STORY 09 - Pyres of Novigrad
Recommended Level: 10
Objective: Visit Triss in her house
Before you can access Novigrad, you must travel through the blockade preventing people from accessing the city without a pass. Fast travel to hanged man's tree (or the city of Novigrad if you have it unlocked) and follow the trail marker on the mini-map into the city. As you near the sorceress's house, a scene will begin showing that things aren't exactly great here for anyone who isn't 'normal.'
After the scene, cross the square and pass through the crowd to reach the yard outside your destination.
Objective: Defeat the witch hunters
Whichever option you select in the dialogue with the looters, you will end up fighting them. So engage them in a manly bout of fisticuffs. These guys can pack a serious punch, so try to take them one at a time, use the quen sign to prevent damage and use your witcher potions if you need to to maintain your health. If you can manage to block one against a wall, you can simply flail at them till you trigger a cutscene or their health drops down enough.
Have a chat to the commander Menge about the drawbacks of staying in Novigrad. Afterwards, it's time to track down this Putrid Grove where Triss might be located.
Objective: Look for thieves on the main square and carefully follow them
Objective: Talk with beggars about the king of beggars
Skill or money, that's the choice here. A few seconds after these objectives pop up, you'll see a quick scene of a man getting pickpocketed. Shortly afterwards the thief will move away from the area. Simply toddle along after him (around 15-20 meters behind to avoid detection), swapping to the new target when the coin purse changes hands to reach the Putrid Grove (no sewers at all. What were they talking about?). When your target stops at a door and talks to a person through a hole in the door, you're standing just outside it.
Objective: Find the king of beggar's hideout
Walk over to the door and knock on it to talk to the guard. To get in, you can either use the axii sign or pay fifty crowns.
Objective: Talk with the king of beggars
Follow the trail into the hive of scum and villainy until a scene begins, reuniting you with Triss and introducing you to the king of beggars. Watch the dialogue play out, choosing what you will until you leave with Triss.
Objective: Follow Triss
Now that Geralt has finally found her, you get the chance to listen to them catch up as you tag along behind her. Watch the scenes as you go until you reach the herbalist's store and get to talk with the nervous fellow inside.
Seems he threw some valuable components in the waterway nearby. After Geralt decides to help out Triss, some guards turn up outside the building so both Geralt and Triss need to make an unnoticed exit.
Objective: Enter the basement
Open the hatch in the floor next to you to descend into the herbalists basement. You'll immediately be attacked by a lone drowner, so make sure to use igni or quen to defend yourself and get in quick light attacks after dodging it's swings.
Objective: Find the secret passage using your witcher senses, then open it
In the center of the basement is a pillar, when you use your senses on it you should see a single brick with a red outline around it. Interact with this to open up the passage to the waterway behind the house.
Objective: Follow Triss
Walk along with Triss once again as you squelch along the mud of the waterway. A short distance down the waterway, Triss will stop and ask that you find the missing ingredients in the water below.
Objective: Find the lost parcel using your witcher senses
Dive into the water and stick close to the bed of the waterway as you travel West along it. You should find a couple of loot containers (with crafting recipes inside and other loot) before reaching half a sunken boat. Just behind it, you'll see the red outline of the sunken bag of ingredients. Retrieve it from it's watery hiding place.
Objective: Give Triss the parcel
Return the way you came and hand it over.
Objective: Follow Triss
And the march continues. After climbing out of the waterway you'll reach a warehouse with a merchant outside. While Geralt and Triss talk to him, you'll get the following dialogue options.
Let's get to work - results in base pay
You'll pay in advance
Half in advance - results in 50% increase in base pay
Objective: Place rat traps around the warehouse - use your witcher senses to guide you (3)
This one is easier than it initally looks. Simply follow the wall around the warehouse. All of the locations are small holes located in the stone wall of the building.
Objective: Tell Triss you've completed your task
Head back once you're done so Triss can begin the spellwork. Clearing out rats, glamorous.
Objective: Talk to Triss after she activates the spell
Take a moment before talking to Triss again to prepare yourself for battle (replenish your potions, heal up etc). Once you are good to go, talk to Triss.
Objective: Fight the thugs
The merchant will rudely interrupt your conversation, followed closely by a group of three thugs (witch hunters). Ready your quen sign for defense or whichever you choose before engaging them. They are fairly high level (above the quest level), so make sure to use sound tactics (single them out, use igni's damage over time burn, break their guard with heavy attacks etc) to prevent them chewing through your health. As long as you are prepared however, they shouldn't pose too much of a threat.
Objective: Leave the warehouse
After the final thug hits the ground and you've finished looting the bodies, head outside to have a word with the merchant. After agreeing to your new pay scale, it's time to track down the new lead provided to you by Triss. So ends this simple quest.