The party arrives to discover El Morro is a well garrisoned shipyard town. Along with cannon towers guarding the water, the town is protected by 2,500 Castillian soldiers. The shipyards, busy rebuilding the the Castillian fleet (having recently been sunk by the Avaloanian weather and navy), are primarily worked by the slave labor of political prisoners, also kept in the town.
After making meeting with one of Felix’s contacts, they’re pointed to a warehouse where the artifact is most likely hidden and put in touch with Arturo, a free foreman at the shipyards, who’s also a dissident. He offers the PC ai, in exchange for freeing his wife and child, who are held at the town’s slave prison camp.
The party spends some time exploring the town and scouting the warehouse while forming a plan. They discover that the werehouse is not only guarded by an 8 man patrol, but also under observation by well trained soldiers inside a neighboring building. During their investigation of the prison, the prison guard’s commander Ferdinand “The Bull” gets into a scuffle with Hector, and they end up challenging each other to a boxing match, to be held several days hence.
The fight proves to be the missing ingredient in the stew. The party spends the next few days promoting the match to get as many of the towns soldiers in attendance as possible. Sean buys out the towns supply of beer and offers it free to any solder in attendance.
The day before the fight the party breaks into the warehouse to go after the artifact they have been tasked with stealing. Felix (disguised as a Castilian) and Hector stage a mock fight near the warehouse, drawing the guards’ attention. (This distraction is helped by Hector’s incredible punch clean through the hull of a nearby ship in dry-dock.) While the rest of the party’s members keep watch and distract the guards with bets, Flavio breaks into the warehouse through the upper windows. Inside, he discovers two guard, who, thankfully, have been distracted by the fight and are betting with Sean. While their attention is elsewhere, he looks for the artifact.
Although the plan was just to find the artifact, after Flavio finds it inside a crate and discovers that it’s small enough to carry, he steals it and hides his tracks, and slipping out a door unnoticed by the guards watching the mock fight. Flavio also notes another crate that looks like it might contain another crystal statue.
The party has now now acquired the The Metal Box, the artifact they’re in town for. Jaques Moreau bloods the artifact and rides out to their camp outside the town, porting the artifact to him to keep it safe while they stay and free the prisoners, as planned.
On the night of the fight, nearly all the town’s guard are in attendance drinking the free booze. When the fight begins, Flavio, Claudio, and Felix Luc d’Ilsen slip away to assault the warehouse, while Sean MacEarly O’Brian stays to keep the guards entertained and as drunk as possible. First, the three quietly take down the guards watching the building from across the street, aided by the massive amount of alcohol they had been consuming, then they take out the 8 guards patrolling around the warehouse. When they enter, they’re assaulted by the 2 guards inside, but after taking a musket ball or two, the party is able to incapacitate the guards. The party retrieves the 2nd artifact from the warehouse, lights it ablaze, and heads back to the prison compound where the fight is taking place. Meanwhile, their dissident allies light the ship yards on fire as well.
Shortly after the PC’s arrive, the fire alarm goes up, and all the soldiers still up and able to walk head to the shipyards to try to control the fire. “The Bull”, however, refuses to stop the fight. The commander cheats, not only with a weighted glove, but also by attacking between the bells. The party puts him down (notably, Felix picks up a musket for possibly the first time ever and puts a ball between the commander’s eyes). The prisoners are freed and armed, thanks to a skillful pick-pocketing of the keys by Flavio, and after assaulting many of the nearby drunk guards they head north to a rendezvous point.
That’s when the dissidents blow up the cannon towers defending the water. These cannon towers surround the shipyards and kill most of the soldiers trying to extinguish the fires. The dissidents then steal the the most impressive Barque afloat and along with Felix’s contact (who’s captain of a barge) head north up the river to meet the PC’s and released prisoners to pick them up and take them to safety.
The newly named Escape and barge, laden with 1,700 prisoners, head east to Vodacce. This trip takes over a month and is generally uneventful. During this trip the crew discover the usefulness of The Crystal Angel and The Crystal Mermaid on a ship.
In Vodacce the slaves are dropped off on the mainland and Felix uses his contact Gus to ensure they’ll have a means to survive. The barge heads it’s own way, and The Escape head to Villanova where Sean ‘feels’ the party can find a Rose and Cross contact.
They arrive in port and the PC’s head into town. During his exploration Sean encounters three fate witches. One of the Witches catches Sean’s eye, and she appears to catch his. She drops a note with a restaurant name and time… unfortunately Sean can’t read this note, so he heads to the Pub the parties at to get it translated.
Meanwhile Felix chats it up with his local contacts and along with ensuring that the refugees on the mainland will be cared for he gets the same instructions for where to meet the Rose and Cross.
Inside the pub Sean finds Flavio and Claudio, enjoying their usual fair, wine and goat’s milk. Sean joins them and over a beer has Flavio translate the note. After a little chatting Flavio spots someone he recognizes and suddenly becomes uncomfortable, making a hasty exit. Curious Sean approaches the recognized man who calls himself Brutus, and after a brief greeting offers Sean a job delivering a package to Avalon. Sean detects something fishy and turns down the work, and he and Claudio make their departure. Felix walks up just in time to catch the tail end of an insult match as Sean and Claudio are leaving, then the three of them head to the restaurant.
The only table available is for six, and the three (Flavio returned to the boat after fleeing the pub) are quickly joined by 2 Knights of the Rose and Cross, one male, one female, and (thought not wearing the traditional veil), the Fate Witch Sean encountered earlier. Claudio begins telling the Knights about the quest, but though trusting is somewhat reserved, however Felix is smitten with with the female Knight, Sylvia, and starts telling her everything and anything she wants to know (Claude is the 2nd knight). Sean not trusting of the Knights in general, and concerned that their last encounter with the knights involved one of their party stealing an artifact, gives Felix a good punch in the nose to shut him up.
These Vodacce knights know nothing of the party’s quest, nor the artifacts they’re collecting. Further, they’re surprised that the Knights would willingly employ outsiders, particularly an Inish. They’ve been brought here by Maureen, the Fate Witch that left the note for Sean, who only told them they needed to come.
After the basics of the story are told, Sean takes Maureen for a walk to the ship, where she preforms some fate magic on the statues, then Sean’s ring, saying that ‘this will tie us together’, they retire to the captain’s cabin to preform so magic of their own.
Meanwhile, back at the restaurant, the 2 Knights take Felix and Claudio to their guild hall to meet their Guild Master, Vincent. They relay the story to the Master, who informs them that the next artifact is in Avalon, and that a Rose and Cross knight there will know more. The Guild Master also sends his daughter Sylvia along with the party.
At the advice of Maureen, the following day Sean returns to the Pub and offers his ‘aid’ to Brutus, accepting the Mysterious Package that he wants delivered to Avalon. Back on the boat, the party tries unsuccessfully to open the case.