Roderick and Raus went to the Shallyan hospice to recover, Bjorn went home, and Noa went to crash at Rodericks on the docks after checking in at the College. Noa was hailed by a voice from a dark alley, it was Frederick Grosz. Frederick was looking for Roderick, but Noa told him he was in the hospital after going to a garden party. Frederick said he was skipping town before he got his throat slit and was hoping Roderick and his crew could escort him out. He offered Noa 10 shillings, but Noa tried to bargain and was quite rude. Frederick told him where to stuff his attitude and slinked off. Noa paid no more attention to it and went to crash.
The next day Roderick and Raus checked out of the hospice and they all went to the Journey’s End Tavern to meet with Graf von Kaufman. Von Kaufman wanted to know what information they had gathered about the attack at his party, and what they knew about the criminal activities on the docks, as he suspected the two were related. Bjorn showed him the throwing star he had recovered and told him the wound caused to the demigryph by it was similar to wounds on bodies killed on the docks. Von Kaufman took this as evidence that events were indeed related. He offered them a reward for returning his artifacts and the killer of his falconer, one gold crown for each artifact and another for the murderer. Noa asked to see the star, and realized it was made with an amalgam of warpstone, stuff of pure chaos. Noa freaked out and started arguing in circles about what to do with the throwing star. Bjorn and Raus assured him they would turn it over to the Church of Sigmar for safekeeping, quite surprised at how riled up Noa got about the small weapon.
Noa and Roderick went to see Luminary Mauer about the warpstone throwing star while Bjorn and Raus took it to the Church of Sigmar. When Mauer heard about the weapon, he had a eureka moment where he declared his suspicions were right about the wounds on the body. The wounds were likely the work of a “weeping blade”, a weapon used by Skaven. Skaven were ratmen who lived deep in the underworld and worshipped a diety known as “The Horned Rat” whose 169 edicts ruled them. There were lots of legends about the Skaven, but they were a secretive race. Mauer was now convinced they were dealing with a Skaven assassin. He even showed them a book detailing the weeping blades, weapons made with warpstone that caused wounds poisoned with chaos. Asked what else he knew about them, he said they could be hiding anywhere in the city. They went about unseen, could be slinking through shadows at night, using the sewers, or skittering across the rooftops. They were vile and cunning, and the number 13 was sacred to them. Other than that, he had no idea where to find them. They could be hiding anywhere…
Returning to the docks they searched around for any more clues. While passing the Knacker’s, an irate man with a lame nag asked if they had seen “that no good lazy knacker”. He had an appointment and the knacker wasn’t here.
The street urchin they had paid earlier to watch Ute’s place, found them and told them he had found Ute’s hurdy-gurdy. He showed it to them, it was up against a barge pulled onto the mudflats where the river had receded near The Upright Pig. Raus reasoned that it had floated downstream and washed up against the barge. They went upstream and looked around when Roderick realized the smell he had caught a whiff of at the falconry exhibit was present in this area. It was pervasive around all the limehouses, gong farms, and tanneries in this part of the docks. They went to the White Horse about dinner time and started asking around about strange people being seen or anything unusual happening with the businesses on the upstream end of the docks district or other missing persons. Roderick found out that Fritz the Cutpurse had not been seen in a while, and that Hans the Knacker had not been seen all day. Roderick also found someone who claimed to have seen the Black Cowl slinking around at night in the alleyways. He was short, stooped, and covered with a cowl and cloak. Raus talked to the proprietor of the Horse and found out Linus and Dieter, two adjacent tanners had been spending their days recently in the Horse spending an unusual amount of money on drink. They had said something about their tanneries being closed for “renovations”. Roderick, asking around about Linus and Dieter, found out Linus had been seen at Mathilda’s this afternoon.
Going to The Pig to find Mathilda, Roderick looked for Grosz. He wasn’t there and the owner of The Pig told him Grosz had cleared out his possessions from his room yesterday (Noa hadn’t mentioned his visit with Grosz and still didn’t when Roderick told them what he had heard). Roderick was very interested in what had happened to Grosz (Noa continued to stay silent). Roderick talked to Mathilda who told him that Linus had brought here a small chunk of gold broken from a larger piece to sell. The chunk had a piece of a carving on it, she showed it to him. He was pretty sure it was broken from the plaque stolen yesterday. Mathilda said Linus claimed to have two pieces he wanted to sell. She told them where Linus was holing up.
They went to visit Linus, concocting a complex plan to do a home invasion. When Noa knocked trying to pretend to be drunk, Linus answered and said “Oh, it’s you, you’re with Rodericks crew right? Come on in!” This caught them by surprise, they went in to the small one room flat Linus was renting. He told them he had been served with a notice from the city a fortnight ago that his tannery was water damaged and had to be closed for renovations by order of the city. He was paid compensation of 20 shillings for the trouble. Dieter, the tannery next door, got the same. Yesterday they were given their next weeks payment in the form of the gold chunks by Friederic Grosz. Grosz had told them that Roderick could help if there was any trouble with the payment. Linus wondered where his money was for the gold, he couldn’t spend the gold chunk for booze and needed silver. Roderick told him they had a buyer and to sit tight.
They returned to Mathilda and told her they would buy the gold. They made arrangements for tomorrow with her and asked her to keep their involvement quiet. She agreed.
They went to the tanneries of Linus and Dieter around midnight. They were quiet and abandoned, sitting along the river with a common set of drainage works between them. Roderick picked the simple lock on the gate of Linus’ tannery and they went into the open yard. There were several building, shacks, vats, crates, and other equipment for tanning hides. Grated drains criss-crossed the yard and there was a trap door on the side towards the drainage works between the two tanneries. The found a lantern and oil, lit it and went down the ladder under the trap door into the sluice drain between the tanneries.
When they entered the sluice drain they saw a massive rat man, apparently a Skaven mutant, with three arms and a scorpions tail waiting for them. He wielded a greatsword and a shield and had a large green gem embedded in his chest. Behind him was a smaller Skaven in robes embroidered with runes. The smaller one began casting a spell as the large Skaven roared a challenge. Noa spotted a third Skaven slinking in the shadows off to the side wielding a nasty looking green blade and holding another green throwing star in his hand. He had little time to warn them though, as the mutant monstrosity charged, the green gem flaring to life with a sickly green glow as the Skaven sorcerer muttered some magical words.
The fear was palpable as the howls of the Skaven mutant rang off the stone walls of the cramped sluice drain.