An advertisement has recently appeared in the Adventurer's Guild on behalf of one Doctor Terrence Averos, who seeks a party of adventurers to retrieve a collection of 'sewer crystals' from the Acryn Sewers. Those interested should meet at the 'Averos Emporium of Alternative Medicine and Other Therapies' for more information. A payment of 40R per person is available for the successful retrieval of ten or more crystals, with an undisclosed bonus offered to those willing to take part in some unspecified 'field testing'.
Having received a collection of 'experimental concoctions' to test for extra pay, and instructions to obtain 10 'sewer crystals' - with Batts discovering that they cause memory loss via gastric distress by licking the one sample Dr Averos possesses - the party proceed into Acryn's fluxy sewers. They are promptly ambushed and vomited all over by enormous sludge monstrosity which had swallowed several crystals, causing them to lose their recent memories. When the party come around, they fight many smaller sludges that emerge from the remains and take the swallowed crystals. Emily tries one of Averos' concoctions, and finds it heals her quite nicely. Bartholomew expresses surprise.
The party cut through some rats and a large crocodile, before fishing more crystals from a river of sewage, as more sewer monsters emerge. Batts attempt to pour one of the concoctions into the sewage to see what happens to the monsters, but it explodes on contact with the air upon opening. Bartholomew makes remarks on 'that quack Averos'.
A group of Wayfinders, working on behalf of the Wayfinders' Guild, encounter the party coming the other way. They are in search of a crystalline Anomaly that has been spotted stalking the sewers - it becomes clear that this is the source of the 'sewer crystals'. The situation rapidly disintegrates, since Batts and Emily both ping as Threats to the Consensus to the wayfinders. The party defeat the wayfinders, but bring them around, as some of the party are agreed with their general mission. Emily and Batts are not, and attempt to double-cross the others, but are defeated. When Emily comes around, she runs off, while Batts spends some time inside Dauntless. The party strike a deal with the wayfinders to go to the City Watch to sort out their differences, once they have been led out of the sewers (since Emily is no longer present).
Emily, and soon after the rest of the party and the wayfinders, come to a large chamber, where they see the crystalline anomaly - Latissa, the Malformed - lashing out with crystal shards of itself against the sewer denizens. Nobody steals the anomaly's identity, and so the party are confused at the presence of a second being. The party engage Latissa, despite its requests for them to stay away from it, and after a while it retreats through a tunnel, smashing several pipes on its way. The wayfinders are too weak to follow the party through the hazard. The party subdue Latissa, before bringing it around to a somewhat docile state, and return to Acryn. Along the way, the party realise that they have lost 'Susan', but assume she is with the wayfinders. Emily tries another concoction, which heals her, although her eyes feel a bit weird… (Bartholomew is unimpressed on later examination of her eyes, which seem to be a little loose).
The party visit the Wayfinders' Guild, where they hand over 'both' anomalies. An agreement is reached that the wayfinder party will meet them at the City Watch in a few hours, so in the meantime the party return to the Emporium, for the promised free lunch and showers. They eat with various shop assistants and patrons, however Dr Averos is not present, having been arrested by the Watch over allegations of kidnap and memory wiping. Averos had been experimenting with the liquid exuded from the crystals on willing volunteers, but when they lost their memory of volunteering, one of them brought in the Watch. Nobody sends a replacement for Susan.
After lunch, the party visit the Watch with the wayfinders and settle their differences. They also speak receive a paycheck from Dr Averos to take to a bank to get their pay. However, Bartholomew first wants to go to the sewer to locate the missing 'Susan'. After not finding her there, he prays to the Tender, and ultimately decides that she must have died. In a fit of rage at Batts not taking this seriously, Bartholomew destroys the cheque.
The party return to the surface, no longer able to go to the bank. Screaming citizens run past, shouting about a crystalline monster attacking the market. Latissa has somehow escaped from the Wayfinders' Guild! The party rush to the market, finding it destroyed. Emily and Batts both take further concoctions - Bartholomew stands outside of the blast radius. Batts gets healed slightly, and Emily gets fully healed, before being fully un-healed and requiring medical attention.
The party follow the trail of destruction away from the city. They assist a farmer in subduing his cows, which have escaped from their pen and been spooked by the anomaly. Further out, they encounter a bandit encampment by a lake. Latissa has walked through the lake, poisoning it - the bandits appear to have drunk from the lake and passed out. The bandits awaken to the party's arrival, and are confused at their lost memories - a fight ensues. After the battle, Emily takes the last concoction, which both heals her and strengthens her, to Bartholomew's surprise.
The party finally catch up to Latissa, who is engaged in battle with Guild wayfinders, who have already reached it. Nobody steals Latissa's identity again. The party and the wayfinders subdue Latissa, but there is some disagreement about what should happen next. Ultimately, Emily runs away, and the 'Anomaly' Nobody escorts Latissa into the flux, after discussion with the wayfinders. Unable to follow, Dauntless, Batts, and Bartholomew head home.
Emily runs back to Acryn, finding that as the final concoction wears off, its side-effects leave her incredibly weak. She goes to visit Dr Averos.
Dauntless, Batts, and Bartholomew return to Acryn, and search out various contacts for information about ' Howard Branch', a name that came up several times during their interactions with the Wayfinders' Guild. Dauntless and Batts also go to the watch to report the bandits and various damage encountered while dealing with Latissa for the second time. They place the blame for Latissa's rampage on the Wayfinders' Guild, since the anomaly was supposed to be under their guard. Dr Averos has by now been released from the Watch. The three meet up and go to visit Dr Averos, encountering Emily along the way.
It is apparent, once back in Acryn, that the bank Averos uses has been robbed in the meantime. If only a group of adventurers had been coincidentally present at the same time to foil it…
The four recount what has happened to Averos, and explain the effects of his various concoctions. Emily is quite adamant that she receive further dosages of 'Number 6', the final concoction - Averos isn't sure it has any particular value, but tells her he will consider it. Emily is also shocked to realise that the whole party will receive the fee for testing the concoctions. She wonders why she subjected herself to so many of them…
The four party members collect 58R each from Dr Averos as agreed - he is insistent on paying them for all they have done, despite not ultimately getting the supply of crystals he desired, since they seem to have no application that won't get Averos in trouble with the Watch. 58R is also set aside for claim by Nobody.
Dauntless, Batts, and Bartholomew return to their search for information on Branch. Dauntless visits Walter Cargan, and reports his many concerns to him. Walter explains Branch's proto-god status, and his links to the Wayfinders' Guild. Dauntless gives Cargan the sewer crystals she collected. Batts visits Damerung at the People's College, but the skull has no idea who Branch is. Bartholomew asks at the Tender Church, who do not like Branch. The three meet up to compare notes on what they have found out. They decide to visit the Wayfinders' Guild next. The Guild pay them each 50R for their assistance with Latissa, with 50R held for Emily on her next visit.
Meanwhile, Nobody has been travelling with Latissa, and has observed how it loses its memory over time. After several days, he returns with it to Acryn, and brings it to his friend Howard Branch. Howard is in Scion mode, so is friendly towards the Anomaly. At Nobody's request, he casts an Identity Miracle on Latissa, giving it an identity that resists its own nature to forget - allowing it to grow as a person. This also grants the Divine Favour of the Splintered Man to Latissa. Latissa remains with Nobody.
Dauntless, Batts, and Bartholomew later visit Howard Branch to ask him some questions. By this point, he has transitioned to Harbinger mode, and views Batts as a Threat to the Consensus. After various threats of bodily harm, Batts leaves, although Dauntless is annoyed by this and makes this known to Branch.
When asked about Latissa, Howard says he has the siuation 'under control'. The anomaly is apparently in a 'secure location', 'not in the city'. 'Appropriate steps' have been taken to make 'less of a danger' - 'don't worry'. Dauntless isn't entirely convinced by this. 'Just give me a second… I need to do something'. 'It's very secure'. 'I know what I'm doing'.
Howard ends up explaining various secrets to Dauntless on the nature of Anomalies and his owned godhood. Dauntless decides to guard the entrance to the house for a while, just in case Howard tries to go after Batts in a Harbinger-fueled murder-rage.
Howard Branch takes Nobody's mask and goes as Blake to get paid by Averos on Nobody's behalf.
Following these events, Batts takes his sewer crystals and three mana crystals and conducts a ritual. First eating a mana crystal and tracing intricate patterns upon his skin with a scalpel. Next he consumes a second mana crystal, one of the sewer crystals, and a final mana crystal. Focussing the energy within him he focusses on the power which he believes to be related to his Fair Folk nature. He quickly realises that he was very wrong, two different powers seem to be present within the sewer crystal and neither of them is particularly compatible with him. His poorly informed ritual quickly spirals out of control, luckily he had enough foresight to guard against the initial side-effects which nearly wipe every single one of his memories. In a desperate attempt to reign the ritual back in, Batts begins to consume anything he can use to reshape the ritual, fruit, his scalpel, a particularly nice scarf, and finally the remaining sewer crystals. At some point he passes out. When he comes to, there is little in his room that hasn't been at least gnawed, although nothing else appears to have been eaten. Inside him is new potential, although he isn't certain what it is yet.
Crystal fragments of Latissa: Pinkish/purple crystalline fragments. These persist outside the flux, although degrade slightly having been brought into the consensus, causing a slight change in their effect. The liquid they exude still causes loss of recent memories, however the associated vomiting effect is gone. Instead, the lost memories will flicker for a short while across the eyes of the subject, allowing observation by a third party, before disappearing completely.
The liquid disappears after a while, and is produced slowly. Mechanically, enough can be collected and persist for enough time for characters in possession of crystals to bring up to one concoction per adventure with the above described effect. (i.e. these cannot be kept between adventures)
Due to miracle casting, must undertake a psychic combat before next played in order to Determine the Consequences.