The Fall of Sarpedon
Diamonds Aren't a Deva's Best Friend
The Story So Far…
Fresh from your victory upon the barge Fortune’s Lady, you arrived at the frontier settlement of Dark Rapids. Before being allowed to enter town, the magic-users in the party were required to surrender their implements and to wear distinctive armbands marking their profession. Brandis was given a mysterious package by Constable Graft, the dock security chief, the contents of which the rogue didn’t seem inclined to share with the party.
Once in town, you managed to connect with Eben, a Deva Cleric who may be able to learn something of Ogrium’s origin through his own exploration of his past lives. After some brief posturing towards a few rude Hobgoblins and words with a local fence that had something interesting to say about a looted dagger, you met Pallidar, the captain of the town guard. Impressed by your capture of the scoundrel Nathan Redwine, Pallidar beseeched you to help defend the town against the selfsame pirates you fought earlier, before their tactics force the entire population to desperation and riot from lack of food and other essential supplies. Upon the party’s agreement to help, he promised a portion of the salaries of the entire town guard for your aid.
While talking with Pallidar, you were rudely summoned to meet Lord Blackthorne within the hour by a surly Gnomish page. En route to his keep, a tattered, wild-eyed man named Huston approached you with tales of a fortune beyond imagination, and offered you an Astral Diamond, a rare gem of enormous value, as proof of his story. Despite his insistence on leaving immediately to hunt for the treasure, you decided to wait until after your appointment with Blackthorne, and arranged to meet later at his hovel.
At the keep, Blackthorne welcomed you with a sumptuous banquet, allowing you to feast to contentment before starting to discuss his interest with you. Despite the disparaging comments made by Pallidar about him, and the arrogant manner that you’ve seen exhibited by his troops, Blackthorne himself came across to you as a man of honor, both amiable and magnanimous. That is, until Eben offered him as a gift the Diamond given you by Huston.
Instead of appreciation, Blackthorne first showed shock, then exploded with rage, demanding to know where the gem came from. For some reason disbelieving your claim that it was given to you by a filthy prospector, he demanded to be taken to Huston at once.
Arriving at the hovel where Huston told you to find him, inside you only found a body, head missing and the remains dissected so thoroughly that you were inclined to think the killer had been searching for something inside the corpse. Faced with a murder at the spot where you claimed Huston to be, Blackthorne declared the entire party under arrest!
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