-Ollin recognizes where they are, says they need to go west to an old iron mine, since that’s where he found them the first time
-after a day’s journey, they come to the mine, but there’s a fort built over the entrance. Arcturus notices that they’re not flying Combine colors, so they’re curious.
-Ironbeard steps up offers to trade with them. they reveal that they’re The Iron Talon Bandits, and that they’ve never had a merchant come to them. Ironbeard does an impressive display of magic and they flip out. He then tells them that they just need to get through and that the mine is a secret passage his company made for ease of travel. They buy it and go through.
-Ollin leads the way, and they find a passage where reflective eyes shine back at them and tell them to GTFO. They name-drop Yukanis and the person steps into the torchlight. It is a drow named Araunio Musentan and he is the son of their elder, Tieilex Musentan. He walks them into their city, Drow Atnan (“the hidden place” in elven).
-Huge underground cavern with multi-story buildings inside, an underground lake, and large white-glowing mushrooms that provide light.
-They arrive in a meeting room where Tieilex is waiting for them. His daughter Viyara Musentan welcomes them to Drow Atnan and reminds them to be careful in their city.
-The upstarts tell Tieilex about Yukanis and his suspicions about Eoric Deepsong. Tieilex confirms it and says that he’d heard about that, so he brought someone else to talk with them.
-He introduces Lady Autumnshade (not a drow), who tells the upstarts that she’s been rallying the elves against Deepsong. She confirms that he is behind the unrest and is blaming elves for The Ekwan Republic. Through all this, she’s very elven supremacist and generally angered, which concerns the upstarts.
-She notes their distrust, and says that they should go to Pyath to see for themselves just what Eoric is doing to the people. They agree that some evidence is necessary (since they don’t want to just outright murder him), and they leave for Pyath.
-Ironbeard gets them past the walls and promptly receives a letter from his daughter Hilda via courier. It says that she just heard that he’s in Lorath and that he needs to meet her at the temple of Semadra
-Hoping for the best but expecting the worst, Ironbeard takes Alphonse with him inside the temple while Ollin and Arcturus post up outside in case anything bad happens.
-Inside Ironbeard finds his daughter and they have a moment together. Ironbeard can tell that something is wrong, and he asks her. All she says is that she’s sorry. Cosuv and a squad of Obsidian Heart agents step out from cover and start walking towards him.
-Alphonse busts out an illusion of ironbeard killing himself, which takes them all aback while Ironbeard grabs his daughter and runs out.
-Ollin takes a look inside and notices Cosuv, he and arcturus put together a distraction. Arcturus fires at them, and then Ollin grabs and pulls Cosuv into an alleyway. Ollin tells him to call off the pursuit, and he laughs. Ollin reminds him of the knife at his throat, and Cosuv reminds him of what happened last time his throat was cut. Ollin opens Cosuv’s throat, and his spirit flies out again, but this time it goes into one of the other OH agents and he winks at Ollin.
-They book it, eventually evading them. Ironbeard finds a stable and buys the best horse he can find for his daughter, who he tells to get to the Ekwan Repbulic. She kisses him goodbye and leaves.
-Ironbeard hears the creepy voice in his head again. It tells him that the way it kept his daughter safe was making her ally with those who would’ve done her harm. As long as she is one of them, she is safe. Ironbeard retorts by saying that all they’ll have to do is take out those who would do her harm. It replies by saying that they’ll be seeing each other soon then.
-The upstarts reconvene and decide that it’s time to go after Eoric Deepsong. As he’s one of the king’s cabinet members, the capital is a good place to start looking.
Torol, the Dwarven Capital
-Ironbeard namedrops himself and makes a bribe to get into the city. The party splits up to see if they can find out if Eoric is home and if they can get to him. They all meet up with a man named Tolf, who is a servant in the Royal Palace.
-Tolf confirms that Eoric is in town, and they discuss with him how to get inside. They tell him that they’re going to stop Eoric and put an end to the racism, which Tolf supports. They come in as servants (disguised by Alphonse’s illusions) through a side entrance with Tolf. Another servant comes in and tells them that they can’t be lounging around while the king is in a meeting, so they go to the kitchen and grab platters of goodies and go attend the King and his cabinet.
-While they’re passing stuff out as requested, they listen in on the meeting. Several advisers are talking to the King about Lady Autumnshade and how the elves are nearly ready to begin a civil war. Eoric Deepsong speaks up, and notes how the Combine is failing, and claims that the only way to survive is to separate. The queen makes a comment on how his argument is inappropriate and tired, but that the threat of separation might force the elven half of the combine to pacify its people. The king assents, and Eoric smiles
-Ollin had written a note for Eoric telling him to meet in a specified room after the meeting was finished to get information on Autumnshade’s latest activities. He Slips it under Eoric’s plate before the meeting is adjourned.