Post Greyhawk Wars: 585 CY

26th of Planting, 586 CY

High 68
Low 45

A dry rain with fog present for the entire day.

After doing your best to rest morning finally comes. It is time to head out.
The journey from the Weary Horse Inn to the gates of Barovia is 15 miles away. The road is wet, muddy, and difficult to travel as it winds steadily uphill into the mountains.

After 1/2 the day (roughly 12 hours):

Gates of barovia 2
Jutting from the impenetrable woods on both sides of the road, high stone buttresses loom up gray in the fog. Huge iron gates hang from the stonework. Dew clings with cold tenacity to the rusted bars. Two statues of armed guardians silently flank the gate. Their heads, missing from their shoulders now lie among the weeds at their feet. They greet you only with silence.

When the adventureres approach within 50 feet, the gates open, screeching loudly as they move. The gates slam behind the PCs after they pass through.

The woods inside the gate match those you have been traveling through. Towering trees whose tops are lost in heavy gray mist block out all but a pallid light. The tree trunks almost touch. The thick, damp undergrowth presses in on you, making it impossible even to see one another at times. The woods have the silence of a forgotten grave, yet they exude the feeling of an unsounded scream.

Dead dude barovia
A mere 50 feet from the road, a dead villager lies in the trampled underbrush. He holds an envelope crumpled in his hand.The remains of his clothes are torn and raked with claw marks. Paw prints of many large wolves are pressed into the earth around the body. The man has obviously been dead for several days.

The letter is dated one week ago. It is sealed with a large initial ’’B." The parchment is worn and flimsy.

Real letter

After half an hour in the woods, you hear a lone wolf cry in the distance. Another wolf adds its voice each round. It’s a familiar sequence to all the PCs.

Barovia hamlet
Tall shapes loom out of the dense fog that surrounds everything. The muddy ground underfoot gives way to slick, wet cobblestones. The tall shapes become recognizable as the dwellings in a village. The windows of each house stare out as pools of black nothingness. No sound cuts the silence except for a single mournful sobbing that echoes through the streets from a distance

P cs 1
All shops are permanently closed. All unoccupied stores seemed to have been looted and ruined. Claw marks cover most of the walls. Some of the boarded up homes still have families living in them. The occupants either seem too scared or cannot speak in the common tongue so do not communicate to any of the adventurers.

Center Square
P cs center square

“Blood Of the Vine” Tavern (E2)
A wide shaft of light thrusts into the main square, its brightness like a solid pillar in the heavy fog. Above the gaping doorway spilling the light, a sign hangs precariously askew, proclaiming this to be the Blood on the Vine Tavern.

Close inspection of the sign reveals that the sign originally read, "Blood of the Vine.’’ but the “F” in “of” has been scratched over with an “N,” This once-finely appointed tavern has grown shoddy over the years.

A blazing fire in the hearth gives scant warmth to the few huddled souls within. The silence is broken only by the occasional sip of wine. There is a barkeep behind the bar. Three men, similar to the gypsies in the inn outside of town, are at a table to the left.

The barkeep cleans glasses, one after the other. When they are all clean, he starts over. If spoken to, he responds to orders for drinks in a dull, hollow voice. After serving drinks, he returns to cleaning glasses. He ignores most questions, answering only those about daily living, such as “Where can I buy supplies?” or “What is the name of this town?” He speaks a broken, distorted version of the PCs’ common language, and the same strange language being spoken at the inn outside of town.

I smark
Ismark
A man, sipping his wine in a dark corner comes up the PCs. In very poor common he introduces himself as lsmark.
After speaking with the adventurers he tells the PCs he knows that for some unknown reason, Strahd is strongly attracted to lsmark’s sister. lsmark’s father, the Burgomaster, has been dead for three days. A great holy symbol that provided their strongest protection from evil forces was stolen. Now, lreena is unprotected and helpless in the house.

lsmark does believe him to be a man so evil that the holy symbol might actually have protected her from him.
When he is shown the letter the PCs received at the start, he confirms that the Burgomaster did attempt to send a letter of warning. The PCs’ letter, however, was certainly not written by the Burgomaster.lsmark recognizes that the handwriting is not his father’s. He accepts the PCs as potential allies and invite them to his home, where lreena Kolyana waits.

Center square barovia

E3 Mad Mary’s Townhouse
Loud sobbing heard echoing through the streets clearly comes from this building.The house (about 40 feet square) is boarded up and barricaded from the inside. Mad Mary sits in the middle of the floor of an upstairs bedroom. She is lost in her sorrow and despondency. She barely recognizes the presence of anyone in the room.
Mary hid her beloved daughter, Gertruda, in this house for the girl’s entire life. Gertruda ran away from the house and has not been seen since. Her mother fears the worst.

E4 Burgomaster’s Home
A weary-looking mansion squats behind a rusting Iron fence. The Iron gates are twisted and torn. The right gate lies cast aside while the left swings crazily in the wind. The stuttering squeal and clang of the gate repeats with mindless precision. Weeds choke the grounds and press menacingly upon the house itself. Yet against the walls, the growth has been trodden down to form a path all about the dwelling. Deep claw marks have stripped the once-beautiful finish off the walls. Great black blottings tell of fires that have assailed the walls. Not a pane nor shard of glass stands In any window. All the windows are barred with heavy planking, each plank marked with stains of evil omen.

Ismark bangs on the door. Ireena answers. She is breathtakingly beautiful. After you manage to tear your eyes from her, you see the interior of the house is well furnished, although the fixtures show considerable wear. Obvious oddities are the boarded-up windows and the abundant holy symbols in every room.

Ireena
lreena Kolyana
The moment the door us opened the stench of death is overwhelming.
She tells you The Burgomaster is in the drawing room and is quite dead. The room is dark, despite the candles burning In his honor.

lreena will accompany the PCs to the castle if they will allow it. She has been bitten twice and can no longer be protected here by lsmark. The townspeople are afraid of her and avoid her. The PCs are her only hope for protection.

She Is a sweet but troubled woman. Although she may at first appear mild, she has a strong will and a good arm. She tells the PCs she is actually more skilled at arms than her brother. By no means a hapless victim, she will aid the party as best she can in saving herself. She does not remember her early past. She does not know how she came to Barovia or where she came from.

lreena informs the party that, each night, wolves and other terrible creatures attack the house. The Burgomaster’s heart could not stand the constant assault, and he died as a result of the stress and his fear. Strangely, since his death, the wolves have not attacked the house.
The Burgomaster has been dead for three days, but no one from the town has been brave enough to help lsmark take him out for burial. His death establishes that the letter presented to the party in the Weary Horse tavern is certainly forged.

She prepares herself by putting on studded leather and uses a well crafted scabbard to fight with.

E6 The Church
P cs church

Ireena and PCs decide it might be best to visit the priest in town for answers.
Atop a slight rise, against the very roots of the castle’s pillar stone, stands a gray, sagging edifice of stone and wood. This temple has weathered the assaults of evil for centuries, and is worn and weary. The bell tower leans to one side, its sweet tone long silenced. Flickering light shines through holes in the roof.

The building’s interior is in shambles, with overturned and broken benches littering the dusty floor. At a claw-scarred altar toward the far end stands the priest.

Barovia priest
Donavich, Barovian Priest
Donavich has been praying and chanting throughout the night. He spent this night, like every night, warding off evil from his temple. The priest knows that only these nightly prayers have kept the church a place of sanctity in Barovia. He also knows that there is a book in the library of the that might help destroy the devil Strahd, for Strahd is known to have kept meticulous notes on all that he did. “Perhaps some weakness of his may be found there,” he says.
The priest knows that lreena Kolyana is not the natural daughter of Kolyan lndrirovich. Although lreena never knew, Old Kolyan found her one day at the edge of the Svalich Woods near the pillar­ stone of Castle Ravenloft. She was but a child then and seemed to have no memory of her past. Old Kolyan adopted her and loved her dearly.

Donavich will not fight with the PCs and instead tells the PCs they are causing more harm than good.

As the evening begins to set in the priest barricades the doors and anything else that might let in the nightmares of the cemetery, or even worse yet; Strahd.

The PCs witness a ghostly procession take place. Dozens of spirits rise from the graveyard and march up the road to Castle Ravenloft. The priests explains to the adventurers the spirits march straight to the chapel and up the high tower stair to the top of the tower. There, they throw themselves down the shaft toward the crypts, where they disappear. “These are the spirits of previous adventurers who died try­ing to destroy Strahd,” he says. “Every night, they attempt to complete their quest, and each night they fail”

Strahd Attacks

Sam 2012 2
One by one what the priest calls “Strahd zombies” begin to appear from the graves. “He is here,” says the priest. Within rounds more than a dozen zombies are marching towards the front of the temple. The PCs and Donavich do what they can to bar the door. Boethian Volonwood hides near the top of the temple and prepares an assault of arrows.

Arisoth Darkleaf and Jang Milos decide to go back to the Burgomaster’s Home. Within minutes of arriving the home is assaulted by dire wolves and bats trying to break into the home.

Sam 2006 2
Strahd enters in gaseous form and turns into physical form. He looks at Ireena and then reaches for Gurvinvar “This is no place for you priest,” he says. He touches the duergar, turns back into gaseous form, and leaves. The priest of Ulaa begins to panic. “The touch of the undead is haunting him,” says Donavich.

Sam 2016 2
Arisoth Darkleaf]] and Jang make their way back to the temple. Outside of the temple is Strahd, the PCs, and now 4 wraiths. It is them vs the undead. Strahd cries out for Ireena then leaves. Arisoth and Davian take off for the wraiths. They seem obsessed with this specific form of undead. The go into a rage and attack with little or no caution.
The PCs eventually destroy the undead but not before one of them puts its chilling touch on Arisoth. He cringes in pain. He is now a lesser form of himself (he lost a level).

Tser Pool Encampment
As the PCs head down the road to the castle the canopy of mist and branches overhead suddenly gives way to black clouds booming far above as a clearing opens before them. Dry, brittle grass rustles in the biting wind. On the far side of the clearing are several colorful wagons parked on the banks of a pool. The mournful strains of an accordion mix with the moaning of the wind. Several brightly clad figures surround a large, roaring fire. The road passes close by this camp.

Ten Vistani are standing and sitting around the fire. When the PCs approach the camp, they are asked, in a very broken common tongue, to join in the singing around the campfire. Whether they join in the singing or not, one of the gypsies tells them, “It was fated that you would visit this humble camp. Madame Eva foretold your coming. She awaits you.” He then leads the PCs into a large tent.

Madam Eva’s Tent
Vistani card reading 2
Within the tent, all is dimly illuminated in washes of red light. A low table stands across from the entry, covered in a black velvet cloth. Glints of light seem to flash from a crystal ball oh the table as a hunched figure peers into its depths. She speaks. Her voice crackles like dry weeds. Her tone soars and falls like the wind outside. “At last you have arrived!” Her sudden cackling laughter bursts like mad lightning from her weathered lips.

She identifies each PC by name, and makes some reference to a past deed of each PC. She asks the PCs if they wish their for­tunes to be read.

She 1st pulls what would be considered a “5 of Diamonds”
“This card is a symbol of great power. it tells of a powerful force for good and protection against the forces of darkness. You should seek for a carefully hidden place of great worldly wealth. I see a blazing fire protecting the place. The diamond blesses your skills here but bodes poorly for your protection”

She then pulls what would be a considered a “King of Diamonds”
“This card tells of history. Knowledge of the ancient may help you understand a foe. A kings throne is the place to find this. The diamond blesses your skills here but bodes poorly for your protection”

Then what would be a “3 of Clubs”
“It is a place of tranquility, a harbor for the mighty and powerful. It is a place of wisdom, warmth and despair. Great Secrets are there. This is the object of your search. Ah, I see darkness and evil behind this card. It is a powerful man whose enemy is light, and whose power is beyond mortality. The club sustains your strength here, but holds you from your victory, taking more time than it otherwise would”

Then what would be a “Jack of Spades”
“This lies with a fallen prince of old. The brother of dark is light and he rests in this place. This card is good for you. It is a card of power and strength, the victors card. It tells of a weapon of light, a weapon with a vengeance. The spade is a dark shadow of evil cast over that place. You fight under its influence here.”

She then says, “one last card Georgio”
“Queen of Hearts”
She looks directly at Ireena.
“And here is the root card. Out of the darkness, and chaos, this card finds the reason and foundation for darkness and chaos. This card shows the purpose of all things. It is the key to life and death and else beyond. The darkness loves a light and desires it. Great subtle plans are in motion about you; plans that the dead may find warmth from the living”

The Carriage
Carriage 1

The adventurers continue down the fog-shrouded road, dead leaves crackling along the trail. The road splits in two. The dirt road continues to the northwest while a wider road leads east into the heart of the dense forest. Patches of cobblestone show through the east road, telling that it was once a great road. To the right side of the fork stands a large carriage with two horses. Both horses are black as pitch. They snort violent puffs of steamy breath into the chill air. The carriage door swings open silently.

The two horses hitched to the carriage look like normal, flesh and blood creatures. They wait patiently until the PCs get into the carriage. There is plenty of room in the carriage for all of the PCs. When the PCs get into the carriage, the horses draw it down the road to the drawbridge at a breakneck pace. The horses cannot be discouraged from their course

The Gates of Ravenloft
Sam 1989
After passing through the craggy peaks of the Balinoks, the road takes a sudden turn to the east and the startling, awesome presence of Castle Ravenloft towers before you. Twin guardhouses of turreted stone, broken from years of use and exposure, stand before you. Beyond these, a 50-foot-wide precipice gapes between the Balinok cliffs and the walls of Castle Ravenloft, a chasm of dizzying depth that disappears into the fog-shrouded distance far below. The lowered drawbridge of old, shorn-up wooden beams hangs precariously between you and the arched entrance to the courtyard.
Castle ravenloft
The chains of the drawbridge creak in the wind, their rusty iron straining with the weight. From atop the high walls, stone gargoyles seem to stare at you from their hollow sockets and grin hideously. A rotting wooden portcullis, green with growth, hangs In the entry tunnel. Beyond this, the main doors of Castle Ravenloft stand open. A rich warm light spills from them into the courtyard. Torches flutter sadly in sconces on both sides of the open doors

The drawbridge creaks and groans under any weight but is relatively sturdy. The bottom of the cliffs, 1,000 feet below. A patch of green slime hangs over the entry tunnel.

Castle  front courtyard 2
Thick, cold fog swirls in this darkened courtyard. Sporadic flashes of lightning lance the angry clouds overhead. Thunder pounds the courtyard. A light drizzle begins to fall. Ahead, torch flames flutter in the wind on each side of the keep’s open main doors. Warm light spills from the doors into the courtyard.Doors in the gate towers on east side of the tunnel entrance are shut against the rain. A howling wind rushes through the courtyard. The dark towers of the keep loom above In the mists. Flickering lights shine from a short round tower on the southeast side of the keep.

Main Floor
K7 Entry
1st floor a
The ornate, massive doors stand open. Fluttering torches cast dim yellow flickers of light out from the entry way. Twenty feet into the castle, a second set of doors suddenly swings open effortlessly and the sounds of organ music flow out. Overhead, in the entryway, four statues of horned and winged monstrosities glare down, their eyes flickering in the torchlight

Sam 2043 2

K8 Great Entry
Cobwebs hang from the dust-covered columns of this great hall. Illuminated by torches sputtering in iron sconces.The dust and webs cast strange. moving shadows across the faces of stone gargoyles squatting motionlessly around the rim of the domed ceiling. Cracked and faded ceiling frescoes display centuries of decay. Two doors of bronze stand closed to the east. To the north, a wide staircase climbs into darkness. The sounds of the growing storm outside are subdued in here. Sad and majestic organ tones float in from a lit hallway to the right.

K9 Guest Hall
Torchlight flickers against the walls of this vaulted hall. To the east, a dark ancient forbidding hallway runs Into darkness. Beside the opening, a suit of armor, oiled and glistening, stands at attention in a shallow alcove.To the west, large double doors stand slightly open, a steady bright light escaping through the crack. Swells of organ music come from behind the doors, spilling their melody of power and defeat into the hall

The hallway lies in darkness.Double doors open to the west.To the east, a singl arched corridor of stone Is Illuminated by light spilling down from the circular stairs now visible some two dozen feet away.The staircase descends into a terrible darkness. Beside the archway to the stairs, a suit of armor stands in a shallow alcove, a dark shadow falling across its
face plate.

1st floor b
This is a magnificent room,brilliantly lit by three massive crystal chandeliers. Pillars of stone gleam against dull white marble walls, supporting the ceiling.In the center of the room, a long,heavy table Is covered with a fine white damask cloth. The table is laden with delectable foods of every type: roasted beast basted in a savory sauce, roots and herbs of wide variety, and sweet fruits and vegetables. Places are set for each of you with fine delicate china and silver. At each Is a crystal goblet filled with an amber liquid whose delicate fragrance tantalizes your senses.
Sam 2002 2
At the center of the far west wall stands a massive organ. Its pipes blare out a thunderous melody whose tone blends greatness and despair. Seated before the keys, his back toward you, a single caped figure pounds the keys in rapturous ecstasy.The figure suddenly stops and a deep silence falls over the dining hall. Then the figure slowly turns toward you.
K 10 dining hall illusion of strahd playing organ 2

Strahd welcomes the PCs and invites them to dine. He converses with the PCs for 3 rounds, never moving from the organ bench. When the 3 rounds are over mocking laughter echoes throughout the hall. The bone-chilling wind rises up and roars through the hall, putting out all non magical lights. The PCs hear the screech of ancient hinges and the solid thud of many heavy doors slamming shut, one after another, in the distance. They also hear the portcullis dang shut and the tired groan of the aged drawbridge pulling up.

It doesn’t take long for the adventurers to figure out this some kind of illusion. Jang inspsct the figure and verify it is some kind of mannequin being controlled by a mechanical device. A closer inspection reveals a small space between the organ and wall. There seems to be some kind of inconsistency in the wall.

Arisoth hears a strange noise outside of the doors. He decides to take a look. Total darkness filled with a familiar moaning. Wraiths. The elf slams the door shut. “Hurry,” he says

Jang finds the secret door and forces it open. The PCs hurry through. The thieves do what they do and seal the door.

Castle map k13
K11 South Ground Archer’s Post
A single arched corridor leads to the south. There are several mirrors in this room. A tall, dark figure in a flowing cape floats in the middle of the room. Old archer’s slits in the north and west walls are bricked up

K12 Turret Post
A high, domed ceiling caps the three-foot­ diameter room before you. Frescoes, faded with age, adorn the ceiling but are impossible to make out. Thin arrow slits, 2 feet tall and 4
inches wide, peer out over the courtyard.

K13 Turret Post Access Hall
This long, narrow corridor runs east and west. Cobwebs fill the hall and obstruct sight beyond a few feet

K64 Guards’s Stair
The PCs find a spiral stair that goes up and down. They choose to go up 1 floor.

The adventurers go up to the next (K13) Turret Post Access Hall. Arisoth notices a secret door. After checking it for traps the PCs enter the room

Jack Cronus Is Fucked. Or is He?
K25 castle

K25 King’s Audience Hall
Rain and wind burst Into this room through the broken glass and iron framing of a large window in the long wall. This immense room stands In chilly, brooding darkness. Hundreds of dusty cobwebs drape the room, hiding the ceiling from view. Directly across from the window are a set of double doors, the ornate carvings in their wood obscured by a thick layer of grime. A single door is also tucked into the same wall, like a lost and forlorn child.
At the far end of the hall, a huge throne stands atop a raised platform. The back of the throne is turned to the room. At the other end of the hall, opposite the throne, twin staircases lead down into darkness.

The PCs check the throne and dais. They quickly realize there is tomb on top of the dais.
The book is bound in a thick black leather cover with brass hinges and fastenings. The pages are of parchment, and very brittle.
Most of the book is written in a curious shorthand. Stains and age have make much of the work illegible.

Arisoth attempts to read from the tomb.
“I am the Ancient, I am the Land. My beginnings are lost in the darkness of the past. I was the warrior, I was good and just. I thundered across the land like the wrath of a just god, but the war years and the killing years wore down my soul as the wind wears stone into sand”

He had trouble with the next few pages, then;
“The death she saw in me turned her from me. And so I came to hate death, my death. My hate is very strong; I would not be called “death” so soon."
He has trouble with many more pages. Some of the others attempt to read the pages and fail. The elf seems obsessed with the tomb.

The party hears the sounds of the wraiths coming up the staircases. “The same ones from the 1st floor,” says Arisoth Darkleaf

To keep them out Jack puts up a wall of fire. A couple of rounds later Strahd shows up and dispels the wall. A loud laughter is hear echoing throughout the room.

Ireena and Jack get into an argument. The mage walks away and whispers something to himself.
He begins to scream. Ireena turns to see what’s wrong and segments later falls to ground, DEAD. The others manage to overt their view or look away just in time. Jack falls to the ground. Screaming in agony he hols his hands over his eyes. “MY EYES! MY EYES,” he screams over and over. He passes out from the pain.

Sam 2022 2
The others check on Ireena and confirm she is dead. You can tell her death caught her off guard. A look of shock is still frozen on her face.

A few rounds later the mage is no longer unconscious. "My eyes. What has happend?? My eyes…!, he says.
One of the PCs gives him a piece of cloth to wrap around them, for now.

The ranger, Davian Urthadar, whispers something to Boethian Volonwood. “The mage cannot be trusted anymore. We must do what we have to do.” Jack overhears them. He begins to walk the rangers way. The ranger is grasping for his sword. Suddenly Shavinski The Orc Slayer grapples the ranger face 1st on the floor. Chaos takes over…

The cleric, Gurvinvar, throws his rope of entanglement at Jack. He misses

The mage backs up to the northern part of the room. He puts up a wall of ice.
Strahd appears behind him but does him no harm. Jack decides it is best to flee from everyone and takes off through the northeast double doors.

See your player secrets

And then:

K47_Ravenloft.jpg

K47 The Landing
One by one they enter the trap and taken to a small flagstone landing wobbling slightly underfoot. Two stairwells sit side by side on the long wall. The chill draft of wind whistles mournfully through the small room, rushing down from one set of circular stairs. Pausing only for a moment at this landing, the wind continues down the other stair. A single doorway with a heavy wooden door, fortified with metal bands, stands opposite the ascending stairwell. Beside this door, an ancient portrait of e bearded man stands watch over the area, its still eyes staring defiantly back at the PCs.
One member of the party sees the eyes in the portrait shift to look at him. The rest of the party see only an unnervingly defiant portrait.. Suddenly through a recently created hole in the wall a small bird appears. It’s eyes looking away from the rest of the party. “It’s Jack,” says Jang Milos.
After several rounds the party decides it would be best to let the mage back into the group. They need him and they know it. Davian Urthadar is hardly comfortable with this decision but does decide to allow it if Jack covers his eyes with a blindfold. He refuses, the party bickers, and they ultimately move on together as 1 group again.

100 feet down the stairway they come across a young lady. She seems hurt but does not appear wounded. She insists she escaped and is trying to leave the castle. Jack isn’t buying it. The lawful good characters insist on taking her with them.

SAM_2805.JPG
73. Dungeon Hall
Down more than 200 feet, the stairs descend into black, still water that fills an arched hallway before you. The water’s surface Is like dark, mirrored glass, disturbed only occasionally by the “thwick” of a drop falling from the ceiling.Two dozen feet down the hall, arched doorways lead from each side of the hallway. In each arched doorway, an iron door stands closed and partially submerged. All Is still except for a weak cry for help coming through the door to the north.

Jack, Arisoth Darkleaf, and the girl stay behind as the rest of the party investigates the hall and the large room to the west. They decide to ignore cry’s from the room to the north.

SAM_2806.JPG76. Torture Room
Dark, ominous shapes Jut up from the still, brackish water that fills this room. An undefined chill crawls up your spine as you survey motionless shape. An arched passage, also partly submerged, lies on one side of the square room. On a rounded balcony, high above the water, two high-backed chairs look down.
The ceiling is 17 feet above the water, which is 3 feet deep. To the north, a large balcony (room 77) stands 7 feet above the level of the water in the room (10 feet off the floor). Close examination reveals that the dark shapes in the room are racks, iron maidens, stocks, and other torture apparatus. The skeletons of their last victims seem frozen in silent screams.
K73.jpg
Skeletons attack once the party is in the room. Zombies are completely submerged in the water. The zombie rise slowly upward. Their slime-gray arms clawing through the water as they attack. The skeletons pull themselves off the torture devices.
Shavinksi_room_K76.jpg

vampire_maiden.jpg
While the the fighters do their best to take care of the undead the girl reveals her true identity: a female vampire. She attacks Jack, grabs him, and then heads up the stairs. Jack is left near dead on the stairway. Jack attempts to burn the vampire alive by putting up a wall of fire. He knows this will cause the death of the halfling which will be in the way of the fire. The vampire is not affected but Jang us burned alive. At least he was unconscious when he died.
The vampire jumps on Jack. She pins him to the ground. Bite after bite. level drained after level, finally the PCs, after taking a severe beating from the undead, arrive. The wall of fire dissipates but it is nearly too late. Jack is near death and he looks it. They do arrive in time to keep him from crossing over but will it really matter?
Jack_drained_to_1st_level.jpg

As the PCs attend to Jack and deal with the remains of Jang, Boethian hears what seems to be movement in the water where they just finished fighting the wraiths. More undead? Something else?? They move in to investigate.

The rangers make their way back down the stairs and notice something in the shadows. Their arrows pointed in that direction, they call out before attacking.

Dr._Rudolph.jpg
“I am Dr. Dr. Rudolph Van Richten. I mean you no harm,” the man coming out of the shadow says. He is carrying a wooden stake in his left hand, a hammer in the right, and wearing some type of amulet around his neck.

After what the PCs have been through it is nearly impossible to trust anyone. The Dr. notices the mage, Arisoth, is badly injured and immediately begins working on his wounds. “Stand back sir”, says Auron. But before the PC’s can manage to judge the Dr. as friend or foe the moans of the undead return. “They are coming down the stairs,” says Gurvinvar. The wraiths are back.
wraith_encounter.jpg
Seconds later the PCs, including the Dr. are forced tor retreat back down the stairs and into the hallway, ultimately backed up to the torture chamber.
Before the fight is over several levels are lost and Jack falls. The Dr does what he can to destroy Jack before turning into a wraith. Too late. The party is forced to put him down.

“Dr, you have, at least for now, can help us,” says Davian.. The Dr. explains he is looking for a special sword called The Sunsword. He explains it is a great artifact that can destroy undead.

K77_Ravenloft.jpg
The party decide to climb up to the observation balcony 7’ up with the 2 thrones.
Two large thrones stand on this balcony. Behlnd the thrones Is a wide, red velvet curtain running from wall to wall. The room is oppres­sively silent, as quiet as a tomb. Dampness and mildew fill the PCs nostrils. The Dr. investigates the thrones and finds a bag containing 600 pp hidden beneath the western most throne.
K78.jpg
An additional 10-foot section of this room is hidden behind the curtain. The far wall has a door in the center of it.
The Dr investigates the door. He is somewhat confident it is safe to open the door but cannot be 100% sure. One of the PCs decides to open the door. It explodes. The party takes massive fire damage as the small room begins to quickly fill with smoke. The hurry into the room to the north.
K78B.jpg
This square room rises to a flat ceiling. Gargoyle carvings smile, revealing their teeth, from high upon the walls.Three faces are lit by a brazier, which Is planted in the center of the floor. High overhead, an hourglass with writing on Its base hangs suspended above the brazier. All of its sand is in the upper portion, somehow refusing to run down into the bottom. In the center of the room,next to the brazier,Is a golden chest. A single door stands in one wall, while three doors line the opposite wall. In the alcoves In the center of the two side walls stand two bronze statues of giant skeletons. Each statue has four arms, one with a shield, one with a spear, and the other two with their palms turned toward the ceiling. Their eyes seem to watch as you walk about the room.
The statues each hold 2 stones: a ruby, sapphire, emerald, and an opal.
When all the doors are shut, the sands in the hourglass start falling.
Boethian quickly recognizes it is a trap. He begins to collect the stones but but before he can figure out what to do the statues animate. A flame, about the size of a campfire, ignites in the pelvis of each skeleton, its flames licking the inside of the rib cage. They attack but do minimal damage. The PCs got lucky. The statues return to their original positions and the hour glass resets. Again the sand begins to fall.
While this is happening The Dr. investigates the chest. He decides to pick the lock but fails. A green poisonous gas fills the room. Luckily only 1 of the PCs succumb to the sleeping gas. The chest is empty.
One of the PCs takes a minute to read the writing on the base of the hourglass:
“In the palm o{ my hand
Is the time left to thee
When it is consumed
Will the flame set you free”

Once again the statues animate. They begin to attack. This time the PCs realize can do little or no damage. Unless they immediately escape the room, they are doomed. While the PCs are trying to fend off the statues Davian decides to take a closer look at the empty chest. He discovers a secret compartment. The trunk actually opens from the back and contains a deck; two scolls; and two potions o{ healing..
The statues again miss more than hit. The PCs know they will not be that lucky again and again. Boethian one of the stones into the fire. One of the doors opens and reveals a stairway going up.But before the party can decide what to do Davian pulls a card from the deck and says, “I wish we were all home”
The PCs. minus the Dr, find themselves back in the forest. The rangers quickly realize they are back in the Gnarley. They are home. The cleric takes a second to check the scrolls and discovers one of them is a clerical scroll with dispel evil, flamestrlke, raise dead, and restoration. He brings back Jang.
SAM_2833.JPG

The rangers will 1st travel to The Free City of Greyhawk before heading off into the woods for Corustaith. They will rest for the rest of the evening/late morning and then prepare for the 5 day trip to the city.

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Juan

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