The party returned to Bonetown and after a healthy amount of drinking, contacted God. The party signed an (unaltered) contract for the trade route to Redcliff. The party also entrusted the water talisman to God for delivery to Redcliff. God agreed, signing a napkin-sized contract Alvyn wrote up.
The party’s next destination was to find Red Hand. As the party traveled south west, they had a problem with Nidhogg getting into their rations. The party began training Nidhogg to hunt for its own food. The training is mostly successful. Though Nidhogg still cannot fly and the concept of sneaking up on prey eludes her, she enthusiastically chases down any small prey she comes upon.
On their way to Red Hand’s compound, they came across a village called Happy Hills. Unlike other ramshackle villages made in the decaying ruins of pre-war cities, Happy Hills is new, clean and beautiful. After playing for the residents and being treated to a round at the pub, Sheryl became suspicious of the apparently flawless town. After sneaking around, she found that the town is under Red Hand’s control and being built on the backs of slaves that he captures.
After Sheryl clued the rest of the party into the situation, they picked a fight with a gang of slave masters overseeing slaves at a construction site. All of the slaves collars with red arcane runes around their necks and one of the slave masters had a similar one with green runes. The part was able to determine that the red collars are linked to the green “insurance” collar, which would cause all of the red collars to detonate if the wearer of the green collar died. Luckily, the party figured out how to remove the collar safely and no slaves died.
After the fight, the party decided to steal a slave wagon and head into Red Hand’s compound. They asked for the help of the freed slaves, but all left on their own except one.
When the party arrived at Red Hand’s Compound, Alvyn was able to Jedi mind-trick a guard into giving them an audience with Red Hand himself. After the party played a song for the bewildered but bemused Red Hand, he sensed that the party carried with them the ManaSeed they took from Cormag. He asked the party what they intend to do with it and when they told him they plan to remove the Red Fog, he became rather congenial. He said he applauded their efforts and pledged his ManaSeed to their service once they had collected all the others, as his was currently being used in his quarry. The party agreeed and negotiated for the release of Timmy’s parents, at the cost of considerable gold and the lightning talisman they took from Gravemark.