Taking their leave of Lavinia and the Jade Ravens, the party spent an entire day exploring Port Shaw and shopping for equipment, bidding farewell to Shea who decided to remain with Crush and clean up the bullywug disaster.
In the Jade District, they were first stopped by a group of dragoons that demanded an “entry fee.” Keahilani managed to avoid bloodshed and talked their way out of the situation. They then spent time at Old Fish’s shop, wading through junk and clutter, before Keahilani struck a deal to locate a suit of mithril breastplate. The old shopkeeper also showed them his “select” goods which seemed to consist of concealed weaponry and other…“subtle” tools of “detective work,” as Old Fish dubbed it. Taking their leave, they next visited Sagacious Samuel’s Magic Emporium to buy a few trinkets and restock. Samuel’s prices were stiff but he did have what they needed. Before retiring for the night, the party met a beautiful woman dressed in a fine green outfit who seemed to flirt with Bertram. As they talked, a beggar girl approached Bertram. When he threw her a coin, she turned and ran into an alley. The party then noticed that the lady was no longer there…and neither were 30 gold pieces from Bertram’s pouch. A search of the alley turned up nothing.
The Kraken’s Gullet was the finest establishment in the Jade District. Using Lavinia’s account, the party purchased finer clothing, temporarily losing Keahilani’s loin cloth. Lavinia’s account also purchased the finest food and drink the establishment could provide. Before leaving, they were snubbed by the elven ambassador Alistair Crimmeran and scolded by mayor Barrison Hargrove, the same Hargrove from whom Lavinia was attempting to collect debts. Their rooms for the night provided almost holy comfort after months of sea travel and dangerous adventures.
Tide District provided more insight into the workings of Port Shaw. Young Tulita men seemed to either perform back-breaking manual labor that had the appearance of slavery or to sit listlessly in the streets due to Dragonsmoke. Ono purchased another dose of dragonsmoke from Crazy John and the party briefly considered chasing down the drug scourge. At that moment, the party heard a commotion from the docks. Investigating, they found an old Tulita chieftain dressed in rags and feathers preaching about the coming of Dajobas and the hunger that would consume all. Dragoons approached and commanded that he desist. Instead, the old chief looked at the commander and proclaimed, “I see it! You’ve been kissed by Dajobas. I will save you!” He pulled a scrimshaw knife and attacked the sergeant.
The party interceded and restrained the old Tulita man while Keahilani spoke to him and flattered the sergeant (introduced as Darenar) about his skill and wonderful hammer. As Darenar proclaimed the potency of his magic hammer and told a story of how he won it in a dice game against old “Shakes” Montgomery, the rest of the party led the chief away. Darenar demonstrated his hammer’s powers by throwing it at an old can, which promptly exploded with sparks and returned miraculously to his hand. Bidding farewell to Darenar, they party spoke to the chief. Ono and Zuka Zuka recognized him as Milliauka, chief of a neighboring tribe to theirs. Milliauka also recognized them. “You must retrieve the Jawbone of Mokoli Ali’i to both save our people and redeem yourselves!” He also lamented the effects of dragonsmoke on the young Tulita.
Gaining a sketch of the jawbone from Milliauka, they returned to Sagacious Samuel. After some conversation, 600 gold pieces were exchanged in return for a Locate Object spell. The wizard cast the spell and seemed puzzled that, while there were several large pieces of scrimshaw around town, the oddest one seemed to be under Port Shaw and to the west. Possibly, something was in the sewers.
Rushing back to Old Fish for advice, he recommended they take the “sewer pirate,” Lester Farrows with them. The halfling told them he could guide them in the sewers better than anyone…for a price. They agreed to his 100 gp fee. That night, they followed Lester into the sewers in order to board his two small rafts. As Lester poled them through the slime and muck, they were set upon by lacedon ghouls. The undead swarmed the rafts and inflicted filthy bites and paralysis on party. Bertram’s musket echoed in the tight chambers while Aleister used his hook to rip gashes into the ghouls. As Zuka Zuka, Ono and Lester attempted to hack apart the creatures, most everyone fell to the paralytic touch of the cannibalistic undead. Finally, Keahilani called upon his goddess and burned them in holy fire. Lester scolded the party for the noise they were making and warned of more ghouls, something called “necroworms” and a mysterious “worse” that might consume them all.
Rather than go deeper into the sewers, the party asked Lester to let them off at a drier structure, something remaining from the rumored lair of a lich or necromancer. As they crept through the slimy portholes and passages, they found the bloated corpse of a human floating in a pool. Dragging the inflated bag of flesh to them, they inadvertently unleashed a swarm of centipedes. After using most of their alchemist fire and fire spells, the party recovered and moved further into the complex. Ono’s sense of smell narrowly avoided a methane gas pocket, set off by Aleister’s Spark spell.
They reached a flooded chamber with a narrow ledge all around it. Ono and Zuka Zuka dove into the pool to explore while Bertram climbed to the ceiling using his Boots of Spider Climbing. Keahilani tied himself to Bertram and crept onto the ledge while Aleister stayed behind. At that moment both of the portholes into and out of the room closed. Aleister barely recovered his wits in order to dive into the pool of water before he was cut off from his friends. At the bottom of the sewage-tainted muck, six fish men swam, attacking the party with barbed spears…while water began to sluice rapidly into the flooded chamber.