The Grand Dame looked exactly as we remembered, complete with surly captain outside demanding we turn over our weapons. We were in no mood for subtlety this time around.
I reached out with my mind, attempting to convince him that we were on official business, and needed to be escorted immediately to the captain’s quarters.
Whether through exhaustion at being teleported hundreds of miles in a matter of minutes or through sheer overconfidence, the man sneered at me in response. “You ain’t on no business.” He drew his weapon and the guard next to him did the same.
I switched tactics, spreading out my arms as a sign of complacency. “Hey friend, have you heard of the Graham Cracker Crew?”
The man sneered even further, the corners of his mouth threatening to leap off in opposite directions. “I heard of the Graham Cracker Crew. I don’t give two shits if that’s who you are. No weapons on this ship.”
I stumbled my way through a bullshit response, as Halfred crept up next to him. The Captain took a single step forward and Halfred launched himself, planting his head directly in the man’s gut. His eyes bulged, knees buckled, and his whole form seemed to fold in on itself as he teetered for a moment, then toppled over into the water below.
He cried out a yelp as he fell, and the other guard screamed and drew his weapon. We were getting in there, one way or another.
I originally named last week’s session “Into the Maelstrom p1,” but I cannot in good conscience name this week’s session part 2. Thanks to our dumb luck we skipped through the huge Storm Giant dungeon and were able to secure a private audience with their leader, Reagent Serissa, without so much as bumping into any other giants, and from there have already received our next quest – to find King Hekaton and restore the Ordning.
The youngest daughter of King Hekaton, Princess Serissa wasn’t quite in the danger we were lead to believe. She was stuck in political turmoil, surrounded by scheming sisters and bickering advisers, and couldn’t really trust anyone around her.
She had a good heart but didn’t appear to have the constitution nor the will to lead, though Bryseis and Kazin attempted to put her on the right path. We assured her that we would help find her missing father and avenge her mother, if she in turn could stay the wrath of her Uncle and keep the other giants from exploding into further chaos and anarchy.
She offered only a single clue – a wooden, painted coin with the symbol of a goose was found near her mother’s body. We remembered this item (with the DM’s help) as belonging to The Grand Dame, the gambling boat in Yartar that Atalia and the K society operated out of in their plan to depose nobles and replace them.
Serissa had the power to transport us anywhere, so she sent us to Everlund, where Kazin confronted the captured Atalia. Using a Zone of Truth spell during the icy interrogation(and a bit of Bend Luck from Bryseis) we learned a name: Khaspere Drylund, the man who actually owned and ran The Grand Dame, and a top agent of The K Society. We needed to huff it back to Yartar.
One quick Harper Teleportation Circle later and we marched right up to the large casino boat on the docks. Captain Nelvin stopped us short and Kazin attempted to use Suggestion to let us pass. It was a no go as the guard sneered and stood his ground.
Plan B was Halfred head-butting the man in the gut, shoving him into the water. Nearby guards drew their weapons as Korinn shot out twinned bolts of lightning.
Though we hadn’t rested since the Maelstrom, we also hadn’t met any resistance there, and a group of bandits and guards were little match for us now.
We cleaved our way into onto the boat, with Bryseis and Halfred flying up to the upper portions as the rest of us headed toward the stairs. A single Cone of Cold from the casino’s floor manager stung a bit, but we shouldered on, shooing away the fleeing, screaming patrons.
We were not quite prepared for friendly fire, however, and I mean fire in the literal sense.
Bryseis and Halfred spotted nearly half a dozen guards guarding the captain’s quarters upstairs. Bryseis reacted by hurling a Fireball at them. Into the wooden ship. Next to the stairs that Kazin and Korinn were coming up.
The Fireball exploded, vaporizing all the guards, setting the ship aflame, and catching both Korinn and Kazin in the blast. After being hit by the Cone of Cold earlier, Korinn went down from the 30+ damage, while Kazin and T.I.M. rushed to heal her and stay clear of the spreading flames.
Our way was blocked; it was up to Bryseis and Halfred. With the enemy forces very much dead, they quickly searched the office while the flames began to spread. Bryseis found a spring-loaded trap drawer, narrowly dodging a poisoned needle.
Inside lay the papers and documents that Atalia had told us about, information that should hopefully lead us to Hekaton’s whereabouts. She snatched the paperwork (and pocketed a few coins) and we all fled the ship, watching the boat burn right there on the docks before the setting sun. The Grand Dame would not be making its nightly rounds this evening.