The party continued exploring the engineering deck. It was an easy choice in the end, given that the upper deck had been fully explored and the other two decks had been destroyed by the ship's ancient impact. The party searched the room of the fallen Gearsman robot and found some interesting devices. Ghartok acquired an odd pistol that glowed blue when he readied it. Luna claimed a futuristic camouflage outfit. She also toyed with some fist-sized canisters. Red buttons on their tops shone with inviting lights and beeps, but for once Luna decided she probably shouldn't be the one to press them. After the gear was divided up, the party left the robotics lab and returned to the thylacines former lair.
Two new opponents now occupied the room. A pair of fanatical orcs were surveying the damage when the party entered. Upon noticing the party, the orcs bellowed and charged with brutal weapons fashioned from scrap metal.
One orc's jagged axe parried against Morgrym's. With this distraction, the other orc smashed his fist into the savage smith's face. The orc then looked down with an expression of shock, pain, and regret as Morgrym's mighty dwarven teeth sank into his wrist. The unbitten orc backed off quickly as Arlowe, the Lunas, and Ghartok attacked. He fought ferociously like only an orc could, but this was only enough to buy a few precious seconds before Arlowe's seven-branched sword went through his heart. As Morgrym chomped his assailant to death, the rest of the party noticed someone watching them from the long tunnel. The party ran down the spy and found that he was none other than Sanvil from town.
Sanvil began spinning some unlikely story about innocent stealth deliveries. It almost worked, but this time Arlowe saw through his deceptions and intimidated him into revealing his true purpose. Sanvil admitted that he was actually stalking the party in the hope that they would fall victim to one of the shipwreck's many perils and leave their collected treasures free for the taking. The party stripped him of his gear and most of his clothing before tying his wrists. In searching their captive, the party made two significant discoveries. He had been hiding both a pin that revealed his allegiance to the Technic League and a note with an address. Ghartok recalled the address as an "abandoned" warehouse owned by Garmen Ulreth.
More attention was grabbed by the League pin, however. The Technic League was an order of power-obsessed mages who had become the tyrannical rulers of Numeria decades ago with their corruption of the barbarian warlord Kevoth-Kul, now known as the Black Sovereign. Torch was on the outer edge of their influence, but was still required to pay regular heavy tributes to the Technic League. Needless to say, supporters of the League were not popular in Torch. Morgrym dragged Sanvil's leash behind him as the party moved on through a new door.
That door slid open to the sound of shouts and battle. As soon as the party was visible, four ratfolk opened up with screaming magical bolts from hand crossbows and two more orcs pounced from hiding.
Battle was joined. In the chaos, Morgrym glanced back over his shoulder to find that Sanvil had slipped from his bonds. Once again chasing him down, Morgrym found Sanvil desperately trying to call the elevator out. With an exasperated groan, Morgrym slapped Sanvil over the head with the flat side of his axe and knocked him unconscious. Meanwhile, the pack of rats and orcs fell. The last ratfolk to fall had been cut down just as it opened a door that now repeatedly opened and closed upon its corpse.
Never ones to turn down death's door, the party ventured through. On the other side was an ominous display. A darkened navigation chamber blinked with tiny status lights and shimmered with the reflections of burning braziers on black screens. A shrine consisting of a large clawed hand made of scrap metal dominated the center of the room, accompanied by a metal-coated gargoyle. A holographic map of the ship itself marked out a corner of its own.
After Morgrym stuffed Sanvil into a mop bucket on a rope, the party ventured in and learned one of the most common lessons of adventuring. Gargoyle statues are never "just" statues. The gargoyle sprang to life and slashed its claws at Morgrym, who narrowly dodged and countered with a solid axe blow that glanced off the gargoyle's magic hide. Ghartok drew the blue pistol he had discovered earlier and fired it at the gargyole. A blast of energy struck the gargoyle, which rocked back on its heels for a brief moment before showing no apparent effect. Arlowe extended his arms for extra reach as the Lunas and Morgrym battered the monster, once again with no effect as the gargolye slashed Tiger Luna. Morgrym then remembered the magic hammer given to him by the vegepygmy chief and drew it. The hammer's magic bypassed the gargoyle's defenses and struck true. It did not claim the kill, however. Morgrym's bite took that honor.
As usual, the party looted the room. A pair of advanced sunglasses that helped perceive threats became a source of dispute as the party argued over who should have them. It was rather briefly a debate of practicality, as the more overriding issue was whether or not Luna or Morgrym would look cooler in sunglasses. Luna eventually won, but Morgrym was soon satisfied by a space helmet that was largely similar in function with the addition of an audio proximity alarm. Ghartok got a grapple-harpoon gun, and Arlowe had little need of material things.
Several paths lead out from the navigation chamber. The party picked one and looked over their choice. A pair of exposed Tesla coils arced out with lightning on an irregular pattern in a passage leading to the elevator. Morgrym went on through, forgetting that he was dragging Sanvil's bucket with him. The bolts lashed out with nearly fatal strength. After the few seconds it took Morgrym to rush to the other side, both were scorched and Sanvil was rapidly dying. The party argued for a few seconds over what to do before Ghartok rolled through the hallway and managed to stabilize the quisling just before life could leave him completely. The party then regrouped and agreed not to needlessly electrocute themselves for a third time. Time would tell if they could adhere to that promise.
Heading in the opposite direction this time, the party found themselves in a chamber very appropriate for a final showdown. A room as large as the navigation chamber, but this one dominated by a giant reactor spitting suppressed purple flames. Clearly, this was the source of Torch's iconic flame. A purple-haired woman with many angular tattoos stood with a dispassionate expression on a balcony above the lower level. A sleek steel and red pistol was clutched in her hand. Another pack of ratfolk and orcs accompanied her, along with a collector robot that they could somehow influence.
By her unusual appearance, those knowledgeable in lore of Numerian relics could identify the woman as an artificial human known as an android. Morgrym and Tiger Luna charged against the orcs and clashed for a moment before the collector robot flew over and snatched up Morgrym for an aerial wrestling match. Luna formed a solid wall of moonlight just before the android stunned her with a sonic spell. Ghartok took cover behind the moonlight wall and began shooting at the android. The ratfolk mostly just bounced poorly aimed crossbow bolts off the walls. Arlowe and Tiger Luna battled with the orcs, slaying them, but not before Tiger Luna took some blows. Luna revived in time to heal her cat. Not having much luck with his musket, Ghartok decided to bring the android down from her perch and took aim with the grapple gun.
The android tried casting some sort of spell on the gnoll, but he shrugged off the magic and fired the harpoon into her gut. Ghartok then handed the grapple gun off to Luna, who read the Androffan instructions on the side and hit the "retract" button. The android was yanked off her perch and slammed to the floor in front of Luna. Unperturbed by her fall and impalement, the android immediately punched Luna with her spiked glove. Meanwhile in the air, Morgrym pinned his mechanized abductor against the wall and held it still for Arlowe to finish off. The android fought hard, but could not stand against the whole party once she was surrounded. Luna's spear ended the android's struggles.
The party allowed the ratfolk to surrender peacefully and sent them away. As the party member with the most knowledge of ancient technology, Luna somehow persuaded everyone to let her carefully fix the flame-emitting machine. Eventually, Luna got it. The problem was that the android had taken the reactor off its standby/venting mode and disabled the failsafes in order to siphon power away and transmit it to some unknown destination. Why she had been stealing the power, or known how to do it in the first place, would have to remain a mystery for now. By tinkering with the alien controls, Luna stopped the siphoning and send up the flame once more.
The party returned triumphantly to Torch. When they got back, the first thing they noticed was that the purple torch had indeed returned, but initially seemed much stronger than it should be. Too hot for safely working metal, at any rate. The party dropped off Sanvil to the town council's custody and claimed their reward for restoring the torch. They then rested at the inn. The next day, the flame went back to its normal behavior and Torch could once again forge its skymetal. There were still two major issues to resolve before the party's adventure could really be considered done, however. Baine's mind was still damaged, and they needed to investigate the warehouse from Sanvil's note.
The party decided on a morally dubious course. They knew Garmen was almost certainly corrupt and the Technic League seemed to be involved in whatever his business at the warehouse was. So, the party decided to storm the place after spending some time scoping it out. Arlowe was not comfortable with this plan, but went along with it. The party crept up to a door as Morgrym counted guards with his helmet's scanning. Kicking in the door, the party found Garmen and four members of his gang of thugs that called themselves the Ropefists.
The Ropefists charged and Garmen used an invisibility potion to vanish from view. Arlowe decided not to participate in the rather one sided battle between the party and the Ropefists, instead electing to scout the warehouse. Two Ropefists fell to Morgrym's bite, and one was disabled by Luna's spear before Ghartok kicked him unconscious. The final Ropefist only had a moment to reconsider his life choices before being slaughtered.
Arlowe noticed a loud, dull humming in the warehouse. Tracking it to its source, he found a transmitting computer hidden in a box. Pushing a promising-looking switch, he turned it off. Instantly, everyone in Torch felt a sense of relief as the barely audible humming finally vanished from the town. It turned out everyone had been losing sleep to it, but it wasn't quite loud enough for people to be consciously aware of it. Arlowe was then stabbed in the back by Garmen himself in a desperate attempt at revenge. Ghartok promptly shot Garmen in the back before Arlowe neatly sliced the gang leader apart in a flurry of sword blows.
The town council obviously soon required an explanation as to why the party had attacked and massacred a building full of people. After the party explained, the council let them go. It would be hard to find a jury that would convict anyway, now that the party had saved everyone's livelihood and eliminated the humming. Luna even somehow acquired ownership of the warehouse itself and decided to settle down for a while, running a storage business. As for Baine, the party eventually found a cleric who could purge the affliction and restore Baine's mental health. Once he regained full command of his faculties, Baine explained that his problem had been nanites that a robot injected into his brain in an attempt to find out where his magic came from.
Just as things were settling down, a little gnome with a megaphone wandered into town.