While the theater was clearing out, and the authorities were clearing in. Annabelle the rogue was disregarding the fact that the new found treasure in her pocket was worth enough money to last her the rest of her life. So, she continued to search for insignificant items that could be easily be stolen, despite the risk. (Side note: kleptomania is a serious problem and should be dealt with by a trained professional.)
It was only a matter of time until the party all regrouped at the Pilgrim’s Rest Inn. This time they wanted to rent the room for the night, not by the hour. “Getting serious are we now”, the inn keeper quipped. For the low, low price of 5 gold pieces the party bribed the inn keeper to not input their names in the books and forget their faces if anyone comes looking for them.
In the morning the party awoke to the pleasant sounds of blue birds which were nesting in their room (which the cleric of Umberlee hated). Today seemed like every other day after a day of murder, deception, lies, bribery and flautery. The inn keeper explained that some people in funny hats and get-ups were looking for them, apparently they went to every inn in town. Scared to go outside (because he wasn’t wearing a clever disguise last night) Peldu the tiefling barbarian gave the inn keeper 2 gold pieces to do some shopping for him. He wanted all sorts of mundane items like a fishing rod or some wood for burning. The inn keeper was exited for the task because his shopping list was less than 45 silver coins and each shop was within the district (easy money).
While outside and soaking up the sun, Cavanaugh the bard was bumped into by a women wearing a red dress. She placed a package in his hand and whispered an admiration in his ear. Without question, she was gone. Funny, he didn’t remember it being his birthday. He quickly opened the package like a child. Inside was a note, covered in crimson rose pedals. The note had a list of names on it, the first being Maskar Waldorf (which was crossed out). The others were Groll Stormhand, Nevar Ezelmann, Priscilla Baum and Your Mom (just kidding about the last one). The other side of the note featured only the lipstick kiss of voluptuous female lips. The only name that stood out was Priscilla who was famous in Waterdeep for being the Duke’s daughter.
While this was happening, Annabelle went to the biggest jeweler in the city Brother’s Jewelry Robin and Robert. And asked for its appraised value. The gnome jeweler seemed uneasy about getting it appraised. He got a good look at the rogue who obviously stole the thing. Robert the Jeweler offered 10 gold pieces for the garnet. Suspecting it was a trap, Annabelle took back the gem and went to the black market jeweler on the other side of town. There, the shady jeweler offered 50 gold pieces for “The Priscilla Stone” as it was named. He explained that in order to hock such a famous jewel he would need to spend at least 800 gold to get it far enough away from Priscilla, so that his head wouldn’t inconveniently fall off his shoulders. The rogue agreed, and went on a shopping spree! She never wore more than rags even while on the rag. Little did she know she was being watched, and not in a pervy way.
The party met up with the rouge and admired her shinny new leather armor. She was one bath away from fitting in! They all went to Priscilla’s huge estate in the richest part of town. It was heavily guarded, two in the front and 2 more every 50 or so feet. As they approached the gate Annabelle felt something stabbing her side and her new armor. It was Malik, and his prized dagger. She had recognized him as a member of the beggar’s guild they were both members of. Malik demanded the guild’s cut. The rogue tried to bluff her way out of her predicament, but to no avail. Even though there were guards just 50 feet away, Annabelle bribed Malik with 5 gold to avoid a fight. He took the gold and agreed, but only temporarily as “the guild will be back to collect what is owed from her greedy heart”. They moved past that minor setback and asked the guards at the gate to see the Duke himself, and that he was expecting them; the Duke of high forest (pointing at the bard). The guards had a good laugh at their expense. Then without warning the cleric of Umberlee punched the guard so hard in the face that it would have layed out a normal man. But the guard didn’t budge an inch, he was also no longer laughing. Considering either this band was really who they said they were, or they were just suicidal Last Hope cult members, he excused himself to check with the higher power. A short time later the guard came back and asked for their weaponry. The party was hesitant but agreed in the end.
The agitated guard led them to the throne room with gritted teeth as he spoke. The room was very typical when it came to rich, over decorated show-offs, except the life-like statue semi-centered in the room.
They were met by Priscilla. She asked plenty of questions about the validity of their shore-story. Eventually she came clean about toying with them. She never believed they were who they claimed to be, but she was amused by the idea of them seeking an audience with her. The 1st clue was that the guardian of high forest was Turlang, the treant (yes, a tree person). And 2nd every noble knew about the tragic end to her father the Duke, and that he was turned to stone and couldn’t very well seek an audience with anyone (Know your history guys. Stay in school).
Before Priscilla began slaughtering every last one of them, they showed her the note with the kiss and asked if she knew any of the other names. She knew this smelled of a hit list (and roses), and wanted to know if they were REALLY there to finish their contract. They explained that they really wanted nothing to do with the hit, or the hit at the theater last night. She finally agreed to let them live, under the condition that they seek out the second name on the list – Groll Stormhand, in the dwarven district. But, if he were to find himself dead in a ditch, she would consider that an attack on her life and she would have to send her full onslaught of guards after them.
One last request the party made was to question the owner of the Smiling Siren. With a snap of her fingers 3 guards left the room. She asked if that was all, and excused herself. The party was led outside and awaited the arrival of Randal, the owner of the theater.
After an hour, the guard brought their requested Randal and threw him on the ground. He was terribly scared and had a bloody nose. The party inquired about the Laughing Castle, and he explained that they left a day early and canceled their final show. That was about the only useful information he provided. After questioning him they quickly tried to beat Randal back to the theater, as Priscilla also wanted to speak with him.
The party returned to the scene of the crime (as they always do), but this time the front door was smashed in and there were fliers scattered all over the floor. Annabelle looked around for any lock boxes or chests in the theater, but there were none. They investigated the bloody box with the target on it and realized this wasn’t exactly how the trick was suppose to go. There were grooves and knots for the fake flimsy swords so that the person in the box would look like they were getting stabbed but no harm would come to them. They were then met by a man who was hiding in the shadows. He thanked them for doing his dirty work for him. No time for questioning, let’s get him!! (They never asked his name, but for the record it was, in fact, Nevar)
He was quick, dodging and weaving around on this 5 VS 1 fight, but in the end he met his demise by magic paired with missiles. On his person they found another note similar to the one the bard had (with the kiss on the back and all) but his list had 3 names already crossed out and the last one of the list was Waldorf. They followed Waldorf’s blood trail which led out the back door, then mysteriously vanished! Once Randal returned, they made haste and left the theater unnoticed. (Except for the new dead body they left backstage.)
They found themselves back in the dwarven sector, but this time it was much different. As they entered the area, residents would turn the other way, close up window shades and close down their shops. It was far too quiet and the party was on high alert. They could still see the blood stains on the side walk from the dwarven fight the night past (like I said, they always return to the scene of the crime).
They found Groll’s dwelling and knocked quickly (hoping to get out of plain sight), but no answer. They opened the large wooden doors and entered his home without invitation (and now we know that none of them are vampires). Again, they called out to Groll, this time thy heard a faint child-like sound asking them to “please, go away”. They found him in his study, hiding behind his desk. After a bit of convincing he came out and was open for dialog. They showed him the letter and he turned stark white! “The Scarlet Kiss!” Groll exclaimed. “Once you get the scarlet kiss, you cannot be free unless you kill everyone on the list.” He readied himself for a battle, but the party assured his safety. Groll offered them 100 gold each if they escorted him out of town, FAST! They agreed, seeing as they wanted nothing to do with dwarves (homeless or otherwise), the daughter of a statue-duke, the authorities, magical dead wizards, the beggars guild, the Red Sashes, bouncers, scarlet kisses or the theater any longer!!!
The cleric of Umberlee called in his last favor to Captain Morris, who owed him greatly for putting an end to his stalker girlfriend. Captain Morris offered free transport to any cities off the Sword Coast and they shall leave at once.
Baulder’s Gate, is where they requested; the largest city on the coast. Groll brought with him 3 ornate robes (that he wore all at once), a ring on every finger and a large chest, presumably filled with gold.
They set off just shy of 24 hours from when this whole adventure in Waterdeep began. Only now they were stronger, braver, and wanted for multiple accounts of murder!