MAZE OF THE BLUE MEDUSA DRAMATIS PERSONAE Alabaster Rime, played by @Wiwaxia Lyriae Quicksilver, played by @esotericPrognosticator Sarnai, played by @swirlingflight Liron Amanodel, played by @thegrimsqueaker Stella Kirschmesser, played by @missoyashirou PROLOGUE Lord Gideon Avaraptus spared no expense on security. His vaults were guarded by keen-eyed men with keener blades, sealed with wondrous locks purchased from gnomish artificers, and built on foundations of solid stone. The painting might have been in a leaky shack on the beach for all that it slowed you down. A few well-placed bribes, some filched blueprints, and two hours' work on a foggy night were all it took. By the time the enchantments wore off you were well away from his manse; by the time the city watch took up the alarm, you were hauling on muffled oars and watching the lights of Carcemar recede over the bay. Now, in your safe house in a sleepy fishing town, some miles from anywhere anyone might be looking, you take a moment to admire your prize. False Chanterelle. No one thinks deeply on it. Most modern critics dismiss it as puerile and amateurish. Its history is mostly notable for the impossibility of establishing anything concrete. Though it has certainly existed for a very long time, its origin, artist, school, and even time period are frustrating unknowns. Yet through the quirk of mortal minds that causes us to covet the rare and unique, it has become fantastically expensive. Priceless, some might say, but that figure of speech will not prevent numerous interested parties from rewarding you handsomely for its "rediscovery." Nor will Lord Gideon’s creditors be pleased he has lost it, but the other contents of the vaults and cells beneath his estate removed any scruples you might have had about sealing his doom. The rays of a [d8 for phase...] waning crescent moon spill in through the window. Rumor has it that the painting's subtle hues can only be properly appreciated by moonlight; how much credit you give this rumor typically depends on whether you have darkvision. In the dim, colorless light, it is easy at first to mistake the movement for a shadow passing across the wall -- a night bird or a windblown leaf. Then you hear the voice, and realize that the woman in the painting has turned to look at you. Her whisper echoes strangely, not just in the safehouse room but in whatever unfathomable space lies beyond the canvas. "Please. Help me."