Blythe shows the treasure, and gives an inspiring speech to the crew. They decide to wait a day, and determine if they should journey back in.
Blythe notices that many of the crew are still sick. She talks to Spart, and discovers that he has been improvising the meals, cooking shoe leather as well as salt pork. He has a barrel of wet flour that he’s been ‘feeding’. In the pot on the fire, he says that he put the non-poisoned food on one side, but kept the good stuff on the other. Blythe rips into him, threatening to throw him overboard if he doesn’t get better at cooking, and stop poisoning the crew. She finds him an assistant to keep an eye on him.
They anchor for 2 days, waiting for the fog to go down. It is spilling out of the cave, rolling down the hill into the water, where it dissipates. In the meantime, the crew begins to recover from their ‘sickness’. Tevelyn remains holed up in his room, Trundel is sick in bed, and Malik organizes the remaining crew. Blythe uses the opportunity to inculcate piratical thought amongst the rest of the crew.
The Golden Edge is heavily damaged, all excursions into the caves have been deadly, and the two ships are nearing skeleton crew status. There is perhaps a month of supplies left before they would be forced to sail for civilization. Blythe decides to sail back to Mercir, by way of Highgate, ostensibly.
One week out, sails are spotted. Fang looks out, and identifies it as a Cryxian slaver ship. He sees black ogrun, known for ferocity and cannibalism. Paths would cross in the next day or so. Blythe orders the course changed to avoid them.
Another week passes, they enter the Gulf of Middlebank. THey encounter a small group of Cygnaran Warships. They are not on the same course, and Blythe orders that that remain so. The Cygnaran ships do not move to intercept.
Blythe and her company plan to blow up the Golden Edge, taking down any loyalist crew with her. Spart is ordered to rig the powder hold to detonate, then Blythe will call a meeting of her officers, and Spart, on the Black Dawn. Then, the tow cables will be cut and the Black Dawn will sail away.
The plan is put into effect. Officers and Spart row over, and the cables are cut. The fuse takes much longer to burn through. Spart counts it down, but it does not explode. Blythe is angry, and Syphon throws Spart in a long boat and begins lowering him down, telling him to fix it. Spart repeatedly counts ‘1’. Blythe orders the gunners to fire on the Golden Edge, and Syphon stops lowering the long boat. The Black Dawn pulls around, but the Golden Edge explodes in a massive, fiery burst. Spart counts ‘0’! Syphon pulls him back up. A new course is set for The Docks.
3 weeks later, they arrive. They are short food, and the crew is hungry. Shares are doled out to the crew, and 2 days shore leave is declared. The ship is re-supplied. Merk meets them on the docks, having been waiting for them.
Blythe talks to Gond, withdraws some of their treasure. Gond wants to know about their adventures. Blythe fills him in. He also tells her that Ayvil was in town about a month ago, and was asking about her. Apparently, he caught rumor of what she was up to, and was asking around.
Syphon tries exchanging the treasure, handling it with gloves to avoid curses, for regular currency. He is able to exchange a quarter of it. The party purchases gear.
Fang and Syphon seek out Geoffrey, finding him in the Empty Crate tavern. They show him the empty box, and tell him they found it empty. Fang asks what was in it, so that they can look for it when they go back. Geoffrey is visibly distraught when he finds the box empty. Syphon physically intimidates him to reveal what he knows of the item. Geoffrey tells them that it was a Cryxian power source of some kind, that he wanted to study. It was one of Capt. Alexanders favorite prizes, as no one has successfully retrieved any Cryxian tech like that.
2 days later, they sail for Five Fingers. Syphon, worried about cursed treasure, stays at The Docks, he gives away a lot of his excess ‘cursed’ treasure. A weeks smooth sailing brings the Black Dawn into port, 1 day before the Firelight Jubilee.
Late Morning: Fang wants to find someone to finish modifications on his armor and research cryxian curses, Merk wants to shop and gamble. Blythe arranges Wolfshead Chuck to arrange for the Black Dawn to be repaired, and makes inquiries into purchasing a new ship and hiring Jack Marshals and steamjacks. Jade accompanies Fang.
In the streets, the party is confronted by a gang. They point at Fang and demand he return what is theirs. Responding that they do not know what they are talking about, the gang attacks.
Burt rapidly kills many gang members, but the gang leader, a swarthy swashbuckler, knocks out Blythe, parrying a number of attacks. Merk blows back a massive Ogrun, after Fang hit him square in the face with the mace to no effect. A gobber flees the scene, trying to get into the rigs above, but Burt shoots him off the ladder, setting him on fire and blowing out an eye. Burt also shoots the leader, who tries to hobble away, spitting blood. The ogrun charges Merk repeatedly, but can’t seem to connect well. Jade shoots him through the neck, and Merk ends him. His head pummeling into the stones, he passes gurgling on the ground.
Fang stabilizes the gang leader, and he is taken prisoner.
Taking a room at a run down inn, they strip their prisoner and strap him to the bed. Fang, wearing his mask, rouses him, and begins an interrogation. Burt helps by sticking his pistol into his wounds. He says his name is Bairn, and that he thinks they work for Riordan, but the questions they ask convince him otherwise. He says that his intel came from Smek, the gobber Burt killed,, and that he said that they had an old pistol of some importance to the Rovers, his gang.
Fang notices that he has the pistol described in his pocket.
Blythe strikes a deal, she’ll give Bairn the gun and will free him, if he clears their name with Kilbride, the high captain who patronizes the Rovers. .
Bairn is freed, given the gun and his clothes back. He stumbles towards the Paulson street HQ, ostensibly. Merk and Burt stealthily follow. Bairn goes into a Clockwork repair shop. Merk pretends to study the prices outside, then goes in. Tools are along one wall, workspace fill the room. There is a middle age man in a leather apron present. Also, two thuggish brutes are playing a boardgame with stones in the corner over a barrel. There is a door leading deeper into the building. Merk plays off that he was looking for a watch, and is directed another 3 doors down. He leaves. A short while later a scrawny man leaves the shop, and speedily walks east. Merk and Burt follow. He travels to Captains Island, crosses through, and crosses a bridge to Anchor Island. Two large men in heavy armor guard the bridge.
Merk takes up a hidden position in a construction site. He snipes one of the guards off the side of the cliff with his rune shots. The other runs down the bridge, makes some hand signals, and runs back. Merk shoots him, and he takes up position behind some rocks, scanning for Merk. Merk leaves the construction, rejoins Burt, and they head back to Chasers Island and the rest of the party.
Burt checks in on Chuck. He is getting quotes for ship repair. Lily takes a room at an upscale lodge. Hires Gronk to be her bodyguard. Merk replenishes his runeshot. Fang and Jade heads to the taverns, trying to spread his pirate shanties. He does a good job.
An unaddressed letter is delivered by runner to Blythe. It says:
“If you want into my good graces, you will get rid of the Twin Bridge Blades in the Bridge’s Belly Tavern. Once they’re gone, we’re even. -K”
Blythe summons her crew back. They plan a to check out the Bridge’s Belly.
In a dingy hovel built into the side of a cliff below the bridge, the party finds the Bridge’s Belly tavern. Fang and Jade approach, with Merk and Burt watching from a distance. A guard stands in front of the door, asks what brings Fang and Jade there. Fang shoots him in the head, killing him. Burt moves the body aside.
Fang and Jade walk in, get some chowder. Some drunk sailors are about, as well as some tattooed men, obviously gang members. Merk and Burt walk in, get some beer and shots. Fang challenges a gang member to a knife throwing contest.
When the man throws his two knives, Burt rolls an acid grenade at the two gang members at the table. Merk shoots the bartender in the head, killing him instantly. Fang draws his pistol, shooting his knife throwing opponent, grazing his shoulder. Jade puts an arrow through the head of a gang member by the door, spins around and shoots the knife throwing man in the chest.
They point weapons at the sailors present, convince them to leave peaceably. They take their drinks with them.
Fang steals some rum. Merk opens a trapdoor behind the bar, and observes kegs below. He also sees some work tables, with tools and bits of material (shavings, wire, etc). Merk closes the trapdoor, ties it shut, shoots out the keg stands to barricade it.
Stealing more alcohol, they leave, heading back to the inn. Fang declares ‘Free Booze’ to the folks outside.
Fang and Jade take a room next to Blythe. Blythe hires a doctor to treat her wounds, sends a message to the priests of Morrow about her Cryxian curse.
Havershaws Folly, the site of the Firelight Jubilee, is destroyed in a massive blast, thousands die. The whole area is cordoned off, and glows green at night.
Fang visits the temple of Morrow, Merk checks on the crew to see who might still be alive. Burt and Merk hear many rumors, from asteroids to dragons to dark energies, to Khador attack.