Date: 8/3/1479 DR
Speaking with Amyria, the group learns that the Githyanki threat is greater than they had ever imagined, but so is the hatred in the city for them. An attack leads the Outsiders down beneath a spice house for more information.
While part of the group is exploring the city of Sayre, an urchin runs up to them asking if they’re the Heroes of the Rethild Vale and tells them that he was sent by Amyria to collect them. Reluctantly the group follows him back to the Riverdown District, to the warehouse were the Githzerai are staying. Inside they find Searynox Winterborn with the Gith, eating their meager food supplies. Around a small table are seated Amyria, the Deva whom they had saved, Elder Odos and they are introduced to Gal’ott, a prune-faced man, and Aziff a young female Githzerai; both of whom have been leading their people here in the city. Once everyone is settled, the Deva explains why she’s so glad to see the Heroes here.
Amyria has spent a great deal of time in the weeks since she parted with the adventurers traveling outside Rethild Vale, seeking out the extent of the githyanki invasion. In the process, she has established connections in most of the cities nearby. She has also learned that githyanki attacks have come at the worst times for the defenses of every region. Only Rethild Vale has been spared—at least thus far—thanks to the group’ actions in defeating General Zithiruun. She knows it is only a matter of time until the githyanki try again.
Amyria has an agent in the household of Lord Torrance and is suspicious of his connection (as well as that of other prominent citizens) to Lord Telicanthus. The githyanki, whom she went out of her way to meet at a social event the week before, seems genuine, but a githyanki operating so openly just seems wrong to Amyria. It seems that Amyria is ashamed of her feelings about Telicanthus. She wants to believe that not all githyanki are evil ravagers intent on conquest, but she is suspicious nonetheless. She is too quick to deflect questions about Telicanthus, his motives, and his possible operations. Her own self doubt gets in the way of her instincts about the githyanki, which is why she cautions the githzerai of acting too hastily.
Amyria learned that two leaders in other nearby cities are seeking out allies. She feels that forming a more concrete alliance—she calls this group the Coalition—between all the besieged communities, city-states, and regions will help them all, so she has been spending a great deal of time fostering this idea. She has been marginally successful in putting together the war council, which holds its first meeting in Sayre, the following morning. But Amyria herself has little more than a voice in the proceedings. She has no home community and represents only herself and her god, Bahamut. She is being allowed in the proceedings because she organized the event and chose Sayre as the site of the meeting. Vylify Morin asks about security for this event, to which he is told that the Deva would appreciate their insight to make sure the site is safe for all.
Amyria chose for the council to meet in Sayre because, like Odos, who grunts and nods when she mentions this, she suspects that the githyanki have some means of communication that surpasses any sort of magic that she is aware of. They seem able to react almost instantaneously to threats that marshal to meet them, and they strike when their enemies are at their most vulnerable. Only regions such as Rethild Vale (on a state of perpetual heightened alert), are having luck defending against the attacks. She also tells the group that she tried to get to the island nation of Nefelus, off the distant coast, but there’s some sort of ice blockade, which can’t be breached from either side, preventing any ships from sailing there. The knowledge of magic possessed by the sages of Nefelus is said to be nearly unsurpassed, but the University of Sayre is a worthy rival. She hopes to convince the war council that they should ask the scholars of the university to turn all their efforts toward uncovering the nature of the githyanki’s communication network. The group then shares their information about the pieces of colored glass that they had found among the Githyanki spies.
Finally, Amyria has one other reason for coming to Sayre. She had a dream recently that had the weight of significance behind it. She won’t use words like “prophetic,” but when she recounts the dream, her eyes grow distant and her voice soft as she relates what she saw: “In my dream I was standing in the midst of raw elements. Waves crashed around me and fires flared, and I was looking down through clouds onto a dark blue night’s sky. Stretching across the sky was a giant spider’s web that was woven between planes. It was silver and sparkled with stars, and at the end of each web line was a githyanki. As each githyanki spoke, the web sparkled, and a fat spider in the middle listened to everything that anyone said. The spider was beautiful, but you could tell it was evil, just like the people talking through it. It scuttled around, fixing frayed lines and tossing out new lines to new people. Most were githyanki, but some were not. One of the lines went to a githzerai.” She looks troubled.
“I looked harder at the spider, and I knew it was here in Sayre. I could see the city around it. So I came here. I think someone in Sayre is helping the githyanki, but we don’t know for sure who it is, although we have our suspicions. And we don’t have an easy answer about what to do about it.”
Gal’ott finally bursts out that they all know who this spider is and that they should just attack him, take him out of the picture, and make things better for everyone! Elarinya counters that he is politically connected to everyone who could help the githzerai! Kill him and get everyone executed as murderers and traitors. She thinks that they need proof before they can act in any way. While all of this is going on, Damaia is scanning the crowd feeling out any resonance of a spy trying to use a glass communicator, but also looking to see if anyone around them is possessed like Gallia is. She finds nothing, but does personally understand why Gal’ott is angry at the mistreatment and racism his people are suffering. The group agrees to help Amyria with her Coalition, by scanning out the building for the meeting tonight, while the other half would go to the University Library to do research. Amyria thanked them again for their help, and Elder Odos remained non-committal, while seeming impressed with this mis-matched group.
As they left the warehouse, Rinya noticed a lot of bodies creeping around in the shadows around the square. She also noticed that they were dressed as beggars with chainmail underneath their clothes and new weapons in hand. Instincts kicked in and she raced forward to meet their attackers head on. One of the “beggars” stood in the middle of the square, brandishing a glowing gem that seemed to always be pulling the Heroes closer to him. The group made quick work of their attackers, except Searynox accidentally stabbed Damaia while they were fighting.
Damaia is not happy about being accidentally stabbed by one of her teammates!
As the last of the beggars fell, Rinya saw a shadow dash into a nearby alley, so without saying a word, she dashed after him. The rest of the group was busy picking through the bodies, trying to figure out who they were and why they had attacked. They could simply tell that they all smelled strongly of spices, but they didn’t even carry coins with them. Damaia fished the gem out of the fountain where it had been dropped and found that it was a cursed item. Searynox asked to study it and found that it was cursed by Tiamat, but stuck it in his pocket anyway. That was when Vylify noticed that their elf companion was missing. The Artificer pointed out that the only person who could track their Ranger, was the Ranger, so Searynox set off to cast a ritual.
Rinya chased the shadow down a few blocks and then lost him as he turned a corner barely ahead of her. She stepped out, across the street from a rundown, condemned shop called Ridolfi and Sons Spice Shop. She eagerly searched the area, but couldn’t find anyone other than a small girl. Suddenly, the voice of their cleric whispered in her ear asking where she was? She told him that she was hunting the attackers but had lost them. With the message sent, she sauntered over to ask the little girl if she’d seen anything. The little girl just huddled down and told her that she hadn’t seen anything and that this was a bad neighborhood so she should leave. Rinya said that she was looking for a spice shop, so the little girl was willing to lead her towards the Marketplace, secretly slipping a dagger from her boot.
After asking for directions, the rest of the group hurried to catch up with their impulsive teammate, and Damaia barely caught her walking around a corner, with the little girl secretly pulling out a knife. Just as she swiped to hamstring the elf, Rinya sensed the girl’s intent and flipped over the slice, then grabbed the little girl and disarmed her. As they rushed up, Searynox asked Rinya not to the kill the little girl. The giant, white dragonborn grabber her by both arms and threatened to rip them out of their sockets if she didn’t talk about their attackers and the spice shop. She broke down weeping and told them the run down shop was a secret entrance to their hideout. The cleric then hugged her and started counseling her on the merits of leaving behind a life of crime and becoming an adventurer who helped people out. The rest of the group just rolled their eyes. Under duress, the little girl told them how to enter the hideout, and warned them about the trap… sort of. The trap door led the group deeper into the underground, to the destroyed city of Auger that had sunk beneath the ground a long time ago.
A small crawlspace led from the shop above to the top of a collapsed room with multiple levels deep underground. Vylify sent Obi in to check it out and he returned to report that there were a few beggars in the next room, and a door that led deeper into the underground. The group carefully made their way down a rope ladder and began taking out the beggars. As Rinya stepped down the floor, she was smacked and immobilized by a Gluttonous Cube, that had looked see-through from above. She escaped while it was distracted and Damaia pummeled it with the Giant Maw of Atropus, an undead immortal whose power she was blessed with by Dispater. Angry at the immense attack, the cube immobilized the warlock, then drug it into it’s depths. The rest of the group attacked for all they were worth to save their compatriot, and finally Searynox returned it to a puddle, though the tiefling was still slimed. The dragonborn then reminded the little girl that this is what companions do for each other. More eye rolling!
Instead of Navi, it’s Travi!