25 Eleint 1384 D.R.
Year of Three Streams Blooded
Upon arriving in town, the party were witness to a clerk from The Money Man Banking and Lending serving foreclosure papers on Orik at the Pixie and Dixie Tavern. When questioned about it, the clerk, Xaver Moyaux, explained that a loan had been secured by Burgo, and it had not been paid. The Pixie and Dixie Tavern was held as collateral, and as such, was being foreclosed to satisfy the terms of the loan.
Orik was distraught, but the paperwork all seemed in order, so he was forced to watch his father’s tavern fall into Xaver’s hands.
Mesmer, Badrick, Liam, and Anders proceeded to Lady Iselda’s manor, where they spoke to her of the letter they found in the cultist’s temple. Standing nearby, Lady Iselda’s steward, Gervais Burguet conversed in whispers with a maid, and raised the suspicions of Badrick, who promptly accosted him. An ugly scene transpired, with Gervais ultimately denying any wrongdoing and storming off to look after the house.
Convinced of the danger to herself and her family, Lady Iselda agreed to be escorted to Liam’s home by the party and to stay there until the threat was neutralized. She sent instructions with Anders for Gervais to secure records of any transactions between the Money Man and Burgo.
The party returned to Ambroth, and upon receiving the documents from Gervais, determined there would be no way Burgo could have signed for the loan in question, since his hands now shake too bad to even feed himself. The document had been forged, but by whom?
After some bar-hopping for information (and copious amounts of liquor, of course,) Rummy and Badrick made their way to the Money Man Lenders to question Xaver. However, when they arrived, dusk had settled in and Xaver was nowhere in sight. A well-dressed female halfling, Therphina Distantvale, was exiting the Money Man and had just locked the door when Rummy and Badrick loomed over her.
Pointing to the sashes bestowed upon them by Lady Iselda, the pair demanded to speak with the halfling inside the bank. Scared witless, and quite sure she was being robbed, the halfling refused to be taken inside the bank alone, and requested she be permitted to ask a guard to stand nearby while the trio spoke out front. Rummy didn’t like the idea, and in the end, when Therphina made a break for the guardhouse next door, took a swing at her. Badrick did the same, but Therphina proved too nimble and darted between them, screaming for help.
The guardhouse emptied into the street, protectively surrounding Therphina and demanding answers from Rummy and Badrick. Emboldened by their sashes, and perhaps by a false sense of authority, both adventurers decided to push the issue and deny any wrongdoing on their part. As no physical harm had been done, the guard captain ushered Therphina inside the guardhouse and dismissed the two instigators.
The party took rooms at the Traveler’s Haven, and resumed their inquiries the following morning.
Anders, being more level-headed than Rummy and more charismatic than Badrick, tried his luck in speaking with Xaver inside the Money Man, but the conversation quickly went sour and Xaver demanded he leave. Showing Anders to the door, Xaver turned his head and Anders spotted a familiar tattoo behind his right ear. Deciding discretion was appropriate, Anders took this information to the rest of the party.
Rather than directly approaching either Therphina or Xaver, Mesmer donned a clever disguise as a hunched old man and went inside the bank to do business. Speaking with Therphina, Mesmer was able to convince her to take the conversation to a more private location, and Therphina quietly escorted Mesmer to a side room.
Meanwhile, Rummy grew tired of waiting, and stormed inside to confront Xaver. Xaver darted to the rear of the room, and crashed through the door into the private room Therphina and Mesmer had gone into.
Inside, Xaver grabbed Therphina and pressed a dagger to her throat. Rummy blocked the door, and the rest of the party gathered behind him. A tense confrontation ensued, and in the end, Xaver lay unconscious, while Therphina trembled across the hall, having been rescued by the same men that had accosted her the night before.
Xaver was loaded across a horse and taken out of the city. Once inside the woods, Rummy and Badrick sent Anders, Tonan and Mesmer ahead while they “questioned” their captive.
Xaver defiantly denied knowledge of anything more than where to drop coin for the cult, though Rummy and Badrick suspected he simply refused to be tortured into submission. In the end, Xaver died quite painfully, but not much information had been learned from him.