The party assembled at Vigils Keep, and were directed by the Captain of the Guard at Vigils Keep, Captain Maverlies, to assist the human merchant Bren in his journey between the fortress and the city of Amaranthine. Along the way, the party encountered human bandits, who were quickly dispatched.
On arrival in Amaranthine, the party met Constable Aidan, the captain of the city militia, who thanked them for dealing with the bandits, but informed them that there was just as much trouble within the city. He also mentioned that he was running for the open position of Bann of the city, but that the gang crime was hurting his chances. He then directed the party to the Chanters Board at the Chantry of our Lady Redeemer. There, they were informed of
- A missing chantry sister who went outside the city in search of herbs and other ingredients, but has not yet returned
- Various complaints of gang trouble within the city and the bandit trouble on the roads
- A stolen amulet of great worth, belonging to one Thalsian Martel, a human nobleman within the city
- A message from the templars asking for help in apprehending and eliminating the presence of maleficarum (users of forbidden magic) within the city
- A few missing people notices
The party chose to follow up on the stolen amulet and were welcomed into the house of Thalsian Martel, who invited them for dinner while discussing the theft. In addition, he also mentioned that he too was running for the position of Bann, but felt that he stood with a lesser chance compared to the Constable Aidan, and a third candidate who the party have not yet met, Master Kendrick, the head of the Merchants Guild, who are both much better known within the city.
The party then went to Octham’s Goods to inquire as to whether the human merchant had been offered the stolen amulet in question. Octham told them that it was unlikely that anyone would try and sell such an expensive stolen item to one of the reputable merchants, but that the party should inquire at a local tavern, particularly The Crown and Lion.
The party then returned to the Crown and Lion, where Jurgan and Colban engaged in a friendly drinking contest, before planning to retire for the night.
As the party soaked up the atmosphere in the tavern, they became aware of some shady goings on in a corner, and after engaging the suspicious characters in conversation, they discovered that they were in the possession of Thalsian’s stolen amulet. Retrieving the amulet, the party learned that the dealer had acquired the amulet from someone in one of the poorer districts in Amaranthine.
Returning to Thalsian’s mansion, the party told the nobleman that the cash reward being offered for the return of the amulet, 60 GP, was far below the sum of its worth (1000 GP). Thalsian agreed, and together the party and the nobleman came to the arrangement that he would pay 100 GP and arrange for some healing potions from Master Henley, plus pay for their stay in Amaranthine. In return, the party has offered to clear up the streets in Thalsian’s name if Thalsian will continue to line their pockets with coin.
The next morning the party ventured to the Chantry of our Lady Redeemer and spoke with one of the chantry sisters regarding the missing sister from the chanters board. She gave them some information, but seeking more they went to the Merchants district where they asked Master Henley, the apothecary. Henley informs them that he gets all his supplies from Denerim, but that the bandit problem had been crippling him somewhat. The party then introduced themselves as the band of adventurers who had helped his last shipment arrive, at which point Henley called over the head of the Merchants Guild, Master Kendrick, who expressed his sincere gratitude to the party for what they had done, but informed them that the bandit problem hadn’t been eradicated completely, and that this was hurting the Merchants Guild. Kendrick requested that the party deal with the problem to help his Merchants, and help his campaign for election as Bann. The party asked when the next shipments were coming in, and told him they’d look into it. They then met with Constable Aidan who thanked them for their work so far, and gave them some assistance in determining where Sister Ella may have gone missing. The party then ventured out into the wilderness east of the city, and found Ella on a steep mound, surrounded by ravenous wolves. Dispatching them, the party were given gold and a healing potion by Ella for their troubles, and escorted her back to Amaranthine.
As the day was not yet too late, the adventurers then decided to deal with the bandit problem along the roads once and for all, and so set out with some of Constable Aidans men to setup an ambush. Capturing one of the bandits, they were able to find a map to the bandit camp and, under the cover of darkness and in the pouring rain, assaulted the camp and eradicated them, helping themselves to the stolen spoils, including an impressive dalish armor worn by the bandit leader.
Returning to the road, the party ventured back to Amaranthine, while Jorveth and the city militia continued up along the roads to ensure there were no bandits still out. The rest of the party met with Constable Aidan at the guards station where he thanked the party for dealing with the bandit problem and paid them a reward. Returning to the Crown and Lion, the group rejoined with Colban who was now in much better spirits. Gathering around a few rounds of ale, the party discussed the ongoing political situation, and the possible consequences of their actions. The party retired for the night, and the next morning set off to try and deal with the bandit problem within the city. Returning to Constable Aidan, they were told of a lead within the low town districts, a dangerous fellow by the name of Tranter who may have been responsible for the theft of Thalsian’s amulet. The party made haste to the lowtown districts and got into a fight with some gang members who tried to mug the party. Capturing one of them who fitted the description given to them, they returned to Aidan who confirmed that they had indeed apprehended Tranter. However, being unable to get any further leads from Tranter, who wss unwilling to talk, they decided to return to the lowtown district, visiting a tavern tipped off to them by Constable Aidan as a hive of scum and villainy. Pressuring the barman into not making a scene, they were tipped off on a particular street where they might be able to find further information on the gangs who had been causing so much trouble. However, as they approached the area, they came across the final moments of a skirmish between one of the gangs and a mercenary group who identified themselves as Greyhawk Company, led by one Eva Ashtura, a battle-hardened female soldier. Dispatching the gang with great prejudice, Eva revealed that Greyhawk Company had taken up the offer by Thalsian to clear up the streets in his name, and warned the party against interfering with their business. Nonetheless, after Greyhawk company had left the scene, the party started questioning some of the locals, and found a new lead through a sister of one of the deceased gang members, leading to the suspicion that a powerful criminal organisation known as the Black Hand were behind the gang problem within the city. Returning to Aidan with their new evidence, the party were able to interrogate Tranter, and able to agree to a plea bargain: In return for information on the Black Hand, the party would grant Tranter freedom, on the condition that he be taken to Vigils Keep and offered to the Grey Wardens as a possible recruit. Reluctantly agreeing, Tranter informed the party that he believed the next target for the Black Hand would be the merchants guild, and that they would strike soon. Hurrying to the merchants quarter, the party discovered well armed men already laying waste to the shops and intimidating the merchants.
The party defeated the men assaulting the merchants guild but were unable to glean anymore information from them other than confirming their connections to the Black Hand. Returning to the Militia guardhouse, Constable Aidan suggested that the party escort Tranter to Vigils Keep as he expected the Black Hand would try and exact their revenge upon him. Together, the party came up with a clever plan to smuggle him safely out of the city and transfer him to the Wardens base. Arriving safely, the party met Seneschal Garavel who greeted them and welcomed them into the keep for the night. They discussed a little of the history of the Keep, the Grey Wardens and of darkspawn lore, before retiring for the night. The next morning however, the darkspawn menace became a horrifying reality as a breathless man brought word to the keep of attacks in some of the outlying farmlands.
The party moved with haste to the farmlands, where they encountered a raiding band of darkspawn terrorising some local farmers. Dispatching the darkspawn, the party returned to Vigils Keep for reward and further hospitality before heading back to Amaranthine. Arriving late at night, the group briefly spoke to the city guard who informed them that there had been developments with both the Black Hand and malificarum presence, and that they should speak to Constable Aidan in the morning. The party then retired for the night at The Crown and Lion.
Meeting Constable Aidan at the Militia guardhouse the next morning, they found him talking to an elven lady in some distress. Passing her off to one of his officers, he invited them into his office to discuss the new developments.
The first new lead concerned the malificarum presence in the city, in that the templars had discovered and confiscated some sort of spell residuum in the city warehousing district. However, believing that increased templar presence, or even more city guard patrols might drive the apostates deeper underground, Aidan requested the assistance of the party to deal with the problem for him.
The second new lead came directly from some of the arrested members of the Black Hand who, under interrogation, had offered up their HQ within the city. However, due to its location within quite a rich district, Constable Aidan said his guards would be unable to get a warrant to raid the premises without alerting the Black Hand to their knowledge of the hideout. As the party had already proven itself exceptionally capable at dealing with the Black Hand, Aidan requested the partys assistance in dealing with the Black Hand once and for all, saying that he would personally see that party would be rewarded. Together, Erik and Aidan came up with a plan so as the city guard would not be in the area at the time of the party’s raid.
In the meantime, the group investigated the warehousing district to see what more they could find out about the malificarum. Chatting to several people within the district drew little leads, however after interviewing the owner of the warehouse outside of which the residuum was found, it was suggested that they could perhaps stage a stakeout there at night, to catch the malificarum as they met together.
Later, at the time appointed previously, the party then staged an elaborate raid on the Black Hand HQ within the city and toppled the crime syndicates operation.
Reporting back to Aidan, he thanked them and rewarded them for their help, and said he’d go by the warehouse owner to authenticate their warrant on his way back to the office. The party then returned to the inn to rest. The next day, looking to kill some time until the evening, the party returned to the Chanters board, and became somewhat suspicious by the number of missing people notices that were up. Investigating some of them, the party discovered that a number of elves had been going missing from the alienage of late. Following up on a lead from one of them, they were led down to the docks district, where they were eventually led to a closed section of the dock belonging to a Tevinter trading vessel with some rather suspicious crew. The party then stormed the dock and ship.