Synopsis: After an 11-day overland journey, the party investigates the mysterious Lucretia. She had a surprisingly high profile in town, but is now believed to have gone down with the wreck of her floating casino. But why do so many townsfolk have the same tattoo of a familiar symbol?
Sunday, 4 Kuthona 4707
After an uneventful night at the Turtle’s Parlor, the party started asking around the village of Turtleback Ferry about someone named “Lucretia.” To the party’s complete surprise, everyone in town knew Lucretia: she ran a casino on a converted barge called The Paradise, which was usually docked about a mile from shore on Claybottom Lake. Everyone also seemed to know that the barge had caught fire and sank with all hands (including Lucretia) not quite two weeks ago! Only a handful of people had managed to escape the fire and make it to shore.
The party then introduced themselves to the mayor of Turtleback Ferry, a cleric of Erastil named Maelin Shreed. Shreed was an old man, but still strong and spry, and his demeanor seemed stern but friendly. He said that he didn’t approve of Lucretia and her gambling house, but he did like the amount of revenue it brought to town. He wasn’t sad to see that it hurt the business of the other gambling house in town, the Lucky Snapper, which he was sure was run by the Sczarni (although he can’t prove it). He said that the Snapper’s business has bounced back since the loss of Lucretia and her casino, and thought it smelled fishy, but the sheriff wasn’t able to find any links.
The party then went to the Lucky Snapper and played a few games while chatting up the staff and patrons. The staff was happy to see the Paradise gone, but all expressed sorrow at the loss of life. Then Zandu noticed that one of the gamblers had an odd tattoo on his forearm that he seemed to try to keep hidden: the Sihedron Rune, in blue-black ink! After buying the gambler a few drinks, he explained that the tattoo was a secret symbol that Lucretia used for favored customers of the Paradise. “Well, you paid her 25 ducats for the tattoo, which she inked herself, and then you could just show it at the door to get the cover charge waived and 10 shillings in free chips.” It also apparently granted access to the VIP lounge, which had a bar that sold top-shelf liquor and had other pleasures available for sale: drugs like flayleaf and pesh, and also harlots. “Not that I ever partook of those, of course…”