Reconvening with Korbin, our swashbuckling heroes filled their ravenfolk companion in on the details – Bō’s missing, Shipbreaker’s a kraken, the Golden Wheel situation – but the cleric was hardly convinced. Giving a side-eye to the chicken-facehugger abomination that accompanies them, Korbin reluctantly agreed to accompany them on their fool’s errand to Dead Makalo. All piling into the apparatus of Kwalish, they departed Seabottom and headed east.
It was a short but stressful journey in the apparatus. Nasira took over driving duties and quickly became enraged by the lack of labels, the vessel’s unmaneuverable nature and the large number of obstacles in their way. Hakari took the opportunity to stretch out, removing his boots and pestering everyone – particularly Korbin – with his unkempt toes. Weed demanded to have her disturbing storybook read over and over. Korbin, hemmed in on all sides, took pains not to go mad.
Once they arrived on the outskirts of Dead Makalo, their instruments started to fail them, affected by magnetic interference. Scuttling through the shattered reef city, the apparatus fell under attack from merfolk zombies and ambush predators alike. Through a judicious use of spells, turning undead and trial-and-error with the unlabeled levers, the pirates were able to negotiate their way through the reef and eventually arrive at the gates of the massive merfolk palace, the three masts of the Majestic visible in distant silhouette.
No sooner had they crossed the threshold, however, than the heroes were forced to contend with the shockstone statues that guarded the way. Their iron apparatus – and their metal armor – magnetized to the side of the stone, it was a long trudge to the palace doors, occasionally interrupted by brief bursts of lightning originating from somewhere inside the palace. Once through the doors, they explored the sunken ruin with magical lights, eventually encountering and banishing a coral golem that guarded the throne room.
In a great courtyard, they came upon the wreck of the Majestic, its wooden rotten and covered in seaweed and its darkened spaces occupied by something sinister. No sooner had the heroes wrenched free the Golden Wheel that that something – massive sparkling electric eel – reared its ugly head to oppose them.