We begin our adventures in the city of Majipoor. The Circle has been here for some time, each for their own reasons, and and have had the chance to form a relationship with its ruler, Prince Marek. The Prince has called for their help once again, this time in bringing down the infamous bandit Lao the Butcher. Head of the palace guard under the previous ruler, Lao was now leading a prominent and growing group of bandit. Indeed, that very night he had murdered the son of a prominent merchant, Nash Acar. Prince Marek charge the Circle with finding Lao, and bringing him to the capital for trial and, he was confident, execution for his crimes.
Despite the Prince’s confidence, many of the Circle-mates felt there must be more to the story, and so they set out to the home of Nash Acar. High on the central hill of Majipoor, the architecture of the neighborhood stood in sharp contrast to the rest of the city. Here the buildings are of polished stone, with soaring arches, tiled roofs and small family gardens. Upon reaching the Acar family home, they find the house guarded by members of the Iron Wolves. Fortunately Arden was able to talk the group’s way past the guards, and Vox was able to ingratiate himself with the family valet. The clearly shaken man was able to guide the group to the room of the young victim.
The scene was a blood bath. Arden, Gilt Prism, and the Wanderer cased the room, and were soon able to determine that far from a ruthless assassination or occult ritual killing, someone had opened up the young boy and splashed around like a child in a muddy puddle. By peering into the immaterial, Arden was able to observe that the perpetrator was no mere bandit, but some form of spirit, that had simply walked out through a second floor wall. In the meantime, Vox spoke with the valet, and determined that Nash Acar had no clear enemies, even declining trade with questionable partners. Unfortunately it was at that point the mourning mother encountered the group, and in her grief ordered them out of the home.
Believing there was more to learn, the group split up. The Laughing Scamp turned to his criminal contacts, seeking information about Lao the Butcher. Arden turned his attention to the spiritual aspects of the case, seeking help from Majipoor’s City Father. The rest sought out the captain of the Iron Wolves, who had led the investigation into the attack on the boy. Vox was able to make a good impression on Captain Ilen, and was able to determine that the search had been taken seriously, but that the conclusion of Lao’s involvement was the Prince’s and not the captain’s.. Meanwhile the Scamp determined that Lao was a figure of much disputed reputation, demonized by the ruling merchant class, while seen much more sympathetically by the underclasses. At the same time Arden managed to garner the attention of Wan Sen, the god of Majipoor. With careful prayers and propitiation, he convinces Wan Sen to use his oversight of the city to try and detect the source of the young Acar boy’s attacker.
Having done all they felt they could in Majipoor, the Circle resolved to set out in search of Lao the butcher. The first night out of the city, their sleep is disturbed by a violent disturbance among the animals of the forest, loudly screeching and crashing through the woods. Finally ending after midnight, the circle could find now source of the disturbance, and so resumed their journey. Coming across a small village, Vox and the Scamp sought more information about where to search for the bandit Lao while Gilt Prism began spreading her artwork, subtly spreading the reputation of the Circle as heroes. Vox learned of an area frequented by the bandits, and the information turned out to be excellent as the CIrcle was ambushed two days later by a well armed gang of bandits. It quickly became clear however that they more accustomed to preying on fat merchants rather than reborn god-kings, as they were quickly decimated by Wanderer and Eight. In the end, one bandit, who had hidden from the rest, fled off into the forest, with the Circle in hot pursuit, uncertain what the would find when they caught up…