Cordroy, Slide, Randoon and Shadow busy themselves gathering the last of the unearthly crystals that Elysia requested. Escaping from the Inverted Tower of the Order of the Starry Night means confronting a final gantlet of carrion crawlers, lobster-faced tentacle-armed “halflings”, and flying “kites” of undead flesh.
In the battle of the columned hall, Slide stumbles and is carried off, howling his defiance, by a carrion crawler. Cordroy disrupts the aberrant lobsterlings’ attempts to ensnare him by smashing them bodily against the caryatid columns until they burst. Randoon is knocked down by the fleeing carrion crawler, but scrambles into a dark corner and unleashes a salvo of icy blasts at the skin kites. Slide’s shouts abruptly cease. The crawler scrambles back into the room and snatches Shadow this time. The eladrin is tucked into a crevice in the crawler’s lair and battered unconscious.
Randoon and Cordroy finish off the lobsterlings and skin kites and race to the rescue of their comrades. Fortunately for the duo Shadow had gotten in a few vicious blows on the crawler before succumbing to the beast, softening it up for the goliath and the warlock. They kill the beast and kneel beside their fallen friends, frantically plying them with healing potions. Once they are revived enough to stand, the heroes flee the Inverted Tower to deliver the much-needed crystals to the Shrine of Ioun above.
Elysia and Barnabas synthesize an antidote to the amber fever that has infected the disciples of Ioun and the Protectorate soldiers sent to secure the shrine. Elysia confesses to the party that she is overmatched by the threat from the Far Realm that the Inverted Tower seems to represent, yet she wishes to avoid the Protectorate’s threatened usurpation of the Shrine. Staying independent of church politics is almost as important to her as the saving her flock from the emerging aberrations. She begs the party to seek help from the scholar Claudius Ptolemaeus of the Akademeia Zau-Sais in the northwestern quarter of the city. Shadow recognizes the name from an earlier encounter on the Embankment Bridge that involved an attempted mugging by the Shades of Typhon agent named Edge. Ptolemaeus was the victim, and the book he carried was used by Alekto Kerameikos to help the party find the Blackfriar’s hidden crypt beneath the Goblin Market.
The party agrees to seek out Ptolemaeus in return for a supply of healing potions to be delivered to the Jaundiced Jellyfish.
Father Darius of the Erathian Cathedral asks the party for details of the aberrant threat in the Inverted Tower. He provides some background information on the Order of the Starry Night, the Far Realm, and the potential threat, in particular about a “vaeyen” called the Green Moon. He refers to an inscription seen in the Inverted Tower, and in the writings of the Order of the Starry Night:
The Sleeper is the herald. His dreams call to That Which Waits Beyond the Stars. When the Sleeper is awoken, He will dream again.
Father Darius offers to perform a “simple” and “harmless” ritual on Shadow and Randoon to draw out further details on their experiences that they may have perceived, but have trouble recalling due to the trauma of their experience. The two respectfully decline.
On the journey back to the Jellyfish, Shadow spots Cookie, a former employee of his Blackbird master, the Dodger. Cookie appears to be inexpertly shadowing the party. Back at the Jellyfish they are met by Demetrios, a courier from the House of Kerameikos. He acknowledges the receipt of Shadow’s persuasive letter, and says the Lady Alekto has agreed to meet with the party in the morning at the Sands End Gasworks Tavern.
Ciro, the halfling maid at the Jellyfish speaks to Slide about some private matter. He keeps the business to himself. The next morning, somewhat refreshed, the party sets off for Daylain’s shop, the Wonders of the Fae. On the way they chat with Cubit, the ferryman, who passes along the rumor that the Blackbirds are in disarray, and eagerly seeking Slide and Shadow as scapegoats. Shadow plies him with coins to communicate to the guild that the two rogues don’t intend to oppose the guild, and are willing to work with them, if not for them.
At Daylain’s shop the party sells a few of the items they acquired in the Inverted Tower. The eladrin provides some background information on the Order of the Starry Night and the “vaeyen” called the Green Moon. It is, apparently, a phylactery or repository for the soul of a powerful mage. Such a phylactery grants the mage’s material form a kind of immortality, but at great cost. He explains a bit about the “Sleeper” reference, and that the “Sleeper” may refer to the vaeyen, the Green Moon.
On the road westwards through the city, the party again encounters Cookie. This time he appears to be working with Grint Venitari, once an ally of Slide. Slide and Shadow ambush the two “shadows” and wring confessions and promises from them. They agree to pass the word up to Hilt, the head of the Blackbirds, that Slide and Shadow’s plans are intended to complement those of the Blackbirds rather than compete with them. The party rogues offer vague promises of tribute to their former guild.
The party then meets with Lady Alekto Kerameikos at the Sands End Gasworks. She acknowledges the party’s virtue based on their past service to her House, but is reluctant to take sides in the struggle between the Terminus thieves’ guilds: the Vandals, the Shades of Typhon, and the Blackbirds. She agrees to present the party’s proposal that House Kerameikos invest in some Dockside warehouses in support of their efforts to wrest control of the neighborhood from the corruption of the Shades of Typhon.