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Anno, Beneath the Influence of Madrasheen

Background

Anno and Shrishna have been having difficulties of late. She accuses him of being distant and attributes his absences at night to indicate that he has found another lover. The truth is much more dire. Anno has fallen under the will of Madrasheen and the Cult of Niosha.

Anno has been sneaking out of the compound at night and traveling to a brothel in the Atítapri District called Red Dreams. There he meets with Aisafti, a luscious harlot, who takes him to her private quarters. All the while, Anno is clearly distraught and worried. He fears for his soul and sees no way out of his predicament. He is afraid that should he disobey or seek help that Shrishna will come to harm, that he will be slain or that his soul will be taken by Madrasheen.

Aisafti is a willing scion of Madrasheen, who has taken certain foul pledges and oaths that allow Madrasheen to manifest in her body. When Anno meets with her, she undergoes supernatural transformation and suddenly resembles the voluptuous and deadly beautiful Madrasheen. Madrasheen commands Anno to give his report; then she has him pleasure her, culminating in him drinking of her blood from her breast. Before he departs she gives him a dire warning and issues any new commands.

Anno then returns to the Four Pillars, exhausted and terrified, were he spends his time as Madrasheenís spy.

Encounter

While the PCs are gathered at the Four Pillars, Shrishna flees from her and Annoís tent, crying, and off into the city. Anno emerges moments later, looking distraught and helpless, then he returns to their tent.

Asking around, the PCs can learn from other NPCs that this has been happening fairly often lately, but neither Anno nor Shrishna speak about it. Asking Shrishna directly (Diplomacy DC 15) she breaks down and talks about how she suspects Anno is cheating on her, how he leaves her bed at night to go into the city and comes home smelling like perfumes before the sun rises. Confronting Anno reveals little. He denies desiring any woman other than Shrishna, denies going into the city or if forced he says he has been having trouble sleeping and that he goes to a bar. Under no circumstances will he admit to visiting a brothel or make mention of Madrasheen. However, the party has much to learn if they keep an eye on Anno and follow him into At'tapri at night, where they can find him divulging the secrets of the Four Pillars to Madrasheen's agent. Madrasheen never forgets a foe and has only appeared to have upheld an unspoken truce.