With Slaan in tow, we made our way through the place, and found the trapped lizardmen, not without a nasty fight or two. Then he took us to meet the leader.

As you might expect, it wasn’t easy but we convinced him to make a deal whereby each side would leave the other alone. I’m rather peeved that the funny hat I bought with +2 diplomacy (making +6 overall) hasn’t been too helpful. Then again, the dice roll low too often as it is.

Anyway, after that we were back in the village. Talked to the Elder and got him to agree (and Diplomacy failed, there, too). But that put us at the docks, and I wasn’t ready for a trip to Neverwinter just yet.

For one thing, we hadn’t found the missing kids. So we went back to the ruins and explored the surroundings. Fought a bunch of wolves, found the children, and sent them home.

But there was this missing guy named William. Odd thing, there’s no entry in the journal for him. We looked all over outside the ruins but couldn’t find a trace of him. Finally I called it quits and we set sail for civilization.

Happily, the trip was without incident. The first place we went was the Sunken Flagon, of course, to see about that second shard. Got a bit of history about that and a couple other things.

I also learned that I could drop party members here if I wanted to, and they’d wait for my return, no charge. That could be helpful in the future.

The main thing, though, was learning more about the shards. Turned out that a mage who could tell us was stuck in the Blacklake area. Someone had been murdered there (this is shown in a cutscene, by the way) and the area’s been shut off.

The only ways in are to join the city watch or hook up with some thugs. Great choice there. Of course we opted for the Watch.

First we protected a merchant from a shake down racket. Then we went after a guy named Caleb. He didn’t want to come quietly, so now he’s quiet, permanently ;).

Next we did a round of the four guardposts to see if any of the men there were taking bribes. Some were, but they won’t be taking any more. In a couple of cases, we managed to talk them out of it. But there were those who decided to fight. Their mistake.

We got back to HQ to find it in flames. The gang leader, Moire, is obviously not happy with us. Since the place was trashed, we had to move on to the merchant district to see the captain.

On the way, we ran into a couple of groups out for Neeshka’s head. Seems she cleaned out most of her former partner’s loot, and he isn’t happy about that. We’ll have to do something about him in the future.

Meanwhile, we saved a sorceress called Qara from a mage duel in the streets. Diplomacy roll came through, for a change. She went to the inn and we went on to the watch captain.

She and Cormick don’t see eye to eye on the situation in the Docks. But they both agree that we are the answer (isn’t that always the case?). So we have to stop a bunch of weapons being smuggled into the city. I’m sure that’s going to be just loads of fun.

We also came across everyone’s favorite Kobold, Deekin. Looks like he’s had enough adventuring for awhile, and has set up as a merchant. He had some nice items for sale, few of which we can afford right now. Maybe later.