“Revenge is a dish best served cold” – Klingon proverb
Colonel Beaumont Sebastian, Retired, is hosting a reception in his Ludheim townhouse. The Mazarin Store, a sapphire from far-off Sutland, was recovered by one of his expeditions, and the Colonel is unveiling it tonight before it’s donated to the Ludheim Museum. Many of the city’s notables will be on hand, including Henry and Rosie. Bill has conned his way to an invitation, wearing a false beard for the evening. Kothar, accompanied by Grimloc and Chaska as bodyguards, uses the opportunity to meet up with Henry. The bard is his contact in the city and the evening is his introduction to Ludheim society. There is small talk among the players and their host. The guests are having a fine evening. Surely nothing will go wrong.
Something goes wrong when a party of goblins smashes through the skylight, rappels down, and demands the Stone or murder. Our heroes spring into action, quickly dispatching the goblins. In an effort to protect the Stone, or facilitate its theft by Bill or Rosie, Henry casts Prestidigitation during the chaos, creating a ring of mirrors inside the Stone’s glass case.
As the last goblin falls the players hear a scream from upstairs. Kothar and Grimloc race up to find Mrs. Sebastian fainted and the couple’s infant son missing. Out the open window, Kothar spies a flying man carrying the child to an airship, which then takes off into the night. In the crib is found a military badge with a silver basilisk.
Meanwhile, Bill is weighing his chances of using the distraction to steal the Mazarin Stone. Rosie reacts dramatically to the carnage, shrieks, and swoons, drawing all eyes to her. Bill attempts to pick the lock, but can’t quite get it. The moment passes. The Stone will have to wait for another day…
A flurry of investigation follows. In private, Sebastian reveals that during his military days he served in the Colonies. His experiences were mostly gin and cards at the officer’s club, but, in order to pad his record, he led a few excursions in the field. His final patrol ended in disaster; the Silver Basilisk unit was ambushed by lizardfolk. He alone survived because of his cowardice. Not trusting the speed or efficiency of the Watch, the Colonel entrusts the players with the investigation, giving them a letter of authority with his seal. He also hands over his records of the Basilisks.
The group splits up to follow leads. Leaning that the cook had drugged the guards’ stew and had a gambling problem, Rosie and Henry went to question him. They find him at his flat, murdered. Casino chips featuring a ship’s wheel are found in his boot. Kothar and Grimloc travel to the Aerodrome to check into airship traffic and leads on the mystery ship. The escaping airship eluded the city’s patrolcraft, and the towermaster is caught in a moment of incompetence. He promises Kathor the use of a patrolcraft if he agrees to keep the matter between thamselves. A surviving goblin informed Chaska that he and his fellows were hired are mercenaries by a “scary woman” and agrees to take him and Bill down to Monstertown to meet his boss. The goblin leads them to an old foundry refashioned as a bar called the Forge. There, Bill wins some favor with the monstrous crowd by leading a carousing drinking song. They soon meet with Eustace Hardscabble, local half-orc boss, fixer, crime lord, and problem solver. He informs them a scarred, red-haired woman named Sasha Fix, accompanied by a cloaked man, hired a team of goblins from him. He met with her at a casino in the Rose District called the Squeaky Wheel.
The heroes then meet up at the Vulgar Minotaur, narrowly missing copyright infringement. They exchange information, and agree to follow their leads to the Squeeky Wheel. In a stunning cliffhanger, the Colonel’s list of presumed dead Silver Basilisk’s included one “Sasha Fix”.