“A series of high profile, and somewhat unusual thefts have swept the city. Initially, few thought them connected, but as the number of occurrences increased and more information has spread out, a pattern has emerged - priceless treasures seem to be vanishing, leaving only Flux-formed mockeries in their place. The nobility and guilds are up in arms, and someone in the civil service seems to be taking the problem very seriously indeed, as word is being put out in the adventuring community looking for a team to sort the problem out.”
Frost rimes the ground as the final gang member falls. Mark thanks and dismisses the icy female form that has struck such terror into the criminals, and the party hastily ensure that none of them are about to die - after all, they need to be questioned.
Mark can feel that the college as a whole is starting to revert to consensus, the sensation of the whole world being angry starting to drain away. Quickly, before the watch can arrive, the party start to search the gang and wake up Carla for questioning. She is somewhat wild eyed and livid at the party, but not apparently especially concerned about holding back the information she has any longer.
She first encountered the thief a few months ago as she made her way through a Flux part of the sewers and was perturbed to find it waiting for her in her path. It apparently recognised her talents (as she could see that it had considerable power), and offered her a bargain - it had an employer that was planning a wave of high profile crimes across the city, and needed someone to fence the goods. If she performed well, it might have more tasks for her.
She readily agreed, and has been trying to get more information from it since. She’d managed to extract that its employer was something it considered a peer and worthy of respect - and apparently, it had been specifically sought out by this employer for this task. The items stolen have been fenced to whoever would buy them, as instructed - from what she’d been able to discern, the point of the exercise was to cause anger and stress within the city rather than to make money, and lay the ground work for the big job. She wasn’t aware that the Serradics were involved but it makes sense - the thief had told her that its employer specifically wanted an item from the exhibition to stop Acryn having access to it in the war.
Regarding the angry flux, she’ll disagree that it felt angry - to her, it felt wonderful and right. The Thief warned her that its employer had given it a new tool to test out on the night, and to only attend the exhibition if she was sure she could handle herself. At the time, while it didn’t show her, it was carrying a small glass orb on its person that veritably boiled with the same sensation that could be felt in the college at the time.
At this point, she attempts to spit in Mark’s face, and doesn’t seem to have much more to say, other than suggesting that her no good sister put him up to this, as he feels just like her. Shortly thereafter, the additional security turn up to take all those incapacitated here into custody.
The party are paid 70 Riel a head base by the civil service, and an additional 40 Riel on the grounds that the incursion into the college had Serradic involvement that the party thwarted. They are disappointed that the Thief got away, but at least understanding the nature of the threat helps them plan further moves. While the party hear no reports of any success in tracking it down, they hear no news of further thefts either.
Mark enacts his plan to use his flux powers to create a massive flux farm of the potion producing plant. A few tries are needed to get it right, but a farming operation is now in full swing, with supplies of the potion being built up by the Council. The Council and leaders of the various military companies are ecstatic about this, and Mark can consider himself owed a big favour by both. The product is not being sold on the open market yet, but anyone with Council Contacts or a similar skill relevant can purchase the potions for 3 Riel a pop (the are a HEAL 2 potion).
Victor has his own cutting of the plant, which he feeds on the blood that seeps from his hands. The plant’s root network has extended considerably in the pot he has placed it in, and the plant is looking extremely healthy. The sap has taken on a faint taste of blood, and appears to have unusual characteristics even beyond the production of the potion. This counts as an artifact component for alchemical purposes.
Finally, Mark receives a letter a few days later from Carta thanking him for his help. She’s heard about what happened at the college from a contact, and discovering the forces the Serradics are willing to unleash against Acryn, combined with seeing something of a kindred spirit in Mark, has lead her to decide to try and go straight, sign up with one of the companies and join a scouting corps for the war.
Victor now has the ability to learn to brew the pain suppression potions he purchased a sample of. 10 seconds after drinking one, the user becomes immune to rend for an encounter, but takes a DOUBLE at the end of the encounter due to taking additional damage thanks to feeling no pain. It counts as a class B potion for relevant mechanical effects. Victor is concerned that addiction effects from this potion are likely to be unusually bad.
Rafe has a specially weighted short-axe. This counts as a standard dagger that grants one DISARM per adventure, as an additional effect.