Our party sleeps-in following the events in the Estuary, fully curing Grognak’s exhaustion and giving Hildra the opportunity to learn greater restoration, which she immediately uses to roll back a few of the additional years Grognak was aged by O’Grotten. (Grognak is still in his 50s, some of the aging being too long ago to so easily undo.) Most of the group gathers late in the morning in the Kilton lobby to plan their next move. Apparently caring little about the fate of Rhiverpuhl—despite its physical proximity to the previous night’s dragon attack—they decide to go shopping in Iswäter. There is no sign of Ms. Sánchez or Gorthaur, though the front desk assures them neither has checked out. Mira attempts to leave a message for them but finds the workers snooty and difficult to abide. The group leaves.
As they exit into Iswäter, they find that it is Clamival, a regional multi-day celebration of the annual clam harvest and the end of summer. Grognak is hooked, eating as many free clams (which are being given out on nearly every street corner) as possible. The whole city is in a festive mood, though the party perceives undercurrents of stress and anxiety: after the Broughton Calamity, there has been a wave of refugees coming from the Broughton Region. Outside the gates of Iswäter a refugee camp has been growing daily, and the issue of how to handle them is a divisive one. The Broughton Region is largely seen as the backwater shit-hole of the continent, so there are many who doubt the capacity of the Broughtonites to assimilate and contribute to Iswäter society.
Lead by Mira’s desire to restock on potions, the four present group-members (Mira, Calderón, Hildra, and Grognak) head to one of the town markets to find a potion shop of some kind. They see a shop adorned with a giant sign in the shape of a conical flask and head inside; they are greeted with the sight of shelves upon shelves of bottled potions of every kind, as well as a substantial amount of raw ingredients presumably for the amateur at-home potion brewer. From behind the front counter a thin halfling pops up and introduces himself as Clefki, shop manager. The group proceeds to spend 8000 gold on various potions, including some greater invisibility, fly, and two types of unspecified healing potions.
Taking a shine to his new, clearly wealthy, customers, Clefki gives them each a gift: for Grognak, a magical perfume; for Hildra, bottled lightning; for Calderón, bottled chaos; and for Mira, liquid stone. Grognak spends the rest of the day experimenting with his perfume by spraying it on random people (and his fellow group members). He learns that the effects of the perfume are variable, making the recipient appear more engaging, repugnant, or “earthy” and pragmatic; the latter seems to influence recipient personality for a while as well. Clefki also gives the group a scroll of sending to contact him if they ever have future potion needs. Leaving the potion shop, Calderón and Grognak have a sudden, simultaneous desire for blood and, as if with one mind, destroy a passing peasant so utterly that the poor soul is erased from existence.
The group heads to a weaponsmith nearby. There they meet the smith himself, an old surly elf named Bojivan. With a bit of help from Grognak’s perfume, the party is able to get Bojivan to reveal that he has experience working magical items and that he can probably upgrade their magical weaponry, though he seems reluctant to do so. In return for such services, Bojivan requests the party retrieve a magical weapon for him from a shop a few streets away. On display, but not for sale, is the legendary Shit Dagger of J’sson—Bojivan has made extravagant offers in the dagger, to no avail. Our “heroes” promise to bring him the Shit Dagger within a few days time via unspecified methods and head out.
Next up is a magical armorer’s shop. The shopkeep here is a half-orc named Tug, who seems unfazed by most of the party’s antics. After some negotiation, Tug gives the party upgraded magical armor (and some rings of protection) in exchange for 10,000 gold. He also takes the fifteen red dragon scales Mira has so far collected, promising to craft custom plate armor for Calderón and custom “leather” armor for Mira. They are to return in two days time to collect. The group leaves and spends another (luxurious) night at the hotel. Calderón makes an attempt to seduce Ms. Sánchez, and appears to succeed.
The next day, Mira makes an effort to contact T and her underlings. Over the gossip stone, they hear only occasional noises, and then a partial sentence in T’s voice, saying “No, please, don’t! Let me go!” followed by static. The group begins following signs of thieves cant written on walls around town until they find themselves at the palace. Among the guards currently posted is Bethany, one of Mira’s underlings; she is working undercover as a guard and tells Mira that the entrance to their new thieves guild is in the palace basement. In two days time, she will be giving hourly tours of the palace, and the group decides to return then to try to figure out what’s going on with T (and presumably save him from some horrible fate).
That evening, Grognak and Calderón head to the shop where the Shit Dagger of J’sson is being held. With little time for word-play, they kill the shopkeep and steal the dagger. They also steal most of the rest of the shops goods and secretly deposit it in the refugee cmap outside town. Returning to the Kilton, the group spends another (luxurious) night at the hotel, and this evening Grognak attempts (and apparently succeeds) to seduce Ms. Sánchez.