So the party arrives in Spreley and are immediately greeted with religious zealots on every street, hostile guards, and wanton murder.
To top it all off, nearly the whole city is terrified of, or hates, magic.
So after nearly being jailed for shopping for a magic potion, the party decides “Fuck this shit, I’m out of here.” Using a “Pass Without Trace” spell. Unfortunately that somehow interacts with a curse placed on the city itself, and the party find themselves looking up at a shadowy demon that overlooks the entire city.
They figure, “Goddammit… fine. We kill the demon, then we get the fuck out of this city.”
They begin heading straight toward the city palace where it appeared the demon was lurking. But before long guards appear to be coming from the opposite direction, and the party overhears that the guards are looking for them. They duck into a nearby temple for refuge, and conveniently find a priest who hates the city’s new regime. He informs them of how things got this way, of a coup around half a century ago, and that it’s been downhill ever since.
Around the time the church is preparing lodging and temporary bedding for the weary heroes, there’s a knock at the door.
It’s the town guard. Accompanied by what will become known as a Blackguard.
The heroes barely survive the fight, only living through Salazar’s wit and a really nice roll on a sleep spell.
Before more guards can show up, the priest directs them through a hidden entrance into the city’s sewers. They bind and grab one of the sleeping guards to take with them and interrogate, and descend into the sewers.