Our heroes are interrupted from their evening repast by an urgent summons from Lieutenant Morton Rorke. Strapping on their assortment of gear they step out into a light mist of rain and smoke as night begins to settle over the city.
When they reach Lieutenant Rorke, the mission he outlines seems straightforward. He tells the heroes that his family has been kidnapped by Thamarites. The kidnappers are demanding that Lieutenant Rorke use his position to acquire a box from a local alchemist by the name of Jorvis Torm. Being that Lieutenant Rorke has the final say over the approval of their mercenary charter, the group agree to help Lieutenant Rorke, but not before Toryn and Loomis get Rorke to agree to putting through their charter quickly. As they leave, Lieutenant Rorke reminds them not to let anyone know of what they are doing, and that he will help them with any legal troubles they might encounter during their mission.
With that, Toryn leads the group to the industrial district, where Torm is located. When they get close to Torm’s workshop, the group stops and lets Gretchen sneak forward in an attempt to retrieve the box with a minimal amount of force and confrontation. Unfortunately, as Gretchen sneaks up and peeks around the corner toward the workshop, she sees two Crucible Guards standing as sentries outside of the workshop.
With this new information, the group decides on a new course of action. Kolt finds an abandoned crate on the street filled with scraps. Picking it up, he approaches the guards and attempts to bluff his way in to the workshop, claiming that this is a shipment of supplies that was ordered by Torm. The Crucible Guards tell him roughly to get lost, they have no idea what he is talking about. Kolt continues to argue with the guards until they are all caught in an explosion that engulfs the workshop.
Before Kolt has a chance to pick himself up, a man in the robes of the Golden Crucible stumbles out of the building and cries out “They’ve taken it!” before falling over dead.
Loomus, Toryn, Gretchen, and Kreoss manage to make it inside the burning building. Everyone sees a dead body of a man in alchemists leathers lying in the back of the workshop. Quickly searching the room, they fail to find a box matching the description of the one they are looking for. They do however find several clues as to what happened here.
Piecing together clues found in the workshop before the fire traps them in the building, the group goes to Pier 16, the headquarters of the Bloody Skiffs, a local gang. Once again they send Gretchen forward first, unaware that they have already been spotted from the ship that they are trying to board. Once Gretchen makes it on the ship, she sees that the Crucible Guards from earlier are bound and about to be executed. Thinking quickly, she pulls out her crossbow and shoots one of the crewmen threatening the Crucible Guards.
With this, a bloody fight breaks out on the ship. The guards are forgotten as the crew of the ship try to hold back the heroes. Two of them charge Gretchen and wound her badly before reinforcements make it on to the ship to help. As the full power of ‘Jacks of All Trades is brought to bear, the crewmen quickly fall, with only a handful of injuries received by the group.
As the last of the crewmen falls, a bloodcurdling roar comes from the rear of the ship and a towering ogrun that Kreoss recognizes as Brak Seabreaker, a notorious river pirate with a bounty on his head, charges toward Loomus. Behind Brak comes a short, unhealthy looking female in black robes.
Brak hits Loomus with his cruel looking blade, nearly disabling the Arcanist outright. Seeing his friend in trouble, Toryn charges the ogrun, with Kreoss following right on his heels, trying to draw attention away from Loomus. Most of their strikes bounce off of Brak’s thick armor, barely slowing him at all. Loomus uses this opportunity to break away from the combat and blast the black robed necromancer, killing her quickly. With the death of the necromancer, it doesn’t take long for the rest of the group to overhwhelm the ogrun, although Brak does get in a few good hits before he falls.
Freeing the Golden Crucible Guards, the group is privy to a startling revelation. The guards explain that the reason they were so hostile towards the party earlier is that they were afraid they were subordinates of Lieutenant Rorke. Lieutenant Rorke was after the contents of the box for himself. Apparently, agents of Cryx had contacted Torm, having him build a ‘Jack cortex using the soul poison necrotite.
The group quickly finds the box and takes the crucible guards up on their offer to go back to their local chapter house with the cortex. Once at the chapter house, Sergei and Loomus enter negotiation with Commander Alexander, eventually taking on the commander’s offer of further work. In exchange for escorting the cortex down to Caspia, the commander is willing to pay the mercenaries well, in addition with helping them set up their charter and smoothing over the legal troubles that would certainly be facing the characters in the morning when Rorke could bring the full watch to bear against the group.
Taking an opportunity to rest and make sure they are properly supplied, the group goes about their business, eating a meal provided by the Order. Commander Alexander quickly rouses his men and prepares a local Order ship for departure. Rushing the group there while it is still night out, Commander Alexander leaves them in the capable hands of Captain Horus. The riverboat sets out as the everyone settles into their cabins.