Dagrin is informed of how Achim has betrayed him and how he was sold out to advance Elentys’s political agenda (who in turn betrayed the party as it became convenient), causing Dagrin to confess that Oigri was innocent.
Achim is tortured using a magical orb which inflicts physical pain when a lie is told, but still refuses to clear the party’s name and states that Elentys is innocent. The Inquisitor is disgusted with Achim, and reveals to the party that he is Paros’s brother, and he knows for a fact that Elentys planned this entire event to seize power. The Inquisitor then begs Dagrin to head immediately towards the Palace to attempt to slip in and kill Elentys before she assumes power.
Elentys, feeling she can trust Achim Nadir and use him as a pawn in her political games, reveals that she has been the assassin all along, and has been monitoring Achim via the Opinicus Claw she gave him. Unfazed, Achim has sex with her.
Dagrin nearly walks in on them doing it, figures out Elentys is up to no good, and discerns that Achim is lying to him (although he doesn’t realize the full extent of it). With that, the party heads off to find this Rogeri fellow and interrogate him.
When they reach Rogeri, a sudden cry for fire at the Palace saps their attention, and they run off to watch the Hall of the March-meet burn down, with Massimiliano perishing while attempting to save victims of the flame.
When Elentys asks the party what they know about the assassin, she suggests that Rogeri fits the bill.
During a large debate in the Hall of the March-meet, including a heated exchange of words with Massimiliano, Paros the Golden announces a need for unity and informs the senate that he will not appoint his daughter as his heir, as there are neither substantial reasons to believe there actually is an assassin nor is such a thing compatible with democracy.
During the speeches, Dagrin Tokaast discovers that he is actually Oigri’s cousin, which Red confirms through his book of Oigri’s genealogy.
Following the bills, Achim Nadir winds up in Hinys, outside of Oigri the Handsome’s compound, where the Master of Archers, Massimiliano, informs him that Oigri apparently committed suicide after his goons murdered Servant with a shovel and a fight broke out among them, resulting in them all dying. Oigri drank a vial of dragon bile before dying naked on his bed, surrounded by documents showing his involvement in a conspiracy to overthrow Paros the Golden.
Red bluffs his way into the inner chamber and promptly steals the important documents, along with a book containing Oigri’s genealogy (along with some particularly bad poetry), a magical headband, and a potion.
Dagrin Tokaast and Red investigate the Palace for clues, eventually discovering through the aid of magic their assassin, who appears to be a dark skinned man of average height and build dressed entirely in black and armed with a crossbow. They also discover that the assassin likely followed them from inside the Palace to attack them.
Growing rather cocky, Achim dispenses money liberally, finds out some facts about crossbow bolts, and buys Red some new duds.
When Achim, who has become the most popular man in Etent, hears of this he promptly orders the mob of urchins to go find a man of this description. They quickly return with the nearest black man they can find who happens to be a crossbow maker, beating him with sticks, stones, and moldy cabbages.
Wondering if they can torture the man, the party brings him to the Inquisitor. Instead, once Oigri the Handsome hears what has happened to this man, who happens to be one of his merchants, he shows up to rescue him and promptly sues the party on charges of ‘brutishness and barbarism.’
Achim figures this is a good thing, as it reveals Oigri is somehow involved in a conspiracy. Dagrin is not convinced. All three of them decide to reinvestigate the Landlord’s home. When they reach it, they see a number of bills running by, and Achim decides to follow them.
Dagrin Tokaast, Achim Nadir, and Red head off to the Palace. Inspecting the Palace walls and discovering that Hagger was right about a secret entrance in and out of the Sheep’s Tower, they set up an ambuscade there, as it seems to be the only likely place an assassin could move in or out of the Palace.
Setting up a good ambuscade, hours nevertheless pass and nothing happens. With dawn coming and the sun almost on the horizon, they decide to leave and get some rest.
While walking down a back alley in Etent, Red is suddenly hit in the face with a powerful opiate.
Achim is then hit by a crossbow bolt to the arm, and Dagrin is shortly after hit in the throat by a poisoned dart.
In the conflict that breaks out, Dagrin is nearly killed from enough poison to kill a bull, while Red hallucinates and sees a strange and long forgotten woman in a cloud of magical fog he summons. No one actually gets a clear view of the assassin for more than a second.
As they regroup and prepare a final charge against the assassin, they realize their target has fled entirely. At the same time, the Etent Bills appear, responding to screams of terror from onlookers watching the fight. Achim musters the guard, who seal off Etent and begin a search of the area.
The Inquisitor informs them that they are acquitted of all crimes and free to go, but before they do shows them a chest full of a freaking ton of a gold and asks them if they would like to track down and capture, kill, or in any other way eliminate the assassin. There is resounding agreement from Achim and Dagrin.
Looking over the crude map found in the rubble of Achim Nadir’s former apartment, they decide to split up, with Dagrin Tokaast and Servant investigating the Palace for clues, Achim questioning his former Landlord, and Red figuring out what the liquids in the vials are.
Dagrin and Servant discover very little at the Palace, but do find a secret door which has not been used in, what Dagrin believes to be, around five years. As well, there is some signs suggesting people have scaled the walls at the Sheep’s Tower with ropes.
Achim realizes his former landlord turned him into the authorities to escape blame himself, so Achim begins torturing him to extract information. Unfortunately, before he confesses he dies of a heart attack. Achim grinds his body into sausage and feeds it to street urchins.
Red discovers that some of them are various potions, including a potion of invisibility, while some are poisons. He stumbles across Ravenna the Hag, who decides she is more worthy of the task of identifying these liquids than Red. Pleased with this, Red barters a “fertility potion” (actually boiled garlic) to a bookkeeper for a history book on modern Ageutia.
All four meeting up at the Foal, Dagrin meets Hagger by chance, and learns more information about the Palace walls. Discovering the identity of the poisons as very dangerous, they decide to set up an ambuscade at the Palace, in the off chance the mysterious killer makes his move that night.
A sudden tremor completely destroys the apartment Achim Nadir and Red have been staying in, revealing a number of suspicious vials of liquid, a map of the palace, a strange deck of cards, and numerous other illegal and dangerous items.
Taking refuge at the Sterling Foal Inn, they meet up with Dagrin Tokaast and Red brings along Servant, a manogre he happens to know who is a bit of a specialist when it comes to illusion magic, who identifies the deck of cards as a Deck of Illusions.