Facing the Faceless

Diamonds in the Rough

Hunting for Children in the Gritty City

After agreeing to the task Consulate Barney set out before them, our intrepid band of heroes decided to start by purchasing a sending ritual book for the purposes of contacting Chakto Kasa, the person most likely to contradict the Niyati testimony. So they bought the book, came back from the market… and Meeka Fuddlesplug opened her pack to find it had been stolen en route! The Orduval guide was no help whatsoever, having not been paid explicitly to guard their possessions, only their personal safety. They returned to the city streets to notice a curious street urchin who called Meeka by name, then dashed off into the warrens, ripped pages falling from her rags. Sneaking up on her, they blundered into a corner of the Feywild, somehow untouched by the surrounding city. The child was actually a gnome, who made some cryptic comments about changelings and children. She seemed to treat the party returning her lost changelings as a foregone conclusion, and knowing only that they liked flowers, the party returned to the streets to search for the missing… whatever they were. They recovered some of the pages from the ritual book, but the rest must still be in the Feywild. Perhaps if they returned the changelings, they could negotiate for the rest of the pages…

The first wasn’t difficult at all; stopping by a flower cart to pick up some ‘bait’, a hooded street urchin tried to reach for flowers right off the cart! Curiously enough, the child looked exactly like a dragonborn of the Ta’reed clan- especially when it teleported out of Meeka’s hands and made a run for it! When given a steady stream of flowers, the child was enthralled and picked the petals one by one… but when the petals ran out, the child said, “She loves me not…” and fell limp, revealing it to be nothing but sticks and leaves!

The second child was discovered easily enough, and had stolen a handful of very strange fruit. Meeka ate the fruit, and found that she could sense magic for a short time… She observed that her own party and some merchants had a few auras, indicating the presence of magic items, but a beggar strolling through the streets was far more powerful than the naked eye might indicate. Meeka approached the man, only to find her way blocked by a sudden argument among merchants, and when she dashed around the blockade, the beggar was gone.

A quick patrol of the surrounding few blocks revealed the next changeling hidden under a pile of refuse, a withered flower in its hand with one petal left. Fairly stumped, the party returned the changelings to the gnome, where they returned to life as sleeping children once more. The gnome seemed agitated and switched quickly between anger and gentleness. After some more cryptic comments the party left once more, most notably the comment that Sally’s mother and the last were together somehow, and that Sally’s mother should not be brought to the gnome.

The magical fruit the changeling carried could be a clue, so the party tracked down the fruit vendor, which was vigilantly guarded by tough-looking half-orcs. At 100 gold a pop, the fruit was clearly worth guarding. This, of course, didn’t stop Feyd Kasa from smacking Meeka so she could disappear, scamper up the side of the stall, and steal a pair of the hanging fruits before anyone noticed she was missing. Anyone except the Orduval guide, of course, who was quite put off that the party just ditched him entirely.

The party finds itself increasingly confused in an increasingly unfriendly city…

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Amphiprison

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