Case File-Warforged Murders in Blackbones

Situation
  1. Eight warforged were killed in Blackbones over the past month. It looked like they were ripped apart, with large gashes and parts missing.
  2. Warforge Dandy interrupted the last murder, saw a figure standing over him that escaped.
  3. Brigade’s brother Ash sent a letter to him, asking him for help investigating the warforged murders.
  4. We met Ash at the Red Hammer, a local tavern, and questioned him & several other warforged.
  5. We then investigated the victims’ bodies at the d’Cannith hold. Slogar d’Cannith insisted his men were about to crack it, told us to withdraw before we scared them off.
  6. At the latest crime scene, Grin found a discarded gold chain link.
  7. We investigated Tain Foundry next. Its overseer Molric said none of his workers had been killed, which he attributed to amulets they made to ward off ghosts. Although he treated the warforged poorly, he seems to value their use as tools; he hoped the recent murders stopped soon because they were hurting productivity. I find no reason to disbelieve him yet. He directed us towards Algir, his head smith, for more information.
  8. Algir told us that Copper often traded in the same gold chain links that Grin found at the last murder site. He also mentioned a mysterious shipment had appeared at the Foundry a week before the murders; when he returned with a supervisor to check it out, it had already disappeared. It was full of “reflective” repair parts and alchemical supplies.
  9. We returned to the Red Hammer to tell Ash and Dandy of our findings and ask them for more info about Copper. Dandy mentioned Copper slept in Tain Foundry.
  10. We broke up a fight between a warforged squad and Molric’s men on the way to the Foundry. The warforged Shadowblack convinced a warforged squad Molric was behind the murders, and they attacked him. We knocked out the leaders of both sides, which brought the fight to a halt. The warforged squad was sent back to the Red Hammer to await further investigation of the murders, while Molric’s men brought him back to the Foundry for treatment.
  11. The Foundry was put on complete lockdown until Molric recovered, halting our investigation of Copper’s cell. Without access to his home and unsure where else he could be, we slept for the night at a Ghalladra hostel while Brigade asked at the Red Hammer about Copper.
  12. In the morning, Brigade and one of the warforged squad reported to us: Copper had released an alchemy paralyzer at the Red Hammer and killed 4 warforged, including Shadowblack and Ash. One of the squadmates tracked him through secret tunnels leading into the Foundry, to his cell. Within his cell, we found a secret passage to a tunnel behind it.
  13. After a series of traps, we encountered a ravid amidst a junk heap of warforged parts. The ravid animated some of the parts to attack us. We drove it off, but we were heavily injured in the process.
  14. We advanced into Copper’s lab, where he was trying to animate a patchwork warforged. He attacked us while babbling about the First Creator, releasing flawed warforged from an imperfect existence, trying to create the perfect warforged untouched by flesh. After knocking him out, the patchwork warforged awoke and attacked us. We destroyed it.
  15. We retrieved a magic bag and a ruined crate from Copper’s lab; most of the alchemical equipment had been destroyed in the fight. After we dragged Copper out of there, Cannith troops approached us and presented full authorization to confiscate Copper for Merric Cannith, his creator. We turned him over to them, then returned to Firelight.
Testimony
  • The Tain Foundry is located at the epicenter of the attacks. (Ash’s mapping)
  • The ghost of Jack-in-Irons might’ve done it. (rumor/gossip)
  • Dandy saw a figure over the last victim in an alley, but the figure retreated before he could get a good look. The body was torn to pieces. (Dandy)
  • Shadowblack might follow the Lord of Blades. (Ash)
  • Copper shouting doomsday prophecies of how it’s tougher than us and will rip us apart. (Copper)
  • An unusual bracelet, a narrow silver band with a gold circle and a single gold chain link, is supposed to keep an ancient blacksmith’s ghost from killing the Foundry workers. (Molric)
  • A special shipment crate of “reflective” repair parts and alchemical supplies was delivered to the Foundry a week before the murders. When he returned with a supervisor to check out the crate, it had disappeared. It was originally found between Blower 3, Forge 7 (near Copper’s cell). (Algir, head smith)
  • Copper pays in gold chain links, similar to the one found at the murder scene. (Algir)
  • Shadowblack told a warforged squad that Molric was behind the murders. (Captain Alpha, warforged squad)
  • Copper entered the Red Hammer during the night and released an alchemic bomb that knocked out the warforged there. When they came to, four warforged were dead, including Shadowblack and Ash. All 4 of them were mauled, and Ash’s head was missing. (Scout Delta, warforged squad)
  • “They told me you were coming.” “The First Creator made it so…” Talk of freeing warforged from an imperfect existence, creating a perfect warforged untouched by fleshy hands. (Copper)
  • Copper was originally Merric’s experiment; he wanted to analyze him to see what happened. (Cannith guards)
  • Copper’s crime was ‘vandalism’. (Cannith guards)
Evidence
  • The victims were all murdered around Tain Foundry. (map)
  • The killing blows to each victim was a dagger to the center of the chest (deep penetration wound). The brute force injuries were made after death. (bodies)
  • There was copper on the hands of some of the bodies. (bodies)
  • Gold chain links found at multiple crime scenes (Grim, Molric)
  • Strange crate of alchemical supplies spotted near Copper’s cell a week before the murders. Disappeared before Algir could return with a supervisor to check it. (Algir)
  • Copper’s creation was a patchwork warforged composed of multiple parts, including Ash’s head. It went berserk upon animation and attacked us. (personal experience)
Conclusion

I am horrified by how bad this got. Ash requested our investigation because he thought the Cannith guards were doing nothing about it. Despite Slogar d’Cannith’s protests that his guards were handling the situation, within a day we had found evidence and testimony implicating Copper in the murders. Slogar’s guards had several days to investigate the last murder before we arrived, yet I have seen no evidence they took any action against Copper. If they had, the warforged’s assault on Molric and the 4 murders at the Red Hammer could have been averted. The Cannith troops’ classification of Copper as a “vandal” hints at the priority they gave this investigation.

At best, I would call this fatal negligence. At worst, I would accuse Slogar of working to let Copper continue his construction and murders. His refusal to accept our help or aid our investigation, the mysterious alchemical shipment Copper received at Tain Foundry, and the appearance of Cannith troops after we had done all of the dirty work of capturing Copper and stopping his berserk monster, simply to take Copper into custody for House Cannith are very suspicious.

Whether the Cannith guard are neglecting the warforged or purposely letting them get killed, the warforged are not happy with their treatment. Cannith’s treatment of them should be investigated and called to task before the warforged get fed up with it and it explodes into violent riots.

Appendeum: The ravid (as Grin calls it) who nearly killed us escaped and is still at large. I would suggest sending in a Blackened Book squad to hunt it down before it can actually kill anyone.

Case File-Warforged Murders in Blackbones

Sharn, Syrania, and More JeffGroves