A Cup of Miracles

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Sister Jenna Relani - the Amalthean who is searching for the Mael Cup, a relic she believes will help cure a plague on Malignatius - has located the "Village of Roland", where it is said to have been taken during the age of miracles. The village is in fact named Temsin Urtiz, and it is in the northern part of the continent of Avalon, several hundred miles south of Menoket and about a thousand miles from the island continent of Airvaya Vego, home to the Imperial RAID research labs.

Ruins of Temsin Urtiz

Temsin Urtiz is in ruins when the heroes arrive; after poking around the ruins, they determine that it has been probably ten years since it was destroyed, likely during the Emperor Wars. A reliquary in the half-crumbled chapel seems to have once held a cup, but it - like everything else in the village - has been looted.

In the rectory, however, the ancient records of the village church are discovered, confirming that the Mael Cup was there, and using those records the heroes go to a neighboring village where they determine that some refugees from Temsin Urtiz might have made it to Menoket.

Denizens of Menoket

The city of Menoket is run by a Reeve administrator, who is of limited help to the heroes, though he fills them in on the conflict: Menoket was held by the Hazat during the Wars, and Muster forces hired by Alexius ultimately took the peninsula and then the city. Ridek and Don Alejandro speak to the Muster, who provide them with some information about the Muster companies who were engaged in the action.

At the Menoket cathedral, the old chartophylax takes the records from Temsin Urtiz and directs Father Domingo towards the Church of St. Lextius out in the West Side, the slums of Menoket.

St. Lextius' is a huge church the size of an indoor basketball court, built for soldiers a millennium ago when the Gesar controlled the planet. Over the course of the centuries, worshippers have made tiny, home-made icons of saints, which now cover the walls as offerings and hang from the rafters. Father Rybor, the priest, connects the heroes with Brother Jose, a gangster from the west side, who in turn connects them to Hadrian Temsin, who was the miller's boy and fled Temsin Urtiz.

Hadrian tells the heroes that a set of slavers moved through the village when the fighting was done, looting and taking everything, and identifies the head slaver - a man with coal-black skin and a glowing orange Chainer tattoo who travels in a fiery orange Wagon of Paulus. Don Alejandro's friend at the Muster Hiring Hall identifies the slaver as a Chief Acco Phren.

Acco Phren Visits Nuevo Madrid

Chief Acco Phren is based out of the slave market in Tulasca, but given the heroes' issues with the Scravers there they instead ask him to meet them in Nuevo Madrid. He is reluctant, but Captain Ridek negotiates a 100 fb fee for him to appear, at which point Don Dario interviews him about the raid on Temsin Urtiz.

Phren is not that forthcoming, but he finally admits that an Engineer named Vizex XIX - part of his entourage at the time - looted the church and then left his service. He believes that he is now employed by Imperial RAID.

A call to the Imperial RAID commander - Brigadier-Commander Ashara Cameton - reveals that Dr. Vizex's research was shut down by Imperial decree; she won't communicate more via the wireless, but the heroes take wing for Delos, the port city of Airvaya Vego.

RAID Headquarters / Dunking in Delos Bay

Commander Cameton reveals under some pressure that Dr. Vizex was engaged in bio-weapons research, and that she believes he has continued his research privately since the Emperor cut off his funding. She expresses some concern that he is engaged in dangerous plague research, and offers to connect the heroes to some of his former researchers.

While she is talking to Don Dario, however, Father Domingo notices Acco Phren's distinctive flitter making a visual fly-by of the tower, and immediately questions start being asked. Phren is operating under an old license from Dr. Vizex's now-shutdown program, and so the Imperial RAID authorities order him to land - but first, he dumps some cargo into the bay, likely slaves.

Phren refuses to give up any information on the landing field, so Don Dario takes him up in the RAID Commander's flitter to the place where the cargo was dumped - and then he pushes Phren into the water, where Phren begins to sink. He hauls the slaver up just a little and begins questioning him, upon which he reveals that Vizex has resumed research on an island lab of the northern coast of Airvaya Vego.

The companions "borrow" Phren's flitter and head to the island, intent on confronting Vizex XIX.

The Island of Dr. Vizex

The island lab is basically a pinnacle of rock; the heroes land, subdue the Muster guards who come to meet them, and then enter the facility. They come upon Dr. Vizex in his lab, at which point Father Domingo hits him with a hammer and Captain Ridek shoots him in the knee.

Quickly enough, they discover that Vizex has been working on a plague that spreads swiftly and causes terrible aggression in its patients - the sort of thing to drop in an enemy encampment and swiftly devastate it, with a high enough mortality to not spread too far. He has been restraining the worst effects of the plague through an amplification device surrounding the Mael Cup, with help from a Leaguehim engineer named Storolf. Don Alejandro believes the Cup is beginning to fail, however, and in general Vizex believes that if it is removed from its device the afflicted will start attacking those in the lab.

Don Dario calls the Imperial Eye for backup and then the Muster in the facility start to tie down the afflicted; then, when the cup is removed from the device, Sister Jenna begins to theurgically heal all of the plague-ridden she can. She heals almost all of them before she collapses into a coma, at which point the heroes leave with Dr. Vizex's research - to be given to the Amaltheans - and the Imperial Eye slags the facility from orbit.

Dramatis Personae

  • Acco Phren -- Muster slaver with an unsavory reputation and a glowing orange tattoo.
  • Sister Jenna Relani -- Amalthean healer trying to cure a plague on Malignatius.
  • Vizex XIX -- Engineer engaging in bio-weapons research.
  • Brigadier-Commander Ashara Cameton -- Commander of the Imperial RAID Research Labs.