The party arrived at Stromdorf finding the weather worse than expected. A massive storm had settled over the area and seemed to be growing worse by the hour. The citizens of Stromdorf are used to wet weather but most remarked that the weather seemed to be unnaturally bad. The river Teufel overflowed its banks and threatened to wash the rickty wooden bridge away. As the party crossed the bridge began breaking up. Heinrich Gert was swept off the bridge and plunged into the fast moving river. To make matters worse while struggling to stay afloat he was attacked by a large Reik eel. Grommel dove into the water after Heinrich and eventually helped him reach the shore and kill the creature. Draping it over his shoulder, the trollslayer and his comrades headed into the city.
First the PCs stopped by the Stewpot Hostelry owned by the halfling proprietress, Keila Cobblepot. There they learned that Florian Weschler had stayed at the inn, but had left abruptly some days ago. They also met the swashbuckler Eduardo Castillo Rodrigues from the city of Madriga in Estalia. He seemed to be a drunk and down on his luck but claimed to have once found a lost city of gold in the far away land of Lustria. He said he had been chased away by a tribe of lizard men and captured by the beautiful pirate maiden Janine de Belleville and forced to walk the plank. He mentioned that he had been passed out in the alley the night Florian Weschler left. He only saw Florian’s bodyguards leaving the next morning, but had heard a cart go by sometime after midnight. He also said that he had saw Florian come into town on a wagon pulled by a white pony. Keila warned the group that Eduardo was a compulsive liar.
The party headed out to investigate the town a bit eventually coming to the market square. Along the way, Eduardo acted as a tour guide and told them a bit about the city. The burgomeister, Phillip Adler had not been seen in many weeks. He was once a very competent politician but had recently shut himself up in his quarters above the town hall for some unknown reason. The city council had not met since then, and Captain Arno Kessler had been in charge since.
As they passed the well, Eduardo warned them not to drink the water. Madriga Brenner had drowned herself in the well recently. She was the wife of the owner of the Thunderwater Inn, Sebastian Brenner.
Next the PCs headed off to the Thunderwater Inn to continue their investigation and partake in some of the famous Thunderwater Ale. They noticed that although the inn was full a chair was kept empty by the fire. The locals warned the party not to sit there. Eventually a well-traveled woodsman arrived and sat in the chair. The party talked to him and found out that his name was Franz Bieber. He said that he saw a wagon being pulled by a white pony heading out the east gate the night Florian left. The wagon had been driven by Reiner Holtz.
After Franz left, Urgan Morzak decided to sit in his reserved seat attracting the ire of the owner of the inn Sebastian Brenner. As a physical confrontation threatened to break out, Captain Kessler arrived and calmed the situation down, asking the dwarf to leave for the evening.