The party arrives in Landerwood to find the city in a state of disrepair. Since the [[S5: Through the Mountain Pass | mountain pass has been closed]], trade has come to a halt. The party was instructed by Father Young to investigate both the disappearance of a Judge and his unusual replacement. The first judge just didn’t show up to work one day and was never found again, all of his possessions remaining within the city. The second judge (Scalpisius) ran upon a platform of workers rights and swore to increase the communal level of living, but once elected became niggardly with the mine’s profits and decided to donate excess metals to the Ruby Order instead of selling them to private merchants. Almost everyone in town reviles the Judge. In addition, word around town is that the plague has cropped up again to the south east of Saint’s Rest. While many are uneasy about it, Landerwood is far removed.
Kazuo decided to investigate the Judge. He broke into his house and searched it for clues. The house was strangely dirty, as if nobody was living there. Moreover, the last signed document on the writing desk was from months earlier. The only evidence of life inside was a few footprints downstairs and a slightly damp rocking chair. Kazuo then decided to follow the judge home from work to see where he actually goes. Surely enough, the Judge did return to the house. He entered, sat in the rocking chair, and read a book until he fell asleep. Armed only with the knowledge that he is a boring old man, Kazuo returned to Waldo.
Waldo, meanwhile, had begun asking around town to see what the Judge was up to. Miners indicated that the Sheriff – Theogrim- hates Scalpisius, but Waldo did not pursue the lead. Instead, he came across a strange miner in a local bar. The miner was well-read and introduced himself as a descendant of one of the sailors from the Great Ships. He is an Olidammaran named Samwell who has been working the mines since its inception. Samwell once lived in Rogue’s Point with his parents, but left when Rogue’s Point was sacked by savages and joined the mining operation. Samwell, like all the other miners, holds no affection for Scalpisius and agrees to escort Waldo into the mine to look around as he sees fit.
Scalpisius has Vindicators posted at the entrance to the mithril mine, where he visits often to count and appraise the yields. Samwell tells the party, however, that there is always another way to get where you want to go. He sends them through an abandoned tunnel. They encounter two bodies floating in a knee-deep pool of fetid water at the bottom of a 40 ft mineshaft. One body is bloated, decaying, and mysterious. The other looks exactly like Judge Scalpisius! They leave the bodies behind and continue to investigate the mithril mine. They travel through winding tunnels until Kazuo notices that a wall is illusory. The secret passage leads down a tight hallway onto a platform overlooking another abandoned mineshaft. The landing contains a black stone altar with a carving of a left hand holding a crystal ball. There is also a leather bound tome,Chief Vindicator Mumford’s journal. The journal is written in a secret language, but it is also filled with crude drawings – maps, herbs, and monsters – and even tidbits in Rokugani. The crystal ball, sensing their presence, activated. A voice whispered, “The God of Secrets demands that you speak truly…” It depicted a city by the coast with massive gothic buildings and towers. Waldo told the ball who he was and the ball exploded.
The secret passageway began to drip blood that fell into the mineshaft. A deep rumble was heard from beneath the earth and a terrible monster made of bone and muscle emerged from the darkness. It was 40 ft tall and tried to use its long skeletal arms to grab the party. They ran back into the mithril mine, but it had been transformed into a nightmare. The ceiling dripped blood and the doorways were transformed into gnashing teeth. They ran back towards the first mineshaft but were intercepted by a red-skinned demon. As they began to fight it, a voice in Kazuo’s head called to him. He discovered that his brother’s recovered katana had transformed into a massive demonslaying sword. Now armed with a powerful weapon, Kazuo and Waldo defeated the demon and approached the shaft. Again, the earth rumbled and the 40ft abomination emerged. Kazuo leaped onto his head and began to attack the monster from above while Waldo blasted it with holy energy. Shortly, the monster was quelled and sunk into the fetid pool. The party grabbed the bodies and left the mine covered in blood and ichor. Shortly after exiting the secret tunnel, they were arrested by the Jasidian guards and brought before Theogrim the Sheriff.