[Edited to add an option 6 I was reminded of earlier!]
As promised, the day after the factory breakin, Doctor Raykov provided you with (freelancer) journalistic papers for the Daily Courier, the local paper.
After some investigations and bank robbing (in the nicest possible way) around town, the party found that the Cyraean Workers’ Republic was interested in their activities and interested, too, in working with them – something that held some interest for Jaxar and a little for Aethelthior (albeit with major reservations in the latter case), but was soundly opposed by both Radomir (for reasons of personal loyalty and fundamental disagreement with their ethos) and Marius (for reasons of their genocide against the ‘slave race’ in the early days of the Republic’s founding).
Patriarch Vanadich arranged a fancy dinner at the King’s Head Restaurant, and offered a copy of the Royal Secrets Act to each of the party; the agreement, to be paid 1 guilder a month for as long as the contract is in force, but in return to be bound to keep secret any information learned in the course of their duties to New Urgen. Payment for any specific work performed – and danger pay, potentially – would be discussed on a case by case basis.
Rotis seemed uncertain whether he should agree without his mistress’ permission but signed anyway; Aethelthior had more fundamental disagreement since, as an Elven citizen, he was very concerned that acting as an agent and employee of an Uruk government could compromise both New Urgen and himself if it were ever revealed. He did however agree to a handshake promise not to reveal any information gleaned directly from New Urgen’s authorities by virtue of this rudimentary alliance; but also promisd that if he learned other information in the course of his adventures and travels and felt it was important for Elven authorities to know, he would tell them. The one concession he made was to inform Vanadich of what he was revealing if(/when) it came to it. Vanadich agreed, reluctantly, since it seemed Aethelthior’s aid might be important in this instance.
Vanadich however revealed that he had not previously been made aware of Lord Apargopolous’ ‘arrangements’, and his opinion that the New Urgen military had badly mishandled the situation by keeping Lord Apargopolous’ security light and not demanding access to more of his information and sources. His main short to medium-term worries are that despite some setbacks to their efforts, the New Arkalian Navy-Bloodforce-Solarian alliance was on the verge of becoming the major player in Arkalia and becoming the acknowledged goverment there; and separately, that Lord Apargopolous (and his younger son Hergert) were kidnapped by the invaders at Trynsham and may end up revealing the secrets that New Urgen as a whole doesn’t seem to know.
He also mentioned “Aetherlord” and “Kingmakers” as names that have arisen in his enquiries and asked if you knew the terms or groups or persons involved. The party did not (or claimed so, perhaps).
He therefore has several ‘jobs’ he thinks need addressing urgently (this is expanded and clarified from last night, since it was getting very late!):
1.) The Solarians have promised to reveal a ‘new shrine’ of some kind. If true, and he thinks it is, it is likely within the regions barred by the Treaty of Grelda; but he seems to have a lead on the location and seems to prefer that a New Urgenian discovery of it be made, before the Arkalians can get there (as this would provoke an international crisis and lend legitimacy to Princess Ioanna’s claims on Arkalia’s throne). Since Radomir is a famed explorer and Aethelthior is an Elf who can legally travel with an entourage beyond the borders, he thinks this would be a useful avenue to pursue.
2.) Lord Apargopolous acquired artifacts from two “sites”; their locations aren’t precisely known but at least one appears to be in Birren’s Land somewhere. Locating one or both of these “sites” and ensuring New Urgen can secure them before the Arkalian terrorists can extract information from Lord Apargopolous and loot them, is important.
3.) The New Arkalian Navy has recently built new shipyards and refitted old ones, and is now capable of building simple steam-ships for its war fleets. He thinks this, and other circumstantial evidence, means the Navy has access to its own advanced technologies, either by piracy from others (it is known Apargopolous lost several shipments to piracy); or possibly because they have their own supply, which may be the same as Lord Apargopolous’ “Sites”, or may be separate. With Jaxar’s Blood-Force history it may be possible to infiltrate (or simply find weaknesses and attack and seize) and learn their sources.
4.) Lord Apargopolous was robbed by a pair of as-yet-unidentified orcs posing as Kobold Society members; and they sent a crate to a local man named Silverio Giacomelli. Since the party have already begun looking into this angle, learning who he was, who he worked for, and what his interest was in the affair, may likewise be extremely illuminating.
5.) He’s sure the party has other avenues they can or will wish to pursue. He is open to suggestions as to what and how.
(6.) – Party suggestion was made that seeking out a first-generation birrenian kobold might yield dividends, but would be difficult and/or expensive – though Korakova is likely to have the most in the world, outside Birren’s Land).
He says he has ‘others’ who could pursue many or all of these things as well, though it’s unclear how much (or how imminent) progress is possible with each line of investigation. He also says he’s aware that you have acquired some evidence related to Mr Giacomelli. As long as he’s informed what information was acquired he’s no objection to you keeping any valuables you found; stolen individual pieces of research aren’t his key concern as long as the Sites are unknown and Apargopolous is missing.
He presumably knows other information but hasn’t revealed it. If anyone has immediate questions, ask via Skype or private message here (or openly in the comments if it’s retroactively inserted into the dinner talks) and it may be answered.
AP Total: 31