Otoniel, Emris, and Pehar, along with Alk Ironhame, a dwarf paladin, live in the small town of Kassen in Galt. During a harvest festival, several skeletons attack the town and are defeated by the young heroes. Pip, a travelling gnome summoner, arrives in town shortly thereafter, as does Chimon Pindroch, a halfling slaver, who is arrested and his slave, Korred, a half-orc barbarian, is rescued by Pehar and Otoniel. Mayor Jonark Uptal commissions the group to investigate the source of the attack, and follow up on an archaeological find nearby. On the way they are ambushed by a group of orcs, but defeat them handily. The group discovers the forgotten tomb of Ekat Kassen, the founder of the town. They rescue some of the lost archaeologists and defeat the risen skeleton of Asar, Kassen’s former friend.
Evidence suggest that someone has beaten them to the punch and has broken in to the tomb first, stealing pieces of an amulet from the caskets of Kassen and Asar but overlooking the seemingly mundane eternal flame, which is in fact a grain of the Starstone comet. They interact with the ghost of Kassen, who points them on a bigger quest and gives them some background of Iramine, the third member of his old party and the one who sent the grave-robbers.
The group parts way with Korred before touching base with Cygar, a member of the Pathfinder organization of historians, geographers, and investigators who are behind-the-scenes players pulling string behind much of the activity in the Inner Sea region. Cygar puts them on a river barge with Captain Walren, a dwarf who buys what he believes is a magical crocodile corpse from the group.
Later Alk parts ways with the group. Shortly after they rescue another half-orc named Fink, one strangely enough shaved bald and practicing the martial arts of a monk. There are several more skirmishes with orc forces, all bearing the same symbol, and rumors suggest that they can be traced back to the same leader, a warlord named Ragnus gathering power in the region. They transfer boats at Riverton, a tiny little backwater village run by Brother Naerel Twice-Born, a sketchy firebrand zealot preaching about Hanspur, the Water-Rat, a local but legit minor god.
Eventually the group makes it to Gralton, a city-state made up of exiled former nobles from Galt who fled after the numerous revolutions in the country. There they meet Reginar, the Pathfinder contact named by Cygar.
Reginar gives them some more information about the grave-robbers and Iramine, and says that they are involved in a new branch of the “Church” of Razmir, a cult with spreading influence in the region. Reginar asks them to infiltrate the cult by posing as new recruits. Fink, being somewhat naive and easily influenced, soaks it up and is lost to the rest of his traveling companions. It also appears that Emris may have fallen to the brainwashing techniques after initially resisting and being met with rather severe torture. However, the rest of the group discretely gathers evidence one night and finds some secret rooms in the basement, along with a paper trail of the cult’s illegal activities and corpses of other missing persons who had previously joined the cult. They sneak out a hidden tunnel and present their findings to Reginar, who turns them over to trustworthy authority figures.
The gang sneaks back in, killing guards and eventually storming and looting the entire temple. They reconnect with Emris, who rescues her familiar, Arvel. They fight and kill several high-ranking members of the cult, including the second-in-command, Egarthis, who is apparently Iramine’s lover, and find, in the upper floor, several additional bits of evidence, including plans for future expansion and information about a detachment of high-ranking members and proven supporters to pursue something of great importance. Faced with this information, Reginar asks them to pursue, and sends them to Obidan, another Pathfinder contact with a lead to their opponent’s next destination.