Critical Recap: Critical Role C3E4 “On the Trail of a Killer”
Written by Dani on November 17, 2021
Hello! Welcome to Critical Recap! I’m Dani Carr, the Critical Role Lore Keeper. Let’s dive into our recap of Critical Role Campaign 3 Episode 4 On the Trail of a Killer!
A HEAVY LOSS
Imogen awakens from her dream and tells Laudna about seeing Bertrand peacefully walk into the violent red storm. Imogen is very worried about him, as this is the first time the dream has ever changed or included a person, so they return to the Spire by Fire in the middle of the night to check on him. They wake up Orym, Dorian, and Fearne, but when they check Bertrand’s room, he’s missing. They head out into the Core Spire and Orym finds Bertrand’s deceased body in an alley, with six puncture wounds – clearly made from the same weaponry used by the pale dwarf they fought.
They take his body to Lord Eshteross, who recommends they don’t travel alone for now. He doesn’t want to put everyone in danger, but the group is adamant about seeing this through and finishing the fight for Bertrand. Both Dorian and Imogen are deeply affected by the loss. Dorian, comforted by Fearne, feels guilty about letting him wander off alone and Imogen, comforted by Laudna, is still rattled by her dream. Laudna is amazed by Imogen’s gifts but is sorry for her burden. She promises her that they’ll find answers.
Imogen describes her dream for the group — she is always at home when a storm comes. A voice tells her to run. She knows, somehow, that this voice is her mother’s. Imogen doesn’t know why Bertrand appeared in the dream this time — maybe as a warning or a sign of hope. Meanwhile, Eshteross clears a spare room of traps and allows the group to sleep there for the rest of the night in safety.
A HOLE IN THE BOTTOM OF THE INN
In the morning, Ashton and FCG meet with the others at the Vertical Gardens. Laudna breaks the news about Bertrand and Imogen explains her dream. They return to the dwarf’s hotel room in the Weary Way Tavern to investigate the hole in the wall that was uncovered after the fight. Orym, wearing snake!Fearne as a belt, descends into the hole on a rope with a Coin of Delving from FCG. The narrow, claw-marked hole continues down and down, so Orym finally drops the coin – it falls, curves, falls until finally landing around 1200ft down.
Orym and Fearne return to the others. FCG is a little sad about the loss of the coin, as it was a gift from Dancer, but they insist they’re fine since it helped keep Orym and Fearne safe. These holes are used by the shade creepers – when Laudna and Imogen fought some at Shidana’s, they came out of a similar hole. Shade creepers are a common nuisance in Jrusar, often a fey story about nighttime thieves, but the ones they fought here were different. Normal shade creepers don’t burst into flame when dying.
The group splits up, with Dorian, Orym, FCG, and Imogen going to investigate the roof. They find recent footprints, but lose the trail off the top of the tavern. Ashton goes to Kamala the Maven, the owner of the Weary Way, to see if they can bribe her to give him the name of the dwarf – the bribe works! His name is Duggar and he’s been renting the room off and on for about a month.
DIGGING UP DIRT ON DUGGAR
The illegal movement of brumestone is a highly dangerous field, so they assume that Duggar is running a full operation, which means more people must be involved. The group heads to the Spire by Fire to see if they can get more information on Duggar. A man, Jenaya, recognizes the name, so Dorian chats with him while Imogen reads his mind. Duggar is pretty normal, kind of abrasive, but always down to gamble. He’s fallen on tough times recently and now seems sick.
Dorian casts charm person on Jenaya to keep him talking. Duggar was a carpenter. Six months ago, he started acting weirder. He started running with some people — probably the Hubbatt Corsairs, a thieves guild who steal from the rich. Then he started wasting away. Jenaya suggests brown suude as a possible drug that could make him this ill. Dorian and Imogen leave Jenaya and the party returns to Eshteross’ estate.
They decide to send Bertrand’s body to Whitestone, care of Vox Machina, due to his ties to the famed adventurers. They inform Eshteross of everything they learned. He is interested in this potential connection to the Hubbatt Corsairs, intrigued by their target of the rich and redistribution to the less-fortunate, as well as their quarrel with the Ivory Syndicate. Since the party wants to learn more about the Corsairs, Eshteross asks that they speak well of him if they end up on good terms with the group.
The group says their goodbyes to Bertrand, with Dorian promising that he’s working on his song and Laudna taking some of his hair. FCG thanks him for bringing the group together. As they leave, Orym speaks privately with Eshteross, asking for assistance in finding Oshad “The Anger” Breshio, a bodyguard to the Mahaan family. They were attacked recently, the style of which is reminiscent of a past attack in Zephrah. Eshteross has connections – he knows Breshio is still recovering from his wounds, but he’ll try to arrange a meeting.
They all leave for the Krook House and meet Milo, Ashton’s friend. Since the group is looking for information on the Corsairs, Milo thinks they should talk to either Advik or Effid, but Ashton does not want to talk to either of these mysterious people with whom they have a mysterious past. Faced with the inevitable, Ashton agrees to go to Elder’s Post to look for Advik.
Elder’s Post is an underground marketplace located within a series of subterranean tunnels in the Lantern Spire. Upon arrival, they quickly meet Ephred, the Shadow Baker, an elven dealer of magical pastries who is deeply anti-pie. Ashton pays Ephred and asks where they can talk to the Corsairs — he directs them to the Root Trader Alcove. They are to ask for Heron and tell him they ‘come for the laughter.’ Imogen reads Ephred’s mind, which clearly irritates him.
The group enters the Root Trader Alcove, where they meet Heron, a male eisfuura (birdfolk) with black feathers. They give him the coded phrase and he leads them up a spiral staircase to a chamber above. They enter through the hatch and discover a dark room filled with about thirty people, all grinning at them. Heron tells them that these people have come for the laughter.
Chuckles fill the room as it rapidly becomes clear that Ephred has given them a dangerous pass code. A lone man steps out and brandishes a scimitar at the group. He tells them in Marquesian that this is not their lucky day.
That is it for Episode 4 of Critical Role!
- Holy shit y’all, the group has been together for two days and they’ve already upset Jrusar’s Court of Owls. That was FAST.
- I feel like pie absolutely counts as a pastry. Justice for Orym.
- Imogen’s dream having a precognitive element is new, so what could the dream mean in the long run?
- Let’s go, unnamed party, time to persuade a room full of people not to kill you!