After some minor shadow walk hijinks, the party arrived at the gates of Istivin, where they promptly waited in line for several hours. Upon reaching the gate, they were asked a lengthy series of odd, probing questions, but ultimately are let in. It was immediately apparent that something wass wrong with the town, and boozing and carousing and chatting up priests of Pelor revealed that the town has been under a curse ever since it was reclaimed from the Drow several years ago. Investigations continued:
- A blind beggar warned them: “Beware, it is always watching.”
- The party saveed a construction worker from nearly getting crushed by a falling stone block, only to discover this is a normal occurrence and the worker now gets a week’s hazard pay / drinking money.
- The party broke up a potentially lethal bar fight started by a telekinetically-spilled mug of ale; further investigation revealed one or both patrons were under evil enchantment effects and nearly everybody in town had trace auras of similar magics.
- The party discovered that the circus has brought back gladiatorial combat, which had been out of style for centuries.
- Returning from the circus, they came upon a fight between a single guard and several other guards. The single guard, Alanar Kane, cast powerful magic, including cloudkill, before being wrestled into submission by the party and arrested. A detect thoughts at a crucial moment showed a foreign mind leaving the guard’s, leading to theories about a magic jar spell. After saving the possessed guard from suicide, the guard was arrested by agents of the Marquioness, who refused to grant an audience at this hour (or indeed ever).