On October 10th, Stephen decides to look into a robbery at Wraecliff castle he got wind of in August (spoilers). With a couple of other adventurers, he heads up to the castle to see if any clues remain as to the perpetrator or why Wraecliff decided not to pursue it.
- Stephen (EnS): Level 10 Human Thief
- Q (TrS): Level 6 Human Thief
- Malcom (HuS): Level 3 Human Cleric of the Empty Tomb
Arriving at the castle, they find the gate open and, after briefly asking the guard about his experience on the day of the robbery (he was on a different shift), they continue on to the keep where they meet Wraecliff’s herald. The herald informs them that Wraecliff is preparing to go for a hunt in his demesne and they ask him to tell Wraecliff they have come to investigate the robbery and would like to ask him some questions.
The herald soon returns and informs them that Wraecliff doesn’t want to talk about the robbery. They try to press the herald for information and he informs them that he doesn’t want to speak of things his Lord refuses to speak of. With some more probing questions, they manage to get a little out of him (particularly that the money taken was Wraecliff’s personal allowance kept in his room) before he asks them to leave.
They leave Q behind to watch for Wraecliff leaving on their hunt and leave the castle to wait for him outside (after implying to the guard at the gate that Q is experiencing digestive trouble to justify him staying behind). When Wraecliff leaves, Q rejoins the others and they decide to sneak in to find more information.
First, Q sneaks into Wraecliff’s room by climbing the tower wall. Inspecting the room, he finds no money and no secret passages and climbs down to return to the others. On the way down, he sees signs that someone had climbed this wall before him. Stephen and Malcom have been considering how to climb into the barracks tower to talk to some of the guards about the robbery. When Q arrives, Malcom is desperately trying (and failing) to climb to a window with Tom pushing from behind.
With Q’s clues, they decide to take a closer look at the tower and head that way. A guard on the wall sees them and Malcom tells him they are investigating the robbery. He and the guard on the tower get actively involved in helping with the investigation, proposing wild theories about how the thief got in (magical shrinking ladders, flying powder, etc.). They do throw down a rope so Stephen can climb up and inspect the wall, finding some remnants of powder on the wall. The guards offer to introduce him to the witnesses to the crime that day and they go with them to the barracks to speak to those who saw things.
The guards are less than helpful. The guard who saw the thief didn’t get a good look and seems to latch onto any traits they suggest he might have, settling on green with a tail, probably a lizardfolk. The guard who broke his arm falling down the stairs is adamant that he didn’t pause even for a second between steps when his shoelaces were tied.
With Stephen as perplexed as ever, they try to convince the guards to let them into Wraecliff’s quarters to get a better look, but the guards refuse. They instead ask the guards to show them to the catacombs, as some of the guards are now convinced it was a ghost like the ones that game out of the floor during one of the open house feasts.
In the catacombs, they soon find Wraecliff’s office, picking the lock to get inside. They are perplexed by the bird cage and see mostly innocuous notes including a copy of the map of Wraecliff’s demesne with some additional information. In a notebook, they find a page with blackmail notes on it, seemingly hastily recreated from memory. They carefully cut the page out and steal a couple of interesting books before leaving.
On their way back out, they hear steps coming but manage to lock the door before the patrolling guard arrives. He is surprised to find them there, but finding the door locked dismisses his suspicions. The party decides they’ve found what Wraecliff was hiding and hurry out. They still haven’t found the thief, but the blackmail list provides some suspects, including Rovert, so they head there.
Rovert knows nothing about the robbery and seems unconcerned about the blackmail material they reveal, but he allows them to use his magic mirror to talk to Gorg, who explains all the details of the robbery he committed in addition to releasing the imprisoned fey. Q sells the book he took about Dragon religions to Rovert and they return to the Vale.
EnS asked for a crime to investigate and I reminded him he had heard about this one in August. We definitely had fun, but I’m not sure where we expect things to go investigating small time stuff in the Vale when there’s a big world out there.