Note: Originally posted to the Blades in the Dark Google+ Community on May 08 2017.
The Red Lamp Tramp Clamp (Part 2):
Madame Tesslyn speaks directly to Constance, identifying her as the leader of the robbers. She incorrectly guesses that they are working for Ulf Ironborn. Constance says that he is working for them.
They begin some very tense negotiations. Veiled threats are made. Tesslyn agrees to leave the Skovlan refugees alone, in exchange for her life. For the trouble she’s caused, she’s prepared to let the Dolls have the money in the upstairs safe. In addition, she’s prepared to pay them handsomely for any information on Ulf Ironborn’s whereabouts. Constance asks why he’s so important. Tesslyn is reluctant to speak on it at first, but Constance reminds her who’s holding the weapons. Tesslyn says that Ironborn is in possession of a particular item, the Hand of Kotar, and he’s been unwilling to part with it at any price. Moira has heard the name, but Shade knows a bit more about it. Kotar was a powerful figure in Akorosi myth, long before the cataclysm. There are lots of conflicting stories about what he was and what he could do, but they all tend to agree that the Hand, Eye, and Heart of Kotar are all incredibly powerful artifacts.
Constance is not thrilled about the idea of someone getting hold of something so powerful, so she agrees to assist Tesslyn in acquiring the Hand, but insists that her people be allowed a chance to examine it first. Tesslyn agrees. Constance also states that she wants to buy Penelope, gestures to the sack of money that Kamali has retrieved from the safe, and asks Tesslyn to name her price. Tesslyn retrieves a small coin purse from the bag, hands it to Constance, and tells her to put the rest back. Constance questions Penelope’s value, and Tesslyn assures her that she’s getting a bargain. At this point Kobb indirectly threatens Penelope (suggesting that maybe neither party she have her), Tesslyn reacts instinctively, making an arcane gesture that cuts off Kobb’s air supply, but only for a moment.
In response, Constance attacks and knocks Tesslyn out. She then tells Kobb to take Tesslyn upstairs and stage a suicide by hanging. Shade accompanies him to dress up the secret room to look as though the hanging were part of a summoning ritual gone wrong. He draws a ritual circle, places implements and material components, and a chair in the center, upon which Madame Tesslyn is balanced with a noose around her neck. Once the rope is tied off on the side, Shade kicks the chair out, and she drops, her neck snapping instantly. Kobb vomits into a bucket, while Shade proceeds to rip Tesslyn’s spirit from her body using the lightning hook and promptly bottle her.
Constance informs Penelope that she will be working for the Dolls now. In return, Penelope asks that Constance leave the brothel to Margaret. Constance has Kamali draw up a forged bill of sale from Madame Tesslyn to Margaret (Kamali is not happy with her work, but they’re pressed for time). Constance addresses the gathered employees of the brothel, including Margaret. She gives them the official cover story, that Madame Tesslyn signed the establishment over to Margaret, packed a bag, and left the city for parts unknown. She makes sure they understand.
Heat: 5 total (2 base, +1 for well connected, +2 for killing).
Entanglement: Interrogation. Keel comes to Constance and says that the Bluecoats have picked up Drav along with a slew of other business owners in the Docks, and are questioning them in relation to some suspicious figures hanging about in the Docks, shortly before the business with the food poisoning. Constance spends 3 coin to get him released.
Constance reduces Heat (by 2), Heals the quicksilver poisoning, and reduces Stress (giving out 1 Coin to the folks of Nightmarket).
Kobb reduces Heat (to 0), reduces Stress (down to 4), and works on the Marian project, completing it. He takes her out to dinner at a lavish restaurant, followed by an attendance of a play. When he escorts her home, they have a moment on the front step, where she confesses that she trusts him, and kisses him on the cheek.
Kamali trains Insight (gaining her an advance in Study), and works on the Kazima project (completing it). She shows Kazima her research notes, and Kazima tells her they have much to discuss. She also works on a better forgery of the bill of sale for the Red Lamp (2 of 4).
Shade reduces his stress, trains resolve (raising his Attune to 3), and heals.
Gears works on projects (the Big Idea, and the Eye/Mind Device). He also gets 2 free project slices, which he divides between the Big Idea, and the Eye/Mind Device.
Moira begins investigating what happened to Nyryx (completing it). She discovers that Nyryx, as a member of the Reconciled, was attempting to help Jezelle when he got nabbed, reportedly by the Dimmer Sisters.
The Moon’s Daughter and the Pint and Hound earn a total of 10 Coin.
Constance pays 3 Coin to Lyssa as tribute. Lyssa warns Constance about the dangers in crossing the Circle of Flame.
Things were going so well, and one errant comment knocks the whole enterprise off balance (no pun intended).# dontmesswiththedolls