While en route to Soratos, the convoy is stopped by a frigate of The Blessed Talons, a knightly order searching for artifacts of dark magic. Under the command of Commander Ayla, the Talons search the ship, confiscating a few baubles and trinkets. At the urging of Wil and Vintari, the Talons cut their search short, and part ways, but not before warning them about the dangers of Soratos.
Upon arriving in the city, the party again questions Aelar about the The Crimson Company’s operations in the city. He tells them that their base of operations in the city was at the Broken Cathedral: an old temple converted into a tavern.
Once there, Loderr engages in a few wrestling matches to prove his worth and earn a few coin, and the party investigates, noting the presence of an elderly elf and a young, smooth-faced mercenary, watching.
Garryk runs into Fenn, an old comrade from his mercenary days. After a brief, half-hearted drunken struggle, Fenn sleeps it off, then gives the party more information: the two curious figures are Crimson Company recruiters, looking for mercenary mages for an upcoming job.
Belial approaches and asks for work. The young man offers a test job: to go to the shop of Vondal, reclaim a down payment made for work, and to reclaim a set of custom crossbows that the Company had commissioned. The team agrees, in order to find out what the Company is up to.
They find Vondal in a panic, and packing up to leave. The frightened dwarf tells the adventurers that the Company commissioned him to build great grappling crossbows. Upon researching a bit, Vondal found out that the crossbows could be used to breach the floating sphere-palaces of the Eldritch Princes. Frightened, he refused to give back the crossbows and was preparing to flee the city.
The party keeps up the ruse, and takes the money and knocks out Vondal to take him to their ship. They then take the crossbows back to the Broken Cathedral, where the young mercenary guides them into a shack near the tavern. Once inside, the party is barred in. Lightning magic courses through the shack, and a fight ensues as the Company tries to clear up loose ends. All but two of the mercenaries are killed, who then divulge more information.
The mercenaries claim that the Company is operating out of an old fortress in the Prophets’ Grave.
After resting up at their ship, the party returns to the Broken Cathedral, where word has spread of the Company’s defeat in that back alley battle. With rumors, comes more information. Fenn and a local drunk inform the party that several people have been roughing up librarians, knowledge priests and bookstore owners, in search of some sort of knowledge. Details are scarce, but the town drunk says he saw a knowledge temple get roughed up in another part of town.
The party heads there, to find the holy library ransacked, and the priest dead with a Thornwalker dagger in his neck. Looking over the body is a well-dressed young boy, whose soul is rife with infernal energy.