It is amazing how complicated some plans need to be to be pulled off safely. At first it looked like our only chance to clear my companions name would be to wander aimlessly directly into the mouth of what is supposedly the worst prison in the Feywild. However through talking with the natives I think I have come up with a plan that can work. Yes, it is complicated, but if my companions can operate at any professional level we are not only going to complete our goals (as strange as our goals are) but we might come out with a slight profit, if only we don’t get caught by our own pincers.
I think my plan bears repeating at this time, in order that no one forgets the details and purposes of each action. First Kris, Magpie and I will travel north to where the mercenary company is currently camped, then promising both treasure and compensation from Hal’s family we hope to entice the mercenaries to accompany us. The treasure will come from the xivort stronghold we hope to sack, and the compensation from Hal’s family is because they need us to recover some specialty good that the xivorts took from the family’s caravan.
When the mercenaries question why there are only three of us, why we are all carrying weapons, and why we are riding in a mule driven turnip cart, our answer will be that we wanted to be a small enough group not to raise suspicion when we came from Cormyr, and we wanted to look like we were too much trouble for money it looked like we carried. That is also why we could only show up with the promise of credit; once we smooth things over with Drullyndra by dealing with the xivorts then they might be less tense about a group of Cormyrians traveling through with enough force to protect the payment that the mercenaries will receive. Then, if the mercenaries should survive the battle with the xivorts and we cannot pay them off through our shares we just make it clear to Hal’s father that the mercenaries will need reimbursing for their job protecting his daughter, and, should he not pay them, then they are likely to visit upon her the harms that they prevented.
While we deal with the mercenaries, Ardisia and Claern are to be finding out more information and developing an actionable plan to break Aowyn out of Illuduk prision. Claern from inside the prison is to find her and develop a feeling for the surroundings so we are not wandering around lost, while Ardisia is to survey the outside so that she is familiar with the approach and exit so that not only can we enter without alerting the guards but we will be able to escape once we have Clearn and Aowyn.