Recap January 22, 2020

The Light spell cast enough shadow that the kenku were not completely seen. Most of them felt like there was more than one of them in the warehouse. Sure enough, they fought 5 kenku with 4 of them falling easily but one ran into the darkness at the back of the warehouse. The group followed cautiously. They found not one but two more kenku. One they killed, the other surrendered after being surrounded by half of the party. They tried to get information from the kenku but all that it replied was the following phrases over and over:

In a deep voice with an orcish accent: “Xanathar sends its regards.” In a thin, nasally voice: “Tie up the pretty boy in the backroom!” and “Follow the yellow signs in the sewers.” In a scratchy voice: “No time to loot the place. Just get him to the boss.” We did knock (This is what St. Calmers had said to the kenku several times)

They realized that the kenku was only repeating what was said to it. They tied it up and began to search the rest of the warehouse. St. Calmers and Jendragon went upstairs to check out the second floor while the rest of the group spread out on the first floor.

There were 12 bodies scattered about the first floor all of them clad in leather armor. 5 of them had a black tattoo of a winged snake on either their neck or forearm. Only one of the other 7 had such markings. He had a black tattoo on the palm of his right hand that looked like a circle with ten spokes radiating out from its circumference. They were pretty sure that the one with the winged snakes were Zhentarim and the one with the circle with 10 spokes radiating from it was a member of the Xanathar guild. They were not sure what had happened. And they had not seen anyone that matched the description of Floon that Volo had given them. They started to walk up the stairs and say a door on the side of the stairs and it was cracked open. Moonwhisper moved slowly to the door and peeked in. She saw a cramped chamber beyond and it smelled strongly of sour fish and vinegar. It was filled with discarded ropes, canvas tarpaulins, and splintered wood from smashed barrels. She saw movement from under the tarps. Throwing the tarps off the object they saw a noble-looking young man with blondish hair. He was shocked at first but soon realized these were not the thugs that he had been dealing with. Nadia asked, “Are you Floon?” The man replied, “No, I am not but I was that I was so it would be me that was taken into the sewers and not me. It is my fault that he was taken.”

“What do you mean?”

They helped him up and Calmers cast Prestidigitation on him to clean off the warehouse dust and fish residue. The man continued.

I am Renaer Neverember. On the night of the abduction, I was concerned that Floon was too intoxicated to find his way home by himself and offered to escort him. We were jumped by five thugs as we left Fillet Lane and headed north on Zastrow Street. I know Floon was taken because the Zhents confused us and thought he was me. You see, the Zhentarim thinks that my father, Dagult Neverember, embezzled a large amount of gold while he was Open Lord and that he hid the dragons somewhere in the city. They think they can find it by using an artifact called the Stone of Golorr, which was in the hands of the Xanathar Guild until recently. Apparently, someone stole it. The Zhents thought I knew something about all of this, but I don’t. My father and I haven’t spoken in years.”

He then said “Wait, you are looking for Floon? Who sent you?”

Volo.

“That is good. Now, if you do not mind, I would like to join you all in looking for my friend. That is if you will have me.” They agreed and he began to search for a rapier and dagger from the bodies.

Calmers and Jendragon got to the top of the stairs and turned left. It was a large room with a few bashed-in crates. They went down the walkway towards a single door. Calmers opened it and a bell started ringing steadily. Calmers and Jendragon ran down the hall away from the alarm. Moonshadow ran upstairs to see about turning the alarm off. She was not able to but she did see a wire running along the ceiling and then down the side of the stairway to the first floor. It looked like it ended just below the stairs. She looked and found a button. Just as she pressed it, the entrance to the warehouse lit up and a loud man’s voice said: “Everybody stay where you are.” Moonwhisper was able to slip into the secret room and the door shut behind her. It seems she had not been spotted.

It was a captain of the City Watch and at least a dozen city watch guards. The guard sent off into the warehouse to look for evidence. Ranaer stepped forward and said. Captain Stagat, it is good to see you.” Captain Stagat replied “Ranaer, I did not see you there and I see you have Lady Nadia from the City of the Dead. I do hope that you both are alright. Ranaer said that they were and then he explained why they were in the warehouse. Ranaer then showed the tied up kenku to the Captain who called over his men and they arrested the birdman.

Stagat continued “It seems that you all have run afoul of the gang war between the Zhents and the Xanths. We received word of suspicious activity at this warehouse. Seeing as the situation looks settled for now, I will ask if you will give me your full name and where you are staying in town in case I need to ask more questions related to what happened here tonight. Also, take this. He then handed them each a copy of the Code Legal for Waterdeep. Make sure you are familiar with all of these. Best not to meddle in criminal matters. Leave this dirty business to the City Watch. Not all City Watch officers are as nice as me. Keep the blood off the streets, okay?”

Keep the blood off the streets was a common phrase used by the City Watch. It meant that the streets need to be kept clean from such violence but things that happened below the streets, such as in the sewers as Ranaer would point out later, the City Watch was not as concerned with what happened down there.

The City Watch left and they started to talk to Ranaer on how to find Floon. Ranaer said I think we are missing one of your companions? Moonwhisper came out and said she had been hiding in a secret room. Inside the room, she had found 4 really nice paintings of cities in Faerun, Luskan, Neverwinter, Silverymoon, and Baldur’s Gate. She estimates them to be around 75gp each. In another crate, she found 14 10pound silver trade bars. They were all black from corrosion but were probably still worth 50gp each.

They determined that Floon had been taken by thugs of the Xanathar guild. The guild was known to have hideouts in the sewers. Ranaer said he was sure that there were no sewer entrances in this part of the Dock Ward. They give a quick look around and did not see any. Ranaer then said Well, I may not know but I know someone who may know, that is if you trust me. I will need to take you to his house. You may have heard of him, Mirt the Moneylender. He may able to help us especially once he knows that Floon is missing. Come with me. It is about a 20-minute walk from here. Or we could take public transportation though it might be difficult for that seeing how late it is. They agreed to walk. They made good time with the streets being close to empty. Ranaer opened the metal gate and then knocked on the front door. Shortly, a man answered the door and greeted Ranaer. Ranaer whispered to him that they needed his helped and Mirt let them in. Mirt was a well-dressed man, middle-aged at least. Even though he was on the heavier side, they could tell he was still able to move rather quickly. He escorted them into a parlor and offered them seats. “How can I be of service?”

Ranaer and the group told Mirt all that had happened. Mirt rubbed his chin and said I may be able to help you. Hopefully, it will not take too long. He picks a stone out of a pouch and speaks into it. Are you aware of any know Xanathar Guild hideouts in the Dock Ward and Castle Ward areas? Yes, I know that is a lot of area. It is important. Thanks, I will be waiting. Mirt then talked to each member of the group. He knew Nadia and knew of Calmers. He was happy to know more bards had come into town - Ginko and Callie - and he told them about Three Strings. He laughed when he found out the Three Strings saw Ginko as a rival. He did not know of Jendragon’s family but was impressed by Jendragon overall. He talked only briefly to Moonwhisper before a message came over his Sending Stone.

Good to know. Yes, I know they alley you speak of. I can give them direction. Thank you. Yes, it will be in the normal spot. As always. Speak to you soon.

“There’s a Xanathar Guild Hideout in the sewers close to Lackpurse Lane. I can give you directions from here. It is not far. The entrance is located under piles of trash. Plus, Ranaer should know the way. Just follow the yellow markings when you’re down there. Good hunting – and I hope the poor fellow is still breathing!”

They walked about 5 minutes and found the alley that Mirt spoke of. They saw old crates that looked like the ones found in the warehouse over on Candle Lane. They did a quick search and soon found a metal trapdoor under the crates. They took the ladder down into the sewers. A putrid stream flows along this sewer tunnel, which leads in two directions. In one direction, you see a tiny symbol drawn on the wall in yellow chalk: a palm-sized circle with ten equidistant spokes radiating out from its circumference. The symbol looked very similar to the tattoo on the man’s palm from the warehouse. They set off following the yellow makers.

After an hour of following signs through the tunnels, you come to a three-way intersection where a ladder leads up into a stone shaft capped by a circular metal cover. One of the familiar chalk symbols is marked on a wall nearby, and floating near the symbol is a spherical, grapefruit-sized creature with a bulging central eye and four stumpy eyestalks. It bares its teeth at you.

gauth

Nadia said I think that is a gauth, a kind of beholderkin. It does not look happy to see us. The gauth used its Stunning Gaze to paralyze a few of the group. Moonwhisper ran up to attack it as did Jendragon and Calmers. Calmers was hit by a Paralyzing Ray from one of the gauth’s eye-stalks. Jendragon was hit by an Enerving Ray causing necrotic damage to him. Then Jendragon and Moonwhisper gave it all they had with their attacks, Nadia used her crossbow, Calmers used Vicious Mockery, Ginko played a battle tune. The gauth soon fell and the group after healing up the wounded moved on following the yellow symbols. About 5 minutes from where they had fought the gauth:

The main sewer tunnel expands into a circular hub with a pair of arrow slits carved into its outer walls, directly across from each other. Two passages continue on to the north and south. A stone door is set into the back wall of a stone ledge to the west.

Jendragon walked up to one of the arrow slits and look in it. He was hit by a goblin arrow. He tried to swing back but was not able to. 5 more arrows were fired out of the arrow slit as the group moved towards the stone door. Moonwhisper and Callie pushed the door open and everyone ran into the hallway beyond. The passage twisted and then came to another door. They opened it and went left into a good-sized room. Calmers and Ginko stayed at the door. The good-sized room was a makeshift armory and/or coatroom. Suddenly several arrows came from the north. 2-3 goblins had come out of a room and had begun to fire arrows at those out in the open. One stepped to the side to get a shot on Calmers. The group was patient and took their time and soon all of the goblins were defeated (there were 6 total). They were about to catch their breath when Ranaer said we have company behind us. 6 more goblins were entering the passageway with the stone door. The stone door that they had forgotten to close.