, the group attacked the Emperor’s ramshackle palace. Brealyn, Green Sheen, and Laori attacked the front while the rest of them used Anja’s newly created grappling gun to enter through a hole on the fourth floor. While the front group had great success in defeating the guards there, the stealth team did not have too much success as they disturbed a choker nest.
Though the chokers and initial wave of guards was defeated, the Champions realized that their problems were just starting after they saw an angry gnome kick down a door, brandishing a greataxe.