After a moment’s shock and confusion, the Queen calls off her remaining minions and surrenders, insisting that she is free of the Crown’s influence. She begs for mercy, claiming to have been the victim of an evil curse. Once it is clear that her life is not in immediate danger, she asks after Sabina. Ileosa is relieved that her handmaiden lives, but also horrified at what she must think of her.
The adventurers question her about the important information she claims to have. Ileosa denies responsibility for the atrocities she committed under the crown’s influence, blaming it on the fragment of Kazavon’s soul. And she reveals that she was not the scariest thing lurking in Korvosa.
While enthralled to the crown, she made a pact with an exiled infernal duke, Lorthact, who has been hiding in the city for centuries. She doesn’t know where he is hiding, but she learned of him via the wizard Togomor, so he might have links to the Acadamae. She begs the party to confront Lorthact, because he has the other copy of the infernal contract she signed.
As she continues to plead for mercy, Ileosa notes that she can end the fighting in the city by commanding her Gray Maiden loyalists to stand down. This is of great concern to Flint, since his sister Valeria was one of the loyalists. Flint says that he would support sparing Ileosa, but only if his sister is still alive.
He uses one of his Harrow Deck of Many Things abilities to scry his sister, who is holed up with some other Maidens. She senses his presence and moves into a corner to deny him information on their whereabouts. However, Flint is satisfied that she is unharmed.
The adventurers agree not to harm Ileosa, but will take her back to stand trial. Their first priority, however, is finding Nox and the cursed Crown of Fangs. Egan takes an hour to cast a scrying spell to track the fighter down.
They find him in the richly furnished cabin of a ship, where he is speaking with Amprei. The Chelaxian ambassador is explaining that by working together, they can save Korvosa from an even greater threat and ensure that Nox is acclaimed king. Amprei then senses the scrying and teleports away with Nox.
Using sending and animal messenger spells, the Crimson Blades alert their friends and followers in Korvosa to the developments. Then Zandu teleports the party back to Korvosa—but something goes wrong.
When the party reappears in Castle Korvosa, Zandu is not with them. In his place is a pile of flopping fish, which splatter onto the ground. In a croaking whisper, the fish say “Zandu sleeps with us now.”
The adventurers suspect that the Marid genie that Zandu had spurned has kidnapped him during the teleport, but even Kyra agrees that any rescue will have to wait.
The party hands Ileosa over to Cressida and bring the Field Marshal up to speed on what has transpired. Sabina is also present and has a tense reunion with Ileosa, who tries to apologize only to have her lover walk away.
The word goes out, however, that Queen Ileosa has returned and has commanded her followers to lay down arms. The fighting comes to a halt and the Gray Maiden loyalists turn themselves in, with Sabina overseeing their custody. Remmy, meanwhile, rejoins the party to help them search for Nox.
Flint and Valeria have a rather stiff reunion, having spent the past few weeks on opposite sides of a civil war. Nonetheless, the siblings are glad to have one another, since the rest of their family is lost.
While arrangements were made with Ileosa at the castle, Irabeth, Laori, and Kyra investigated the Chelaxian embassy and returned looking rather worse for wear. Irabeth opens her mouth to deliver the report when Laori excitedly jumps in front of her.
“Vampires!” the elf maiden squees.
Irabeth goes on to explain that it looked like the embassy was overrun, but there was no sign of Nox or Amprei.
Exhausted and not eager to face a nocturnal enemy, the party calls it a night and prepares to go after Amprei the following day.
Egan, with help from the druids and his animal friends, is able to swiftly locate Amprei’s ship off the coast north of the city. In roc form, the druid flies them out there, where they find the Burnt Saffron floating adrift seemingly without crew.
Investigating the vessel, they soon learn what had happened when below decks they are ambushed by a small army of vampires. Arlynn and Egan use their divine powers to burn many of them, but the fight is interrupted by a loud crash that rocks the entire boat.
The Crimson Wave, the ship the party seized from Bekyar slavers and left in the hands of goblins, has returned, as the goblins clumsily smashed it into the Burn Saffron. The party’s attention is divided between defeating the vampires and saving he ship from sinking before they can search it for clues. However, they manage to achieve both objectives.