Last week, the party...
- travelled to Castle Haersley, where they were greeted by Nazzim's gnomish manservant and told that the Duke was currently out to sea.
- asked about the other Dukes, and was told that the Emerald Duke - an elf by the name of Aramil - was currently in residence.
- headed to the Emerald Residence, where they were stopped by a member of the Duke's guard, a high elven woman whose hair is braided in a complex pattern. Myxis told the guard that she was a wizard prophesied to hold the key to ending the Civil War, and the guard showed the party in.
- showed the Duke Otiluke's Wand, which he recognised on sight as he and Otiluke were old rivals with each other. Duke Aramil demanded the wand for the war purpose, claiming that he was "able to make far better use of it" than Myxis ever could. Myxis refused, and the party fled.
- was stopped from leaving by the guard and the mansion doors slamming shut. Bruennor used Dispel Magic on the doors, causing it to wholly disintegrate, while Luna used Suggestion to stall the elf maiden long enough for them to make their escape. The last thing the party sees of the situation is the Emerald Duke glaring at them as they flee.
- headed to the docks, where they hired a ship to send them after the Sapphire Duke Nazzim. Upon arriving at his location, they found him standing a few inches above the water talking to some creatures lurking underwater. At the ship's arrival, the creatures fled, and the Duke accompanied the party back to shore on a boat, where they decided to share a drink at a tavern.
- asked Nazzim about the Emerald Duke, but Nazzim seems wholly uninterested in politics. He offers the party a deal: swear allegiance under him (and through him the King in Purple), and they will be protected from vengeance from the Emerald Duke. The party agreed, and Nazzim produced five contracts - written in Infernal - for them to sign.
- hesitated signing the contracts, given that none of them could read Infernal, and although Nazzim explained that they were only risking their souls if they disobeyed an order from him, they were still uncomfortable signing the contract. Seeing their reluctance, Nazzim told them to seek him out via Animal Messenger if they changed their minds, but since he will be busy for the next few days, they may have to wait a while to get back in touch with him.
- are now sitting in the tavern nursing their drinks and considering their options...