Lady Thrune has become drunk and is bored with the party and has Aether take her back to her chambers. Nyrissia begins to pout about being sent to the castle of the Red King. She hates everyone here. She hates the castle and its creepy puppets. She tells Aether that she’s her only friend. She tries to kiss Aether. Aether avoids her advances. Nyrissia begs her to lay down beside her on the bed and hold her till she falls asleep. Aether is saved by further embarrassment when Nyrissia passes out. Aether lays her down on the bed, and is about to sneak out of the room when Nyrissia sits up. She looks around and says in a sober voice “Very Good, we’ve made it to the castle.” She looks directly at Aether, noticing her for the first time. Aether sees that Nyrissia’s eyes have changed from her normal dull brown to a startling shade of blue violet. Nyrissia demands to know what Aether is doing in her room. Aether says that she was taking Nyrissia to bed. Nyrissia says “Ah yes. My mind is just muddled from waking. Where is my large trunk? I need something from it.” Nyrissia shows her where it is and asks if she needs assistance. She says no and bids Aether to leave her. Aether goes in search of her friends. Darian is leaving the party just as Aether is coming down the hall and they decide to set off together.
Thoroc and Sinjin enter into the trophy room. Laeoden and Tanion wait several moments outside the door to the trophy room. All is quiet inside. They call out to their companions but there is no response. They pry one of the light domes down from the ceiling and discover that under neath the glowing glass dome is a second smaller orb of blue crystal set into a silver sigil inscribed ring. It glows with a cloudy radiance that is beguiling. Laeoden pries it loose as well. Laeoden pockets the blue crystal, and slides the light dome into the trophy room. By its light they see their associates foot prints cross the dusty only to stop at the center of the room. Cautious of a trap Laeoden and Tanion examine the ceiling, walls, and floor as closely as they can without entering the room. The floor can’t be trapped, its activation would have left some sign in the dust. The ceiling and the three walls they can see from the door bare no clues, so they enter the room cautious of the wall shielded by the swing of the door.
They soon discover they’re “friends” fate. Hanging on the wall is a painting of Thoroc and Sinjin engaged in a desperate battle with a knight in blood red armor. With no idea how to get their friends out of the painting; Laeoden takes it down and removes it from the frame with a practiced hand, and rolls it up. They decide to take the painting back to the barracks for safe keeping. Perhaps Aether will be able to help.