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Returning to Eden’s Apple, the team quickly contacted Mr. Johnson and presented him with the fake copy of the Horn of Hrothgar. José Guadalupe Patrón placed a Vigil Brand on the fake horn so that he could maintain a sense of its general location and condition. Meanwhile, Edward Pierce used his supernatural charm to convince Mr. Johnson that the fake was in fact legitimate. Convinced of its authenticity, Johnson took the fake and left.
Alia Nazir sent her companion Khem to follow the man, allowing the team of Scions to discover Mr. Johnson’s destination. Between Patron’s sense of the brand he’d placed on the horn, and Khem’s guidance, the group tracked Johnson to Carlsbad Maternity Care Center. The trio quickly scoped out the location and decided to sneak in and discover any clues that might lead to Mr. Johnson’s mysterious employer.
After Alia deftly lifted the security badges off several doctors and researchers, the team made their way to the security desk controlling admission to the inpatient and research wing of the facility. Pierce used his acute hearing to pick up on the door’s keycode and overwhelmed the security guard with his witty banter, allowing Nazir and Patron to sneak past before Pierce followed.
Inside, the team moved past the maternity ward and navigated the elevator shaft to the upper floors of the facility, intent on investigating the research and development labs. Once there, the team was not prepared for the sight that awaited them.
The laboratory contained specimens that were the results of horrific experiments on human and animal infants. The twisted and mutated results were locked within cages that lined the walls of the lab. At the far end, what seemed to be a successful specimen, a full grown Grendelkin, snarled at them from the confines of its cage.
Stunned by the grotesque experiments, the team was caught off guard when Grenadine Solviegg entered and introduced herself. Surrounded by an aura of allure and attraction, the male members of the team found it difficult to focus on anything beyond her beauty. Even Nazir couldn’t help but be rattled by the sheer power the woman exuded. Solviegg was no mortal woman, and all three could sense the taint of the titans on her. Overpowered by her mere presence, the trio followed her willingly as she led them on a guided tour of the facility.
Beyond the twisted creatures they had already discovered, it became clear that Solviegg was intent on developing an entire brood of what she referred to as her grandchildren. She showed them where new grendelkin were being created in a variety of ways, including in vitro fertilization, test tube incubations, and gene splicing on newborns. She even showed the group a room of expectant mothers, waiting to give birth to the abominations. Pierce was shocked to discover one of the dancers from his own club on a table, waiting to give birth.
Solviegg’s honeyed words encouraged the team to understand that she only wanted her children, and any harm to the mothers was merely an unfortunate side effect of the process. In addition, she encouraged the Scions to return to her with the true Horn of Hrothgar, which she would use to produce pure bred children of her own. Solviegg seemed extremely interested in Patron as she explained her need for the Horn.
Allowed to leave, the band of Scions seemed torn. Pierce knew he would seek vengeance for what Solviegg had done to his employee, as well as all the innocent women and children she had corrupted. Nazir, while silent, seemed equally horrified by what they had seen. Perhaps swayed by Solviegg’s intoxicating aura, Patron seemed less distressed by what he had seen than his partners.
Determined that something had to be done, yet well aware that they seemed outmatched by Solviegg’s undeniable power, the team retreated to Oracle Securities Group, where they hoped to develop a plan for eliminating Solviegg’s operation.