Depending on who you talk to, Legitimate Business Enterprises, LLP went to Alderman Ritter’s either to advise him of occult activity in Ashenport or to break in and steal the coins Wittishens had sent them for.
What followed was a comedy of errors: Bonaventure slipped in the mud while climbing the iron fence surround the Alderman’s manse, only to pick himself up out of the mud and vault over it in a single bound, for example. Or take as another incident: Valens being seen and captured by the house guards, only to serve as a distraction for the rest to sneak into the Alderman’s garden.
Eventually, all parties soaked & bloody, the guards lay in the thick mud unconscious or dying while our “heroes” looted the Alderman’s vacated home. As they trudged back to the Smooth Sailing Inn & Tavern a horrible sound echoed out over the depths. It was the same wretched keening they’d heard the night before, made no less terrible by the flimsy light of day.
Poor Bonaventure was the only one present to succumb to the siren call this time, but Tusk made short work of the trance with a staggering kick to Bonaventure’s chest. They noticed some other traders had fallen prey to the call and rushed to their aid. Their efforts were stopped short when a hideous stench preempted the appearance of several grotesque fish men, whose fish-belly white flesh dripped with ichor. The creatures moved right past the suicidal travelers to assault Legitimate Business Enterprises with their rusty blades. Two ghosted out of the rain and ran Rick & Jin through with salt-tarnished blades, poisoning their bodies and tearing through their guts in one. Another appeared on a roof above and hurled a driftwood javelin at Tusk as two more came charging out of the rain and stabbed at Valens and the previously injured Bonaventure.
The men tried to make for the safety for the inn, but Rick warned them away as he saw several shapes engaged in melee in that same direction. They stood their ground and fought, and finally dispatched the sole (sorry, couldn’t help myself) surviving fish man before they ventured towards the inn and destroyed more of the creatures.
Terza (lead emissary of the Gold Leaf Trading Consortium) shrieked in panic when she inspected one of the vile creatures’ bodies to discover that it had the mark of a Gold Leaf upon its shoulder, just as her friend Surien had, before he met a watery death during the first call, that is. Valens carried her into the inn and they all sat to discuss what they discovered when Jin sensed someone creeping around in the kitchen. He silently indicated as much t the others and Tusk rushed over to kick the door in.