Accidentally let party wander into a high level situation, how do I help them get out without cheesing?

TL;DR – due to poor planning on my part in my sandbox-esque game, a party of four Level 5s (fighter, warlock, non-healer bard, wizard) is about to wander into a high level situation and I’d like them to not die while still letting them accomplish something.

Here’s the situation.

The party recently emerged from the Feywild to find that two months had passed on the outside. They ended up near the capital city. Okay, cool. I prepare some rumors they can dig up so they can help find out what they missed. One character in particular has a lot of backstory in the capital, so we hashed out some of the relevant NPCs.

In an attempt to set up and highlight how tensions are escalating in the kingdom with the threat of war on the horizon, as well as to set up an NPC Big Bad later, I let them find out that some people around the capital have been “disappearing” on order of the Queen’s Spymaster because they were suspected of being spies for the enemy empire. The Queen herself has been rumored to be ill and has definitely become hard to get a hold of. One of the NPCs who disappeared was one of a character’s school friends, who we’d hashed out the existence of between sessions.

Now, these disappearances were all on trumped up charges. The character who’d spent the most time in the capital actually is a spy for the enemy empire and would know this. She was adamant – and correctly so – that her friend was innocent.

What I expected to happen – and this is on me – was that they’d hear that the second most powerful person in the kingdom had a direct hand in these events and get out of town. The entire group is Level 5. I expected this entire setup to be set dressing for stuff they’d deal with later. It’s not like they don’t have a lot of side quests and leads to chase down elsewhere.

Instead, they resolved to do whatever they could to rescue this girl and get to the bottom of the situation.

Here’s what I know that they have no feasible way to find out at this point:

  • The Queen’s Spymaster has defected – she’s orchestrating events to deliberately try and undercut faith in the government as well as generally sow chaos
  • She’s not operating in the good faith the group assumes she is. This is not an innocent mistake or paranoia they can assuage.
  • The Queen’s Spymaster is actually one of the six heroes of long ago legend and is thus a Level 15 assassin living in secret.
  • The Queen herself is not even in the city at this time, and (as a high level sorcerer) she’s left a simulacrum in her place to help allay suspicion.
  • The group has rolled really badly on Perception checks to see if they’re being tailed and they are, in fact, being intermittently tailed.

    I don’t want to punish them for jumping in to this plot with both feet. I don’t want to stonewall them from finding this missing girl since they’re super invested in doing so, and they know she’s still in the city.

How can I help arrange things so they have a chance of succeeding while still putting them in a reasonable amount of danger?

Accidentally added a PPA twice

Today, using add-apt-repository, I accidentally added a PPA that I had already added a few weeks ago.

Do I need to undo this, and if so, how do I undo it?

This is not a duplicate of this question. I want to know whether adding a duplicate PPA will cause a problem. There are no duplicate files in /etc/apt/sources.list.d.

Grub accidentally installed on my main OS instead of USB

I’m new to this forum. I run windows 10 on my PC and successfully installed ubuntu onto a USB flash drive, but ended up installing the Grub bootloader onto my main PC nvme drive that my OS is on. It doesn’t effect my booting in anyway. My PC will boot straight into windows and into ubuntu when I f12 to the boot manager screen and select ubuntu. Its shows my exact main OS drive twice in the windows boot manager. It shows my main drive and then it shows my main drive again with along with the name ubuntu. I know how to do it right next time and how to get the bootloader onto my USB drive, but how to I remove grub from windows PC? I have no idea where it installed and how to remove it. Thanks in advance everyone!

I have moved default files to other folder accidentally and now machine not starting

I have executed following command accidentally on Ubuntu 18.04, now no command(ls, sudo, cp, mv) is working except cd

 sudo mv /* /myfolder/subfolder/ 

I have tried to restart the machine and now getting black screen with following text:

error: file '/grub/i386-pc/normal.mod' not found. grub rescue> 

Can somebody help me to restore my machine as all of blockchain projects are insdie. Thanks in advance.

I want to copy my HOME folder to a USB flash drive but I can’t. I accidentally removed Python 3 and lost many important stuff

I accidentally removed Python 3 from “etc” and now I lost many important folders, programs and also the Gnome shell. I know, I’m stupid.

I can still log in with my user but now everything is like this

I believe the right solution is to install ubuntu 18.04 again.

Since my $ HOME is folder is undamaged (everything I had there remained: see) I want to copy it to a flash drive so I can install Ubuntu again without losing my personal files.

But when I but when I put my USB flash drive it shows me this message:

[ 264.065197] sd 6:0:0:0: [sdb] Asking for cache data failed

[ 264.065242] sd 6:0:0:0: [sdb] Assuming drive cache: write through

see

How can I solve this to copy my home to a flash drive using this terminal?

I don’t know if there is a way to restore everything again, I thing reinstalling it should better, but if there is another solution to this without reinstalling ubuntu again it feel free to share.

Is accidentally accessing files through directory listing a fellony? [on hold]

I’m a novice but has pondered something. If a service provider has certain files accessible in a directory on their web server, I guess if they are sensitive/personal (say, supposed to be members access only) the service provider can be sued or be responsible for breaking GDPR laws.

But is the person who accidentally accessed or stumbled upon the security issue and failed to report it in any peril? I mean just mistyping the URL will list the directory. Where does the responsibility lie and can this poor soul who stumbled upon the breach and browsed around (without redistributing any material or links), committed hacking and a felony?

If so this puts a whole new perspective to security as it might cause problems for people in even more ways than I initially thought of.

Accidentally installed Ubuntu Desktop program on Server – now things are playing up

I accidentally installed a program on Ubuntu Server which was actually for Ubuntu Desktop (Grsync). Now, other programs that worked fine are coming up with this error when run:

(Duplicati.GUI.TrayIcon:26310): Gtk-WARNING **: 01:05:28.218: cannot open display: 

The program in question here is Duplicati, which runs a GUI through port 8200. Anyway I can fix my error?

Are there issues with allowing parties to accidentally succeed at encounters with DC checks?

During Waterdeep Dragon Heist, there are a number of faction missions, one of which is:

With a suggested solution:

Given that a suggested solution involves the party spending money and checks of a given DC.

The party’s solution was:

So, while fun, roleplay not rollplay, but without paying or using checks, the party seem to have solved the requirements of the mission.

What are the issues with not charging/challenging the players in this case? Are there any compelling reasons to force the party to follow the suggested, published solutions closer?