The Institute has provided cover accommodations all the way to Sharn. As you make your way into the city unnoticed, you take the time to marvel at its wonder. Several plateaus of stone hold up colossal towers that defy all reason in their height. The city is smaller in area than some you have seen, but its stature more than compensates. It is easy to see how it can house all types… including some of the most abysmal of lows on the continent. The question now is how much information you can gain and how easily you can get into the auction, where you are supposed to steal holy symbols and garbs of the highest order of Blood of Vol clerics. Not to mention, Ms. Aleria has indicated that artifacts of great evil will be at this location, and this may be the only chance to destroy them. She has given you a small device that will destroy the bond to their magic, but will take several minutes for it to work. Unfortunately, all that Ms. Aleria knows about the auction is that it is going to happen.
Social: They should learn that it is incredibly high class and under impressive guard (allow players to describe the sources of information). Any questions about the monastery should inform them that only the highest order of Blood of Vol priests get to enter the lower levels, and it apparently holds the true power of the Blood.
Note: Any discovered bodies of sentient beings will show a strike occurred, and the Aurum will begin hunting them. KOs can be enacted, but the bodies have to be hidden so they blame their own. Or of course, slip past them entirely.
You make your way up the tower, noting that the quality of life rises in respect to your elevation. Eventually you find your way to Crystal Bridge, a wealthy district of fine shops and lavish homes.
Skill Challenge or inventive narration gets them in.
Vistra, you sneak into the auction floor, where only the most punctual have arrived. You scan the area, when a young man bumps into you, but is currently distracted with the buttons on his shirt. “Excuse me, have you seen the lavatory?” You unconsciously look up, and see Simion, your son.
Most of you slip into the hallway, but hesitate curiously as you notice your Dwarven comrade intentionally tarries. Vistra, you notice that Oscar is here as well. He holds a glass of wine is his hand, as you have seen him do so many times before. He places it on the side table, where you could easily poison it without anyone noticing. Flashes of your sister’s murder are called to your mind. Holding her dying body, leaving your family and Grayson behind, and the many beatings and rape you were forced to endure. Oscar sits, engaged in a jovial conversation with his malicious Aurum brethren. If you take the time to strike, though, his complications may be noticed before your heist is complete. Is it worth the risk?
Vistra decides framing Oscar for the heist would be far more beneficial, but it is touch and go for a minute. Long story (and combat) short, they get the items.
You have the robes, symbols, and equipment you need. Among them is a vial of a poison it will take a bit of testing to identify. If you desire, you can also steal some helpful items, including the vial with only a few drops left of the grey smoky substance that you’ve never seen before, an Eversmoking Bottle, a Robe of Useful Items, a pair of Sending Stones, and an odd yet distinctive locket bearing the symbol of eight platinum rings. Vistra, you also notice something that may help calm your nerves.
You now have the option of returning to Simion and Oscar, but doing so would likely prevent the Aurum from blaming themselves for the theft, and may reveal Vistra’s presence. Instead, they leave Oscar’s locket.
Escaping the scene takes some doing, but you are able without too much trouble. Most attendees are preoccupied with cleaning up before apparently more important guests arrive.
When they make a check to identify the poison, but can only determine it is of a divine, not natural, nature. A Religion check identifies it.
It is an exceedingly rare substance known as Interfector Mortis. It will cause flu-like symptoms in a living creature, but it serves as a deadly poison to undead. There is too little here to do anything with, but it is interesting to say the least. With what you found around town about the monastery, combined with Kai filling you in on the traditions of the Blood of Vol, you know few Karrnathi citizens have an issue with undead, but are not clear what connection they would have with the Blood. A letter waits for you in your safe house, a plain blue card with a hand scribbled note in a familiar aromatic ink, along with 500gp. “There is far more for you to do. Spend some time to recover, letting the heist fade from their minds. Make your way to Atur, and be ready.”