Ptolus: City by the Spire

The Hidden Grotto

Wind 7, 721 IA (Earthday)

The party then leaves, taking their growler to Rivergate, where Mand explained Linnech ran his operation. It was a isolated burrow on the far west side of the district, near the city’s outer wall. They are escorted by a couple armed thugs to Linnech’s office. Linnech’s office was rather tackily but well furnished, with a life-size golden statue of a nobleman sitting against a far wall, seemingly out of place. The half-orc was smoking a smelly cigar, surrounded by more guards, a black-haired dwarf, a burly female barbarian and a pair of guards similar to those seen outside, more muscle than brains. Another man, slightly smaller than the others, sat at a table filled with ledgers in the corner.

Linnech explained that he wanted them to go get his daughters body so he can properly bury her. She died on an island in the Whitewind Sea, and her coffin was being brought back to Ptolus on a ship called the Arrowhead when a fire sent the vessel to the bottom of the bay, near the docks. He thinks it was no accident.His daughter was about thirteen when she died. He wants them to find out all they can, and then go down and get the body. It’s sealed in a glass coffin. They need to bring up the whole coffin to get the reward. He also warns there may be others interested in the Arrowhead, but tells them they can keep whatever they find as long as he gets his daughter back. He offers them each a potion of water breathing and 1,200 gp total (divide it how you wish) to recover her body and belongings. He also insists that Aleele, the man seated at the table filled with ledgers, accompany them.

Gideon tells Linnech that they will need to think about it, since they’ve never done a job like this before, but would let him know something by the end of the day.

Leaving the burrow, Ian is sent to the Docks to learn more about the Arrowhead, while the rest of the group returns to Castle Shard to report what they have learned so far.

Ian learns from an old salt named Dodun Fisk (an eye witness) that he saw men in gold and purple robes come ashore in a dingy, leaving the burning ship a couple nights ago. Apparently the ship had just dropped anchor in the harbor when it caught fire and went down quickly. Other than the robed men, there were no survivors. He doesn’t know who they were or where they went, though. He gives a rather accurate description of where the ship was when it went down.

Back at Castle Shard, Zavere seems visibly saddened to hear of the death of Linnech’s daughter, but insists that the party follow through with the job to the end and see if there is more to this. He gives them each a continual light stone, describing how dark it likely will be at the bottom of the bay.

The group then returned to Rivergate, accepted the job and soon found themselves on a small rowboat in the middle of the bay, just after dark.

Aleele stayed aboard the boat, while the others went down. After a while, they managed to find the shipwreck, but were attacked by a couple sahuagin and sharks. Fighting them off, they noticed that the hold of the ship had already been scavenged, with a trail of debris leading away. On the floor of the bay, they followed the floating debris, eventually arriving at a underwater cave. Finding more sahuagin within, they eventually swam up a chute to a grotto. On the far end, they saw a small beach-like space where several armed men were opening numerous crates. Two slaves were being handed the contents of the crates (piles of raw shivvel) and taking it to the back of the grotto where there was a stairway leading up. The guards were visibly shaken, with two of them looking down a small side tunnel, exclaiming that the girl just got up and walked down there. A glass coffin, it’s top broken was sitting at the water edge. They also saw a small dock with a dingy. To their right a large flooded tunnel disappeared into the darkness, but fresh air could be felt coming from that direction.

Bravely, the group came ashore, parlaying with the guards. They said they were not interested in what they were up to, but they intended to go down the tunnel to find the girl. The guards didn’t object, saying that the dead girl had just gotten up, broken herself out of her coffin and walked down the tunnel.

At the end of the tunnel, they found Linnech’s daughter, Linele, sitting at the edge of a small pool. She was clutching a golden pocket watch. When they drew close, she looked up at them, then they suddenly saw a vision of a stormy, rocky shoreline. They see a pretty young girl and her small black dog playing in the surf, with a compound of buildings beyond, as well as a ship, which they recognized as the Arrowhead. Then, the vision changed. The Arrowhead is gone and the structures are all in flames. Figures in black move around the compound, putting survivors to the sword, but they are too far away to recognize or identify. Linele sat on the beech, but now the dog is gone, but she holds the pocket watch in her hands. The vision ended. Linele looked up at them from the edge of the pool, clutching the pocket watch. She then asked, “Why?”

Gideon walked up to her, to speak, when he noticed that she was deathly pale and she had a pair of small fangs. She didn’t attack, so he spoke with her, eventually convincing her that they were there to take her home. Still clutching her pocket watch, they led her back to the grotto, where they offered to buy the boat as well as the two slaves. One of the guards said that the Balacazars aren’t interested in selling any slaves tonight, but if they took the girl out of there, they could have the boat.

The party and Linele then rowed out of the grotto, emerging back in the bay, just south of the Docks.



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