Injured and mana-poor from the fight on Tern street, Zathalos, Djuric, and one of Bann Nicola’s household guards rushed to the headquarters of the Stilled Tongue cultists. Inside they found two heavily armed and armored cultists (ready for a fight, having just been attacked by Captain Braedon and his contingent of Baranti guardsmen). This battle pushed the heroes to the edge and it was a close call, but still no rest for the weary as our heroes wondered where their backup was. A search of the first floor found three dead cultists and a lot of blood in the common room of this filthy house.
The heroes rushed up the stairs fearing the worst and found a beautiful young woman admiring herself in the large room’s many many mirrors. Mother Brianna, an abomination, stilled their swords with her words. The influence of the desire demon even turned the guardsman to her side for a moment, before she struck him down with her claws. She asked for freedom in exchange for the lives of the guardsmen, and managed to seduce Djuric to her cause. Zathalos, overwhelmed and alone and out of mana, agreed to her bargain. Mother Brianna escaped while Zathalos restored the guardsmen to consciousness.
Disappointed in Mother Brianna’s escape but grateful for their lives and being able to prevent two chidren from ending up as mute orphans that night, Braedon invited the heroes to Bann Nicola’s manor for dinner. He also tells them that if they mention that they are friends of the Bann, they should have no problem aquiring rooms at the Gnawed Noble Tavern in the market district of Denerim.
The next morning, they received a visit from Sheila, one of the Bann’s servants, with a formal invitation and the name of a tailor (Ragnar Traken) who was tasked with outfitting the heroes with a dinner suit appropriate for the royal quarter. Djuric balked at such finery, but managed to find a suit that wasn’t too “puffy” for his liking. Dinner was exquisite, guests included Bann Nicola, Captain Braedon, her secretary Bando (a dwarf), and her grandson Adric (who brought a young lady that the Bann clearly frowned upon). Over the course of the meal, which included spiced nug from Orzammar, the heroes learned of the Bann’s good deeds in Denerim. She has been fighting the Cult of the Stilled Tongue for some time, and always takes in the orphans they create to a special school that trains the mute children to be monks for the Chantry. She has championed for the poor and the elves in the alienage of Denerim, and is generally well respected amongst Denerim’s people. She offered the heroes patronage, but they turned it down as they intend to join the ranks of the Grey Wardens. Bann Nicola wished them well and admired their courage for wishing to join the Wardens.
The heroes headed to the temporary headquarters of the Grey Wardens in Denerim the next morning where they met a wisecracking young Warden names Alistair. A few days later, Duncan returned to Denerim and tasked the heroes with accompanying Alistair to Nevarra to attend the Grand Tourney and summon the Nevarran Grey Wardens to Ferelden. The ship leaves in the morning…