The local town is running low on food, as goblins, orcs and ogres devastates the nearby farmlands. Merchants storing potatoes and other storage-friendly foods are making money on the shortage. The king calls for other towns to help deliver food, but the shipments are sabotaged, and everyone is blaming the merchants. Who are sabotaging the shipments? Why are enemies devastating the farmlands? And what does the king do, now that his people are starving and blaming the merchants?
The people are left wondering whether the merchants or the Diremaw sunk the ship, as both sides have an interest in keeping the supply of food low.
The farmlands were raided by the Diremaw, who want to eliminate opposition and does so by starving the town. The Diremaw has been know to cause problems, but are usually fended off by the local townguard, who guards the outer town perimeter. The Diremaw has rapidly been growing stronger, and the townguard was overrun last time the Diremaw attacked.
The faction that did indeed sink the ship hires the players. They want them to participate in taking down the Diremaw, such that it looks like they are innocent. They want the players to first find out why the ogres are cooperating with the Diremaw, and then make the players speak in front of the entire city, claiming that they and their organization is a hindrance to the Diremaw.