“The universe is so consumed by darkness that seeing the greater shadow of pattern and cause is a gift given only to the mad.”
-Inquisitor Lord Caidin, in conversation with Cassilda Cognos
Senior and Junior Acolytes of Inquisitor Sand are combined into a new investigation cell called C8: Red Cell under the command of newly appointed Inquisition Legate Investigator Red. This new Cell has been tasked with answering a call from Arbitrator Constantine on the planet of Sinophia who is requesting Inquisition assistance in the investigation of a series of mysterious murders that appear unnatural in nature. No one else on the planet agrees with Constantine’s theory and instead believe that the murders are assassinations by the planet’s competing corrupt nobility and the criminal organization known as the Undertow- both of which are locked in an escalating power struggle.
The Acolytes meet Constantine at the Arbite headquarters, which is currently located at the ancient tower known as “Haarlock’s Folly”- a monument created by the infamous Rogue Trader Family of the same name during Sinophia’s glory days; the Arbites’ original headquarters was recently destroyed by members of the tech-heretic cult- the Logicians. The Folly gives the Acolytes an uneasy feeling, especially the party’s only Psyker, Praetus, who is plagued by strange dark dreams every night that affect his performance during his waking hours.
The Acolytes jump right into the investigation and start making contact with representatives from both the nobility and the Undertow and come to the conclusion that neither side wishes to cooperate with the other and the fragile truce they have is on the verge of being broken by all out war. Examination of the murder victims, and the remains of the attackers, leads the Acolytes to believe that these murders are indeed supernatural. The bodies of the attackers appear to be dead corpses that have been animated by the use of sorcery and evidence points that these animated attackers murdered their victims in order to retrieve legendary pieces of a glass mirror, each of which is rumored to have special powers.
The Acolytes eventually come face to face with the supernatural murderers at the Clockwork Court- an ancient mechanical construct built by the infamous Rogue Trader family- the Haarlocks, which also serves as the planet’s seat of political power. What follows is a deadly battle in which a number of administrators, guards and nobility (including the planet’s governor- the Judiciary) are killed. The Acolytes are able to neutralize the enemy but they prove to be super strong and durable and Valen and Lysandros are beaten unconscious during the battle.
The Acolytes are approached by a noble woman, with the title “the Keeper of the Rolls,” who is responsible for the accumulation and study of legendary and forbidden knowledge on Sinophia. She tells the Acolytes that she suspects that the murderers are after thirteen mystical mirror fragments that were taken from Haarlock’s Folly long ago- each is suppose to have powers and unlock a secret when they are combined. She gives the Acolytes one of these fragments which her now deceased uncle had passed to her care. Bruised and battered, the Acolytes return to the Folly for needed medical care and learn from Constantine that tensions are at the tipping point and members of the Undertow and the nobility have started hostilities against each other.
On a hunch, the Acolytes (accompanied by Constantine) are concerned with Arbitrator Marshal Skarmen’s lack of involvement and concern for the investigation and decide to check his Office for clues. They find a hidden door that is secured by a complicated archaic lock that is similar in appearance to the mechanism found in the Clockwork Court. Unable to open it at this time, the Acolytes decide to follow up on it later.
- GM’s Note: This mission was ran with modifications from Fantasy Flight’s “Damned Cities” book by Alan Bligh and John French. It can be found here: