On the ride to Pagua, Gavin and Orden had encountered an inn, where they sought shelter, and found the aid of Jack Rupin.
Encountering the guards at the inn, the pair was forced into delivering a letter to the Emperor of Pagua. As they awoke, they found that their horses were slain, and the horses tongues were cut, replaced with a message – a simple piece of paper with the symbol of the Cabal.
They left hastily in the morning, and upon arriving at Pagua – they offered the letter that was given to them, only to find that the guardsman had demanded that Gavin, and Orden be arrested, and brought to the Emperor on crimes of suspicion against Maribor.
The city was in a festival, celebrating the year, where travelers came from as far as Redania for the celebrations.
Forced to meet with the Emperor, the adventurers were released, only before meeting their lost companion Ariakas – who had been locked away in the dungeons of Pagua, and tortured for his crimes as an inquisitor.
Ariakas explained to them that he would be hung, and executed in the morning, and they must allow his death to occur so they may find the cursed city. He explained they would soon meet a man that would lead them to the city, but they must also be aware that they would be hunted by the Cabal – a hired group of assassins, no doubt hired by the Prophet of Aren, and the Emperor himself.
As they left to find the worth of the platinum bars that they were gifted by Graz’zt, Rupin headed to an inn to find them a room. Gavin and Orden met with an Appraiser Huang, only to find that the bars were not bars at all, but containers. They refused to open them, and headed to an armorer, where they found nothing of value.
Leaving the armorer’s, they entered an alleyway, only to find a box – inside, the dried tongue of a horse from the cabal. A group of thieves assaulted them, but fled, and one was murdered, his skull smashed in. In his hand, was another note, telling them: “You’re fucked.”
As they hurried back to the inn, they found Rupin, who introduced them to Lars, a man in a similar position, who explained he could assist them in finding a guide to Tho-Siggot.
As they headed to their room, a large tiefling in black armor came to their room, claiming to be an escort from Lars. As they ate dinner together, the tiefling attacked them in surprise, in the name of the Cabal.
The tiefling was slain, and on his corpse they found a letter, notating their deaths must be completed, and the sum of payment upon completion. The adventurers followed Jack Rupin to Lars’ establishment, where they met Marcus – the man who would become their guide to Tho-Siggot.
Marcus escorted them to the Basilica of Aren, where they found disguises as priests of Aren, and headed off to the executions in the morning.