The companions come to a quick conclusion, the investigation of the catacombs should continue; however, the extraction of Perry and Sylix’s journal is paramount. With that in mind, Lando negotiates with Hercluf how best to get the group out of the crypts. The Warden will need to arrange his most loyal guardsmen to ensure that things are kept on the down low. This will take time to schedule the appropriate roster. Hercluf believes he can have his men in place in about three hours time. This is agreeable as it provides the companions further time to explore.
After Hercluf speaks with his second in command, he makes himself available for further discussion with Lando. With few persons of suitable reputation to chat with, the gnome is excited for the opportunity to converse, which uncovers:
- Besides the Keep, the catacombs can be accessed through the Iron Tower, although this leads to an area below the Charity District. Interestingly, Chetley and Palomina keep their offices there amidst various laboratories. Many prisoners are ferried from the Keep’s prisons to these laboratories, although prisoners are not often returned.
- Hercluf has a contact within the Resistance; however, he is not yet willing to give up the name. Lando understands, given the delicate situation at present, and advises that he is comfortable with Hercluf providing his name if that is easier. The Warden seems happy with that arrangement and provides Lando with a dagger with his family crest. The dagger will serve as a writ of introduction should the gnome be able to contact the Resistance.
- Although he thinks little of Chetley, Hercluf believes that Wall Lieutenant Briggs is an honourable person and someone who has the best interests of Everstand in mind. They have a good working relationship.
Lando thanks him for his insight and, with a few hours to play with, heads to the Temple District. First on his task list is a visit to the Temple of Imodae, where he meets with Brother Tef Villa. The new High Priest, who was put in place after Father Lodmar left, provides a history of the church in Everstand. The priesthood arrived in the early days of the founding of the city, which is why the cathedral appears to be an extension of the castle and built of similar silt-stone as the bailey. A long time adherent of Imodae, Brother Tef was well aware of Lodmar’s progressive worries relating to the peoples of Everstand – that they were becoming unresponsive to his teachings, were becoming more enamoured with battle chants than prayers. The parishioners began to pressure Lodmar to take on more extreme views, and ultimately, he was unwilling to conform. As such, the leadership of the congregation was transitioned to Tef to allow Lodmar to focus on other initiatives.
The gnome thanks him for this information and comes clean on his relationship with Lodmar, that he is working with the former High Priest. Brother Tef is elated with the news, and advises that Lodmar sent word ahead. At this time, Wall Lieutenant Briggs enters the chapel, embracing Tef. The Brother advises that they are presently conducting business and to await him in his study, to which Briggs acquiesces. Noticing Lando’s inquiring gaze, Tef advises that Briggs understands the nature of his work, and indeed respects it; however, he does not want to be compromised given the inherent conflicts of interest their relationship creates.
Their discussion shifts to the fourth relic. After the Hope Stone was dismantled, nodes were installed across the various Temples to help instill worship. It is his understanding that there were eight nodes in total, two corresponding with each district. Father Lodmar was uncomfortable with such a corrupting influence and disabled the plinth within the Temple of Imodae. Over time, this weakened the power of Imodae’s worship, resulting in a steady decline in their congregation relative to the Temple of Gorum. The nail in the coffin for Lodmar, however, was the purchase of the Hope Stone’s cradle at auction. The remaining congregation was unhappy that a sizable portion of the coffers was used to purchase a piece of the obsolete relic. In fact, it was Lodmar’s last act as High Priest, with the leadership transitioned shortly thereafter to Brother Tef. The ornamental piece remains on display in the Temple, and Tef agrees to let Lando take it if it helps the cause. The gnome is extremely grateful for the gesture and advises that it will be used to further Imodae’s work in the city.
Companions in crypt – battle with ghostly lich with necro vibe. Big battle. Creature wishes torment to end – how can we help? She knows you are coming, need to destroy her/destroy the shard to release creature. It will buy us some time.