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- Markshire PCs:
Further notes for this idea…
To make a long story short, the individual setting up this whole scheme resides in Stonemark, and runs a clothing/tailor business as a front. Communications are smuggled with clothing deliveries to Foothold, Gastlinyk, and points south.
How did it come to this? Kayla was wandering around the Wood south of Foothold, and happened upon a group of bandits. She stuck around, and I indicated that they seemed to be looking for something. Turns out they were looking for a decorative fan; Kayla found it because to her sensitive nose it absolutely reeked of perfume. She and Bram eventually returned it to the bandits, who literally begged that it be returned. The only definitive clues given to Kayla about the owner of the fan was that it was a woman in Stonemark. They thought little of it, and essentially forgot about the encounter.
Inspired by the Yagyu in Lone Wolf & Cub (one of my personal favourite comics)…There was a secret message written on the fan. However, the ink (derived from a rare subterranean fungus from the Cona Caves) is only visible after one dips it in water; the other ink momentarily turns transparent, leaving the message readable. When it dries (hastened by whisking the fan through the air), the other ink reappears, concealing the message once again. The perfume is used to conceal the somewhat odd aroma of the fungus, which is still-living once applied to any surface.
Concerned about being exposed through a chance occurrence with the lost fan, the Stonemark leader demanded the fan be recovered (it had been lost when a messenger going to Foothold had been ambushed by a marauding group of orcs). Hence, the bandits’ desperation in finding the fan.