When the Acolytes broke onto the surface of Quaddis they found themselves in the middle of a festival. The Carnival of Blood in honor of the Grand Conjunction was is full swing and the party found themselves in the midst of the arena district of Xicarph, the planet’s only city.
Asking around about where most adepts would tend to congregate the Inquisitorial cell set off for the Refutation District. Once there further questioning brought the party in contact with their target. Establishing bona fides with the White Scholar the group spoke at length with him about the happenings occurring on the planet.
The White Scholar, known as Septimus Dexter, shared all he knew. Explaining that he believes the nihilistic warp-cult Pilgrims of Hayte seek to claim some item of import during the Grand Conjuncture. Using the services of The Beast House slavers and smugglers the Pilgrims have brought in individuals marked by warp-prophecy who will help them achieve this goal. While not sure of exactly what they were plotting Septimus did know it had something to do with the Widower of Xicarph, a supposed mythical bogeyman and killer used by the Haarlock family as an assassin. Septimus also provided a place to rest as well as some information on the Pilgrims of Hayte and Karkalla’s personal files on Haarlock.
During the reading of Karkalla’s Tybalt discovered several encoded notes scribbled on the back of the folder containing the files. Spending well over a day and a half trying to decipher the code it wasn’t until the illiterate Faritus
possibly through warp sorcery ever the surprisingly clever Feral Worlder, blurted out a possible answer to the code. Using the idea he put forth the rest of the group was able to decipher the notes, which somehow linked the names Haarlock and Drusus through a complicated numerological equation. Encouraged but confused the group decided to investigate other leads about the Heron mask beginning with a street preacher known to speak out against such a figure.
While en route to find the preacher the group was waylaid as they observed several men chase a Phyrr Cat into an alley. Offering to help cage the animal to get in the good graces of an arena operator the group tried to capture the beast. During the short operation Bar’bosa was viciously killed when he reached out to the warp to sense the presence of the beast and the cat attacked, tearing his leg off and spilling his entrails all over the street. Without hesitation or mourning the group promptly turned around, left the Phyrr cat feasting on the body of their companion, and returned to the alley’s entrance and wished the men chasing the cat “good luck.” The jaded group of Acolytes then continued on their way.
Meeting with Obadiah Saul was a strange event. The fire and brimstone preacher claimed to have seen the living body of St. Drusus on the planet Clove while serving as a Chaplin for the 23rd Drusus Dragoons. Once Saul saw Drusus, he set off to proclaim the good news. He became stranded when the barge he was on was diverted to Xicarph at the whim of its noble master. He spoke at length of the Heron mask calling him the false prophet of a corrupt cult that attacked Obadiah in his chapel within the Collapsed Palaces. Saul was planning to gather a force large enough to assault and reclaim his chapel and left the group calling on his flock to gather around him as continued preaching as they traveled to another location. Not sure how helpful the information the preacher provided the group headed off to the Twilight Gardens and visit with the Spider Bride.
While making their way to the district known as the Akasen, Yarni and Iago noticed a face in the crowd staring directly at them. Yarni recognized the face as belonging to Master Nonesuch from Solomon and relayed the information to the group.
The meeting with the Spider Bride emanated a palpable danger, the Bride crouched like her namesake at the center of her web provided the group with cryptic answers and seemed to know everything about them. Stating that she would provide the group with invitations to the celebrations at the Gabriel Chase, she asked a small favor in return. The invitation she said would answer their questions and was required for them to stop Heron mask, all that remained is that the group deliver a package to Papa Grist the proprietor of the Fates Wheel, a gambling hall of renown. Suspicious of the package but agreeing the party set off to complete the Spider Brides errand.
As the party was leaving the Grattos of the Gardens of Unearthly delight, a man who identified himself as Nill Lok and stated that he worked for Lady Du’landra Melua approached them. Lok commented that Lady Melua was intrigued at the questions the group had been asking about the Heron masked man as she too was interested in him. She requested and audience with the party at their earliest connivance. The Acolytes agreed but commented they first needed to run an errand on behalf of the Spider Bride.
Heading to Fates Wheel with the package, the group nervously entered the renowned hall. Everywhere they looked were games and pict screens displaying area fights. It was a gamblers paradise, making their way toward the back of the hall the group discovered the entrance to the offices and tried to head back. Stopped by a man at the entrance only Felix was allowed to continue on with the package in hand. Once inside Papa Grist’s personal office he passed the package to the infamous information broker.
When the ornate silver canister about the size of a hatbox-which Grist seemed to be expecting-was opened a servitor popped out enclosed it’s thorax around Grist’s head and with a sudden snap decapitated him and scuttled off with the still screaming head in tow. Surprised, Felix looked at the two also stunned guards knowing there would be trouble . . .