Art, Fenix, Noble, and Vi are at a tavern – the Goat & Robber. Art is trying to relax, Fenix is trying to hustle, Noble is telling a tale (hired by the Goat & Robber), Vi is drinking after killing some spiders (also hired by the Goat & Robber). There’s a scream from the back room and they all go to investigate. (After Fenix spills his drink all over Art, that is.) There stands a badass-looking dwarf woman, Kzandro, standing over a dead body. She looks terrified. Upon inspection, it appears to be Hamric, one of the owners of the tavern, and the wound appears to be some sort of spider bite. (Way to fail at your job, Vi.) When the dwarf is asked where <s>Borel</s> Borat, the other owner, has gone, she says that he’d left to buy some potatoes, to which Noble has extreme doubts because who leaves to get potatoes at that time of night? More pressing reveals that she doesn’t really know why he left, but that he looked nervous and uncomfortable when he said he was stepping out.
Soon after this, Borat returns with Kaelthorn, head guard of the town of Grimsby, and very obviously lacking these potatoes the group was told of. The group is questioned, then told they can’t leave until Kaelthorn finishes her investigation, so they’re locked within the tavern. Which apparently means it’s time to raid the bar and that it’s a free pass for Fenix to try his hand at flare bartending, which he proceeds to fail at. There’s glass and many alcoholic liquids everywhere.
Vi decides to try to listen in on Borat and Kaelthorn’s conversation. He sees that Borat looks rather nervous and uncomfortable, and when Borat says that nothing appears to be missing, he looks especially suspicious. Clearly something is missing, but what? Vi carefully rushes back to the group to tell them of what he’s learned. Everyone seems to keep getting drunker by the second, though.
There then comes a strange smell…a smelly smell that smells…smelly. They start to look around, Art heading toward a staircase that leads downstairs where the smell grows stronger. The door at the end of the staircase is locked, so Vi asks Fenix, in all his large glory, to knock the door down. Fenix then proceeds to bust his shoulder on the door and fall over. The door unfazed. Vi is in disbelief.
Art steps up to bat and proceeds to bust a hole in the door with his mace. (Fenix keeps saying it’s because he weakened it for him.) The smelly smell instantly becomes stronger. It becomes more obvious that the smell is that of something decaying behind the locked door. It’s pretty gross.
It’s at this time that Noble notices a young woman, Avamire, sitting at a table in the corner, looking nervous and uncomfortable. He goes over to speak with her (of which she becomes a little more nervous, because these guys just raided the bar and then proceeded to bust down a door) and asks her if she’s familiar with the place (which is sort of is) and asks her if she can think of anything of importance that might have gone missing. She mentions a strawberry rhubarb pie, which…sounds delicious but honestly is it even helpful…? Maybe! In the department of helping satisfy some hunger and one’s sweet tooth.
But then <s>Netheridge</s> Toby Maguire comes downstairs from the rooms on the second floor, complaining about all the noise. Upon seeing the bar in a rather aggressive state of destruction along with a mace in a door, he becomes super nervous and tries to head back upstairs, but Vi keeps him from leaving and tells him to stay on the main floor. (Toby Maguire pushes his (as in Toby’s, not Vi’s) bangs out of his eyes. Everyone is uncomfortable.)
Vi and Noble head upstairs to do some searching in the rooms. It goes as follows:
#8 – Vi’s room. It’s a mess.
#7 – A cloak that grabs Noble’s attention, and he grabs it, and he feels nice and safe and wants to keep it but decides to ask around once they return downstairs (but still wants to keep it). Vi finds a bag of 10 gold pieces and he tries to be “nice” and “sneaky” and only takes 3. (He comes back later and takes the remaining 7.)
#6 – Fenix’s room. Kinda messy.
#5 – Vi finds a romance novel on the bed. It’s not Vi’s bag, so he asks Noble about it, but Noble’s already read it (it’s an alright book, not good but not bad) but Vi just leaves it where he found it.
#4 – Art’s room. Pretty bare, just some clothes in the room.
#3 – Noble’s room. He grabs his staff just in case and then they’re on their way!
#2 – There’s a small bag of 10 gold coins under the bed which both Vi and Noble notice so they split it.
#1 – It looks like someone has already looked through the room – it’s in a state of disarray. Noble sees some scratches on the floor. He asks Vi if they’re spider scratches (can spiders even scratch, though) but upon closer inspection, the scratches appear to be from the desk being moved. They move it, and within a compartment within the wall there’s a rather mysterious, shimmering feather. Noble grabs it before they can check it, to which Vi loses his shit.
~ Meanwhile, Downstairs ~
Fenix continues trying to intimidate Toby Maguire (who is clearly chilling not like a villian). Fenix looks downstairs toward the now open cellar and yells for Art to see if he’s alright – Art is a-ok. The cellar looks normal enough – booze, wine rack, sacks full of potatoes (!!), etc. Art begins to look around to see if anything is amiss and, lo and behold, comes across a pair of feet sticking out from beyond the wine rack. The feet belong to a young woman who has clearly been stabbed and her face is all disfigured.
Art, who’s been drinking from a nondescript bottle of alcohol all night, takes yet another swig as he walks out of the cellar to tell Fenix there’s a dead body in there. Fenix misunderstands and somehow hears “potatoes” (everyone’s really disappointed about the lack of potatoes) and runs in to join Art, actually pushing him back closer to the body in the process, only to find that, yes, there are, in fact, potatoes! But there is a dead body. Which sadly distracts from the potatoes.
~ Meanwhile, Back at the Mystery Feather ~
Noble tries to hand the feather to Vi, but he refuses until they can check it. Luckily it seems harmless enough and Nobel tucks it behind Vi’s ear. (Vi gains +1 to charm.)
~ The Gang Start Multiple Fights ~
Noble and Vi return to the main floor of the tavern, where Noble asks Toby Maguire about the cloak. He denies knowing anything about and says he was in room #2, which the cloak hadn’t been in. Noble Acquired: Free Cloak! Noble tucks it away, which prompts Vi to take the feather out of his hair to hide it. Avamire notices the feather and she’s totally pumped about it and asks where he found it and Vi totally lies about it but, no worries, gang! She’s really just genuinely excited about the fashion choices being made.
After seeing the dead body, Fenix runs back to the main floor, Art slowly following behind as the man just keeps taking swigs from that bottle of booze. Kaelthorn and Borat come out from the back room, and Borat is understandably shocked at the state of his tavern what with the countless broken bottles of booze and the busted down cellar door.
Kaelthorn isn’t upset, she’s just disappointed. She approaches Vi to ask what happened and he kinda sorta manages to explain what happened and Art pipes up to say that there’s a dead body in the cellar. So she turns to Art to ask for more information and as Art explains, Kaelthorn looks understandably concerned but also pretty horrified. She tells the guard at the front door to keep the place locked down, then proceeds to push past Art to see the body for herself.
Borat and Toby Maguire share a look. It’s a questionable look. Vi calls them out on it. Toby then proceeds to try to shank Vi but totally fails in his attempt. Fenix never liked Toby’s face to begin with so he uses it as a reason to kick his ass in a drunken brawl. He tries to punch Toby but totally misses. Kaelthorn tries as well – also totally missed. Fists are flying everywhere but everyone keeps missing! Vi is watching, Noble is just embarrassed for everyone, and Art just finished off his booze so he proceeds to smash the now empty bottle on Toby’s head, disorienting him. After gathering up some of her pride, Kaelthorn proceeds to arrest Toby. Success!
Borat is not happy. At all. Looks hella distressed. And bolts for the door. Pretty much everyone chases after him, yeah, he doesn’t get very far. And just as everyone nabs him, the door opens and the guard peers in with a million question marks flying over his head. Vi then proceeds to try to explain what happened again but he just rambles a bunch, per usual. And then Borat is arrested! 2 for 2, team!
But also super unfortunate because Noble and Vi need to be paid for their services and if one of the owners is dead and the other is being arrested, how will money exchange hands for said services? Toby Maguire starts flinging accusations, saying the gang stole stuff (clearly no, free stuff was found) and Fenix proceeds to punch his lights right on out (all the while Noble is trying to hide in the shadows, crazy embarrassed).
Noble (who super failed his perception check) starts to see Randy the Tiny Male Dwarf dancing on one of the tables while everyone else sees that Avamire has fangs. Everyone collectively mutters, “God damn it.” (Noble: “We didn’t even think about vampires…”) Art reaches for another bottle of booze to drink which prompts Vi to be concerned for his wellbeing while Fenix braces while also shuffling over to step behind Vi. Noble is still pretty much oblivious (having a good time with Randy). Avamire proceeds to transform into something super hellish and grotesque – guess what, she’s a spider! A super huge and gross one!
Long story short they actually do pretty wonderfully but are all understandably super grossed out and then are totally covered in spider guts once they kill her! Everything’s a mess! And then there’s a bag found amongst all the guts and Vi, not thinking at all, picks up the bag, opens it, and dumps the contents on the floor. The fuzzy ball that falls out is not at all pleased, but Art quickly picks it up, realizes it’s a Bag of Tricks and dumping it out on the floor was not a good idea. Art pets the bag and tells it nice things and balance is restored! (Art: Tribble Whisperer)
Kzandro comes out of the kitchen, sees the state of things, and starts sobbing. Oh no! Fenix lifts a hand for a high five! …
Noble returns the high five! Yeah!
Kzandro cries about how the gang took her livelihood away but after Fenix explains that, hey, the place is basically hers now, she comes out on top! Realization dawns on her and she’s like, yeah, ok, I’m picking up what you’re putting down, and says that the gang are always welcome at the Goat & Robber! Hooray!
And then Nobel and Vi get paid 5 copper pieces, which is depressing.
And then Art looks at the cloak and explains that it’s the Cloak of Protection! Noble feels safe. And the feather is a Feather Token! Vi feels pretty.
And then Art gets super pumped and tosses the Bag of Tricks in the air and suddenly there’s a huge, majestic lion standing in the middle of the tavern, shaking its mane out.
Art and Fenix want to pet it.