Back at the Rusty Shield, the party talks with Yorus, Linnek’s contact in the criminal underworld. Learning that Linnek is calling in his favor, Yorus agrees to procure a map for the PCs (showing them the route through the undercity from the Rusty Shield to the edge of Natchai territory), and to come back in a few hours to get it.
In the meantime, the group heads up to the north part of town so BENJI can talk with Telgus the Scholar. Telgus shows Benji a strange artifact that recently came into his possession, a 2-foot-long stick that looks like ancient, frozen driftwood covered with strange protrusions. Purchased from a caravan merchant, who claimed it had been found in an area of the Starrcrag Mountains once known for its gold and sapphire mines, the item has mystified Telgus and his Guild fellows. Benji’s task is to investigate the source of this artifact and see if he can find others like it or clues to its origin.
Returning to the Rusty Shield, the group claims the map from Yorus, who warns them of bandits and monsters that roam the undercity, and sets off to brave the depths and rescue Yasmeena from the Natchai…
The first major obstacle on their journey through the undercity is a broad, slow-flowing canal that is missing its rope bridge, which has fallen down on either side. Shadowy forms swim in the slow-moving, murky water, and over the dull drone of flowing water the party hears croaking sounds that echo weirdly through the enclosed space. As they work to find a way across, two froglings climb up the far bank and shout “give us food,” “give us the small one” (pointing at Benji), and so on… Distracted by their interactions with the pair of creatures, the adventurers don’t notice more of the froglings stealthily climbing up on the near side — the party is flanked on both sides!