After returning from the tomb with Leanna’s body in tow, Delin and Ignus decided to stow her at her parent’s house, and despite their indelicacy with explaining her death to them, her parents were unsurprisingly willing to care for Leanna while she underwent her trial. The two headed to the Golden Scepter, the local watering hole, in the hopes of finding something to do while they waited for Leanna to recover. They posted on a message board outside stating that they were two detectives looking for work while they were in the village, and headed inside to see that the tavern was mostly visited by monks enjoying their off-time from the temple. After a few minutes, one such monk came up to Ignus and introduced himself as Lenny, stating that he had seen the notice on the board outside.
Speaking with a slow, lilted accent and already clearly intoxicated, Lenny explained that he had been looking for people unfamiliar with the village’s customs to investigate some of the activities in the Academy. Those who were born in Velika learned very quickly to never question the Headmaster’s words, as he was the final arbiter of all of Velika’s affairs. As a result, when the Headmaster decreed that a student had been executed due to some deficiency or violent personality, no one gave it a second thought. However, Lenny explained that he had always been inquisitive, and although others accepted the Headmaster’s words at face value, none of the bodies of the students had ever been returned to their families for grieving, or even seen again. With a mystery on their hands, Delin and Ignus listened closely as Lenny told them the names of two students who had recently disappeared – Nero and Fulgore. The two had very little in common, Fulgore a bright young man with the unusual ability to affect the weather, and Nero, an angry firecracker with a chip on his shoulder. Lenny offered the pair a meager sum to investigate the Headmaster’s activities, and Delin went off to the library in the Academy to dig up some information, while Ignus went to the Headmaster himself.
Unfortunately, Delin found very little of interest, and instead became immediately distracted with a book on undersea foliage. His thoughts turned from finding out more about the missing students to learning as much as he could about the various types of seaweed that grew in the Rayskel Cays. Ignus, however, decided to get his information straight from the source. Once in the Headmaster’s office, Ignus asked Bassam about the Shard of the Sun that he supposedly carried on his person at all times. He explained to the Headmaster that Leanna had died in an unfortunate accident, and that he was hoping to find out if her Shard had also disappeared. Reluctantly, Bassam reached into his robes, retrieved a smooth, black cylinder, and untwisted it to reveal that the Shard had indeed vanished.
Now with the confidence that Leanna’s Shard was out of Bassam’s reach, Ignus confronted the Headmaster about his policies to execute those in the school that he deemed incapable of controlling their powers or those who were likely to misuse them. He argued that the lives of the students could not be ended just by the whim of a single person, and that an alternative must be available. Bassam explained that in ancient times, those who were born in Velika as Mystics were left to roam free and develop their abilities on their own. This typically resulted in tragedy, as many began to use their powers to force their wills upon those less capable. Although the Gakuen Academy was established to educate the young on their responsibilies as Mystics, there were still those who refused teaching, or were simply too violent to leave alone. The problematic students could turn the public eye of the country against Velika, and simply must be dealt with.
Ignus stood firmly on his position, asserting that a multitude of deaths determined by the will of a single man could not be just, and in doing so, enraged the Headmaster. After a few minutes of intense back-and-forth arguing, Bassam finally lost his patience with Ignus, and asked him to leave. Recognizing that further discussion would be pointless and would gain him little information on the missing students, Ignus willingly left, and Bassam made it clear that he would not agree to any further meetings. He grabbed Delin from the library, and the two went back to Leanna’s parent’s house to go over what they had learned and plan their next move.
The next day, Delin and Ignus went to the local temple to speak with Lenny again. They find him without much trouble, and discuss their theories on what the Headmaster might possibly be doing with the missing students instead of simply killing them as he says. Ignus explains that he believes the Bassam might be using the Ritual of Self-Cleansing that was meant to remove the abilities of troublesome students to instead take them for himself, and maintain their bodies as a way of preserving their abilities. Citing Leanna’s Shard of the Sun as a power that requires the original host to be alive in order to work, Ignus draws the conclusion that the Headmaster has been slowly gaining power over his decades of leadership by stealing and somehow integrating the abilities of students with his own. Lenny finds his theory to be worth further discussion, and asks the pair to meet him at the Golden Scepter later that evening.
When they next meet, Lenny, Delin, and Ignus decide to try and find more evidence to either prove or disprove their new theory that the Headmaster has been secretly stealing the powers of those he claims to have executed. Unfortunately, they have no leads, given that Ignus angered the Headmaster to the point where he refused to meet with them again. Lenny explains that the location of the Headmaster’s house is kept secret for his protection, but offers to try and find out more about it in order to try and progress the investigation. Excited to have another pair of eyes out in the field, Delin and Ignus redouble their efforts and begin asking around to learn more about the Headmaster and the small town of Velika.
Unfortunately, their investigation quickly falls apart. Lenny is nowhere to be seen the next day, either at the temple or the Golden Scepter. In addition, a new notice was placed above Ignus’ original one on the message board outside the tavern, stating that Delin and Ignus were not to be trusted or interacted with. Something had clearly happened to Lenny during his quest to find the Headmaster’s house, and the party was effectively barred from asking any further questions. Resolving to return to Velika later, Ignus spent the rest of the week descending into alcoholism, and Delin took up work as a farmhand at a local farm, earning a few measly shins for his efforts.