Spire – Session 2 – Operation Highwayman

midwife

Theratrix, Midwife

We go deal with the casino people who hold Quartermaster Bob’s gambling debts, and trade them the drugs we stole from the Roaring Boys for the note to them. Then we go steal a payroll and figure out the combat system.

Complete First Battle!

  • Tariq steals Roaring Boys gangster wear and weapons, four sets.
  • Team plants evidence of Quartermaster Bob’s gambling debts in Roaring Boys territory.
  • Team attempts to steal payroll destined for Factory level guard station as it is passing thru Roaring Boys HQ on the Farming level.
  • Lyddia uses their access to Guard HQ to access the payroll route, then alter the paperwork to have it pass thru Roaring Boys territory.
  • Payroll: 4 guards with clubs & good armor, one halberd, one gun. 4 durts with ill fitting armor & carrying the payroll.
  • More equipment is purchased, including some weapons.
  • Plan: ropes in the water to prevent the boats from moving. One team fires guns and spells from shore, while Grella runs along the rope to attack those in the boat.
  • Plan as executed: Tariq shoots the guard leader with a pistol.  Lyddia follows suit.  Guard leader drops.  Tamar drops from a bridge via rope onto the barge, cutting the halberd bearing guard.  Slav the Blood Witch sprays the barge around Tamar with eyeball blood. Several durts pull up a ladder, drop it onto the bridge.  Tariq shoots a porter.  The guard picks up the captain’s pistol and dies from a shrike pistol shot from Lyddia.  One porter swims for it; Tamar spots his leech covered back but opts to cut another guard down.  The last guard dies from multiple attacks from the rest of the team.
  • Tamar threatens a surrendering porter with, “Don’t tell them the Roaring Boys did this!” One of the surviving porters takes note of Tamar’s distinct eyebrows above the Roaring Boys distinct face hiding kerchief.
  • They escape with the payroll, the guard’s pistol, and their lives. Four porters are left alive; those on the boat are told to loot the guard bodies for the silver they lifted from the payroll. The porters accept the bribe.
  • The team takes their payroll to a secret place for counting. Tariq takes a single coin from it, which Lyddia notes in a diary.

Success! We are glad we put a lot of work into our tactical plan because the combat system isn’t real forgiving, and we’re not real combat monsters.

Drow Fact of the Day: All drow are forced by the Aelfir to serve a “durance”, or mandatory service, when they become adults.

Brain Crystals and Crime Lords

After the heist, Tariq arrives at the Hive to find the staff very agitated. The lightning professors are in denial and/or accusing each other about the crystals growing out of back of prisoner’s heads. They are putting crystals into prisoners heads, one of those people died.  The guards are busy interrogating the durt porters from the stolen payroll run; this involves torture and screaming.  Tariq arrives at Lt Langley’s office to announce he overheard that the Roaring Boys pulled the payroll heist and Quartermaster Bob had something to do with it.

But “brain crystals” sounds like something we should look into, as we want to co-opt the prison, not have some weird alien hivemind or something do it for us. So we gather intel…

  • The University’s Applied Galvanics Department is researching at the prison for purposes of warfare for execution/brainwashing and/or fighting. The “Cult of Intelligence” found a Crystal Mind buried nearby. They broke off chunks and placed them into their brains to form a group mind. They are experimenting at the prison for reasons unknown.  They get the name of Tristan Avanod, an ex-student, who claimed to be in the Cult of Intelligence.
  • Slav figures out there are two criminal groups involved with the Crystal Mind shards. Group 1 is led by Lord Veq Light-Through-Splintered-Glass, a councilman and high elf.  Group 2 is let by “The Wicked Mr Alas,” a drow and head of a landlord family seeking further power via criminal enterprises.
  • Bohemians are indulging in crystal addiction on Ivory Row.

The team speculates quite a bit on what all of this means. They decide to approach Wicked Mr Alas. This ends up not being all that simple and requires another round of intel gathering. We determine he operates in “Ivory Row” so find out about it first.

  • Ivory Row is owned by three factions:
    • a high elf heiress Cruel Lady Thorns on Silk (also patron of a Bloodwitch)
    • a drow noble woman who conspired with the high elves (who became a Bloodwitch during high society party)
    • a human cleric Archbishop Wynn who worships the high elf gods. He refuses life extending surgeries.  Rumor has it he is buying up land to build monuments to the high elf gods.
  • Other Ivory Row powers:
    • The Sunlight Collective – not an organized group of bohemians who like partying and cults and such things.
    • The Hidden – drow squatters hiding in the abandoned mansions of long gone rich. They hid quietly and steal quietly from the rich houses nearby.

The group travels up Spire via Perch to Ivory Row to gather more info on the Wicked Mr Alas.

  • Tamar spies on the bohemians to find Mr Itz’Bin, a Hidden drow, who owes allegiance to Wicked Mr Alas. Mr Itz’Bin is a lieutenant, dresses as a hidden with items of wealth displayed openly, plus an illegal rapier and parrying blade.
  • Slav uses religious circles to find that Wicked Mr Alas is interested in the gods and acquiring relics of said gods. He has found that all gods have failed him so he defiles the relics.  He is dealing with the various occult groups as “fire power”.
  • Tariq goes thru high society and finds how to contact Wicked Mr Alas… you start with one of his lieutenants unless you are very powerful and thus can jump to the head of the line. Taking something from him or some
  • Lyddia uses academia to talk to the bohemians. He sells them narcotics. He drives cultists bohemians out of his territory to the point of murder via Gentle-On-Blinded Orbs an enormous elf (augmented by muscle surgery, is blind, and sees via hearing).
  • The point thus far: Wicked Mr Alas would like the bloodwitch and the vermissian sage, but not Abu and Tamar.  He has lots of criminal connections and wants to be The Godfather of the spire.

So this means that the factions vying for power in the Hive (Prison) are:

  • The Guards
  • Crime Lord Wicked Mr Alas – wants to save or comfort his own troops who are imprisoned, gain intelligence from his enemies.
  • Councilman Light-Through-Splintered-Glass – same as Mr Alas.
  • Cult of the Intelligence – followers are being arrested
  • Dept of Applied Galvanics – want to experiment with crystals largely via shock therapy to those implanted with them
  • Us, your friendly neighborhood revolutionaries

A vague plan emerges.

  • Meet Mr Itz-Bin and make nice with Wicked Mr Alas.
  • Destroy councilman
  • Destroy Cult of the Intelligence
  • Make nice with Applied Galvanics

We exercise this plan… Next time!

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