The party is awoken by a rooster crowing. They head downstairs to discover the patrons of the Brass Unicorn – an armored woman, two dock workers and the innkeeper himself – had been slaughtered and infected with the Rot. Initial investiagtion showed that only one person (and some sort of spider-like creature?) had committed the murders, and that one survivor had left through the back.
Tim the Ironborn destroyed the heads and hearts of the corpses to prevent them from rising as Wraiths or Walking Dead. Tucked into the woman's armor, he found a note reading "Across from Vermin-Eaters in the Carcass. Knock thrice, then twice, then thrice.
At that point, the Constabulary began knocking on the door and the party retreated out the back. A short while later, they regroup and attempt to puzzle out what just happened. Hrothgar recalls that "Vermin-Eaters" is a rat catcher's in the Carcass neighborhood of Orc Town. At that point, (the lone survivor of the massacre at the Inn), recognizes his former acquaintance Eero-Esa and approaches the group.
The group decides to follow the note's lead and heads to Vermin-Eaters. Hrothgar and Nol do their best to look inconspicuous while Eero-Esa, Tim and knock thrice, then twice, then thrice on the door of the shack across the street. The door swings open on the first knock, revealing a nondescript hovel without much more than a pile of straw and a half-used candle.
The straw pile turns out to be hiding a trap door to some dwarf-built tunnels, which someone has been keeping lit with torches. In the tunnels they discover an unlocked door which used to be trapped, behind which is a decently-appointed bedroom whose apparent owner has been strangled to death and infected with Rot. Hrothgar recognizes the wide-mouthed snake tattoo on his arm as being the hallmark of a gang called "Whistler's Troupe" that used to drink at a Harbour Town bar called the Grinning Viper.