Returning from Terracina with the fake amulet, the group sets about gathering supplies and resolving their plans. Before heading down into the sewers for an indeterminate amount of time, Brek decides to meet with the maid, taking Fiona along as a chaperon in an effort to make the woman more comfortable. They discuss his father, her duties in his employ, and the reasons why Stern left. She retells the arrival of one of Brek’s aunt who bore a note claiming that Brek’s mother had been kidnapped or killed or kidnapped and killed. The maid was unclear on this point. Brek left his mother safe in Skivendia and it is not possible that a messenger could have arrived with news of her demise months before his arrival in Ceccana, so for reasons he does not know, his aunt lied to his father. The maid was instructed to clean the house and that Stern was not returning. She was also instructed to leave a red carnation, though she does not know why. Having begun to master his visions, Brek is able to see the vision he saw of his father’s departure and identify which of his aunts had brought the message.
While Brek and Fiona are meeting with the maid, Elihas and Ragnar return to Ciro’s home to see if any of their competitors have made as much progress as them. They find the place ransacked and Ciro missing (though no signs of his demise). Later Elihas and Brek return looking for Ciro’s journal, but it is missing. Brek attempts to divine what has happened and hears the search through the house and a man shout, “I found it!” With Ciro’s disappearance and the loss of his journal, it is likely those who took it know about the party. The group starts to be more cautious and indeed discover that their house is being watched. They leave for the sewers at a time they believe is free from observance.
The group heads up The Hill toward the Governor’s Palace (where the magister lives). They find a manhole cover to the sewers at the end of a dead-end alley. They pry it open only to discover that the hole is barred. Rather than going farther way from the palace to non-barred holes (places Fiona has been in before) like any sane person would, Brek simply smashes the bars from their bolts. The resultant noise draws the attention of the local street patrol. The group hops through the hole and recovers it before anyone enters the alley. The patrol is able to open the cover and when they see the bars are missing, they call for reinforcements. The party takes a few turns in an attempt to avoid pursuit.
Traveling through the sewers, they head toward the palace. Though Elihas’ research did not provide an exact location, they figure to start at the source and then search outward. Security in the sewers increases the closer they get to the palace. A locked iron gate bars there way, no challenge to Elihas’ nimble fingers. But when Fiona walks through, she steps on a pressure place that releases a trap. A spiked log falls from the ceiling and swings at her. The group nimbly ducks out of the way. The falling stone from the ceiling, however, alerts the guards to their location (as they had actually turned the wrong direction). The party cuts the ropes and tosses the log and the debris into the sewer water. They then close the gate and jam the lock so it cannot be opened (not thinking to jam the lock to the door on the other side of the canal). They continue forward, more wary of traps and discover murder holes. The deliberate for a LONG time and the Skivendians finally step over the pressure plate and avoid the trap all together.
They reach the end of the sewer. The water retreats underground. But for some reason, the passageway continues onward. They find a decrepit, broken down door that leads into a circular chamber. There is only one other door in the room and it is well maintained. Oiled hinges, iron banded, with wood not warped by weather or age. The guards are still pursuing them and the group decides this is an opportune place for an ambush. The group fights and eventually wins, killing all the guards (despite Ragnar’s best efforts to knock them out). As the blood drains from the soldiers’ lifeless bodies, the party notices that there are small grooves in the floor. They begin to fill with blood, one circle, then another concentric circle, then another…