We resume where we left off, with our heroes R Pompus Antillus and Woden having just heard that guildmaster Corbin Sanmarco has been assassinated. Laurent rushes the pair to Vaerwood Manor, the home of Bertrand Travaere. They inform Travaere of what they know and he rushes off to the guild with his household guard, requesting that the party defend the house while he is gone. In addition to the party members, he leaves his butler, his cook and a Vaestio convoy guard named Ponce with whom he had been meeting.
Once gone, R Pompus distracts Ponce while Woden rifles through Travaere’s papers and picks locks on his desk. The only substantial item found was a dossier with the stamp of house Hamelin, in which Woden found a marriage contract between Bertrand Travaere and Laela Hamelin.
Moments later the party along with their new friend Ponce come under assault by a curious and not entirely stable gnome wizard. Ponce is quickly able to grapple him allowing R Pompus time to easily ensare his mind and attempt to read it. After being expelled from the wizard’s mind the party resorts to more traditional interrogation tactics. The gnome is convinced that Travaere is evil and has stalked him to meetings with houses Sendrakar, Alworth, Hamelin, Sullinger and to Imperial Chancellor Zenisek. After concluding that this gnome is insane, the party counts this intel as a net gain and turns their prisoner over to Travaere to be escorted to the dungeons.
Increasingly pleased with the work of this party, Travaere hands over Senior Associate badges to all three before asking them to spy on the guild for him to get a sense of the direction the elections are taking.
The party rents a room across from the main entrance to Vaestio and begins the stakeout. Ponce makes a first attempt with the receptionist and learns that Vita Sanmarco, daughter of Corbin is running for guildmaster. It seems she blames the dwarves for her father’s death and may be planning anti-dwarf policies for the guild. During this time Woden notices Chancellor Zenisek slipping in a side door to the guild.
In their next attempt, R Pompus and Ponce sit down at a table of Vaestio members having a midday meal and drink. After some probing, they learn a variety of things: That Vita Sanmarco plans to cut off trade completely with the dwarves, that the pro-imperial vote will likely be split between her and Orel DiSaerd who has not been as quick to blame the dwarves, that many associate level guild members will vote by their sponsors’ wishes, that the anti-imperial votes will likely go to Octavius Kent but that he is unlikely to be able to defeat even a split pro-imperial vote, and that Travaere’s support could be a deciding factor in the elections.
Ponce returns to Travaere to give a report, explaining all that they’ve learned. Travaere congratulates him on the party’s work, tells him that they should passively support whichever pro-imperial candidate they see as weaker. He asks that the party deliver two sealed letters to Vita Sanmarco and Orel DiSaerd separately. When Ponce returns, the party opens the letters after forging some replacement seals ahead of time. The letters both offer Travaere’s support to their respective recipient in the final days of the election but not sooner.
The party reseals the letter and delivers them to their intended recipients, noting Vita’s forward and friendly disposition but also her distinct hatred for the dwarves as well as Orel DiSaerd’s lack of capacity for truly inspirational leadership. On the way in the party sees and greets Chancellor Zenisek coming out of Vita’s office.
After dark R Pompus magically disguises himself as Robert Kennard, a Vaestio Partner he had used fro information earlier. He goes to the third floor of the Syndicate hall and convincingly exclaims that there is a thief in the warehouse. All of the guards follow him down though two break off realizing how empty they had left their posts after about 30 seconds. During this time Woden sneaks up to the third floor and tries to break into Corbin Sanmarco’s office. Unfortunately he is repelled by a magic lock. He then moves on to Vita Sanmarco’s office and successfully breaks in. Inside he finds letters pledging the support of 3 additional Senior Partners of Vaestio and notes the names. He hears guards outside and escapes by the window.
After reporting again to Travaere, the party is asked to passively support Vita and to cut off contact with Travaere until the election is over but to do him one final favor, delivering a package to house Hamelin.
The party predictably breaks into the package revealing completed paperwork with all but the recipients name to become a member of the Vaestio Syndicate along with a Junior Associate badge with the name Hamelin. The party reseals the package and delivers it directly to Marco Hamelin in an awkward but inoffensive exchange.