This attack isn’t happening in a place that’s isolated from the rest of society, like the merrow or Siff Duthar battles. There are a lot of people intertwined in The Mighty Nein’s quest to get Algar Dyomin to leave Marion and her clients alone.
Marion, Algar and the Clovis Concord
First, let’s consider the initial mission. Algar Dyomin is a man who works for the Clovis Concord. The Concord is an organization and an agreement between the Menagerie Coast and the Dwendalian Empire to coexist and aid each other in maintaining order. It stands to reason that the Concord wields significant power in Nicodranas, enough to make Marion nervous about escalating her concerns in any official capacity.
Though using his influence within the city to intimidate Marion’s clients isn’t technically a crime, it’s definitely an emotionally abusive tactic to isolate Marion and leave her with no other options than Algar. Marion specifically mentioned that she wanted to avoid any direct confrontation with him. She also warned Beau that coming right out and telling him to leave Marion alone would tie their intimidation back to her, which could bring more negative consequences to her and her business. As Marion said, “If he can be ensured that his presence is not welcome and agrees that is the case, that would be optimal."
The Nein aren’t exactly going for optimal.
Who Knows Who Knows What
Second, we need to be aware of who all the Nein have talked to about any of this, and how they appeared at the time. They haven’t been in town long, but they’ve been seen by a slew of people in different circumstances and talked a lot about their interests.
When they arrived in Nicodranas around sundown, they bribed their way through the gate and were seen by several zolezzo. When they passed through, they had their cart, and it’s unclear how many of them were visible at the time except for Jester, who spoke with the zolezzo, and Beau, as they looked quizzically at their menagerie of animals. Usually, the Nein only travels with two members visible because they’re driving the cart. At the time, Jester was disguised as human!Jester, and Beau looked like herself.
As they drove through town and went to the Lavish Chateau, Nott, Caduceus, and Caleb also disguised themselves to various degrees: Nott into a muumuu-clad dwarf, Caduceus into a human with pink hair, and Caleb into Caleb with nice clothes. Fjord and Beau remained undisguised, while Jester kept up her human visage. Beau pet-checked her owl, while Jester kept her weasel and blink puppy with her (and would continue to keep them with her throughout the next day). Algar would have seen them in this way during the show.
The next day, Fjord and Beau paid a visit to the Wharfmaster. Fjord completely disguised himself and his accent, while Beau didn’t disguise herself, but acted as his second in command. They inquired about Vandren and his crew, Algar and the Sluice Weave, where to sell things, available docks, and Marius LePual. They raised the Wharfmaster’s hackles with their incessant, prodding questions, and left.
Meanwhile, Jester, Caduceus, Caleb, and Nott went to see Lightkeeper Gladys at the Mother’s Lighthouse. Jester remained disguised has human!Jester, while the rest remained undisguised. They talked with her about the Wildmother (and the Lawbearer), Algar and the Sluice (weave), and Nott being a goblin.
Afterward, the Nein met back up at the Tide Peak tower, which Beau unsuccessfully tried to climb at Fjord’s urging. They then went, together, to the Wayfarer’s Cove. At this point, the only person disguised was Jester. They chatted up Orly Skiffback, the tortle sailor. They told him their names were Fjord, Beau, Caleb Widogast, Junior (Nott), Nancy (Jester), and Caduceus.
Jester mentioned that the Ruby of the Sea is her mother, which Orly may or may not have believed. The Nein inquired about his bagpipes, Marius, Sabian, the Sluice Weave, and mentioned they were trying to help the Ruby of the Sea. Fjord and Caleb went over and introduced themselves to Captain Adella, who was there with someone who appeared to be a sailor. They asked her about the Tide Peak, her ship and travels, Fjord’s past as a sailor, Sabian, and Cadmus Leeland.
After talking with the recently-arrived Yasha, Caleb approached the bartender and inquired about the Tide Peak. Nott got up on a table, removed her mask, and threatened the entire bar (there was also a grouchy-looking fisherman in there who noticed their presence and didn’t appreciate their calamity) to tell them everything they knew about Algar Dyomin or be overtaken by a goblin army. No one responded, and Caduceus got the sense that nobody knew Algar.
From there, they went to the Restless Wharf, undisguised except for Caduceus. Fjord secured a boat from Jimmy under the pretense of wanting to give his friends a boat tour of the area, and asked about the Sluice Weave. Beau then assumed her alter-ego, Tracy, and flirted with a zolezzo and asked all about the Sluice Weave. He mentioned that he got off of his shift in 40 minutes, but she told him that she was going on a boat tour. She also told him that she was staying at the Lavish Chateau, and then went with the Nein to the boat.
Under the Sea
Once they went out into the harbor, they found the entrance to the Sluice Weave, broke it open, and all abandoned the ship with a ledeline running to it. After fighting and defeating Nicodranas’ water elemental defense, they found a chamber with a marid, which was commanded by Algar. Flanking Algar were his guards and an assistant. After the marid announced there were intruders, Algar shined his lantern, which illuminated several members of the Nein. The assistant ran off in a hurry, and battle began. During the battle, Algar saw all of the Nein, including a potentially undisguised Jester (assuming she didn’t bother disguising herself in the Sluice Weave). He was restrained by Beau and had his hand cut off by Fjord, severing his dominance over the marid.
What Comes Next
A couple of things remain at stake. First, and most glaringly, is how the Nein handle Algar. They’ve intimidated the life out of him (so to speak), cut off his hand, and potentially placed him at the mercy of a long-suffering and very powerful genie. Ignoring any influence of the marid and making the very strong assumption that they intend for him to live past this, now they have to manage to tell him to leave Marion and her clients alone without necessarily saying as such so that it won’t bring consequences on her head. (The chances of the completion of this subgoal appear remarkably slim.)
Adding to the complexity is the marid, and how he reacts to being free of his forced servitude. Zsundie’s magic was responsible for powering a large portion of the dock’s businesses; the underwater furnaces provided workers energy they could not exert for their equipment. Even if Algar were allowed to return to his position of power, the loss of controlled water flow in the Sluice Weave would already have a noticeable, if not devastating, impact on the Restless Wharf.
Second, is how the Nein weasel (heh) their way back to the Lavish Chateau without getting caught and arrested for breaking into the Sluice Weave, murdering two dwarven bodyguards, cutting off Algar’s hand, and shutting down production in the district. Several people have seen TM9 and know of their interests in Algar and the Sluice Weave, so it wouldn’t be hard for a couple of determined zolezzo to put the pieces together on who’s responsible.
There’s also the matter of the worker that was with Algar prior to the battle, who saw some of the Nein and ran off in the other direction. We don’t know exactly what he saw, where he’s going, or who he could be bringing in as reinforcements. In addition, Jimmy is going to wonder at some point where his boat went, and the zolezzo might go looking for “Tracy” at either the Lavish Chateau or on her boat tour.