The party moved on from the wyrmsmith’s lair to make arrangements for tracking Droki. After a series of mishaps magically persuading merchants to cut them good deals, they found themselves once again at the mercy of the city guard. They were taken to Overlake Hold to finally meet with the captain of the guard, a duergar woman named Errde. Sebastian disguised himself as a duergar for the meeting, but slipped up when trying to speak on behalf of the party.
“I am a citizen of Gracklstugh,” he said, “and I can vouch for the good character of these adventurers.”
“A citizen, eh?” replied Errde. “Funny that I’ve never seen the likes of you before. What’s your name?”
“Uh… uh… Duergar?”
“You’re a duergar named Duergar?”
“My parents had a sense of humor.”
“I knew it! Impostor! Duergar have no sense of humor!”
Errde aimed a wand of detect magic on Sebastian, revealing the enchantment disguising his true form. A fight nearly broke out, but Errde was persuaded, perhaps by shear numbers, to consider alternative punishment. She offered the party an opportunity to make amends by seeking out signs of a derro uprising in the West Cleft District. Errde explained that the Council of Savants, a leadership circle of derro wizards, were suspected of trying to stage a riot. Evidence could theoretically be uncovered if the party could successfully track down Droki, the same derro suspected of being a courier for the Gray Ghosts.
The party took to the Darklake District to inquire about Droki’s whereabouts at the local tavern. Aaron used his monocle to track an earlier visit by Droki, and then the party raced to follow the surprisingly fleet-footed little creature through Gracklstugh and into the West Cleft District.
They found the entire district abandoned, with no derro anywhere in sight. After about an hour of navigating narrow tunnels, tracking Droki wherever he went, The party gazed through time again to try and determine where the derro had fled to. They found that all the walls and cliffs surrounding them were full of derro ambushers, just as a volley of crossbow bolts came flying at them.
20 derro crawled out of the patchwork cliff surfaces and sent round after round of attacks after the party. Though heavily wounded, the party managed to whittle down their attackers’ numbers until nearly half the derro were eliminated. They demanded a surrender at that point, and the pack lowered their weapons.
To be continued…