The party emerged, blinking, into the Mist-shrouded outside world. It’d been hours since they entered the basement and probably days since they’ve been outside the walls of the city. Those who weren’t immune to Mist exposure or wearing top of the line containment suits were visibly agitated by leaving Rat City. Not that the barrier was functioning there, but at least it was possible to run back to Emery Plaza from there.
They needn’t have been concerned as the Stone Shaman cleared a path through the Mist with a wave of his hand, literally. He held his stony hand upright, palm out and the Mist moved as if blown by unseen winds, clearing before him. He led them to an abandoned town five miles from New Eden. Here they noticed Agent 13 had left their company. No one offered to look for him.
As they approached, the Stone Shaman stopped at a rise and beckoned them forward. He said he was feeling his years. The rest of the party moved forward, approaching a dilapidated bridge. They could hear voices, arguing loudly, obviously unaware of the group’s approach, “If you’d let me bring Vera, we wouldn’t have been in such bad shape.”
“Vera wouldn’t fit in the tunnel, Dumbass.” The second voice, though obviously not human, had a feminine quality to it.
“Now we’ve had to come all the way out here to get her, how are we supposed to get back into Low Town?” The first voice complained.
“Shhh… do you smell something? Smells like human blood, but dry, like wounds. Get Vera.”
Vera turned out to be a Rage Drake the size of a car. The Children fought to the death, knowing the capture would mean execution. Sadly, Pai Xhai seemed to be in absolute denial of the situation, crying out, “No, we’ve come so far!”
Thorgrim replied solemnly, “We all have, child, has nothing to do with anything.” Before putting a magic missle right between her eyes.
While the battle raged, the heroes could peer over the shoulders of the enemy to see The Headhunter escorting the Corporate VIP and his small entourage to safety. He’d apparently used his suits cloaking capabilities and the handy distraction of his new-found cannon fodder to spring the prisoners. He made a couple of rude gestures as they exited the danger zone.
Just as Vera was laid down with a mighty blow from Eve’s Breaker Sword, The Emery Group enacted its containment phase 2 policy, a barrage of laser fire from a space station in orbit. Carefully coordinated by computer to blast between the structures. As the fire rained down, the Stone Clan Shaman was reunited with his apprentice.
“Thank you for helping my grandson. He is brave, and he grows stronger every day, but sadly, he is not as smart as you. One against four is grim odds, even for Stone Clan. But he bloodied them well. Please accept these talismans as gifts. They are kept by our people who cannot master the Way but must travel through the Mist, it will keep all but the strongest storms from finding you. Please be careful. This fire from heavens is an ill omen, one that I believe was foretold by my grandfather. I must return to my home and beseech my grandfathers for guidance. Be strong, but use your strength wisely”
This last saying had a hint of ritual that suggested some ominous portent had passed between the two groups. The Stone Clan walked away, disappearing as the Mists swirled and closed around the gap of safe space the Shaman created with the force of his will.
The party took the tunnel into the now “cleansed” Rat City, hopefully finding an uneventful path back to Emery Plaza.