Gito, Lucern, Izzard and Edward continue to interrogate the low level local drug dealer and known associate of Aporcus, Slick. The young man is suitably intimidated by the group but is also confused by their disjointed line of questioning and internal bickering. Several questions concerning how he came by his burns and what he did with the contents of the case are asked and followed up with slaps; Slick reveals that he was ambushed by a wizard and the group conclude that this was probably Aporcus. They are very confused as to how he came by the case and after length Slick reveals that he heard that Aporcus’ late aunt’s house and its contents were being auctioned and he informed the rogue lay wizard associate of this and that the man was visibly excited by the news. Slick states that he went into Old Town to scope out the house and found the case just lying in the road nearby – which seems highly improbable to the group. After lengthy debate over what they have heard and what to do next they finally realise that they have asked about everything in the case but have missed an object out – a dagger. The dagger is described by Slick as being rather dull looking but having a mesmerising green emerald in its hilt. Slick admits that he was entranced by the blade but that it spooked him out as he kept seeing a woman in the corner of his vision and it felt like the knife wanted him to do bad things. The group once more debate what to do next with this news, during which Slick manages to crawl away undetected.
The group decide to call up Tarmon using the talisman issued to them, as they were instructed to, and update him of their progress. The wizard is impatient for news of the location of the box and tells them to get back onto tracking it down and not to bother him again until they’ve obtained it. The group rationalise that the next obvious step is to visit the Knorrbertal house in Old Town to verify the story and to see if there’s any further leads waiting there for them. They head across town and soon approach the open gates. Lucern and Izzard manage to simply walk past the chatting gate guards but one of them spots Gito walking alongside Edward and challenges them both. The goblin thief and awol musketeer are unable to provide convincing explanations and are duly refused entry, forcing them to make time consuming alternative routes in. Meanwhile Izzard and Lucern make their way to the Street of Dreams and locate the Knorrbertal house which is locked up tight and apparently devoid of life. Thinking about what to do next they opt to check on the neighbours and head over to the house on the right which turns out to be a tailors. Lucern introduces herself to the friendly and very chatty middle aged man and makes enquiries about the house next door and is told that Aporcus used to live with his aunt, Delinda, who was a respected mage, but he was thrown out several years ago. The man also says that the Knorrbertal house has been very busy since Delinda’s passing with lots of people coming and going, including Tarmon, who was in the company of a hard-eyed, black haired, tall bronze skinned man dressed in flowing white robes. The man also mentions that he saw the city authorities packing up Delinda’s belongings in preparation to transportation to the MAH, during which he then saw Aporcus sneak aboard one of the wagons and attempt to steal the much sought after case; the man reported this to the city guards who duly kicked Aporcus out of the wagon and placed the case precariously back inside. Lucern thanks the man for the information and leaves, just as Edward and Gito manage to turn up; the religious mage informs the group of all she has learned and they decide that the next step is to search the Knoberrtal house from top to bottom – but they can’t do this until night falls.
With some time to kill a couple of the criminal members of the group declare that now is the time to carry out a quick burglary on Zan’thire’s nearby hotel room where they hope to find the mad mage’s treasure trunk. Izzard, expert grifter, manages to talk his way into the hotel and obtain the room key. He slips into the room and locates a trunk which he then walks straight out. The group then whisk the purloined trunk down a nearby alley and cautiously break into it and explore its contents. Much to their surprise they realise that the case is not that of Zan’thire (this had been stolen long before by some of the hotel staff and its contents either pocketed or sold off to various pawn shops!); the meagre contents of this case appear to belong to some sort of prospector with the initials YBH.
Night falls and the group scuttle back to the Street of Dreams and scale the back wall of the Knorrbertal house and break in. The interior is completely bare since everything has been transported. The group carefully check the house for any secret compartments or rooms and Edward duly finds a small cavity under the floorboards that perfectly match the dimensions of the stolen case. With the house checked and all the discernible pieces of how the case came to be stolen and what it contained now in place, the group discuss how to proceed; the mysterious stranger seems to be the next and only logical step. Once more they call up Tarmon and report everything that’s transpired; the senior wizard and Sea Lords Council member is perplexed by the call and somewhat irritated – he freely admits to having visited the house with his merchant friend, Farastay, but fails to see what it has to do with the missing case. He harshly rebukes the group for wasting his time and once more instructs them to hurry up and locate the missing case.
Dawn arrives after an eventless night spent in the Knorrbertal house and the group decide that since the mysterious Farastay character is a merchant then a visit to the Merchant’s District is the surest way to locate and question him. A short time later they enter the Plaza of Gold in the heart of the district and attempt to enter the Merchant’s Guild, an imposing mansion house on a hill; they are turned away by the guards, but are told that the best place to enquire about specific individuals is in one of the taverns on the plaza. Izzard and Gito wait in the large and wealthy square while the more socially acceptable Lucern and Edward make their way into the Scales of Wealth tavern. The tavern is exceedingly busy, even early in the morning and Lucern unsuccessfully attempts to learn something from one of the barmen. Edward enquires at the other end of the bar and is rewarded with an account that the mysterious man in white is often spotted around the district and is often seen in the company of a wizard. Leaving the tavern the group believe that locating a wizard’s shop would probably be the best place to ask about Farastay; a short time later they manage to find The Firmest Wand. Lucern enters and makes her acquaintance with the fusty old man inside; after an exchange of pleasantries the attractive mage asks about Farastay and the old man vaguely recalls that the man’s name is “O-Tark-“ something; definitely a foreigner and not from Freeport.