On the way back to Mountain’s Gate, the Gwium spots a dragon flying overhead that turns out to be Aurix, gold dragon friend to Lord Ravian. Aurix explains to the group that Lord Ravian has been charged with the murder of Jeremiah Gallant and that he’ll hire the party for 1000g to find genuine (not faked) evidence or testimony that acquits Lord Ravian of the charges against him.
Aurix flies the group to Serendipity City and over the plains where it has apparently been snowing. (Lord Ravian’s warhorse leads Taffy and the other horses back to Mountain’s Gate.) Merewen asks the dragon all about other dragons, and about Lord Sterling’s orb. The dragon knows very little about the latter, but mentions that Lance is an archival specialist and he might be able to help. He also tells them that the reason for the “sausage-fest” (as Luna calls it) is that Empress Ishtar is trying to find a husband for her daughter, Princess Quinn. Finally, Milgram reveals that Bianca Gallant is one hot chick despite having a great-grand-nephew.
The group checks into the Imperial Guest House as Lady Raviaries retinue and then does a little shopping. Milgram‘s familiar, Cosmo the black cat, searches the guest house’s interior for a bloody sword while Gwium meets the maid, who was apparently Jeremiah’s lover. Luna inquires as to whom else is staying at the guest house and finds out that besides Ravian, Sterling, and Gallant, that Prince Max, Prince Herbert, and Lord Whipple are also in attendance.
The group debates the best way to go about investigating, given the amount of Imperial Guards around — whether to sneak, bluff, use magic, or follow Aurix’s advice and call themselves investigators working for Lady Rav.