The players stand before the entrance to the catacombs. The tile floor is broken, in shambles. Mold is growing on the walls. The doorway is heavy, made of thick metal. Ausma knocks on the door with her stick. It rings loudly. A narrow stairwell leads down into dark and damp. The air somehow smells both moist and stale.
At the stair’s end, there is a pool of water, roughly 2 feet deep, flowing down the walls from tributaries above. Bones lay in chambers within the walls.
Ausma is the first to venture forth.
Just as she reaches the water-line, a dark figure appears. seemingly out of a shadow. He draws two katanas without a word.
Upon spotting the figure, Ryo begins to play his lute. Ausma joins in harmony. When the figure spots him and hears the music, he disappears and reappears right next to him, staring with red eyes.
Darkan makes the first move, attacking the figure with his nun chucks. He dodges the attack. Terry attempts to attack with his dagger, and again he dodges. He continues to focus on the bard, lunging at him with both katanas. The bard throws up a magical shield, blocking the first attack. But two attacks was too much, and he is sliced with a flesh wound by the second sword.
Again, Darkan attacks. This time, he manages to hit the shadowed figure, and he winces for a moment. Next, Terry lunges at him again with his dagger, piercing the thick armor and causing a loud groan from the figure. Lastly, Ryo launches into a powerful song, and the shadow collapses to the ground, defeated. The party does not seem to understand what finally defeated him, but were thankful the fight was over.
Removing his hood, he is revealed to be a pale, beautiful man with white hair.
Darkan collects the +5 black katanas the man was wielding. Ryo strips him of the black, hard leather armor he was wearing to use for himself. Terry searches his pockets and finds 3 vials of Royal Arsenic poison and a contract. The contract reads:
Please rid the world of those horrid featured performers at Cantarella tonight. You will be paid the standard rate as you have the previous targets.
The party decides to venture further into the catacombs to find the girl. Following some footprints and other signs of human passage, they eventually hear the soft sound of a pipe organ in the distance. Upon following the sound, they find the Umbra playing the organ and Melissa laying in an opulent bed nearby, unconscious.
Terry sneaks behind The Umbra (who is engulfed in his music) to collect the girl. After picking her up off the bed and walking a few steps, the Umbra turns around to check on her and sees what is happening. “STOP!” He yells. Terry takes off running. The Umbra follows after him, demanding who he works for. Terry decides to tell him that he works for M.D. to try and find out who this mysterious contractor was. This enrages the Umbra more and he aggressively tries to stop him. Then Terry explains that he didn’t really work for M.D., and that they’d killed the assassin, Asklepios, who had. The Umbra is at this point, extremely confused.
Ryo again pulls out his lute and begins to play a lullaby. This causes Terry to fall instantly asleep, falling atop the poor girl he was carrying. She awakes with a start, screaming to know what has happened. The Umbra collects her and puts her back in the bed, explaining the situation. At first she is hestitant to believe him, but after the party verifies his words, she believes him and thanks them all for saving her. She asks the way out and makes her way up out of the catacombs, back to the Palace of Music.
Meanwhile, the group speaks more with the Umbra and learns of his origins. He had come from another world, swept up in a great storm that caused him to end up in these catacombs. He’d spend the last 40 years within the walls of the Palace and below, observing and helping those within the theater however he could.
Terry asks The Umbra of this M.D. The Umbra explains that his name is Morpheus Diotrephes, and he had performed there many years ago. HIs performance was terrible and he was shamed off the stage. Ever since, he’d been sending Asklepios and other assassins to destroy any up and coming stars out of jealousy and spite.
Unfortunately, since he had never been outside the walls of the Palace of Music or the catacombs below, he had no idea where they could find Morpheus…