The Fog Hounds put some effort into figuring out who those weirdos who messed with the boss' cousin was, and filled in two segments in their "Find the Fucking Weirdos" clock. Lord Scurlock did some less obvious things and marked off a couple of segments in his own clock.
Cassilda used to be a leviathan hunter before she accidentally swallowed a bit of leviathan blubber, which is another way of saying demon flesh. Usually people die from this. Cassilda, for some reason, did not die -- but she contracted a serious case of the weird, and found herself no longer welcome on the Valcorel's leviathan hunting fleet. Or anyone else's fleet, for that matter.
Cas is now a cutter at somewhat loose ends. She fell in with the Church of the Empty Vessel?, a small cult dedicated to the idea that we owe ghosts a chance to possess us for the greater good, and as this session began, she was still searching for a higher purpose.
The group was hanging around the Old Dragon drinking mushroom wine when Orian? showed up. He was unusual, even by Old Dragon standards, in that he was wearing stilts and taking great care not to touch the ground. He chatted up the trio a bit before getting down to business: he wanted to hire them on behalf of the Attic to steal something from a bunch of ne'er-do-well punks?. After a bit of negotiation they settled on a 2 coin payment, plus whatever else the bunch could steal during the job.
Orian: "Do you guys have a name, by the way?"
Flashback to the boat: everyone's sitting around arguing about names. Dock is partial to something guttural and hyphenated that nobody else can pronounce. Etty? and Crucible are getting somewhat worried; if they don't come up with something soon the unpronounceable name is going to stick, and that's bad for branding. Etty looks at Diamond, and brightens. In unison, Etty and Crucible declare the crew to be...
Etty: "Yeah, we're the Hexhounds."
Orian: "Oh, that's good. I'll spread it around; people were starting to call you 'Those Fucking Weirdos.'"
The Hexhounds agreed to come by the Attic the following evening.
Meanwhile Anton?, pastor of the Empty Vessel, informed Cas that he'd gotten wind of a relic that the Empty Vessel badly wanted: the Widow's Collar?. He'd contracted with the Attic, a group of occult brokers, to retrieve it for him. The Attic in turn intended to subcontract the work out to some reasonably deniable thugs. Anton, concerned about the number of moving parts in all this, wanted Cas to go hang out with the thugs to make sure things went smoothly. Cas was amenable to this.
The Hexhounds met up at the Attic the next evening as planned; Cas was already there. It's a weird place. The building is well cared for, but the first floor is completely featureless and the second floor is full of windows. Orian met them on the empty first floor, still wearing those stilts. All the action is on the second floor, in -- well -- the attic. Where Mishya hangs out.
Her... let's call it a throne room... had a lot of bookshelves, primarily stocked with various arcane texts. Judging by those and the runework cleverly integrated into her full sleeve tattoos, she has some pretty strong arcane cred. Dock, who likes all manner of occult things, promptly tried to steal a book. He's not very sneaky and everyone in the room noticed.
Mishya: “What the hell is even going on here?”
Crucible: "He’s poorly socialized. We’re really sorry."
Mishya: "Were you going to bring it back?"
Dock: "No, not at all."
Mishya: "OK. OK, this is why I need to have someone along to keep an eye on you guys, I guess."
After the dust settled, the Hexhounds agreed to go steal the Widow's Collar from the Water Rats?. Mishya explained at painful detail that the Water Rats were slime who lived under the ground, like complete animals. It's not healthy to live underground. It's barely healthy, she explained, to live on the ground, but you can't expect everyone to realize that. This mostly seemed irrelevant to the score.
The Rats were known as Nightmarket drug dealers. Their drug den, The Two Neck Hole, was also well known, but the Hexblades recognized that any halfway smart gang was unlikely to keep the really valuable stuff in their place of business. Thus: time to gather information.
Dock thought that if he had some drugs, he could perform a ritual to figure out where the drugs had once been, and there was a good chance that'd be where the Water Rats kept the rest of their stuff. Etty and Cas decided they'd just tail The Two Neck Hole's manager. Crucible volunteered to buy drugs for Dock, and the two investigations kicked off.
Etty sent Diamond to do the actual leg work, with Cas serving as overwatch and spotter. This worked well in terms of not being caught, but Diamond's eyes aren't human, so it's a little bit hard for Etty to interpret what's going on. Nonetheless the pair managed to narrow down the location of the Water Rat's vaults to a couple of square blocks of Nightmarket. Etty, Cas, and Crucible all got back to the Hexhound's ship around the same time.
Crucible came back from her expedition with a dreamy smile and a half-packet of drugs for Dock. Dock reached out to Setarra? to help with the ritual; Setarra was as always happy to help out Dock. Between the two of them -- mostly fueled by demonic occult powers -- they confirmed the actual building in which the lair was located.
Under cover of the usual darkness, the Hexhounds slipped into the basement of the phyiscker who occupied the building above the lair. They were unable to find any further passage (starting at a desperate position), so elected to go for brute force instead: Crucible pulled out some explosive mixture and blew a hole in the wall. Unfortunately, the backblast from the explosion filled her leg with shrapnel. Cas, eager to prove her worth, enlarged the hole. On the other side, they found a pair of guards who were uninterested in allowing further entrance.
The four Hexhounds made relatively short work of the guards, and sniffing around further, they found a secret door. Beyond the door, a stairway descended well below the water level. Unphased, the Hexhounds continued downwards. At the next level, they found a maze made of invisible walls, echoing with the cries of ghostly madmen. Worse, the entire sub-basement section appeared to be sinking -- if they didn't hurry, there'd be no passage back outwards once they'd claimed their treasure.
Dock slipped on his spirit mask, which proved to provide the ability to see the walls of spirit-stuff. He hastily led the others further in, until their path was blocked by a pair of Skovlander ghosts. The Hexhounds once again went the brute force, expeditious route: Dock shattered the existence of the first ghost, with Etty's help, and Cas... ate the second ghost. Or allowed him to ride her body, depending on how you look at it. Either way the immediate problem was resolved.
Finally, they reached the Water Rat vault: the Widow's Collar was there, displayed on a dressmaker's dummy. It was a lovely piece of jewelry. The claustrophobic room also had a safe and a small altar in it.
Cas: "That's probably objectively evil in there."
Etty: "I touch it."
Etty elected to scoop up the gorgeous and expensive Widow's Collar rather than the evil altar. The rest of the crew, unwilling to leave behind a safe full of presumably valuables, huddled. Crucible once again came up with a useful concoction from her bandolier; this time, it was a dose of drift oil, which when poured upon the safe left it floating in midair. Thus satisfied, the crew made their way towards the exit.
And made it out in the nick of time. Cas nearly broke her back preventing the mechanism from sealing her friends in the tomb before slipping through the tiny remaining hole. With a grinding screech, whatever was left beneath the phyiscker's building was sealed shut, and the Hexhounds made good time back to their boat.