After Eric, in his guise of Kreth-Nugar, returned the eggs to a startled and frazzled “captain” of the Dogfish, everyone made good on their evening plans to visit the Dragon and the Butterfly, where Malika would be performing. She sang a stunning song about Timmy the Imperial Dragon Knight (and his stalwart dwarven companion, Billy) as well as a gripping rendition of the Battle Hymn of the Crusader. While mystically attuned music didn’t bring her any favor with the Crusader, something about it proved inauspicious, seemingly drawing the ire of the Diabolist, whom it openly lampooned as a foolish faerie tale villain, unworthy of the Crusader’s valiant attentions.
During Mal’s performance, Decius and Eric noticed a couple strange individuals, each sitting at their own table, appearing to nurse beverages: one was a seemingly dull individual with glassy, wide-set eyes and a broad mouth with lips that he kept moistening with his tongue, while the other was a rail-thin, scraggly and skittery woman with pallid, sallow skin. When the woman made a hasty exit during Mal’s roast of the Diabolist during the Crusader’s Hymn, Eric followed closely. His communication with her didn’t yield much fruit, other than confirmation that she’s very, very weird. Inside, Decius and Mal fared a little better (if anyone wants to call it that) by learning that the wide-eyed idiot was named Grreggory and that he was really interested in something called “The Song of Seokolah”, which Mal was able to identify as a dirge for a long-dead sea god. He creepily invited her to come sing for his sailor family, but, surprisingly enough, she passed.
When Grreggory left, they naturally followed. Mal noticed a large, bulky woman trundling behind the dimwit, and she called out to her, managing to convince her to come back and retrieve a coin that Grreggory had “dropped”. Meanwhile, Kreth attempted to sneak around a building, only to bungle, draw everyone’s attention, and start the fight. A few people, likely lackwits like Grreggory, lurked behind a building, while strange fishy monster-men came in from the shadows. The Sahuagin centurion moved with alarming speed, and the sea-witch called strange energies from some unknown and unknowable depth, but despite their skill (and the superior number of the ill-bred bullyboys they were with) the party managed to best them. After the centurion fell to Decius’ poison blows and and the gang fell to the combined might of Kreth and Mal, the sea witch gave herself up, under the condition that she wouldn’t be harmed. (Spoiler alert, she got harmed.)
Mal distracted the growing crowd while Kreth and Decius retreated into a nearby warehouse with the sea witch. There, they learned that a man with stag horns tipped the Sahuagin off that some of their eggs would be for sale in New Port, though it’s not terribly clear if the Sahuagin know (or care) if the eggs are genuinely demon eggs or Sahuagin eggs. Either way, they’ll apparently help the Sahuagin usher in a new era, and the Sahuagin are only all too happy to give up apparent wealth for the eggs. After the interrogation, Kreth killed the witch.
Outside, Decius encountered the Inquisitors who were in town, apparently en route to the disturbance near the docks. They questioned him a bit, and though still seeming suspicious (and strangely knowledgeable about Decius’ penchant for poisonous marsh flora), they let him go. Upon arrival, they investigated the area while Mal eavesdropped on them. The Inquisitors, like everyone involved, don’t seem to have much genuine knowledge of the situation. They were tipped off that some sort of exchange would be happening, and that it was probably best if they worked toward stopping it, but were fairly ignorant beyond that point.
The next day, plans were hatched to investigate the eggs’ nature as a foodstuff, something that had gone largely unexplored thus far. The party was able to locate two somewhat reputable sources of similar dishes: A fine dining establishment in one of the more hoity-toity districts of New Port (called the Old Highrock Dinner Club) and a street vendor near the dockside district. Eric posed as the manservant of a well-to-do merchant to purchase eggs from the Old Highrock Dinner Club, while Decius and Mal continued their ruse as a betrothed couple planning their wedding and tried to purchase century eggs from the street vendor. Unfortunately, both attempts resulted in the same knowledge: A sickly, sallow, and itchy-looking individual (though not the same one) purchased all the eggs available for sale.
Knowing that someone’s buying up anything in town that might be remotely similar to their “demon eggs”, the party decides it might be time to investigate their utility as ritual components. Eric made plans to visit the library and study there, while also noting that Fray Abbot is taking up residence at the Annex, possibly giving him access to the Friar’s knowledge of priestly rituals… if he can tolerate his presence long enough to ask him about it. Similarly, Mal makes note of the fact that a guest at the Dragon and the Butterfly who had taken a shine to her, a brash and pompous mage by the name of Arhen Torg is due back and may be able to shed some light on the eggs as well.
Decius, Eric and Mal seem to be left with more questions than answers. Who would want to sell a bunch of stinky old eggs, and why? How many people are after these eggs? Does anyone else even know what they are? Who’s the guy in the antler helm, and how many angles is he playing?