…someone is looking for them.
When Sarshan showed up, looking for answers, his captain (Thannu) was happy to provide them, telling him about the battle in the Library as well as the shadowy firefight that erupted in the middle of delicate diplomatic negotiations. Our heroes pretty much had to admit they were responsible.
Before he dropped his disguise, some of the party were able to identify him as the veteran from The Happy Beggar. They remembered him telling them to kill Modra before the dark creeper had a chance to kill them. Before they had a chance to show him Modra’s “body,” however, a group of Sarshan’s guard’s burst in with a prisoner.
Belinda had been caught snooping around the Forge. Grigore then revealed that the Umbraforge itself had been sabotaged, which was soon confirmed by more of Sarshan’s guards.
Sarshan offered the party one last chance, a deal: If they would work for him (and prove their talents by reconfiguring his personal portal for their use), they could return to their world (although he warned them it would soon become a dangerous place to be).
The party accepted this deal (except for Elyas, who was not so quick to give up on an entire plane of existence). They were taken to the portal, where they convinced Thannu to let them use Elyas to aid in the reconfiguration. When it was completed by Raven, the configuration allowed Elyas and Raven to escape with the rest of the party. This betrayal will certainly negate any agreement the party might have with Sarshan. No doubt about his vengeance: Sarshan will be seeking them throughout the planes, no matter where they hide.
Returning to Overlook via the the Black Shrine, the party found the White Shrine filled with dwarves. Also, Belinda’s mother, Lady Alyssa, who had been put onto Grigore’s decision to take her daughter to the Shadowfell by Roland. The rogue had told warden’s wife that Grigore had “rescued” Belinda from both a band of wraiths and from Roland’s own tender mercies. It quickly became apparent that the rogue had managed to transfer some of Alyssa’s maternal suspicions from himself to the Vryloka.
While Grigore Goldforge went off to find a way to invest in Jerath’s latest play (“Roland and Juliette,” a tragedy about star-crossed lovers based very loosely on the hypothetical relationship between Roland and Belinda) and Raven and Sam got distracted with rumors of maps to lost dwarven mines, the rest of the party discovered they were being sought by a messenger from Brindol, named Alyss.
Before she could find them, however, this messenger was kidnapped by the Lost Ones, who are still seeking vengeance on The Order of the Black Feather and their friends in the party for the damage to their reputation caused by Jerath’s parade through Tradetown.
After an exhaustive search, they ran the kidnappers down to their hideout in an abandoned temple in the Divine Knot section of Nine Bells. Their plan to free the messenger was delayed, however, by the need to round up Kane, who had found his own reasons to split the party.
This left open the possibility that the kidnappers might be alerted their hideout was compromised. In finding the exact location, Grigore DID pretend to be a new recruit to the Lost Ones. They decided to leave Sam behind to make sure the kidnappers did not fly the coop.
In the midst of all this, Elyas managed to jump to the conclusion that there might be some connection between the gnolls the party saw in Sarshan’s guest rooms and the gnolls who are reportedly terrorizing Elsir Vale. Kane jumped to a similarly unjustified conclusion about gnolls being some kind of monsters created in the labs of Sarshan’s tower, but Elyas wasn’t buying any of that nonsense.