We went into the next room of the museum-type place the last session ended in. We had to fight a sphinx and an exalted headmaster-type dude (the curator) in the room where the painting was. The sphinx kept putting riddles into our heads, dazing the affected person until they succeeded at a History check (taking damage every time they failed) or someone succeeded at it on their behalf. Too bad Nicosia was keeping watch outside, because she would have passed every one (wouldn’t have been able to fail); even with Kallista’s +17, we kept failing the level 29 challenge with a lot of 28s. Thorgrim and Kallista each spent some of the encounter unconscious. Flint was telekinetically thrown by the curator across the room, over some stairs, into the next room, where he smashed into a table (breaking it) and spent a lot of time dazed unable to make his History check. Kallista got an awesome critical against the curator…until the curator decided to switch places with Thorgrim and make her hit him instead, for a whopping 101 damage (although Chris realized later this should have been reduced because Jeff wasn’t cursed). Anyway, we eventually prevailed. The painting ripped as we slew the final foe, destroying seal #2.
We then proceeded to the marketplace where the 3rd seal was set into the flagstones. We tried to appear nonchalant and studied the flagstones, discovering that smashing them would work but that there was also likely another way Kallista couldn’t figure out. Some foe spotted us and blew a whistle; foes began coming against us as the merchants grabbed their gold/etc. and quickly vacated the marketplace for the fight. Minions were involved. It was a pretty straightforward fight that we won without too much difficulty. We then started to smash the flagstones. As we did so, a dwarf in armour appeared, looked at us sadly and told us he hoped it was worth it…and began to attack us. We will start this fight next session, having NOT taken a short rest.