Vrak is happy she and her undead companions didn’t have to battle the party. She is willing to continue her research and work toward restoring the floating citadel, but only if she’s assured it is for the right reasons and will be looked after by the right people. She trusts the party and evidently deems them worth. She did imply Sakah should be involved since he is Dragonborn. Sakah is hesitant, but will send word to his brother, Tarqan, to see what role the Nomakendar clan might have in everything.
The floating citadel is known as “Ustraterness”, newly renamed “Smaugworts” by the party. The family lineage is Vuthaner, which is what Vrak is a part of.
The party returned to the tower to investigate further since they were rushed earlier. Firie is able to use Arcana to discern the scrapped out chalky area on the wall is related to the opening of something. She uses the Eternal Chalk to “connect the dots” and ends up drawing the image of Orcus. Upon completing the drawing the wall shimmers and reveals a hidden compartment with a chest.
The chest contains the original Lineage of Vuthaner, proving that Bejik’s was a fake. He is not of the Vuthaner lineage after all. It also contains a letter from Bejik’s brother, Sathak. Sathak is hiding out in Fallcrest. The two of them were evidently working for the Son of Orcus. The party tells Vrak about the true lineage. She’s pretty shocked. She’s very much in favor of the party seeking out Sathak to right the wrongs she’s endured. She says she and her undead companions can defend the city for now.
Firie summons Phantom Steeds that are so talented they can ignore difficult terrain. Sakah bemoans the frivolous spending related to looking cool riding phantom steeds everywhere. Regardless, the party rides to Fallcrest. Once a main trading hub, Fallcrest is now still a decent sized city for the area. It’s divided into Upper Quayze and Lower Quayze.
Claws notices someone following the party. At the group’s request, Sakah sneaks out the back of a shop with the intention of doubling back to spy on the stalker. It turns out Sakah is not very stealthy and the stalker easily slips away.
Firie charms a bartender with her luscious rack. No prompting is needed by the party, she pretty much puts the girls to work all on her own. The bartender says Armos is looking for Sathek. Armos has an estate up the hill and owns half of the city and surrounding areas. The bartender also recommends checking the docks. The party opts for the docks despite the hour getting late.
A Halfling foreman at the docks says a figure has been seen going in and out of the catacombs in the cliff dividing upper and lower quayze. The foreman owes Armos 2,000 gold. Rafiki tells him we will pay what we deem fair (maybe 500 gold) after finding out if the tip pays off.
Claws gets lost in a metaphor.
The party hides outside the catacombs. Firie and Lyra utilize their Transe ability as Eldarin to keep watch. They see a figure leave the catacomb. Evidently feeling the party really needed their beauty sleep, they don’t bother waking anyone. Firie tries following the figure but is spotted and he shakes her.
The party goes into the catacombs the next night to set a trap. Claws transforms into a creature that is decidedly not of medium size and stays outside to keep watch. The rest of the party goes inside.
Undead start shambling toward the party. Some even come out of the walls! Naru sends his newfound dragonling familiar into certain death, poor thing. Firie absorbs some Necrotic damage from a zombie and laughs in his face. Naru busts out his flaming balls and sets about destroying anything in his path. Lyra goes full on radiant (what’s new?).
The figure returns to the cave but stops when he hears the battle inside. Claws pounces down, changes into some form of scary beast, and does a Bull Rush, critting him for 15 damage off a basic melee attack. The party finishes off the undead and Sathak surrenders without a fight. Sathak says, “If you’re with Armos I have nothing to say to you”. Rafiki smartly replies, “You’re going to wish we were with Armos!” The party yells, “oh SNAP!” in unison.
Sathak and his brother, Bejik, were looking for random loot in ruins around the area. They ran into a young man, child, man-child claiming to be the Son of Orcus. Son wanted a tome which they found in Gaurdbury Downs. He paid them well and had plans to rebuild the flying citadel. Sathak wasn’t interested but Bejik was. Sathak has access to the Son of Orcus and will gladly set up a meeting so the party can trap him. Sathak is just a thief and would be happy if the party can dispatch the Son of Orcus.
Armus wants all the stuff the brothers stole. The Tome had lots of rituals, spells, etc… about floating cities. We assume it has the ritual for riding drakes. The Son of Orcus has the tome.Letter sent to Tarqan:
I bet you’re surprised to see a letter from me. Despite father’s predictions, I’ve managed to stay alive at least this long. I met up with a fine group of adventurers near Winterhaven who I fit in quite well with. I’m finding my new freedom very refreshing. The suffocation I endured from our clan is even more clear to me now that I’ve gained some distance. I hope my absence has allowed the dust to settle and perhaps smoothed the planning of your own ascension.
I tried to tell you when I left (though I don’t think you believed me) that I don’t hold ill will toward you for taking possession of Dawn Bringer. I admit I was upset, but more so with father and the rest of the family for their unwillingness to give me more time to show them what I’m capable of. I know you were only following the family’s wishes. There’s no denying you’re the better fit.
But this letter has more purpose than these personal issues. You were always a much better student and historian than me, what do you know of the Vuthaner clan? I’ve given an abbreviated lineage below. It seems they were connected to Ustraterness, an ancient airborne citadel like father used to tell us about in bedtime stories. My companions and I have made an interesting discovery and I could use any information you can find in the libraries. I’m uncomfortable putting more in writing, but I believe it’s in the best interest of our family if you could manage to come visit me.
My traveling party is currently in Fallcrest but have no trustworthy contacts here yet. You may wish to seek out Lord Padraig or Valthrun “twice daily” in Winterhaven if you have trouble locating me.
(Vuthaner Lineage Here)