Finally the adventurers came to find the remains of a dwelling, and then another, and another. Until they were surrounded by a sinking shanty town slowly subsiding into the black sea, inhabited by shuffling shadowborn eking out an existence on the fringes of the great city of Cheelast. Across the dusty causeway lay several walled islands, dim lights pushing against the gloom beckoning the adventurers to enter. As they pondered if they should enter, Argos and Rynn finally caught up, directed to Cheelast by Nitru.
Crossing the causeway they entered what appeared to be a market quarter, seeking supplies and advice before taking on the vampire nest. The Market Quarter, like all the islands, was all right angles and low walls. The lowest part of the island was packed stone, with the buildings generally stone but more recent and higher constructions were timber. Every building was different, with almost every architectural style from Faerun having a presence here. And new, every building was new. Over the centuries Cheelast was slowly sinking into the Sea of Tears, rather than move the people simply allowing it and then building more stories onto their homes and businesses.
The adventurers could see this due to each building being a different level, some higher and some lower, and some on strange angles. Below ground level long-forgotten stair cases descended into flooded realms long forgotten, but still accessable to the brave. Seeking information the adventurers entered Meeson's Tavern, and questioned the Shadar-kai owner as to the nature of the city. She was happy to direct them to the market square, and to take more than enough money for their drinks.
Moving through the Market Quarter the adventurers were recommended to find Jack's Alchemy Shack, purveyor of all things alchemical. One of the only Dwarfs in Cheelast, Jack was pleased to see Saggy, and was happy to supply potions and identification services. Just off the market square they found Lance's Money Exchange, Pay Day Loans, and Porn Shop. Here Lance, a paunch middle aged elf, took the time to explain more of Cheelast.
Cheelast uses it's own currency, a locally minted Platinum, instead of any other coin. It is almost a one-for-one exchange for Faerun gold, but most merchants will only take local coin or gems. The city is divided into six wards; the Sunken Ward, the shanty town on the sinking coast; the Market Quarter; the Docks, to the north of the Market; the Factorium, opposite the market and home to the city's entire industrial base; West Port, a rarely used port district that acts as a barrier to the Tower; and Castle Rock, a seemingly fully sunken castle at the city's northeern most point.
Seeking even more answers, and possibly some divine guidance, the adventurers struck out towards the Tower. Crossing the Dusty Causeway they encountered an almost endless stream of wagons carrying goods from the Docks to the Factorium and back. Whatever it was the city manufactured was in high demand somewhere. Entering West Port was easy enough, except for failing to notice the spear trap on the main gate.
Inside seemed abandoned. The noise from the causeway outside could not be heard and no sound emanated from within. Occasionally a glimpse of a robed figure was seen in the distance, and finally one was close enough that Sandrina sneaked down an alley to follow one. She followed it around a corner, and found herself back on the main road behind her companions. Memories of trees came flooding back. Deeper in they found an open square, and spread out to investigate. Looking back they saw the path they had come up was no longer there, looking forward they saw the webs left by something in the dark.
Throwing firebolts indiscriminately around attracted the giant spiders that lived in the square, and they closed in to attack. A combination of webs, swarms, and venom almost felled the party; but instead they only took down Argos and Rynn, cocooning them and taking them away. With their next meal secured the surviving spiders retreated. The remaining adventurers took stock and pondered their next move, to retreat or push on and attempt a rescue?
The silence returned.