While Merri continues trying to connect to her god, Darius and Felix decide to take a wander around the town and soon lose track of the others. They arrive outside a pub called the Brawling Bear. Darius is all for heading inside and having a quick one, but Felix is the voice of reason for once and cautions that maybe they should find a more reputable looking establishment. As they stand there, they heard some people talking in the pub. They seem to be discussing something about orcs with ‘Boom sticks’, who came to the town a few months ago. They then hear the strangers conclude their conversation, with a suggestion to whomever they were talking to, that they will forget this conversation ever happened, that these people wherever in the city and even that they exist. The suggestion is met is a comment of ‘who even are you people… what was I doing again?’ The two back away as they hear the strangers coming towards the door. As they come out, a dapper gent with gloves and a cane looks towards them, and ask if they heard anything. Felix and Darius quickly say no, nothing, what? The Dapper gent walks away followed by another, who wears goggles, and some kind of mouth armour that makes him sound like he’s breathing through a tube. As they walk away, Goggles uses Dapper’s name: Delphin Horn. The two sorcerers also note that Dapper has a strange insignia around his arm – it is a white circle on a red band, with a serifed capital letter I in black within the circle. Interested by this, and by the stranger’s general presence, the two decide to follow them, and end up watching them leave via the eastern gates. They feel they have learnt all they can, and since the two strangers have left, they decide to report back to the others. Then discover they are lost, and have no idea where anyone else is. Annoyed, they head back to the council’s tower, in order to ask the whereabouts of the others.
Meanwhile: Now Zege has said hello to the high priest of Moradin, he takes his leave of Merri, who is still trying to connect to her god, and heads off to the Plot Hook in order to speak to Orock. There is a little bit of trouble at the door when the gent on guard won’t let him through, but Orock comes out and meets Zege, welcoming him into dinner. They chat about Zege’s destiny; the half orc says he beat the fist of the mountain, and also fatally fought the Fist of Kutulmack. He tells Orock he’s been advised to seek out a kobold clan of monks, but Orock dismisses it, and asks after Zege’s dreams. Zege says he’s been dreaming of a strange floating monastery – a place called Githzerai, and Orock tells him it’s located in Limbo. The ogre goes on to explain that they are a secretive order, and if – when Zege is ready, he travels there and can get them to accept him, then his destiny will be fulfilled. Orock hands Zege an envelope, saying it’s contents will not make sense right away, but to open it when he feels ready for it contains details about Githzerai. They eat lunch after that, and then Zege heads to the Slippery Slope to meet up with the others.
More meanwhile: Elo feels the need to check on her old precinct, and heads to the north-east watch house. She loiters in the street for a moment and out comes a familiar face, dragging some unlucky sot. He kicks the man out into the mud, lights a fag and then spots her. Officer Breakwood is more thrilled to see her than she was expecting, and after a bonecrushing hug, he tells her he never doubted in her, even if he did have to knock a few heads together to convince everyone else likewise. He sends her into see the new Captain, one Arthur Fugit, who welcomes her back. She tentatively asks if she’s still on the force then, and he says yes – there’s not a whole lot of new recruits these days. Captina Fugit tells her about the posthumus investigation into Daraja, and says that Breakwood and Cobbleskater probably have some reports she’d like to read. He then tells her the whole place was pretty much destroyed, and had to be completely re-fit. Cece is still in the city, but hiding out in the temple of Olidammara, and unfortunately can’t be prosecuted due to her religious immunity. He thanks her for coming back, and says he understand that she’s also employed for the Empire so knows her time will be split. He then suggests she go and read up on what she’s missed, and dismisses her. She spends some time with Derran and Irvine, before taking her work to the pub to meet the others.
Even more meanwhile: Merri is having no luck getting through to speak to Moradin, and gives up and heads to the Slippery Slope to meet the others.
She comes in and sees Elo with a stack of paperwork, and a dozen empty coffee cups and takes a seat beside her. As Zege comes wandering on in, they all sort of look at each other with a growing feeling of unease. The girls simultaneously curse as they realise they had each assumed that Felix and Darius were with one of the others, but are with none of them. They take off to search for them, and decide to head back to the council tower at least, as that’s where they were last seen, and Elo asks Auriana to provide aerial support in the form of a pigeon.
Fortunately they all manage to meet up, but as they stand there with the sorcerers telling them, about men hunting orcs with boom boom sticks, there is a scream from an alley way. They hurry over to see a man lying on the ground in a growing pool of blood, and a woman stood over him. Elo shows the woman her watch badge, and passes her over to Merri while she herself investigates the crime scene. The woman tells Merri he just dropped and died and starts cursing him out for being selfish. Elo looks over the body and decides that he was killed by a boom stick. She checks through his purse and hands it to the widow, who says her name is Esme Faraday, and tells them that her husband had met up with some shady fellows who were asking about the orcs in the siege a few months back. Zege fills the two sorcerers in on these events while Elo and Merri talk to the woman. It seems that these two were the same as whom Felix and Darius followed. That satisfied, Elo dismisses the woman and rifles through the man’s pockets, finding a letter printed out in an unfamiliar gothic script that reads:
I hear you have some info on the strange orcs, you say they don’t come with bows and arrows, they come with strange things that go bang. It would be worth your while if we could come and talk about this in private, sincerely, Inquisitor Horn
Felix supplies Horn’s first name, having overheard it before, and the group ponder the ramifications of such. Another watchman is called over and asked to deal with the body, taking it to the church of Fharlanghn for burial, while they head to 23 Acacia Ave to discuss this matter. On the way however there is a ruckus at the North Gates. They hurry over and Elo shows her watch badge again and explains to the officer present they’d just had a similar case near the center of the city. He allows her under the rope to look at the bodies of the two guards that have been struck down. She goes back to the others and between them they fill the officer in on the detail of the other murder, and deduce that there must be three of these inquisitor chaps – Dapper, Goggles and now Sniper. They leave the scene to the officer in charge, with a promise to share any new information they come across.
Finally they reach 23 Acacia Ave. Mrs Wiggins is happy to have them back, but saddened by the loss of Lorcian and Alphonse. She feeds them a marvelous meal, and they discuss the case, and their laundry list of things they need to do, and then retire for the night.
The next day, as they are taking breakfast, there is a knock on the door. Mrs Wiggins answers it, to see a chap who introduces himself as Templeton, a courier for the council. He says the presence of Elo, Merri and Zege is requested urgently. They leave with him in a dark carriage, leaving Felix, Darrius and the disciples behind, and go to the council chambers. When they get there, there are told that they have crimes that need to be answered for. When pressed, it seems the council – the merchant guilds in specific – are trying to pin not only Daraja’s death on them, but also Cece going out of control, various property destruction and indeed the entire siege/ war on them. The Drakemar Emissary says that while some of these are valid charges, the Empire still has use of the three, and have it’s protection for however long they retain that usefulness, after which they will be at the council’s mercy. The general speaks up and says that all the charges are phoney, and should not be enforced. He dismisses the three, and again the room erupts in noise as they leave.
As they are heading back to 23 Acacia Ave, they decide it’s high time they headed back to Wyrmholm to deal with the dead God, and get the hell out of the city again. Elo wonders if the airship is still around, and as they cast about, they note it is. Not only that, but they spot three very distinct looking humans sneaking on to the ship, as it takes on supplies. They hurry back, collect the mages and disciples, say goodbye to Mrs Wiggins and Samantha, send a missive off to the watch house to say Elo is in pursuit of suspects, and hurry over to get passage on the ship…