“It is better to be dead in Dovent than alive in the Tumbles.”
It is two days before the “Counting,” the 34th of Ollamas.
Volarus, Amnon, Novakri, Praesidium, and Vikros of Nochter (the Infernus Nochtrum) are at Vor Kraghall.
Volarus says, “I think my chances are good this year. The counting should go well.”
There is some discussion of other competitors, including Gable West and Zele Noran. Praesidium is mostly ignored.
There are a number of organizations who have donated to the Nochter House:
• The Black Bird Tavern, from the bartender Bilt.
• The Church of Pelor gave 10,000 gold (Merle Draggin – perhaps connected with them).
• The Tumbles branch of the Penzon library. It was donated by Old Man Goras.
• Marcus, a captain of the Gray Shields from Starling.
Eltin Nochter runs in with grave news – the dragonborn Gray Shields have entered New Minath.
The party heads there, only to find out (it is pointed out by Praesidium) that the dragonborn aren’t real; they are illusions. We dispel them quickly and easily.
Vikros believes that this encounter may have been a lure to get the Infernus Nochtrum away from Vor Kraghall! We start to head back immediately.
Praesidium tries to take a shortcut and runs on to a road that is not well paved. He tries to navigate his way back quickly, using his endurance to keep pace.
Navokri runs in to a large crowd. He clears them by threatening their death.
Vikros is stopped by a young student who wants to ask him about House Nochter. Vikros convinces the student to continue his studies, but also to leave him alone at the moment.
Amnon gets his purse stolen by a small girl. He gets distracted and chases her around before being reprimanded by Vikros.
When we return to the house, we find the door ajar and fallen tieflings inside, including Volarus. He says, “Eltin…what have you done…?” He dies.