Blixa Pew, a resident of New Heaven and Carrion-Priest, is contacted by his handler in the Ministry, Azekel Dorna, another charnel priest. He asks him to meet him at an address in New Heaven with a team to help investigate something - he will explain when he is there.
Blixa was a killer for th eAelfir and is now a charnel priest. He has a trained hyena, and wears unimpressive leathers. He knows Argenta from when he stopped him from taking venegeance for Argenta's friend, who was killed.
Blixa gathers a group of associates and fellow revolutionaries;
1. Argenti Silver-in-Sunshine, an Idol artist who is well connected with the Aelfir and makes art from his own blood.
2. Choronzon Zanner, a Vermissian Sage who knows secrets about Argenti's blood art, and is close friends with a demonologist expert, Abraxas Kadaman.
3. Tavesh Szat, a Masked who worked as a spy for his mistress, Alari Nariael, a diplomat to the humans. He is still close with her maid, Kaviri Unaro, and her cook, Hagiro Ulaira. He also knows a dark elf human emissary called Joran Havini. He knows Unkasu Nasiavi from when he found some information for him from an Aelfir household to help him profit on a trade. He wears green robes with black trim and carries a knife.
4. Unkasu Nasiavi, an Azurite dealer. He wears fine blue robes and gold necklages, nose rings and bracelets holy to Azur. He knows Azekel from when he helped him out of debt for reneging on a contract to kill someone. He also knows Drada Dinuil, a trader who distills pain and sells it to the Aelfir. He has a bodyguard, Zakfaein, who fears snakes and the outdoors.
They travel to the safe house at New Heaven. Zakfein refuses to come outside, and waits a level below for Unkasu to return. The safe house is a badly appointed single room apartment below an apothecary in the commercial district of New Heaven. They are unimpressed.
Azekel Dorna arrives soon after them, and greets them. He explains that a new drug, Drek, has hit the streets in New Heaven, and it is having a very destructive impact on the area. The Ministry also believes that a recent implosion of a building was a demonic incursion, and they think it is linked to the drugs somehow. He wants the players to stop the drug problem.
He explains that Drek is a cruelty drug - it makes the user cruel and heartless, laughing at others misfortune and actively seeking to cause it.
Unkasu sees that Azekel really wants to be confident that the group can solve this problem, and they immediately begin exploring theories and showing off their confidence in the situation. An almost tearfully grateful Azekel is convinced they are capable and will solve this problem, and tells them he will visit them again in two days.
Blixa knows a small-time drug dealer, Imbay, in the neighborhood and decides to make him a visit. They find him in a bad way - shivering and in withdrawal from Drek. He agrees he can get some for them in return for a few silver coins. They follow him and see him pleading with the street hustler who reluctantly gives him some Dreck - Imbay returns to Blixa, and then uses the silver to pay off the dealer. Blixa gives a sample of the drug to Choronzon who enters the Vermissian to find Abraxas and his lab, to break down the drug.
Choronzon quickly deduces that Drek is a cut down and dirty derivative of Sulphur, a drug made by scraping off the residue from demonic incursions. So the Ministry was right - the demonic incursions are almost certainly related to the drugs. The drug is extremely addictive as well, and acts by destroying the empathy centres in the brain and making the user cruel.
Meanwhile, Blixa and Argenti follow the dealer. Argenta attempts to help by putting a glomour on the dealer, a street dealer named Percum, and taking him to a bar where Percum lets out a little too much to Argenti - he mentions he knows the big boss, a man named Bern. But Argenti pushes it a little bit far and Percum suddenly becomes suspicious of why Argenti is so curious. Argenti distracts by suddenly creating a party at the bar.
Blixa seeks out Bern - he is a wealthy but relatively low key merchant who seems to be heavily protected by guards and has signs of new wealth. Blixa follows him and after a while sees him go to a heavily guarded warehouse - and then several hooded gnolls with a pack animal go in, and then leave without the pack animals.
Blixa follows the gnolls to another heavily guarded building, but he manages to find a way to look in. Inside he sees gnoll and drow workers assembling some sort of large, fridge sized, ornate brass device...
He returns to share the news to his companions but is waylaid by three giggling Drek addicts kicking a hyena puppy to death in an alleyway. They turn and see him, and giggling, and leaning on each other, they draw knives and approach him. Blixa's hyena leaps at them, and he cuts one in the femurial artery before fatally slashing a second across the eyes. He takes the second thug's unreliable looking pistol, and then swiftly kills the third thug. Surprised by his own effectiveness in the fight, he leans and quickly patches up the hyena puppy, carrying it gently in his arms as he hurries back to the safe house...