Critical Recap: Critical Role C2E98 (Dark Waters)

Written by on March 11, 2020

Hello! Welcome to Critical Recap! I’m Dani Carr, Production Coordinator and Sobbing Critter. Let’s dive into our recap of Critical Role Episode 98 Dark Waters!


Essek is appreciative of the party’s faith, but warns the Mighty Nein about the dangers of getting too close to him. The group makes it clear that he has a long way to go to prove his loyalty and their trust comes hard, though they do have hope for him. Essek tells them about his relationship with the Assembly — he is trusted, but only so far. He tells them not to give too much information to the Martinet and that Vess DeRogna is extremely clever. He will stay in touch, as he is overseeing the transaction of the assets, and leaves with the Nein’s permission.

Veth wants justice and vengeance for what her husband went through. Caduceus will not support vengeance and reminds them to keep their focus on ensuring that no more people are hurt — pursuing justice blindly is more likely to respark the conflict. Beau thinks there is a way to ensure justice, but it will take longer and is something to figure out later. Caduceus can support a desire to ensure that no one else is ever hurt by these people again.

Meanwhile Jester, who realized that she accidentally left her mother at the party, races back with Fjord in tow. They find Marion happily chatting with a few admirers. Marion is pleased they have returned but is ready to head back to the Lavish Chateau, so Jester and Fjord walk her back. Marion notices that Fjord lost his hat, which he’d tossed after Jester told him it was a joke, and tells him she’ll get him a new one. They return Marion to her room and Jester thanks Fjord for his help. They decide to eat dinner together downstairs while they wait for the others to arrive. Once the Nein reconvene, they again discuss their thoughts on Essek’s redemption and the long game towards eventual justice.


It’s two days until the armada departs, so everyone takes time to relax. Jester purchases fabric and sculpting clay and paints three more tarot cards — The Jewel & the Thief, The Spark & Blaze, and Death & Dawn. Caleb works on the silencing collar, ascertaining that the material used to power it does not exist naturally and was utilized as an arcane battery by top mages during the Age of Arcanum. His best chance of finding material like this is in the north, where the remnants of a crashed floating city reside in Aeor.

Fjord reminisces, visiting old bars in Nicodranas and gaining comfort from the Wildmother’s lighthouse. Yasha looks for entertainment within the city, going to the beach at night to play her bone harp in contented solitude. Beau, too, goes to the coast and camps for some alone time. She hears Yasha playing her harp and watches her awhile from a distance. Caduceus finds a small magic store called The Seafarer’s Bounty. The shopkeep, an elderly gnome named Sheila Bobsnopper, shows him a magical fan that casts a wind spell and a locked box that she cannot open, along with a necklace that allows her to converse with plants. She sells him all three items for 900 gold and some of the lichen that turns his hair pink.

Before they depart, Veth, who spent her two days with her family, talks with Yeza. He is happy to stay here, to find tutors for Luc and a place for them to settle. He supports his wife’s adventuring, but wants her to be safe and come home to him. He is fond of the songs of heroic deeds, but he would rather have his wife than a story. She gives him 100 platinum, to his shock and delight, and he promises to find them a place. She will always have his support.


Now heading south with the armada, everyone resumes their former positions upon the Balleater. The crew includes a new member named Shelda, a punk kid whose bad attitude rivals Beau’s. Caduceus gives Beau the magical fan and Jester paints the monk in her pirate glory. Veth picks the lock on the Mystery Box, finding two spell scrolls: flaming sphere and telekinesis. Caleb is excited for the latter and gives the former to Veth.

Over four days of sea travel, Jester makes Traveler figurines and Beau uses her jeweler’s kit to help. Yasha joins the crafters and the two check in with Jester on her feelings about her god. At first, she felt betrayed, but at the end of the day, he’s her best friend and has always been there for her — now it’s her turn. They wonder if the Traveler simply showed Jester the path to power she’d always had within her. The conversation turns to Yasha’s coping methods. The fighting pit did not make her feel better and she wonders if she should die for each person she has killed. Jester thinks the better option is to do as much good as you can now. Yasha appreciates that her friends have her back and apologizes to Beau for the pain she caused her, which Beau shrugs off. The monk wonders if the Storm Lord has more lessons for Yasha.

Caleb and Fjord discuss Fjord’s darker side, the side he was exploring when they were first at sea. The sword was his first brush with control, but he realized that he didn’t like the path he was going down. He didn’t have to treat others the same way he’d been treated in his life — this family helps him find his place. Caleb confesses that he values this family due to his murder of his own. He wants to make up for his mistakes. Fjord can’t understand what Caleb has gone through, but Fjord sees a good man in him. He asks Caleb about the dangers of the Assembly — they are playing this game to set up their ascendance. They are the power of the Empire.


As a storm rolls in, Yasha dreams. She follows a path that leads to a chasm. As she leaps across, she falls. Her god tells her to prove herself. She bamfs out her wings and the chasm grows closer until she lands on the other side. Her wings are now feathered and whole. The Storm Lord tells her she is worthy and he will not let her stray from her path.

Fjord, too, dreams. He is alone in a forest that keeps repeating itself. He summons his sword and sinks it into the earth, to listen to the Wildmother. But his sword is now the falchion and as that yellow eye stares into him, a searing pain strikes his chest. He awakens to see that same falchion plunged in his chest and a humanoid sea monster bearing down on him. Armorless, Fjord casts far step, teleporting into the sea. He gets Orly and Marius’s attention and sees more sea creatures climbing the sides. Fjord teleports onto the ship and rings the alarum bell. As the Nein come to consciousness below deck, more creatures come through the portholes. A frenetic battle ensues as the group must contend with the Sea Spawn before they can get to Fjord.


It’s a battle of Eldritch Blasts as Fjord avoids the Deep Scion that is intent on him. He makes it to the crow’s nest but his attempt to attack invites the scion’s own string of blasts. Fjord loses consciousness, falling from the crow’s nest as Beau screams. Another scion takes Orly out but Caduceus rushes to the deck, casting Mass Healing Word and reviving both Fjord and Orly. It’s a short victory as the lead scion arrives. It plunges its falchion again into Fjord’s chest, carving through him. Another comes up, pushing the sword deeper. The Mighty Nein can only watch as Fjord dies.

Now all on deck, they rally around their lost captain, but a scion murders an unconscious Orly. The leader attempts to Dimension Door with Fjord’s body, but a flying Caleb counterspells the attempt. Slowed by Caduceus’s Spirit Guardians, it drags Fjord’s body to the edge of the ship but Yasha stops it in its tracks, breaking its neck, tossing it overboard, and leaving a piece of its body as warning. Caleb finishes off the last creature with an acid arrow and everyone rushes to the side of their fallen comrades. Fjord and Orly lay lifeless on the deck as it slowly dawns on the party what the creatures were after: the third Cloven Crystal that still rests within Fjord’s chest.

That is it for Episode 98 of Critical Role!


  • Holy shit y’all. NO! NO! NO! I do not accept this!
  • Fjord & Orly have been dead for about …12 seconds? So there’s still time for Revivify!
  • …but there are outside factors that could fill the entirety of my conspiracy board. We’re not out of the woods. 
  • Oh Mighty Nein!

Catch Episode 99 on Thursday, March 12th at 7pm Pacific on or a week later on our podcast. Is it Thursday, yet?!

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