On the Island of Sarthorak, the Order of Remorse teaches two things: the rest of the world was destroyed during the Darkshed, and the Island and its inhabitants were spared thanks to their one and only Goddess, Vashka. Anyone who claims otherwise is thrown in the depths of Derith, the underground prison.
Our story began when Vilras Shinxar, a Dragonborn jailor, discovered one of the cells of Derith to be empty, and found a hole that led to the surface. Additionally, he found some scribbles on the walls of the cell that he could not understand. He quickly alerted the authorities of his findings: for the first time in history, a heretic had escaped.
Vilras was instructed to head to Shilok and bring back an expert who could decipher the symbols he had found. While he was gone, a paladin named Wynnstan Whitesail was summoned by Vaal, the man in charge of newly graduated Remorsers like him, and made aware of the situation. Wynnstan was promised an immediate promotion to a position of power if he could capture the escapee and keep the incident under wraps.
Vilras soon returned to Derith with a Remorser named Sefris Mordran, a Human astronomer and scholar. He met with Wynnstan and led both Remorsers to the cell. Sefris revealed that the symbols on the wall represented stars and constellations, but without a cypher, a small object to be placed on a marked spot on the floor in order to project light on the wall, the meaning of the drawing would remain a mystery. The cypher was nowhere to be found, so the group went to interrogate the guards who were on watch when the criminal escaped.
One of them was a Remorser named Hest. He was suspected of having aided the heretic in his escape. The tired, terrified man could barely talk, and insisted that his only crime was falling asleep on the job.
Lastly, the group examined the hole that led from the cell to a nearby forest. They determined it had been dug by non-magical means, likely from the outside. They found some tracks that led south-east, but before following them they requested to bring Hest with them, to spare him the agony of his imprisonment and give him a chance to help them find the criminal and clear his own name.