Salt in the wind from the bay rubs against your skin and the smell of freshly caught mackerel and oysters from the nearby market stalls tells of a catch. You’re in a busy intersection in Westport between the Fresh Markets, the Salt Ward and the Imperial District. The streets are full of all sorts of folk, for it’s Ammain, the first day of the week when many of the guilds and labor houses are closed for the morning.
Most folk are copper-skinned humans with dark hair, wearing shendyts or chlamys, though there are others too. A pair of goblins walks side by side, an elven woman coming up from the docks wears the blue and red kaftan of a captain of Starcoast, a lizardman wears nothing, but no one seems to point out his immodesty.
Shouts remniscent of the proclamations of a town crier draw looks from passersby, but few stop to listen. He points to you in turn and meets your eyes as he speaks, “You! Come here, and you! And you! I see the seeds of heroism in each of you. Hear me and help me save us all! For the emperor has doomed us all! He sends our young children off to die in pointless wars, he brought goblins, trolls, and orcs into our cities, and as if letting the barbarous orcs into our cities wasn’t bad enough, he feeds the dragons with our children! Doom he has brought! We must rise! Rise my brethren! Will you take up this call?”
A pair of city guards seem to have taken notice of the man as well and are approaching from across the intersection.
The PCs decided to ignore the ravings of the heretic, but they picked up on the hint that the Emperor “feeds our children to the dragons.”
They also mostly ignored the little hubub between the ogre Dartook, who they spotted wearing a navy badge, and a human man named Argent until Alek was pointed out by the elf Elben as having been the one who took the letter that Dartook was harassing Argent about. No one, including Alek noticed Elben sneaking up behind them, or him slipping the letter into his hands. Elben held up the real letter and winked at Alek as he and Argent snuck off to the north, through the crowded markets. Dartook went after Alek.
Ignatius, worrying he might be discovered pulled out his book of poetry and began reading, which immediately fascinated the large ogre. Dartook sat down to listen while Chem and Aester ran off to look for Elben and Argent. Alek, not really knowing what to do with the letter tried to confer with Ignatius, who was busy reading poetry, but managed to hint to him to meet him around the corner in ten minutes.
Chem and Aester quickly lost track of the two that ran off and returned to the original intersection, noticing Alek head off around the corner. Chem sat down to listen to the bard’s poetry until he stopped and went to meet up with Alek, leaving the confused Ogre and Chem alone. Dartook stood up and asked where the letter went. Chem told him he ran off to the north, and instructed him which direction that was with a finger pointing towards the market stalls. Dartook headed off in that direction and Chem met up with the others.
After a few minutes of confering with each other about what to do, none other than the Elf, Elben, reappeared and immediately started going on about the empire and how it came to be as it is. He rather inexplicably offered them a job, claiming to be impressed with how they handled themselves.
Dubious, the others cautiously agreed to meet him again at the Westgate Inn in the future to discuss the details of said job. Elben flipped Aester a coin with the head of Idjara on it, a series that was taken out of circulation immediately after the coup. Elben said, “Use it when you need it.”
After that they split up with various ideas in mind, planning to meet up at the newly founded alchemy guild the next day. Chem asked around at the guild about the coup and dragons eating kids, but no one knew anything, or at least no one knew anything they wanted to tell him about. Aester did some preliminary research at the Guild of Pure and Just Magicians, found nothing on the coup in the library except for some references to the collection at the Imperial Administration building. He checked with his colleagues about how to go about researching there and found that he would have to give them his query and have the librarians research it for him.
Alek took his letter to the Penny Library. He looked around trying to find anything that could verify the truth of what both the heretic’s proclamations and Elben’s claims said of dragons and the coup but he found little. He drew the attention of the shopkeeper when he kicked over a barrel trying to hide his letter in the random mess of papers. Eventually he discovered that the shopkeeper runs an interesting side business involved in the trade of secrets. He offered a small sum of gold to try to encourage the shopkeeper to find something telling about his topics of choice, but the document the shopkeeper offered seemed mostly to be a document providing increminating evidence of a bribe at the harbor, although worth a few silver, the knowledge of the shop’s true purpose was the real reward. He opted to hold onto the letter he received from Elben as opposed to trying to stash it anywhere, at least for the time being.