The party was adrift.
In the recent past though, things have changed. The gnome discovered that Harold, cleric of Desna, could cast locate object. So locate a purple crystal they did, underground. Searching and whatnot revealed an entry way near a spot where some townsfolk had recently disappeared.
The party assembled and a tremendous fight ensued between some Fetchlings and their seeming allies of mixed race and nature. In the room where the fighting occurred there was a great device.
After a large scale battle, the missing townsfolk were freed and the device was examined. It appears to be a device that governs the placement of the city throughout Golarion.
Players have controlled the device and sent it to the volcano near Absalom to further gear up.